National 25.7.2016 07:06 am

SANParks given powerful weapon to blow poachers away

Nonhlanhla Mbatha and Oupa Manzini from SANParks Ranger
Corps with the new weapon donated by Milkor.

Nonhlanhla Mbatha and Oupa Manzini from SANParks Ranger Corps with the new weapon donated by Milkor.

The 40mm Under-barrel Grenade Launcher is a lightweight weapon with both lethal and nonlethal applications.

In aid of the ongoing fight against poaching in the Kruger National Park (KNP), weapons manufacturer Milkor donated its 40mm Under-barrel Grenade Launcher (UBGL) systems to SA National Parks (SANParks) in Groenkloof, Pretoria, on Friday.

According to the company, the UBGL’s lightweight and durable characteristics, along with its diverse less lethal and lethal applications – such as flare, smoke, flash bang, impulse and rubber rounds – would aid SANParks’ anti-poaching operations.

The UBGL also features a main weapon or assault rifle.

“SANParks will be able to deploy these weapon systems as part of their arsenal to combat poaching activities nationally,” said Milkor’s CEO, Marius Roos.

SANParks CEO Fundisile Mketeni said the organisation would continue to explore new and innovative ways to fight the relentless poaching incursions in the country’s national parks. South Africa is home to the largest population of rhino in the world.

“The South African rhino population is one of the last viable rhino populations in the world, which makes it extremely vulnerable,” Mketeni said. “The country is therefore the remaining hope for the world in terms of rhino conservation and, as such, we have no choice but to conquer this war.”

Mketeni said that partnerships of this nature allowed SANParks to provide desperately needed support in terms of equipment to the counter-poaching teams.

“The time has come for everyone to stand up and fight against poaching in order to help ensure this precious heritage for our children, forever.”

– news@citizen.co.za

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