Controversy gores first SA rhino horn auction

rhino auctionBy TINTSWALO BALOYI
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – SOUTH Africa’s first ever legal auction of rhinoceros horn has sparked tensions between conservationists and the man behind the momentous yet controversial auction.
World experts on rhino conservation, among them International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), are dismayed and denounced the upcoming exercise as an intended to enrich an elite and likely to speed the road to extinction for one of the world’s most endangered species.
Van’s Auctions will auction the horn online from Monday.
It will be followed by a physical auction on September 19.
It reportedly comes from the stockpiles of South Africa’s biggest private rhino breeder, John Hume, who according to reports owns about 1 500 rhinos. He owns the world’s largest herd of the endangred animal. They are bred at Klerksdorp in the North West.
The auction has been advertised online, in English, Chinese and Vietnamese versions.
The main markets for trafficked rhino horn are Vietnam and China, where the horn is believed fictitiously to have medicinal properties.
“This sale of rhino horn is inexcusable,” said Dr Joseph Okori, IFAW Director for Southern Africa.
“It is a sale based entirely on the greed of one man, plays into the hands of poachers and illegal wildlife traders and ignores the fact that more than 7 000 rhinos have been brutally killed for their horns in less than ten years.”
Okori lamented that “countless brave” rangers had also died trying to protect rhinoceros.
Hume has been quoted as saying the profits from the sale of the horn would help him better protect his rhino populations.
Meanwhile, it has been reported the Department of Environmental Affairs had not yet approved the permit for the auction.
CAJ News

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Posted by on Aug 17 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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