SA breeders sue government to lift rhino horn trade

2015-06-25 13:12
(File, Beeld)

(File, Beeld)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - A group of South African rhino breeders has taken the government to court to overturn the domestic ban on rhino horn sales, the group's chair said on Thursday.

Legalising the trade will help to save the threatened species, Private Rhino Owners Association (PROA) chairperson Pelham Jones told dpa.

Hundreds of South African rhinos are poached each year to meet a large demand for their horn, particularly in Asia, where it is believed to boost sexual potency but also used in traditional medicine to cure cancer and other illnesses.

A staggering 1 215 rhinos were slaughtered last year in South Africa, which is, with an estimated 25 000 black and white rhinos, home to the world's largest population of the animal.

This was a 21% increase in poaching from the previous year, according to government figures.

"We clearly see that the trade ban has not diminished poaching in any way. In contrast, it is stimulating the black market trade," said Jones.

PROA filed a lawsuit against a 2009 moratorium prohibiting the trade in rhino horn in South Africa. Internationally, sales have been banned since 1977.

The association, whose 320 members own about a fifth of the country's rhino population, argues it needs to sell the horn to generate funds for conservation to save the threatened species.

"Just over 1 000 rhino were killed on private land since 2008," said Jones. "That's R400m worth of rhino lost, plus R300m spent on security to protect them."

Private owners were simply out of pocket, added Jones.

The legalisation of the domestic trade would mean that rhino horn purchased by commodity speculators would have to be genetically coded and stored in security vaults until the international trade ban is lifted.

Read more on:    cape town  |  rhino poaching

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.