NO TRADE IN IVORY AS KENYAN LED COALITION SECURES MAJORITY WIN AT CITES’ COP18
(Posted 28th August 2018)
While the pro elephant coalition’s proposal to uplist all elephants to Appendix 1 of the CITES convention did not attain a majority vote – the move would have ensured that all trade would have been made impossible – did the group however manage to defeat attempts by Southern African countries to have trading in their ivory stocks allowed.
101 of the member states present at COP18 in Geneva voted against the trading proposals, leaving the promoters of the motion pondering what next to do.
At least one of the countries has already threatened to terminate their membership in CITES as they seek ways and means to dispose of their ivory stocks thought to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Southern African countries, led by Botswana, had prior to the CITES meeting tried to charm Kenya into a change of heart but given the level of public opinion across Eastern Africa and Kenya in particular, was this an attempt doomed to fail – as ATCNews reported at the time.
Kenya’s Chief Administrative Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife, former Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet said in Geneva after the votes had been counted: “I commend the delegation of Kenya in Geneva, which consists of government and no-state actors for their teamwork and tireless efforts that ensured that we were successful in all these endeavors” while also thanking Kenya’s partners in this fight, the African Elephant Coalition and the EU among others, for their support.