Man Jailed for Pangolin Killing

May 3, 2024
PANGOLIN | Report Focus News

ZIMBABWE | Simon Khumalo (41) from Inyati communal lands recently received a three-month jail sentence for killing a pangolin, an endangered species protected under the Parks and Wildlife Act. Khumalo admitted to violating a section of the Parks and Wildlife Act during his appearance before Magistrate Tinaye Maunganidze at Inyati Magistrates Court, stating that he killed the pangolin with the intention of consuming it.

Khumalo, who had been poaching at Gourlays Ranch, was apprehended with the deceased pangolin by members of the People’s Militia. In handing down the sentence, the magistrate emphasized the pangolin’s protected status and noted that previous individuals who had encountered the animal had reported it to the President. Maunganidze stressed that the sentence was intended to deter others from harming pangolins.

Representing the State, Mr. Philip Kawara highlighted that Zimbabwe’s pangolins are safeguarded under the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Act, which prohibits the illegal possession or sale of pangolins, punishable by significant imprisonment terms.

In many traditional African societies, animals often symbolize deeper cultural values and beliefs. Pangolins, revered for centuries in various African communities, including Zimbabwe, symbolize protection, wisdom, and spiritual connections. Presenting a pangolin to a chief is a gesture of respect and seeks blessings for the community, reflecting the animal’s role as a harbinger of good fortune, luck, and prosperity.