Cecil has a new meaning


South Africa’s Eye Witness News reported last week that Cecil, the lion which was killed by an American dentist, was the biggest international news from Zimbabwe since the 2008 elections which the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front lost narrowly to the Movement for Democratic Change.

Not even poverty, job losses (16 000 in the past two weeks), the dying economy or even Itai Dzamara who disappeared four months ago- could beat Cecil.

The killing of Cecil by American dentist Walter Palmer has sparked international debate with calls for Palmer to be extradited to Zimbabwe for trial.

PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals), which says it is the largest animal rights group in the world, even said Palmer should be hanged.

“Hunting is a coward's pastime. If, as has been reported, this dentist and his guides lured Cecil out of the park with food so as to shoot him on private property, because shooting him in the park would have been illegal, he needs to be extradited, charged, and, preferably, hanged,” PETA said in a statement.

Two United States congressmen Raul Grijalva and Earl Blumenauer are urging the US Fish and Wildlife Service to finalise its proposed rule listing the African lion as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

Senator Robert Menendez also of the United States is proposing a bill to ban imports of trophies.  The bill is called the Conserving Ecosystems by Ceasing the Importation of Large (CECIL) Animal Trophies Act.

The interest in Cecil has baffled many especially Zimbabweans with one quipping on twitter: “Guys, there's no greater publicity than a global cause, Cecil is doing what would have taken ZTA yrs.”


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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