Zimparks on the recovery path

07 Jul, 2019 - 00:07 0 Views
Zimparks on the recovery path Minister Ncube

The Sunday Mail

Sunday Mail Reporter

THE new team at the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (Zimparks) has managed to transform the organisation, which was previously dogged by transparent issues and allegations of poor corporate governance, into a reformed entity, Finance and Economic Development Minister Prof Mthuli Ncube has said.

In a performance review report dated 10 June 2019, Prof Ncube said there have been positive reforms since August 2017.

The previous board and management, he said, had failed to successfully run the organisation.

“However, the efforts of the new management (led by director-general Mr Fulton Mangwanya), at the helm since August 2017, and interim board have changed a lot of governance issues that were undermining activities and operations at Zimparks,” said Prof Ncube.

He said Zimparks was fighting sophisticated poaching syndicates, thus the company required more resources to achieve intended goals.

Zimparks spokesman Mr Tinashe Farawo said the new team has managed to reduce elephant poaching from 400 elephants in 2015 to only 12 in 2018 through joint patrols in national parks and awareness campaigns.

The authority, Mr Farawo added, had also managed to clear the salaries’ backlog that was inherited from the old administration.

“When Mr Mangwanya joined the authority in 2017, employees had gone for seven months without salaries and it was cleared. To date, almost every station has a vehicle which is improving law enforcement and patrols to protect our animals,” he said.

However, Prof Ncube noted that lack of resources was negatively affecting anti-poaching activities.

He said, “Inadequate resources have undermined the capacity of the authority to effectively respond to all such threats and curb poaching of many wildlife species, including elephants, rhino and trafficking of wildlife.

“Resource constraints to modernise national parks equipment has left the authority facing challenges related to obsolescence of critical maintenance equipment, compromising anti-poaching initiatives.

“Challenges bedevilling Zimparks pose serious threat to sustainable natural resources management and wildlife conservation, fundamental to the survival of the environmental ecosystem; hence, the need for urgent Government and other stakeholders’ interventions.”

Treasury recently injected $11 million to bankroll Zimparks’ commercial unit.

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