Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Jul 23, 2014 8:28 pm

Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo
Jul 23 2014 2:03AM


SIHLE MAVUSO

Facing an internal revolt from its workers who are demanding better salaries, Ezemvelo is now facing the wrath of Ulundi residents who are demanding to be compensated for damages inflicted by wild game on them and their livestock.

The residents have taken their fight to public protector Thuli Madonsela and late last week Madonsela visited the area to conduct an inspection in loco at the park near Ulundi.

While there, she assured residents that she would take their issues into account as she finalises her investigation.

The investigation into the matter followed complaints by the residents that not enough effort was being made to prevent wild animals from escaping from the park and that victims of animal attacks were not being compensated.

Locals allege leopards have escaped from the park, maiming some members of the community. In addition, most locals had lost some livestock due to attacks by the animals, including hyenas.

Madonsela’s spokesperson Kgalalelo Masibi said that during the meeting with the community, further complaints were filed, these included the manner in which the community claimed it had been forcibly removed from the land without compensation.

Community members also complained that their rights to the land had been trampled upon.

“Other complaints included claims that locals were not benefiting from the park and that they were not part of the decision-making processes on matters – concerning the park – which affected their livelihoods.

The community also claimed that, due to a 1950 policy, they were only compensated for attacks by animals, other than those indigenous to the area. They called for the review of the policy and increased efforts to stop dangerous animals from escaping, said Masibi.

Ezemvelo spokesperson Musa Mntambo said they heard late (not being formally invited) that the public protector would be visiting the area – and that they therefore could not send a senior team from head office .

“However, we instructed our staff in the park to attend the meeting and listen on our behalf. There is no meeting that took place between us the public protector, as stated in their statement,” responded Mntambo.

This is not the first time the residents have complained about wild animals devouring their livestock.

sihlem@thenewage.co.za

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Jul 23, 2014 8:34 pm

This is moneymaking rubbish...there is a general atmosphere of being entitled and compensated, linked to land claims etc. 0*\

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Jul 23, 2014 9:06 pm

Here more detailled info:

Public Protector inspects KwaZulu-Natal game park fencing after complaints about wildlife attacks
Friday, 18 July 2014

Public Protector Adv. Thuli Madonsela on Thursday conducted an inspection-in-loco at the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park near Ulundi in KwaZulu-Natal as part of an investigation into allegations that wild animals from the park terrorised nearby communities.

The own-initiative investigation into the matter followed complaints that not enough efforts were being made to prevent wild animals from escaping from the park and that victims of animal attacks were not being compensated.

Locals have alleged that leopards that have -on several occasions- escaped from the park, killing and maiming some members of the community. In addition, most locals had lost some of their livestock due to attacks by the animals, including hyenas.

On Thursday, the Public Protector, who was accompanied by a team of investigators from her office, inspected the quality of the fencing around the 960km2 park, to ascertain if indeed it left local communities and their livestock vulnerable to wildlife attacks.

Prior to her tour of the park, the Public Protector met with a group of community members and headmen from the area. She also met with officials from Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, a state institution that manages the park.

During the meeting with the community, further complaints were filed. These included the manner in which the community was allegedly forcibly removed from the land without compensation. Community members complained that their rights to the land had been trampled upon.

Other complaints included claims that locals were not benefiting from the park and that they were not part of the decision-making processes on matters -concerning the park- which affected their livelihoods.

The community also alleged that, due to a 1950 policy, they were only compensated for attacks by animals other than those indigenous to the area. They called for the review of the policy and increased efforts to stop dangerous animals from escaping.

The Public Protector undertook to take the new issues into account as she finalises the investigation.

For more information, contact:

Kgalalelo Masibi
Spokesperson
Public Protector South Africa
(012) 366 7006
079 507 0399
kgalalelom@pprotect.org
www.publicprotector.org

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:41 pm

Richprins wrote:This is moneymaking rubbish...there is a general atmosphere of being entitled and compensated, linked to land claims etc. 0*\
Correct \O

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:35 pm

Ja...they don't moan about the steady jobs, cottage industries and tourist income generated by the parks... O**

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:41 pm

Protector pins deaths on game fence

October 1 2014 at 02:50pm
By CHRIS NDALISO AND SAPA Comment on this story

Durban - Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has laid the blame for the deaths of villagers from Ukhukho in Zululand, the maiming of others and the killing of their livestock, squarely at the door of the provincial government and the wildlife authority.

She said the KZN Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife were responsible for allowing stray wild animals to escape from the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve because of poor fencing.

In her report on the attacks by wild animals released on Tuesday in Pretoria, Madonsela said she had no reason to doubt the accounts of the villagers, including traditional leaders, about the incidents in which more than 100 people lost their livestock.

Some villagers lost limbs while a few died after being mauled by lions and leopards.

Madonsela visited the area in July to get more information and to talk to the people.

“Virtually none of those people can say, ‘I’ve never lost anything’. The game reserve has fencing that was built around the 1950s,” Madonsela said, indicating the fencing was not properly maintained over the decades.

In the report, titled “Ubuntu”, which looked into uncompensated wildlife attacks on villagers and their livestock, Madonsela found that the department and Ezemvelo had failed to adequately compensate the victims for their losses.

“Over the years, the plight of these communities has received occasional print and electronic media (coverage), with the last incident happening in July 2014, the time I had visited the communities for an inspection in loco at the reserve,” she said in the report.

Some of the people who met Madonsela at the time, related stories and showed the investigation team wounds allegedly inflicted by wild animals, mainly leopards, wandering outside the game reserve.

The report reveals that a victim of wild animal attack, identified only as Mr K, was offered R50 000 and a tractor as compensation by the then-agriculture MEC, Meshack Radebe.

Mr K suffered various injuries including the loss of a hand, a disability that prevented him from using the tractor.

“The peoples’ view was corroborated by the Ezemvelo officials who presented their side of the story at the meeting of July 17 and during the inspection in loco at the game park later,” Madonsela said.

During the inspection, according to the report, rangers pointed to the ageing perimeter fence and its poles as the reason the animals had escaped.

Madonsela found the department and Ezemvelo had failed to install or ensure adequate security measure to prevent these attacks.

By failing to compensate the victims, the two entities violated the principle of redress in section 195 of the constitution and the Batho Pele principles, she said.

Mike Mabuyakhulu, MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, said he would make sure the Ezemvelo board reviewed its compensation claim policy, adding that the wildlife authority had started a process to upgrade the fence and a service provider had been appointed to supply and deliver the fencing material.

Daily News

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Oct 01, 2014 5:57 pm

They must fix the fence....but compensating alleged animal victims is ludicrous, and will lead to a flood of claims! 0*\

Re: Madonsela visits local complaining of Ezemvelo

Wed Oct 01, 2014 6:13 pm

The investigation by the public protector’s office found that there were "systemic deficiencies" in the nature conservation laws, policies and conduct in KwaZulu-Natal nature conservation practices that needed urgent attention. The investigation led to the provincial government earmarking R30m for the reparation of the game park’s fence that was erected in the 1950s and has been sporadically "patched" since then.


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