Windhoek, Aug 10 — On Sunday, 8 August 2021, four highly-trained dogs arrived at the Hosea Kutako International Airport from the Netherlands with the sole purpose to combat wildlife crime in Namibia. Old Mutual invested N$268 000 to procure three of the four dogs from the highly specialised Dutch K9 Training Centre in the Netherlands.
The three German Shepherds and one Belgian Malinois breeds named Caga, Britta, Vanda and Devil will be sent to the Waterberg Law Enforcement Training Centre with their respective handlers for the next five to six months to complete their local training after which they will be deployed to the north-eastern part of the country. These canines are specially raised and put through a series of tests to develop and identify their natural skills and abilities to serve as detection dogs.
Mauriza Fredericks, Manager: Communications and Social Responsibility, at Old Mutual, expressed her gratitude to the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism for their assiduity in protecting our wildlife saying that Old Mutual will continue taking the lead in things that matter most. ”We care for our communities and our natural resources; we, therefore, deem this partnership with the Ministry as an investment in the preservation of our natural resources for another 100 years to come”, she said.
Colgar Sikopo, Deputy Executive Director, Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism said that the procurement process dates back to 2017 when Old Mutual pledged N$268 000 to acquire the dogs from the Dutch K9 Centre in the Netherlands. Upon arrival, Old Mutual contributed another N$50 000 for additional supplies to the K9 Unit.
Mr. Colgar Sikopo, expressed his gratitude towards Old Mutual and further outlined how the dogs that are currently in action, have successfully brought down the rate of wildlife crime since their introduction of 5 detection dogs to the K9 Unit in 2019. “The dogs have already been involved in 240 success cases where they have detected weapons such as rifles in the cars. We have certainly seen the impact of having detection dogs in the Unit. This is because of the measures that the Ministry and its partners have put in place.” said Mr. Sikopo. The dogs will now be sent to the Waterberg Law Enforcement Training Centre for further training and pairing with handlers before they are deployed to the northeastern region.
Old Mutual, as a Responsible Business, devote efforts towards the preservation of our wildlife for a sustainable future. We further encourage our communities to protect themselves while protecting our environment as we can only do so if we create a sustainable future for ourselves first. We will continue to Do Great Things Every Day and Protect Tomorrow.
– NDN Staff