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MEC urges residents to protect endangered species

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“We call on all roleplayers to continue to play an active role in the protection of endangered species in the country and the Province.”

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THE NORTHERN Cape MEC for Agriculture, Environmental Affairs, Rural Development and Land Reform, Mase Manopole has urged residents in the Province to protect endangered species, which include plants, mammals and birds.

The country celebrated Endangered Species Day on Friday, May 21, 2021.

Manopole said this year’s celebrations focussed on the preservation of pangolins.

“Pangolins are considered to be the most trafficked animals in the world. They are poached for their scales, which are used in traditional medicines, the meat is considered to be a delicacy and for their blood, seen as a healing tonic,” said Manopole.

She said the department would also focus on educating people on the importance and benefit of some plants found in the Province.

“Succulents are plants with thick, plump and puffy parts designed to retain water. The word succulent is derived from the Latin word sucus – meaning juice or sap. Succulent plants are specially adapted to survive in some dry Northern Cape areas, arid environments and can conserve water in special water storage cells in thickened or swollen leaves, stems or roots. Water storage tissue consists of large cells with thin cell walls that can expand or shrink depending on the availability of water,” she said.

Manopole applauded the roleplayers who had been fighting for the protection of endangered species.

“We applaud the Kalahari Wildlife Project, for the good work they do in ensuring the rehabilitation and re-integration of pangolins into the environment.

”We also applaud the South African Police Service (SAPS) for a sterling job in addressing the illegal poaching of succulent, marine and reptile species as well as their approach to the illegal activities associated with environmental crimes.

“With the collaboration of the police, perpetrators of these illegal acts will continue to face the full might of the law if found.

“We also applaud the men and women in blue, for the sterling job in addressing the illegal poaching of succulent, marine and reptile species.

“We call on all roleplayers to continue to play an active role in the protection of endangered species in the country and the Province,” Manopole said.