Newsletter October 2012
CACH NEWSLETTER – October 2012
Just a brief outline of what Campaign Against Canned Hunting (CACH) has been up to in 2012.
Aside from the daily tasks of raising awareness, educating volunteers and journalists, wildlife documentary film makers etc. there were some unusual features about our work in 2012.
1. ANIMAL WELFARE POLICY.
The year started with the two Animal Welfare Summits organised by the Premier Helen Zille, and held in Cape Town, in January and again in April for wildlife. Thanks to Jan Cox’s unique expertise in the field of international animal welfare policy, we were able to set up a website on which we published:-
a. The current draft animal welfare policy prepared by the meat industry – a horrific document.
b. Our critique of that document, exposing its weaknesses.
c. Our (Jan’s) suggested policy that would bring South Africa up to date with world standards.
See ‘Animal Welfare Policy in South Africa’ http://design-a-webpage.com/node/130
This website had over a thousand visits during the period of the Summits, and it certainly informed debate. Afterwards we also submitted the new Policy to the ruling party, the ANC, urging it to adopt the new compassionate policy as the party’s own.
2. TROPHY HUNTING.
Here we adopted an Al Capone strategy (you’ll recall that Al Capone could not be charged for all his murders but he was eventually nailed for tax fraud). We submitted a critique of the hunting industry to government, explaining all the threats that hunting poses to South Africa’s national interests. The paper has gone to National Intelligence as well as other law enforcement agencies and we hope that it results in a forensic audit to see if, as we contend, that this cruel industry may actually include foreign currency swindles and tax fraud. The nature of the business presents unprecedented opportunities to smuggle money out of the country and evade tax at the same time.
Wouldn’t it be ironic if we could get all trophy hunting banned – for reasons that have nothing to do with animal welfare?
Hunting a threat to National Security
3. LION BONES.
You may have seen the Avaaz campaign to ban the trade in lion bones from S.A. to Asia. Three quarters of a million people have signed the Petition and Avaaz is now taking legal proceedings against the S.A. Airports Company for insisting that the Avaaz posters at Jo’burg Int. Airport be taken down because they were “objectionable”. We liased closely with the Avaaz team both before and during their excellent campaign, and it was a pleasure to work with such professional people.
Avaaz campaign to ban lion bone trade.
4. KALAHARI DREAM.
We carried on marketing our book via the Internet, and spend hours every day engaging with animal lovers on social media websites. We focus on Google + and Twitter, as well as LinkedIn, You Tube and Facebook. We are steadily building up followers on all of those platforms.
5. WILDLIFE FORUM.
Out of the animal welfare Summits has emerged a Wildlife Forum: a group of a dozen or so people tasked by the Premier with giving recommendations to Government on wildlife issues, and in particular, farmer/predator conflict. Chris sits on the Forum and he continues his efforts to persuade other Forum members to recommend a total ban on the use of gin traps by farmers.
a. Darwin Primate Centre in Plettenberg Bay is a worthy enterprise of Karin Saks. She needed funds to build a spacious enclosure for the baboons and vervet monkeys in rehab there. Bev found an animal - friendly supply company in George to provide the mesh fencing at half price (SAR8,500.00) and Karin was able to pay half of that. The balance came from our our savings account because there was not enough money in the CACH account.
b. We visited Nola Frazer in Barrydale to find out if we could make an arrangement to take over the well developed primate sanctuary infrastructure, so that we could resurrect a wildlife sanctuary there. We were unsuccessful but while there, we discovered tonnes of dried fruit and other valuable primate food left over and being stored in their sheds. Bev travelled to Barrydale in her bakkie with the trailer, collected the food, and transported it to Karin’s Darwin Primate Centre in Plett.
c. Dedicated animal rights campaigner Nikki Botha organised a demonstration against hunting at the annual Huntex exhibition, being held near Cape Town this year. CACH donated SAR1,000.00 for demonstrators to wear T-shirts carrying slogans like “Hunting is to Conservation what pornography is to art.”
And so it goes. Thanks for your ongoing support.
Chris and Bev