An MP in Botswana wants to introduce elephant culling


Botswana is home to the highest number of free-roaming elephants in the world. The exact number of elephants in the country is disputed: conservation groups say there are 130,000, but Botswana MP Kosta Markus says it’s actually closer to 250,000 – and he thinks that’s too many.

He believes the elephant population is causing problems for constituents and has tabled a motion in parliament to reintroduce elephant culling in the country. A ban on hunting the animals got cross-party support four years ago and a quarter of a million people have signed a petition against his new proposal.

Newsday’s Alan Kasujja went to the country’s parliament in Gaborone to ask why Mr Markus proposed the bill.

MP Kosta Markus tabled a motion in Parliament to reintroduce elephant culling in the country after a four-year ban. The motion to lift the ban on hunting elephants has angered wildlife campaigners.

But Markus argues the northern part of the country, where the elephants live, only had the capacity to sustain a population of 60,000 elephants.

“Elephants encroach into where people settle. I’m proposing all elephants found in areas that are game reserves or national parks should be reduced,” he said.

He said that communities could have quotas and make money from trophy hunting – and this, in turn, would reduce poaching.


7 months ago

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