𝗧𝗵𝗶𝘀 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗹𝗹𝘆 𝗮𝗶𝗿𝗲𝗱 𝗼𝗻 𝟮𝟲 𝗙𝗲𝗯𝗿𝘂𝗮𝗿𝘆 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟯.
A conflict is brewing in northern KwaZulu-Natal, pitting people against elephants. In September last year, Indlovu, a female, trampled a man to death on the east bank of the Jozini Dam. It set in motion a bloody reprisal from the local community, resulting in the ongoing killing of elephants in the area. It’s a conservation catastrophe that has its roots in a drought seven years ago. Then able to move to the other side of the dam, a great herd of these mammals from a private reserve in Pongola crossed paths with rural communities. Unable to cross back when the rains returned, the elephants stayed, often destroying valuable grazing land in the area. While there we tense encounters before, local communities say the trampling of one of their own was the last straw. Others, though, say there’s something far more sinister at play than a bid to preserve farmland and a recent attack on foreign tourists suggests they could be right. Carte Blanche investigates.
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