Automated translation of French article below.
In Gabon, the former top scorer of the African Cup of Nations (CAN) in 2000 and in 2002 made a pilgrimage to the Loango National Park in the south of the country where he was captivated by the extraordinary biodiversity and admired elephants swimming in the river Ogowe and in the lagoon.
After this dip in nature, Patrick Mboma returned to Libreville where he met with Gabonese officials including the Minister of Forest Economy Nelson Me Essone before giving a press conference during which he asked the poachers, smugglers, craftsmen and buyers of art objects made of ivory to stop this criminal trade.
“Now stop your ambitions, now quit these crimes, because we will fight to protect our biodiversity,” he warned forcefully.
The situation in the region is serious. Gabon has lost 11,000 elephants in the past 10 years. According to the World Fund for Nature, the Democratic Republic of Congo has only 7,000 elephants compared to 100,000 twenty years ago. In Congo Brazzaville, poachers also elude the law.
Central Africa is considered to be one of the last strongholds of forest elephants.
After his tour in Gabon, Congo Brazzaville and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Patrick Mboma wants to organize “a weekend for the protection of the African elephant.” He dreams for this purpose to mobilize stars of ball, singers, and other opinion leaders to brandish a red card against poachers and those that supply the trade in ivory— a shame that threatens to remove the elephants in Africa.