First published in The Citizen 3 November 2014: http://citizen.co.za/268787/am-rhino-or-tambo/ PICTURE: Two men were arrested at OR Tambo International Airport on Friday for possession of rhino horn worth an estimated R4.5...
The administrative authorities of the Limpopo National Park (LNP) have begun the process of registering families living in Mavodze, the largest village remaining within the core zone of the park. The main objective is to update the data from the census conducted in 2005, which will allow the authorities to determine the actual costs for the relocation of people living in the village.
To this end, a team of 25 people will work for 90 days on the collection of data that will end with the preparation of the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP). This is a challenging task given that Mavodze is a village of over 700 families, although this number is likely to be reduced once the data has been verified. Sadly, a number of the families are headed by widows whose husbands were killed in poaching.
“One of the principal objectives of relocating people living within the park is to ensure the protection of forest and wildlife resources existing there,” said Sergio Bie, the park’s Resettlement Coordinator. “Everything is being done for the process to be completed at the necessary speed, because the ultimate aim is to achieve the goals outlined in the creation of the park.”
The plan is to strengthen the team working directly on resettlement, enabling the process to move quicker. It started in 2008 with the resettlement of 18 families living in the village of Nanguene in the central area of the park. Plans for the resettlement of Old Massingir and Makandazulo villages to the park buffer zone are also well in advance.