The Portfolio Committee on Environmental Affairs hosted a two-day colloquium on captive lion breeding under the title: Captive Lion Breeding for Hunting In South Africa: Harming Or Promoting The Conservation Image Of The Country.
Day One of the Colloquium
was divided into four parts. In part one, the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Environmental Affairs gave an opening address and Ms Edna Molewa, Minister of the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) gave the keynote address.
The Chairperson stressed that this Colloquium will not be just another talk shop without being followed by action. Meticulous records of the proceedings will be kept and a detailed report will be produced with detailed recommendations to be considered by the PC Committee, after which it will be tabled in the House for adoption. Whatever outcome to the Colloquium, it will be followed up by the Committee with the sheer tenacity of the hungry lion chasing its prey.
A fundamental question
It is deliberate the theme of this colloquium poses a fundamental question in relation to the conservation image of South Africa. Even though it is in favour of the sustainable use of biodiversity resources, South Africa finds itself increasingly isolated at important international conservation and hunting platforms as a result of this policy stance. Major questions are not only raised in relation to ethical and fair chase hunting considerations, but more concerns are being raised about the absence of scientific evidence showing the conservation value of canned hunting as well as the application of the precautionary principle.
Day Two of the Colloquium
was divided into three parts. In part one, questions were asked and comments were made based on the previous day’s presentations. The Scientific Authority of the South African National Biodiversity Institute indicated that it was not answerable to the public, but was only answerable to the Minister of the Department of Environmental Affairs, even though it operated 100% off public funds. The Parliamentarians were asked to clarify whether that was an acceptable position. The Threatened or Protected Species regulation had been implemented by some provinces eleven years later. How could it take 11 years to take action on that very important matter?
Credit Day 2 – conservationaction.co.za