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Media Release: Community stands up against rhino poaching
Date: 18th April 2012
The Matsulu community on the Western boundary of the Kruger National Park (KNP) actively helped South African National Parks (SANParks) apprehend a suspected rhino poacher recently. SANParks would like to thank the community for their assistance and asks other communities bordering KNP to follow suit.
William Mabasa, HOD: Public Relations, said “this noble deed is a clear indication that the communities around the Kruger National Park will not tolerate criminal activity, specifically rhino poaching, in their own backyard any more”.
Three suspected poachers thought to be working in the Khandizwe Mountains between Berg-en-Dal and the Western Boundary of the KNP were spotted and apprehended by field rangers on Friday 6 April 2012. William Mabasa said “after being questioned by SANParks officials the suspected poachers indicated that a vehicle and driver were waiting for them to arrive with rhino horn in the Matsulu Township”.
A SANParks helicopter was dispatched to where the vehicle was waiting to apprehend the remaining suspected poacher. As the helicopter approached, the suspected poacher abandoned his vehicle and fled on foot into the township where a gathering of local community members realised SANParks was after the fleeing suspect and gave chase. They tackled the unsuspecting poacher and within a few minutes he was arrested and restrained by the members of the community and handed over to SANParks officials.
According to William Mabasa, “the community members after being told he was apparently involved in rhino poaching shouted that they were sick and tired of this criminal activity emanating from the township”. SANParks is proud to congratulate the community on the role they played in exercising this citizen arrest and assisting the fight against rhino poaching.
GM: Media Liaison & Stakeholder Relations, SANParks,
Tel: (012) 426 5170, Cell: 073 373 4999, e-mail: email@example.com
HOD: Public Relations and Communication, Kruger National Park,
Tel: 013 735 4363, Cell: 082 807 3919, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org