AN OPEN LETTER PREPARED BY THE BORN FREE FOUNDATION ADDRESSED TO:
His Excellency Hagers Geingob, President of the Republic of Namibia
Private Bag 13339, Windhoek, Namibia
Honourable Minister Pohamba Penomwenyo Shifeta, Ministry of Environment and Tourism Private Bag 13306, Windhoek Namibia
Her Excellency Linda Scott, High Commissioner High Commission for the Republic of Namibia 6 Chandos Street, London W1G 9LU
The CITES Secretariat
Your Excellencies, Honourable Minister,
We, the undersigned are writing respectfully to express our grave concerns relating to proposals to offer live elephants for commercial sale from regions of Namibia, where they are reported to be overpopulated, affected by drought, and/or in conflict with local people.
According to a tender notice posted by the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism (MEFT) in The Namibian in December 2020, as many as 170 live elephants, including adult males and family groups, are being offered for sale from the Omatjete area, Kamanjab commercial farming area, Grootfontein-Kavango Cattle Ranch area and Grootfontein-Tsumkwe area.
The proposed sales will not achieve the stated objectives of controlling populations or reducing human-elephant conflict. Moreover, the capture and relocation of elephants could have extremely deleterious impacts on the health and welfare of the individuals concerned, the stability of their wider societies, and the health of the ecosystems of which they are an integral part.