April 17, 2019
Central African and heavily armed Congolese ex-rebels are accused of
decimating the wildlife population of this protected area.
“The appetite of poachers in the park is limitless despite our efforts to
deter,” worries Jean Siroma, the curator of Nki National Park in the
Eastern Region in the daily newspaper, The Day.
In its edition of April 17, 2019, the newspaper says that the poaching
activity is becoming very worrying. The multiple efforts of eco-guards
often result in seizures whose auctions embellish the coffers of the public
treasury, but it must be recognized that the wildlife species of Nki
National Park are permanently threatened.
According to the conservation statistics of Nki National Park in Ngoyla, in
one year (2017 – 2018), about one million receipts have been collected
from auctions of cargoes of protected species seized by the eco guards.
“Among the species we found most included: deer, sitatunga, and tiger cat.
They are species whose hunting is subject to a hunting license, but also
fully protected species such as gorillas, duikers, elephants, etc. . . . ,”
says Julien Abena, an eco guard.
Park officials accuse former Central African rebels and Congolese, heavily
armed, of decimating the wildlife population.
They take advantage of the porosity of the border between Cameroon, Congo,
and Central Africa. Residents of the park, who for subsistence reasons kill
all species on their paths, are also singled out.
“During the same period, we were able to seize the hands of the Kalashnikov
A4 poachers, 47 12-caliber weapons, and a good stock of ammunition. The
intensification of poaching in the Nki National Park is motivated by the
exponential increase in the price of ivory on the market both in Europe and
Asia,” says the conservative.
Nki National Park covers an area of 309,365 hectares, which surround six
districts in two departments, including Haut Nyong, Boumba and Ngoko.
But only 33 under-equipped eco-guards are deployed every day to ensure the
safety of this huge forest area. And according to the standards of the
International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), an eco-guard
must guard an area of 5000 hectares.