SABC News - N West officials accused of issuing illegal permits to rhino poachers:Wednesday 14 November 2012

N West officials accused of issuing illegal permits to rhino poachers

Wednesday 14 November 2012 05:52

SABC

North West DA leader, Chris Hattingh says of the 179 permits issued, 141 were illegal.

North West DA leader, Chris Hattingh says of the 179 permits issued, 141 were illegal.(SABC)

The Democratic Alliance has accused North West officials of issuing illegal permits to rhino poachers. The DA leader in the province, Chris Hattingh, told the legislature that of the 179 permits issued, 141 were illegal, including one issued to poaching kingpin Chumlong Lemthongthai.


He was sentenced to 40 years in jail earlier this week.  The number of rhinos killed for their horns in South Africa this year now stands at 549.

Over 220 were killed in the North West Province.   

The DA’s Chris Hattingh says, “There is a major problem on farms where after farmers apply for permits there is suddenly a massive amount of poaching on that farm. We suspect officials are involved.”
 
Rhino owners are currently busy relocating their animals to places of safety, under heavy security.


The MEC for Economic Development, Environment and Tourism, Motlalepula Rosho, says the department will ask the police to follow up the allegations of government involvement in rhino poaching

The MEC for Economic Development, Environment and Tourism, Motlalepula Rosho says the department will ask the police to follow up the allegations of government involvement in rhino poaching.    


 “If there is anybody with information that there are officials involved, we would really appreciate if they can bring that information to law enforcements.”

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