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Sat Nov 01 02:31:16 SAST 2014

More than 100 register rhino initiatives

Sapa | 11 October, 2013 15:16
Rhino. File photo.
Image by: Bruce Gorton

More than 100 organisations and individuals have applied to register awareness projects and fundraising initiatives to fight rhino poaching, the environmental affairs department said.

The department made a public call for the registration of all rhino-related funders so that it could create a national database, it said in a statement.

This would help monitor fund raising operations, activities and use of the funds raised.

"The initiative is one of numerous steps being taken to rid the sector of illegitimate and ill-intended operations and ensure greater legitimacy of organisations and individuals involved in projects aimed at addressing the scourge of rhino poaching in South Africa.

"The establishment of a national database, and a credible national financing mechanism for rhino anti-poaching, were agreed to by government and rhino stakeholders during a public engagement in July 2013," the department said.

NGOs, NPOs, businesses and individuals involved had until September 30 to register.

The department said it was also planning on establishing a national rhino fund in consultation with National Treasury and other role players. The fund would support interventions in rhino poaching.

"The national rhino fund will result in the consolidation of all funding requirements and ensure that funding is distributed successfully to state-and privately-owned rhino anti-poaching initiatives, including conservation, safety and security, skills development and research," it said.

Since January 746 rhino have been poached in the country and 228 people arrested.

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