Anti-poaching laws should be stiffer

EDITOR — I am one of the people that love our environment and would help in all ways to see to it that our environment and our wildlife are conserved.

I was disturbed by the recent Hwange cyanide poisoning incident which  caused a serious ecological disaster.

This disaster  will be difficult to manage for a couple of years to come.

The consequences of the cyanide poisoning are huge considering Hwange National Park is the biggest wildlife sanctuary in Zimbabwe.

In this case not only elephants were affected but several animals, among them lions, hyenas, cheetahs and birds, were caught in the cross fire after either drinking from poisoned water bodies or eating the dead elephants.

The anti-poaching laws should be tough so that one will think twice before embarking on such a practice.

On paper, Zimbabwe has strong anti-poaching laws and a first offender convicted for unlawfully killing a rhino or elephant is sentenced to nine years or 11 years for second or subsequent offences, as per the amended section 128 of the Parks and Wildlife Act Chapter 20:14.

I was happy with the 16  years given to the three of the eight people arrested in connection with the cyanide attack.

Besides the law, much more needs to be done to curb poaching, including bringing to book people behind the poaching syndicates.

Tendai,

Bulawayo

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