Zambian Whistleblower Calls for Protection

A conservationist and a journalist in Zambia say they are living in fear after they exposed that 80 black lechwe had “gone missing” in a protected area in the north of the country. Conservationist Nsama Musonda-Kearns blew the whistle last month on the relocation of the antelope species native to the south-central region of Africa. Ms Musonda-Kearns says the black lechwe were moved from their natural habitat in Bangweulu Wetlands, in north-eastern Zambia, without consulting the community as required by law. But the government has denied any wrongdoing, saying the animals were moved to two privately owned ranches after a capture permit was issued in March. Minister of Tourism Ronald Chitotela has accused Ms Musonda-Kearns of being sponsored by people wanting to dent the image of President Edgar Lungu and ordered police to investigate her. Ms Musonda-Kearns, who has since written to human rights watchdog Amnesty International, wants her rights as a whistle-blower to be protected.


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