Sangha / Fauna: Four poachers got sentenced to three years in prison (Republic of the Congo)


Agence d’Information d’Afrique Centrale/Brazzaville    

Date Published

The World Wide Fund for Nature in collaboration with Space Tridom Interzone Congo (WWF-ETIC), reported on February 29 to our editorial condemnation, of four offenders of wildlife, after a hearing by the Tribunal Ouesso. Named Job EKombinde, Idris Mbalanga, and Dinga Bakamba, all of DRC nationality, and Mbouadi Njoya Adama of Cameroonian nationality, must serve three years’ imprisonment. The sentences of the four offenders became heavier because they will pay two million (2,000,000) CFA francs, the sum of five hundred thousand (500,000 francs, which corresponds to 909.090 dollars) each on behalf of the damage and interests. This money will be cashed by the Departmental Directorate of Water and Forests harmed by the fact of an elephant slaughter, species fully protected.

The judiciary also accused the four wildlife offenders with illegal possession of firearm and ammunition without prior authorization of the authorized services. They were arrested in the town of Sembé, located in the northeast of Congo, last December 11, after a joint patrol of the ETIC project in partnership with the Ministry of Forest Economy and Sustainable Development (Mefdd) and the World Wide Fund for nature (WWF). The publication on the deliberation of the case by the court was welcomed by several organizations working in the field of wildlife conservation. Thus, the legal assistant WWF-ETIC project, Cornelius Kutia-Kwa-Nzambi Moukson states: “The African elephant is an animal species endangered in some places. It could disappear completely by the fact of excessive poaching. The ideal is to preserve what little remains and we firmly punish the perpetrators of heinous acts such as these in the image of judgment.” Remember that not long ago that Congo has joined the elephant protection initiative (EPI), a conservation program led by Africa to eradicate the trade in ivory and stop the rampant killing of elephants poachers.

It now occupies the eleventh position in Africa. The commitment of Congo was announced on 14 January 2016 by the Congolese delegation to the sixty-sixth session of the Standing Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of wild fauna and flora threatened with extinction Committee (CITES). However, Congo’s accession to the EPI initiative is not yet popularized among communities living near parks by organizations working for wildlife conservation.