Germany has equipped the Department of Parks and Wildlife with four motorcycles, safety boots and raincoats for game rangers.
German Ambassador Juergen Borsch presented the items for game rangers to the Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining on Tuesday as one way of boosting the department’s operations.
The envoy said Germany was impressed with Malawi government’s efforts to protect wildlife in the country’s tourist attractions.
He commended Parliament for passing the Wildlife Protection Bill, which Mutharika easily signed into law.
“This is a sign of commitment,” Borsch said. “We have also seen efforts by troops in the department. That is why we decided to support you.”
Parks and wildlife director Brighton Kumchedwa said the motorcycles will strengthen the country’s fight against wildlife crimes by speeding up efforts to counter trafficking of ivory and other game trophies.
“This is a timely contribution to our anti-trafficking unit which has been facing numerous challenges, especially lack of transport. With this, our operations will go on smoothly,” he said.
Principal Secretary for the ministry Patrick Matanda urged against complacency in the battle against poaching and trade in wildlife commodities.
“Be hard on poachers and use the equipment diligently to protect wildlife,” he said.
The population of animals in many game reserves and national parks has been depleted following laxity in laws and enforcement which turned the country into a hunting ground and transit route for wildlife criminals.