Cecil killing ‘honest mistake’, Zuma

via Cecil killing ‘honest mistake’, Zuma – NewZimbabwe 11/08/2015

SOUTH African President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday brushed aside the killing of Zimbabwean lion Cecil, dismissing the animal’s death as “just an incident.”

Describing the death of Cecil as an honest mistake, Zuma said the hunter — American Walter Palmer — was probably unaware he was shooting one of Zimbabwe’s most beloved animals.

“The hunter did not know Cecil was so popular, he just saw a lion and killed a lion,” said Zuma, giggling as he spoke at a press briefing in Pretoria.

“My feeling is that the fellow did not know.”

Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, paid $55,000 to shoot a lion with a bow and arrow in July.

The hunt provoked worldwide outrage when it emerged that Cecil was a favourite attraction among visitors to Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park and was wearing a tracking collar as part of an Oxford University research project

Zimbabwe has requested that the United States extradite Palmer to face charges over the hunt.

Palmer’s guide on the expedition, Theo Bronkhorst, appeared in court last week.

He was granted $1,000-bail pending his trial on September 28 on charges of organising an illegal hunt.

Zimbabwe introduced strict hunting restrictions earlier this month in the wake of the killing, but lifted most of them on Monday.

Zuma said Zimbabwe had the appropriate legislation in place to regulate the hunting industry.

“I think Zimbabwe has laws about hunting and everything, I don’t think it’s a matter we could really debate that much,” he said.

Like Zimbabwe, South Africa sees a substantial amount of tourism revenue come from wealthy overseas clients who pay big money to hunt lions, elephants and buffalos.

According to South Africa’s environment ministry, the hunting industry generates about 6.2 billion rand (US$485 million) a year.


  • comment-avatar
    V Ndlovu 7 years ago

    Cecil is dead. That was most unfortunate but irreversable. Is it not time for presidents to perssue burning economic issues affecting peoples lives instead of talking about a dead lion which was going to die anywhere? Human beings are dying daily due to ecomonic hardships caused by wrong economic policies.

  • comment-avatar
    machakachaka 7 years ago

    Jacob Zuma is trying to exonerate the accused person, when he knows quite well that the matter is before our courts. He is a president, and should know that his comments are uncalled for, in matters that are sub-judice. He could be right or wrong, but his opinion should not have been expressed publicly.