News Monday 3 July 2017
President Ian Khama, former president Festus Mogae, opposition Botswana Movement for Democracy (BMD) member Sidney Pilane (previously member BDP, ruling party) and a number of Cabinet ministers were complicit in an elaborate secret psychological warfare and scorched earth policy to force Basarwa out of the Central Kgalagadi Game Reserve (CKGR) – confidential official documents and memos passed to the Sunday Standard have for the first time revealed thegovernment’s documented systematic plan to use starvation as a weapon to force Basarwa out of the CKGR. The documents reveal that the government at some stage considered physically forcing Basarwa out of the reserve, but was worried that this would attract international controversy. Pilane, then Special Advisor to Mogae came up with a military-style scorched earth tactic to starve the Basarwa out of the CKGR. Pilane wrote in one of the secret memos: “As previously advised, the physical removal of those people from the Reserve would attract too much controversy, quite apart from the incidents that might result from the forcible and physical removal of such great numbers of people and animals.” Pilane proposed making sure that CKGR residents did not cultivate crops, keep domestic stock, hunt for wild animals and collect wild plants inside the reserve." Read more: sundaystandard.info/plans-starve-basarwa-out-ckgr-open
One may wonder why these documents only now have been passed on. And if earlier it was considered that physical removement would attract too much international attention, why they had not realized that these documents would come into the open one day and therefore did not destroy them.
From June 2017 tourists will have to pay on entering Botswana per person a $ 30 tourism levy for a visit of maximum 30 days. This is on top of the tourism levy which one already is charged when staying at lodges, camps, hotels etc.
“Lions are ambush predators; they rely on stealth and the element of surprise in order to bring down their prey,” he said. “As soon as they lose that element of surprise, as soon as the prey sees them, they abandon their hunt.”
That is why he and fellow researchers are going to Botswana to paint eyes on cows’ rumps. They hope it will prove a low-cost way to protect livestock from lions, and lions from being killed by farmers in retaliation. One of the main threats to lions in Africa is conflict with farmers, who shoot or poison them to stop them preying on livestock. In the 1990s there were more than 100,000 African lions. There could now be as few as 23,000 adults and they are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Dr Jordan, a conservation biologist at the University of NSW’s Centre for Ecosystem Science, said farmers and local governments feel the only way they can protect livestock from lions is to kill them.
“It’s from desperation, really, because obviously the lions affect their livelihood and the non-lethal tools that might be available are all very expensive,” he said. “As protected conservation areas become smaller, lions are increasingly coming into contact with human populations, which are expanding to the boundaries of these protected areas.”
Dr Jordan, who also holds research posts at the Taronga Conservation Society Australia and the Botswana Predator Conservation Trust, was inspired to paint eyes onto cattle after watching a lion hunt an impala. When the intended prey cottoned on to the carnivore’s presence, the lion gave up the hunt.
“We wanted to hijack this natural response by painting eyes on the rumps of cows, so that lions could be tricked into thinking they’d been seen and abandon the hunt,” he said.
It’s the same kind of “psychological trickery” employed by woodcutters in India, who ward off tigers by wearing face masks on the backs of their heads, and butterflies that avoid becoming bird food thanks to eye-like patterns on their wings.
Dr Jordan trialled his idea - which he calls iCow - last year, with promising results. The researchers stamped painted eyes onto one-third of a herd of 62 cattle, making sure the eyes were large, easily visible and “potentially intimidating”. While three unpainted cows were killed by lions, all the painted cows survived to graze another day.
If successful, iCow would be an affordable tool for farmers; losing one cow costs five times as much as painting a herd of 60 cattle. Over the next three months Dr Jordan will lead further testing on another herd of cattle in Botswana.
About this site Supporting the Bushmen so they can stay in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and live there as they wish and as long as they wish. The CKGR was created for them.
Reason for establishing CKGR.
Reason for establishing CKGRQuotation from the book by George B. Silberbauer. (anthropologist and sociologist):
“In response to recommendations I made to the Bechuanaland Protectorate government on April 28, 1960, some 52.000 km2 of Ghanzi district east of the latitude of Great Tsau Hill (Sonop Koppies) was proclaimed a game reserve in 1961. This step was taken to protect the Bushman inhabitants in the area; in the late fifties illegal hunting by non- Bushmen from outside the area posed a serious threat to the hunters and gatherers who depended on the game herds for part of their livelihood. Hunting by Bushmen was not restricted in any way, but entry by non- Bushmen was controlled and the danger from poachers diminished.”
Nampol Vocational Training Center 2016