This is the result of political indifference

Written by Elise Serfontein

Anyone following this crisis will know that corruption at all levels is killing rhinos and has been for years now. Systematic and specifically targeted infiltration to criminalize useful individuals to achieve criminal objectives. Calls for integrity management in state run reserves has been ping-ponged across the boardroom table for years now, as have so many other interventions that fail to be implemented or fall on deaf ears. And that’s just the thing. The deaf ears. The apathy. The void of urgency and accountability, the inability and inefficiency. Indifference enables corruption to thrive, and while there are (hard won) solutions to corruption, how on earth does one address the biggest threat to rhinos – political indifference?

Token, tick in the box, pacify the public, honey coated media statements come back to bite when the truth is revealed. Especially when the truth is scores of carcasses and it’s been known for years that the killing fields would shift. Trapped in this vicious cycle of the annihilation of a species lie a deeply determined and emotionally invested group of frontline heroes (State and private) that are being thrown to the wolves, let down by our government leadership in their culture of criminality and astounding incompetence. Government is failing the rhino; government is failing its people on the ground.