This may or may not be a step forward, according to whether the Department of Environmental Affairs and its lacklustre minister, Edna Molewa, can come up with a viable, legal system of sales and permits and those in favour of a legal trade can deliver on a sophisticated set of arguments presented to convince that a legal international trade can reduce poaching significantly and advance conservation. For me, the jury is still out, but I feel a regulated legal trade in non-mortality horn may prove the only way to save wild rhinos from the poachers’ chainsaws. KS




‘Open rhino horn trade to encourage transparent, regulated process’

The Private Rhino Owners Association says any regulation into the sale of horns is welcome.

FILE: A baby rhino playing in the mud at the Rhino Orphanage in Limpopo. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – The Private Rhino Owners Association says the open trade of rhino horn will encourage a transparent and internationally regulated process.

The Environmental Affairs Department has issued rhino breeder John Hume a permit as per instruction by the High Court.

This is the first permit issued to a trader since the Constitutional Court ruled in April that the domestic sale of horns is legal.

Hume turned to the court on an urgent basis as his online auction starts on Monday.

The association’s chairman Pelham Jones says any regulation is welcome.

“If we’re able to meet market demand at let’s say $10,000 per kilogram, why would a syndicate boss look at or be able to compete when currently horns are being traded at let’s say $60,000 a market?”