23 Feb 2023

Fauna / Landscape of fear: crime, corruption and murder in greater Kruger

The national park’s most-pressing challenge is no longer preventing rhino poaching but eradicating internal corruption.

Briefing to SA's Portfolio Committee on Forestry, Fisheries and Environment

For more than a decade, Kruger National Park has faced a relentless onslaught of rhino poaching. But today its greatest threat is internal corruption, itself a symptom of a breakdown in trust, staff cohesion and professionalism within the park. Recent staff arrests following lengthy financial investigations and a renewed commitment to combat corruption are bearing fruit but will require political support, clear law enforcement strategies to address organized crime around the park and a long-term investment. The park is severely affected by corrosive corruption and violent organised crime, particularly in Mpumalanga, where staff living in surrounding communities are vulnerable to deeply entrenched criminal syndicates.

About the author

Julian Rademeyer is Director: East and Southern Africa: Global Initiative against Transnational Organised Crime. Previously a project leader at TRAFFIC, the international wildlife trade monitoring network, the former investigative journalist is the author of Killing for Profit – Exposing the illegal rhino horn trade.

Image: SAPS


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ENACT is funded by the European Union
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ENACT is implemented by the Institute for Security Studies in partnership with
INTERPOL and the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime.