Target: Philip Ngole Ngwese, Minister of Forestry and Wildlife in Cameroon
Goal: Demand that the Cameroonian government do more to protect wildlife rangers from armed poachers.
Every day wildlife rangers put their lives on the line to protect endangered animals from ruthless poachers. One estimate from The Guardian puts the death toll at 2-3 rangers a week, internationally. This week, Bruce Danny Ngongo was gunned down in Lobéké National Park by a gang of poachers carrying Kalachnikov guns. Ngongo bled to death after being shot three times. Another man was injured in the attack, Private Martin Ngozo, and is currently recovering from his injuries. Ngongo left behind a grieving family.
These two men were attacked while protecting endangered elephants and gorillas. The group of rangers managed to fight off the attack and seize the poachers’ stash of illegal ivory. In total, nine tusks were recovered as a result of this confrontation. Two men were shot, and one was killed over nine tusks of ivory.
It is time that more is done to protect these conservation warriors. They must be given access to more resources and training to prevent them from being killed on the job. The government must implement other strategies for dealing with this systemic problem.
One method for doing this is to convert the poachers into rangers. Most poachers resort to illegal activities out of desperation. If they are offered a decent wage to work within the law, that is often all the motivation they need to protect the animals they once hunted. Another benefit is that these rehabilitated rangers are skilled at catching poachers, because they know from experience exactly how they operate.
Sign the petition below to tell the government of Cameroon to do more to protect its rangers.
Dear Minister Ngwese,
One man was killed this week and another seriously injured while patrolling Lobéké National Park. These rangers were heroically protecting endangered forest elephants and gorillas. Bruce Danny Ngongo left behind his grieving family and Private Martin Ngozo is still recovering from this attack.
More must be done to protect the men serving Cameroon in this way. They must be given access to more resources and training to prevent them from being killed on the job. The government must implement other strategies for dealing with this systemic problem, including converting the poachers into rangers. Most poachers resort to illegal activities out of desperation, but if they are offered a decent wage to work within the law then they can become an essential part in protecting the animals they once hunted.
Please do more to safeguard these men. They are doing good work preserving your country’s wildlife for future generations.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Joe Mckenna