On the 29th of August 2023 Michele Pickover, Executive Director of the EMS Foundation, addressed a letter to the Chairperson of the Captive Lion Industry Ministerial Task Team, Mr Kamalasen Chetty.
The content of the communication highlights the significant importance and the implications of the changes to NEM:BA. These implications include the fact that “wellbeing” now falls within the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment and Minister Barbara Creecy’s legal mandate.
Furthermore, as a result of these changes to NEM:BA, it was indicated in the legal opinion obtained by the EMS Foundation, competent for the Honourable Minister to:
Furthermore, Michele Pickover highlighted examples of some immediate actions that can be considered by the South African Government:
None of the above actions by Government involve the arbitrary deprivation of property nor unjustifiably infringe any individual’s right to property.
In conclusion, the EMS Foundation, is aware that the South African government is allowing a number of lions and other big cats to be imported into South Africa from captivity in Europe and elsewhere. Given the crisis of a huge number of lions and other big cats in South Africa it is their view that the NGOs that bring these big cats into ‘sanctuaries’ in South Africa should only be provided with permits on the understanding that for every lion/big cat that is imported they undertake to provide lifetime care to a South African captive lion/big cat in a spacious sanctuary.
Image Credit: EMS Foundation
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