Masisi To Engage UK MPs On British Import Ban On Wildlife Products

  • President will be in London for coronation of Charles III as King
  • Aims to explain envisaged harmful effects of the ban on wildlife management
  • Botswana has the largest population of elephants on the African continent


President Mokgweetsi Masisi intends to meet with lawmakers in the United Kingdom to discuss a recently imposed ban on importation of legally harvested wildlife products from Botswana.

The President will be in London at the invitation of the government to attend the coronation of Charles III and his wife, Camilla, as King and Queen Consort of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth Realms on 6 May.

Sources on Government Enclave say Masisi will use the visit to engage with several members of the House of Commons about the controversial ban.

British hunters

In March, the majority of the UK parliament voted in support of banning importation of hunting trophies from thousands of species into the UK, preventing British hunters from bringing body parts of lions, elephants, and giraffes into the country.

“Masisi will have several engagements with UK MPs on the subject,” said a source. “He will use the opportunity to explain how the new law will affect management of wildlife in Botswana.”

Before the ban came into effect in March, the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife Management warned about the negative impact of the law.

It noted that “forcing” Botswana and other African countries to manage wildlife with reduced funding would negatively impact conservation projects, enhancement of biodiversity initiatives and habitat protection across the continent.

Risk of poaching

The ministry said the ban would also increase the risk of poaching and human-wildlife conflict, negatively affecting Africa’s largest population of over 50 000 elephants that Botswana supports.

“This false narrative that hunting poses a threat to species has no scientific basis and misleads the British citizenry and the world at large,” it said in a statement.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and international Cooperation, Dr Lemogang Kwape, could not be reached for comment at the time of going to press.