Environment, Water and Climate minister Oppah Muchinguri has warned that elephants and other wildlife species in the vast Hwange National Parks might soon run out of pasture as the game park has been hit hard by drought.
Muchinguri sounded the alarm bells over the weekend while addressing stakeholders at the launch of an elephant dress designed by a South Africa-based designer, Thembani Mubochwa.
She said the park had a carrying capacity of 25 000 elephants, but was currently home to over 47 000 jumbos.
Muchinguri tasked Mubochwa, whom she appointed Zimbabwe’s elephant ambassador, to immediately set up an elephants fund to bankroll some of the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority’s relief projects.
“I, therefore, appoint Mubochwa our elephants ambassador. He will be tasked to work with my ministry to see that the welfare of elephants in Hwange National Park is improved. I expect a full programme of events from him and his team henceforth,” she said.
She also said a group of musicians would soon record a track for the project and said Mubochwa would mobilise funds through tours in the region and internationally to improve the welfare of elephants.