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Trophy hunters and others who make a living selling hunting trips and accessories like to claim that they kill animals in the name of "conservation" or, patronizingly, to support "natives"—but hunting has nothing to do with respecting wildlife and everything to do with taking sadistic pleasure in needlessly taking life.
Following an undercover investigation, PETA has revealed South African President Cyril Ramaphosa's hidden connections and investments in the trophy hunting industry.
See the footage for yourself, and then take action to help stop these wonderful but vulnerable animals from being shot in cold blood and dying in agony just to give trophy hunters a sick thrill and line the pockets of politicians and businesses.
Trophy Hunting Lining a Top Politician's Pockets
Footage reveals that Ramaphosa is quietly developing and expanding a trophy hunting property called Diepdrift—stocking it with animals from his own wildlife breeding operation, Phala Phala—and that he owns a 50% stake in Tsala Hunting Safaris. In other words, far from "conserving" wildlife, wild animals are brought into this world specifically to be killed for trophies. PETA U.S. recorded conversations in which Ramaphosa's managers admitted that he shares equally in the profits from all hunts conducted through Tsala and spoke of the importance of concealing his involvement. One manager said, "We try to keep the president's name actually out of the hunting thing because … of all the greenies …. So he wanna spare himself this, how can I say, bad publicity and all of that."
Killing Wildlife for 'Sport'
Trophy hunters pay thousands of dollars to shoot animals, including antelopes, baboons, buffaloes, giraffes, hippos, and zebras, through Tsala Hunting Safaris. Earlier this year, a Dutch doctor and his wife slaughtered a buffalo, a bush pig, a kudu, and several impalas during a Diepdrift hunting safari. Hundreds of animals are also killed at Phala Phala by the property manager, and their flesh is sold as exotic game meat.
No Animals Are Off Limits
The animals have no chance of escaping a hunter's bullet, and no animals are off limits. Tsala conducts lion and elephant hunts on other properties in South Africa and also organizes leopard hunts in Mozambique and Namibia. A Tsala representative told PETA U.S.' investigator that the company could even make special arrangements to acquire rhinos to hunt.
Like the animals bred at Phala Phala and hunted at Diepdrift, many of the lions hunted by Tsala clients are captive-bred, meaning they are habituated to humans.
What You Can Do
All animals are beloved by their own mates and offspring, but to hunters they are only the sum of their body parts, seen simply as living targets to kill, decapitate, and display on the wall. You can help wild animals by demanding an end to trophy hunting.
Do more: Animals shot by trophy hunters often endure a prolonged and painful death—simply so that hunters can chop off their heads and other body parts as trophies, and politicians and businesses can make a profit.
Please use the form below to urge South Africa’s Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister to ban trophy hunting in South Africa.