African park will improve the management and protection of Kafue, Zambia's most famous and largest national park. This is the whole purpose of the Memorandum of Understanding signed on February 4th, 2021 between the conservation organisation and the Zambian government. It will run for a period of one year, and will be financed to the tune of 3 million dollars by the World-Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
This is good news for local Zambian communities, who have often become rangers to defend wildlife in protected areas. The Zambian government and African Parks have signed a memorandum of understanding to implement a priority support plan for the protection and development of Kafue National Park. “It is essential that we invest in the protection of our wildlife and improve the infrastructure for tourism. Having worked together for 18 years, we believe that African Parks is a partner that can help us realise the park’s potential to contribute to the economy and the well-being of our people,” said Ronald K. Chitotela, Zambia’s Minister of Tourism and the Arts.
The Kafue National Park, located 200 kilometres west of the capital Lusaka, covers an area of 22,000 square kilometres. It is the largest park in Zambia and one of the 10 largest protected areas on the continent. Zambia’s main tourist destination and internationally renowned wildlife sanctuary, it is home to lions, leopards, elephants, buffaloes, hyenas and 21 species of antelope. The Kafue River is home to crocodiles and hippos. The authorities have recorded some 400 species of birds.
A priority support plan estimated at 3 million dollars
African Parks’ mission in Kafue will last for the next 12 months. During this time, the non-profit conservation organization will work with Zambia’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW) on key priority activities such as improving critical infrastructure, supporting wildlife law enforcement efforts and conducting conservation baseline studies.
Kafue’s priority support plan is being funded to the tune of $3 million. The funding comes from the Dutch Postcode Lottery’s Dreamfund grant to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), African Parks and the Peace Parks Foundation to assist states in the world’s largest transboundary conservation area, the Kavango Zambezi (KAZA TFCA), which straddles the borders of Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.