CAPE TOWN South
Africa (Xinhua) -- The South African
government on Monday denied reports that it has approved
international trade in rhino horns.
international trade in rhino horn is and remains prohibited in
terms of all international protocols that South Africa is party
to, particularly the Convention on International Trade in
Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES)," the Department of
Environmental Affairs (DEA) said.
This came after a South African private game rancher used
social websites to advertise an online auction of rhino horns,
sparking concern that this could undermine the 40-year-old
international ban on rhino horn trading.
The DEA would like to emphasize that international trade in
rhino horns would be illegal in terms of domestic regulations
and South Africa’s international obligations, said DEA
spokesperson Albi Modise.
South African rhino breeder John Hume is planning to sell
part of his massive stockpile of rhino horns in a global online
auction, scheduled for August 21.
Hume won a series of court battles earlier this year to
overturn the eight-year-old moratorium on the domestic sale of
Although a Constitutional Court order on April 5 this year
set aside the moratorium on the domestic trade in rhino horns,
the domestic trade in rhino horns is subject to the issuing of
the relevant permits in terms of the relevant laws, regulations
and applicable provincial legislation in order to be able to
trade nationally, according to Modise.
"The planned sale of rhino horn by private rhino owners
relates to domestic trade only," Modise said.
The DEA can confirm that it has received an application to
sell rhino horn by means of an online rhino auction from a
private owner and is in a process of evaluating the application
in line with the provisions of the Threatened or Protected
Species Regulations, Modise said.
"In terms of the auction, it should be noted that national
regulations and legislation with regard to the domestic
commercial trade in rhino horn will have to be complied with.
"This means that the buyers and the seller would have to
abide by all laws applicable within the borders of South
Africa," Modise added.
The South African government and the DEA remain committed to
a well-regulated process implementing its domestic legislation,
as well as all CITES provisions, to manage the trade in
endangered species, such as rhino, in a manner that is not
detrimental to the survival of the species in the wild, Modise
South Africa, home to about 90 percent of the world’s rhino
population, bears the brunt of rhino poaching, loosing 1,175
rhinos to poaching in 2015.
The government introduced the moratorium on rhino horn trade
eight years ago to curb rhino poaching.
But private ranchers say that the moratorium has failed to
stop the scourge, and therefore should be lifted.
Human Rights Commission
condemns police minister’s remarks on foreigners
JOHANNESBURG South Africa(Xinhua) --
The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC)
condemned the remarks made by the Deputy Minister of Police,
Bongani Mkongi on Monday which they said have a potential to
ignite anti-immigrant sentiments.
Mkongi, last Friday accused foreigners of economic sabotage,
hijacking buildings and occupying 80 percent of buildings in
Hillbrow. He said the future president of South Africa could be
a foreigner if foreigners continue to dominate the country.
The Human Rights Commission said the statement is xenophobic
and encouraged leaders to refrain from such utterances.
"The SAHRC strongly condemns the irresponsible utterances by
the Deputy Minister of Police, Bongani Mkongi. The SAHRC is of
the view that statements such as this have the potential of
fueling anti-immigrant sentiments and is in fact xenophobic,"
said the Commission in a statement.
There have been xenophobic attacks on foreign nationals this
year in Johannesburg, Pretoria and other parts of the country.
The Commission said it is unfortunate that Mkongi said this
in such context.
"Not only are the statements factually incorrect, they also
unjustifiably ascribe crime to foreign nationals as an
The SAHRC calls on all individuals to exercise caution when
addressing the public so as to not instigate xenophobic
violence," said the commission.
They encouraged leaders to constructively shape public debate
and social cohesion through evidence-based statements.
The SAHRC said repeating stereotypes does not advance the
goals of upholding the fundamental rights of all in society.
The SAHRC is currently investigating if the statements by the
Police Minister Fikile Mbalula that Zimbabwean ex-soldiers are
responsible for violent crimes in the country amounts to a hate
Another traditional leader, Goodwill Zwelithini was
investigated after he said foreigners should pack their bags and
leave the country and not overcrowd the streets.
The Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba is also being
investigated by the SAHRC for accusing undocumented immigrants
for crimes in the city.