…By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media.
Prince Charles Pays Tribute to Murdered Ranger Anton Mzimba at Wildlife Conservation Event
Anton Mzimba, head of ranger services at Timbavati private game reserve in South Africa, was tragically murdered in front of his family during a film screening about the fight against rhino poaching.
The Prince of Wales, along with the Duchess of Edinburgh, attended a screening of Rhino Man, a documentary highlighting the efforts of South African wildlife rangers.
The event, hosted by United for Wildlife, aimed to raise awareness and combat the illegal wildlife trade.
Acknowledging the Risks Faced by Rangers:
Prince Charles expressed his condolences and emphasized the dangers faced by rangers worldwide who work tirelessly to protect the natural world from criminal organizations profiting from illegal wildlife activities.
The murder of Anton Mzimba serves as a stark reminder of the risks these dedicated individuals face on a daily basis.
International Collaboration and Response:
The prince highlighted the need for a collective response to combat wildlife crime, involving collaboration across the entire chain of criminal activity.
United for Wildlife, through its various initiatives and partnerships, has been actively working to address the issue of wildlife crime.
Their efforts have contributed significantly to law enforcement cases, arrests, seizures of wildlife products, and the training of thousands of individuals.
Remembering Anton Mzimba’s Legacy:
During the event, Prince Charles and the Duchess met with Anton’s cousin, Leitah Mkhabela, who supervises the Black Mambas, South Africa’s first all-female anti-poaching unit.
The prince commended Anton’s passion and motivation, describing him as an inspiration to others.
Orlat Ndlovu, head of ranger services at Timbavati private nature reserve, remembered Anton as a brother, mentor, and leader who treated everyone with respect, even his enemies.
Recognizing the Sacrifices of Rangers:
Amanda Berry, CEO of The Royal Foundation, paid tribute to Anton Mzimba and emphasized the devastating loss experienced by his family and colleagues.
She highlighted the fact that rangers worldwide often risk their lives with limited training, pay, and support.
The tragic murder of Anton Mzimba is a somber reminder of the dangers faced by those on the front lines of wildlife conservation.
Prince Charles’ presence at the screening and his dedication to combating wildlife crime demonstrate the ongoing commitment of the royal family to environmental protection.
The event serves as a platform to honor the sacrifices made by rangers like Anton and to raise awareness about the urgent need for international collaboration in preserving our natural world.
The work of organizations like United for Wildlife and the efforts of rangers worldwide should be recognized and supported to ensure a sustainable future for our planet’s biodiversity.