Stop Rhino Poaching in South Africa

  • by: Ula Gillion
  • recipient: Ms Buyelwa Sonjica, Minister of Environmental Affairs, South Africa
On Wednesday, the 14th of July 2010, a female rhino was found stabbed to death in the Krugersdorp Game Reserve. Her horn was removed with a chain saw. She was left bleeding profusely before she died. Nearby, rangers found her 9 month old calf wandering aimlessly.

The increase in rhino poaching in South Africa is partly ascribed to the disbanding of specialist police units. Despite the fact that the Minister of Environmental affairs has promised to establish a task team to investigate incidences in rhino poaching, the unit is not yet functional and rhino poaching has been on the rise. There is also a general lack of funding, skills and equipment available to employees.

This has been the fourth incident in 12 months. The rhino population has plummeted from a high of 65 000. Presently there are 3600 black rhinos left in Southern Africa.

Fifteen hours after the carcass of his mother was found, rangers managed to capture the calf after a drawn out game of hide-and-seek with rangers. He weighs 300kg and suffered no dehydration or injuries. His behavior is currently being monitored and decisions are being made on where to place him.

With this petition we aim to urge the Minister of Environmental Affairs in South Africa to get the investigating task team established and fully operational as a matter of urgency. We also aim to focus her attention to make more funding available for skills development and adequate equiptment for employees of the game reserves in the country.

Please sign this petition to bring these urgent matters under the attention of the Minister and to help curb the carnage of our wildlife.
Dear Ms Sonjica,

We, the undersigned, wish to bring the latest barbaric incident of rhino poaching under your attention in which a female rhino was stabbed to death, her horn removed with a chain-saw, and left to die, while her 9 month old calf was found roaming aimlessly near his mother's carcass.

There has been an increase in rhino poaching and we request that a task team be established to investigate the incidences of rhino poaching and that the team become fully operational as soon as possible.

Furthermore we request that adequate funding be made available for skills development and acquiring proper equipment for employees at game reserves.

We thank you for taking the time to read this letter.
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