Complaint re Jared Kukura:
RE: COMPLAINT LETTER PROTESTING THE DAILY MAVERICK’S WILDLIFE CONSERVATION AND SOCIOECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DAMAGING PROPAGANDA STORIES THAT ARE AGAINST THE COUNTRY’S PRESS CODE & CONSERVATION STRATEGY
The True Green Alliance (TGA) would like to bring it to the attention of the Republic of South Africa’s Press Ombudsman Office that a local newspaper, The Daily Maverick, needs to be called for an immediate hearing to stop it from publishing propaganda stories that are very damaging to the wildlife conservation and socioeconomic development of South Africa; and which against the country’s press code.
The Daily Maverick has continued to spread false rumours about the captive lion breeding industry which is fully supported by the laws of the country. DM of 2 April 2020 (The captive lion breeding industry puts conservation and public health at risk by Jared Kukura) states that the industry poses a disease threat not only to the citizens of South Africa but also to the citizens of other countries where live lions and where lion products, such as loin bones, are exported.
There are no scientific reports to support such statements. No one in South Africa, or from any other part of the world, has been linked to any illness caused by lions. Additionally, the captive-bred lions in South Africa are not suffering from any illness that is harmful to humankind.
Therefore, we find The Daily Maverick reports on these issues to be misleading and causing unnecessary health scares locally and abroad. Beyond this, The Daily Maverick has gone further by calling for a ban on trade in live lions and their products.
They have also called for a ban on other wildlife products. Such calls are certainly against the public interest.
The South African government – in line with our National Conservation Strategy – is working towards the achievement of conservation and development through the sustainable use of wildlife.
It is hypocritical, therefore, for The Daily Maverick to claim that it is acting in the public interest and, at the same time, calling for a ban in the lion bone trade. Banning trade in anything limits economic growth and employment, and, in the case of lions, it reduces our conservation opportunities.
Which state has ever developed without trading in its own rich natural resources? Calls to ban wildlife trade causes resource-rich African countries to remain poor even when they are sitting on natural resource gold mines. It does not take rocket science to figure out, therefore, that The Daily Maverick in this regard is working against the public interest by calling for bans in lions, lion products and bans in other game products.
Telling so many unfortunate lies, should not be condoned by silence because they are damaging the conservation and economic well-being of this country’s economic strategy. They also undermine our National Conservation Strategy (NSC) which promotes sustainable use… as is currently happening with the captive lion breeding industry.