As part of the project “Strengthening the Conservation of Globally Endangered Species in Mozambique through Improved Biodiversity Law Enforcement and Expansion of Community Conservation Areas in the Protected Areas and Buffer Zones”, an award was made today (02/10/2019) of a TATA-branded bus by the United Nations Development Program in Mozambique (UNDP) to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). The event was chaired by Mr. Francisco Roquette, UNDP Deputy Representative and James Bampton, Country Director of WCS, and was attended by officials from both institutions and the local press.
The vehicle will be specifically used in the Niassa National Reserve and its acquisition is part of the implementation of the PROBIO - GEF 6 project. The PROBIO project which is implemented in partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Conservation, the National Conservation Area Administration (ANAC) and the Gorongosa Restoration Project (for components in Gorongosa National Park).
Mr. Francisco Roquette, UNDP Deputy Representative and James Bampton, Country Director of WCS Mozambique
In his speech, the UNDP Deputy Representative stressed that he emphasised that along the Marrupa-Mecula corridor, around 10,000 people, 53% of whom are women, will benefit directly from project implementation, mainly through the creation and operationalization of community conservation areas. He took the opportunity to congratulate the Niassa National Reserve on the fact that there has not been registered elephant poaching for over a year. This shows that the implementation of the PROBIO project is having a positive impact, as it provides operational air support for area surveillance as well as other activities, altogether contributing to a significant reduction in wildlife loss due to poaching.
For his part, the Director of WCS Mozambique emphasized that, in addition to the central purpose of the new bus, which involves the daily transport of Reserve Administration staff between Mbatamila HQ and their residences in and around Mecula town, the bus will also provide services for Reserve Administration community development programs.