International travel vlogger blacklistedby MEFT for breaking park rules

Hertta-Maria Amutenya

The Ministry of Environment, Forestry, and Tourism (MEFT) has strongly condemned the violation of park rules within Namibia’s national parks after a foreign visitor was filmed violating the rules and regulations of Etosha National Park.

The travel vlogger, operating under the account name Travel with PEACE, broke park regulations earlier this month after a video of him was posted on social media when he ventured outside his vehicle with his crew in Etosha National Park. The team was filming black rhinos which is prohibited by all means.

Romeo Muyunda, the ministry’s spokesperson, condemned the incident and announced the blacklisting of the individual from all national parks in Namibia.

Muyunda emphasised that the vlogger had violated various park rules, including filming for commercial purposes, employing high-quality equipment for detailed shots, and endangering the security of national rhinos by exposing their location to potential poachers.

“We condemn the incident, the person is not Namibian and by the time the ministry was made aware of the incident the person had already left the park and country. We have not found the person and it’s difficult now, especially since the person is not Namibian. We will however blacklist the person from entry to any national parks in Namibia,” he said.

Romeo said the actions not only constituted offences but also posed significant risks to the park’s wildlife.

Namibia Wildlife Resort Managing Director Matthias Ngwangwama has also expressed disappointment with the actions of some tourists who were spotted disregarding park rules in the Dorob National Park.

“Allow me to also talk about the despicable sight of tourists recently spotted driving off-road in the Dorob National Park, and recently tourists who were seen standing outside of their cars in the Etosha National Park. Of course, these actions have left a sour taste with those of us who are passionate about tourism,” he said.

Ngwangwama was during the National Clean-up Campaign at Etosha over the weekend, where he emphasised the importance of keeping the environment clean for sustainability.

Environment Minister Pohamba Shifeta, who spoke at the same occasion, reiterated the critical need to enhance waste management in Namibia, recognising it as a crucial aspect of environmental management.

“The Environmental Management Act, (EMA), Act 7 of 2007 highlights waste management as one of the essential aspects of environmental management in Namibia.

The Act provides the strategic basis for waste management and requires that all public and private institutions put in place effective waste management systems to avoid damage to the environment and negative human health impacts emanating from waste,” said Shifeta.

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