Farmer predator forum gets joy from government

The Predation Management Forum (PMF) approached the agriculture department concerning the issue of declaring the predation of livestock and game in South Africa a national disaster, said Petrus de Wet, president of the National Wool Grower Association (NWGA) at the recent NWGA national congress.

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De Wet is also chairperson of the PMF, which represents the NWGA, Red Meat Producers Organisation, South African Mohair Growers Association and Wildlife Ranching South Africa. “Farmers must know that I’m doing everything possible to make this situation easier,” he said.

The PMF also requested a senior official from the department to engage with concerning the issues relating to current government policy and legislation linked to predator management. “The frustration levels, as far as I’m concerned with this issue, are immense, because every time you get to government you deal with a different person,” De Wet said.

A PMF delegation to the US recently investigated how the more effective legislation relating to predator management practised there could be adopted by South Africa.

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“I spoke to Peter Thabethe, acting director general of the agriculture department, and we sincerely hope the necessary action will be taken from his department, so much so that he is going to send his own study tour to the US,” De Wet said.

De Wet explained that unrealistic researchers and various proponents of animal welfare inflicted significant damage to PMF efforts by creating a rift between farmers and urban consumers.