ZimParks enforces game meat sale ban

HARARE - Zimbabwe is enforcing a ban on sales of game meat amid fears wild meat trade and consumption may lead to disease transmission and amid mounting pressures posed by the overexploitation of threatened animals.

Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Authority (ZimParks) said those found selling game meat without authorisation faced the full wrath of the law.

“We would like to advise members of the public who wish to venture into game meat selling to approach ZimParks offices for assistance on how to acquire the permit,” ZimParks spokesperson Caroline Washaya-Moyo said in a statement yesterday.

Wild meat trade and consumption may lead to disease transmission via the hunters, middle market distributors and sellers, and consumers that come into contact with the animals or meat. Amid a crippling drought that has culled cows countrywide, wild meat is now being consumed as the easily available and affordable source of animal protein, either directly harvested from the wild, received as a gift within social exchange networks, or purchased.

Washaya-Moyo said on December 27, Hwange provincial magistrate Sharon Rosemani sentenced a 31-year-old villager to three months in prison for illegally selling kudu and impala game meat.

Thabani Shoko of Gamba village in Lukosi in Hwange was arrested on Christmas day after being caught selling dried game meat to truck drivers at Cross Dete.

Shoko was found in possession of 44 bundles of dried game meat weighing 10 kgs. He confessed to poaching the meat in Sinamatella, Hwange National Park, according to the ZimParks.

Shoko was charged for contravening section 59 (b) of the Parks and Wildlife Act chapter 2014 of 1996 which deals with the removal of game meat from one place to another without a permit.

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