The other good news on hunting in Zambia is, a Director General of Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) has finally been named. ZAWA, you'll recall, is the new quasi-private organization that was slated to take over all wildlife-related matters in Zambia more than a year ago, which is when the old National Parks Department was disbanded. Since then, Zambia has been without any kind of game department at all. The European Union during this period has had millions of dollars ready to help ZAWA get rolling, but has refused to release the funds until a Director General and support staff are in place. Presumably, those funds will now be released. If so - and if hunting resumes in an orderly manner - Zambia's wildlife programs could be on their way to a complete recovery shortly.
To be sure, there are some open questions still. The most important revolves around the possible impact of the presidential election, which is just days away as this is written. Will the current tender process be acceptable to whoever wins the election? Or will still another tender process be initiated by the winner? No one we spoke with had any idea how to answer those questions. In fact, no one we have spoken with for months has been willing to predict just who will win the election. It's no secret that the closure of hunting in Zambia this past year was linked to presidential politics. Surely, its reopening will be too.
Another open question at this point is the condition of Zambia's game and its safari industry. With no........(continued)