Land Seizure Crisis In Zimbabwe


Published: October - 2000

The political situation in Zimbabwe continues to generate great concern. The problem is not the threat of violence to visiting hunters, which is a subject we have covered closely on our website, www.HuntingReport.com. Literally scores of Hunting Report subscribers have journeyed to Zimbabwe this past summer and fall, and only one subscriber reported a brush with danger. Barring something unforeseen, we think the safety level is high enough for most safaris to go forward.

Our greatest concern at this point is the impact land seizures are having on wildlife in Zimbabwe. In recent weeks, we have begun to receive alarming reports from subscribers of a general breakdown in countryside order and an upsurge in poaching. Major international media are reporting the same thing. Here is how subscriber Mark Richards put it in a letter to The Hunting Report this past month:

"I just returned on Saturday, September 23rd from a quick trip to Zimbabwe (seven days in the bush). I was visiting a friend's game ranch in the Lowveld near Chiredzi. Frankly, your web-site reporting on the Zimbabwe situation is missing the mark. Yes, current safaris are going off well with little security risk to tourists. Unfortunately, however, by this time next year typical ranch hunts will be virtually non-existent if the situation doesn't change drastically, and soon. The main issues are this:

"First, poaching is out of control by the squatters, "war vets," comrades - whatever you want to call them. Second, ranchers are beginning to heavily cull game lest it end up in the stomachs of their enemies. Third, the land reforms promised by Mr. Mugabe will effectively put all of the game ranch lands in Zimbabwe into the hands of subsistence farmers. We all know what that means for wildlife and habitat. Millions of acres lost! Lastly, our friends, both black and white, will lose everything. No jobs for PHs, trackers, skinners, etc. A lifetime of work wiped out by the stroke of Mugabe's pen. What can we do now before it is too late...?"........(continued)

 
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