Dear Rhino Owners and Reserve Managers
1 February 2019
PROA participation at CITES CoP 18
At the PROA Board meeting held on the 23rd January, the board resolved that we need to attend CoP18 to be held in Sri Lanka from 23rd May to 3rd June as a registered NGO. This will enable us to participate in the various meetings, proposal discussions on rhino and give support to Namibia and Eswatini (Swaziland).
During the same meeting, we requested senior officials from DEA to attend. We express to them our deep frustrations on the lack of cooperation and perceived obstructive conduct from DEA to rhino owners, as well as discussing CoP18, CBO applications and the way forward to CoP19.
DEA have now requested PROA form part of the SA CITES delegation to assist at CoP18 and participate in Side Events where the need for Sustainable Utilization will be presented. They have proposed the establishment of a DEA/PROA task team to develop a CITES strategy and action plan. This strategy to address both trade and CBO applications between now and the next CoP.
Further we will attend the IUCN AfRSG meeting next month in Namibia where all range states are required to present population numbers etc. in preparation for CITES.
Whilst to our great disappointment DEA did not submit a trade proposal (or at least propose the removal of the Appendix I annotation), we still have possible trade through registered CBO properties. If successful this could bring the much needed stimulation to our rhino conservation and funding needs.
It must be noted that beyond lobbying for Sustainable Utilization and trade, PROA acts on behalf of owners on matters of legislation, policy and security. PROA is busy developing a national strategy around all Key Populations in partnership with National and Provincial Parks. Once finalized we hope to raise international funding to help protect these nodes including private populations in an immediate radius.
We participate on all rhino forum meetings including enforcement and policy, this involves a substantive amount of time and legal advice.
In preparation for CoP18 and other needs including legal services. PROA has very limited funds available and urgently requests member donations and financial assistance to cover our CITES expenses of; airfare, accommodation, registration and marketing material as well as to cover our on-going monthly operations.
Please could members who will be holding auctions also consider the sale of an animal or an auction item and the funds donated to the association.
We do not charge member fees and are 100% reliant on member donations, PROA is a registered Non Profit Company (NPC registration 2015/324972/08). The AFS of the association are audited annually and we are up to date with SARS and corporate compliance requirements.
An invoice will be issued if required for any member able to assist with our CITES expenses.
Banking Details; Private Rhino Owners Association
Bank; First National Bank (FNB)
Account Number; 62427189651
Branch; Cradlestone Mall 210 636
We are currently planning our AGM and will use the same meeting to expand in more detail on our strategy and activities. After the IUCN meeting and our next DEA CITES meeting we will be better informed on the way forward.
Pelham Jones 082 299 3161