Tag Archives: Professional Hunters

PHASA–Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

SCI CEO Phil DeLone addressed a room packed with dedicated members of PHASA where he gave updates on the overwhelming response we are getting to the 2014 Convention, exciting new SCI Member benefits and the status on the African Lion Defense Fund and how that dedicated money is being used.
SCI CEO Phil DeLone addressed a room packed with dedicated members of PHASA.

“Yesterday, today and tomorrow” is the theme here at this years’ PHASA Convention and Annual General Meeting that officially kicked off this morning, and there was lots of good news and exciting new opportunities discussed in addition to the ongoing challenges we face as hunters–all hunters. Guest speaker Ms. Mmatšatši Ramawela, CEO of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa, explained how “PHASA has a special place” with her umbrella organization that represents the business interests of operators in the local and travel industry. She coined the phrase “hunting tourism” while here, and shared some impressive statistics that deserve notice.

Ms. Mmatšatši Ramawela of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa reported that hunting directly accounts for 1,399,500 jobs in South Africa. That's 10.3% of South Africa's total employment.
Ms. Mmatšatši Ramawela of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa reported that hunting directly accounts for 1,399,500 jobs in South Africa.

In South Africa, hunting accounts for 9.8% of the country’s GDP and 10.3% of total employment. Think about that employment number for a second–10.3%. To put that into perspective, fill any typical movie theater and the person on each end of EVERY ROW is employed in South Africa’s hunting industry.

That significance was further recognized by Dr.Moscow Marumo, Chief Director Biodiversity/Economy and Sustainable Use for South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs who explained that South Africa’s government had “woken up” to a “renewable-use economy” and that “hunting is at the center of  that.” It is through the tireless effort and great work of organizations such

Jean du Plessis has been hired by PHASA for its PR campaign. His presentation was exceptional and we anxiously look forward to watching the campaign unfold.
Jean du Plessis has been hired by PHASA for its PR campaign.

as PHASA that the government here sees the importance of hunting and the value of sustainable use.

As many of you know, SCI recently gave PHASA grant money for a public relation campaign to ensure hunting is and remains seen in a positive light. Today we heard from Jean du Plessis of du Plessis Associates, which is the public relations firm PHASA has hired to lead this PR effort. Mr. du Plessis gave a concise presentation that positively nailed all of the issues squarely on the mark and then went on to describe a comprehensive three-year plan compete with obtainable goals and objectives. PHASA appears to have made an excellent PR firm selection and we are excited and anxious to see how it unfolds.

Jeremy Anderson reported on WESSA and its program to combat the serious matter of rhino poaching in South Africa
Jeremy Anderson reported on WESSA and its program to combat the serious matter of rhino poaching in South Africa

Unfortunately, not all the news on this first day was good. Last year there were more than 800 rhinos poached in South Africa alone, and those are just the rhino we know of–there are certainly many poached rhinos that are never found. Jeremy Anderson from WESSA (Wildlife Environment Society of South Africa) reported on its program to combat rhino poaching in South Africa. WESSA has provided information that has lead to the arrest of more than 20 people involved in poaching, and Anderson shared the results of their 2013 SWOT analysis. One of the threats that must be addressed is that the price of rhino horn continues to rise. We must increase

SCI President Craig Kauffman (r.) and CEO Phil DeLone (l.) are currently at the 2013 PHASA Convention and AGM Program and are reporting as the convention unfolds.
SCI President Craig Kauffman (r.) and CEO Phil DeLone (l.) are currently at the 2013 PHASA Convention and AGM Program and are reporting as the convention unfolds.

the sustainable value of rhino in communities so that the long-term value of rhino is seen as more than the short-term value of its horn in grams. If we don’t, the possibility of CITES re-listing the white rhino exists. One of the more alarming threats Anderson shared is donor fatigue. Don’t be that person who tires of fighting for the rhino and gives up. It is too magnificent an animal to let the poachers win, and that is why PHASA has given R200,000 over the past two years to help support WESSA. Tomorrow we are scheduled to hear more about the rhino crisis and see the results from a hunter survey that asked about the benefits and advantages of hunting in South Africa. Stay tuned, I will continue to try and bring you as much information as I can from PHASA as it happens.–Craig Kauffman

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SCI Addresses PHASA Executive Committee

Craig Kauffman and Hans Vermaak President PHASA
Craig Kauffman and Hans Vermaak President PHASA

This afternoon at its annual meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, CEO Phil DeLone and I addressed the 10-member Executive Committee of the Professional Hunters Association of South Africa (PHASA),

There, we renewed our support of PHASA in its commitment to protect hunting and maintain the professional image of huntng in South Africa, and ensured open lines of communication so the important efforts of PHASA are heard by all SCI Members. PHASA President Hans “Scruffy” Vermaak thanked SCI for its support calling it, “vital to the PR drive that is underway.”

As the leaders of professional hunting in South Africa, PHASA sees what is happening to hunting in Botswana and Zambia and hopes its effort to protect hunting in South Africa also impacts its neighbors to the north.

We expressed how well Convention is shaping up for 2014. At its current pace, 2014 is rivaling 2012, which was our biggest Convention ever and also SCI’s 40th anniversary–2014 could prove to be a new record and we look forward to welcoming and seeing many PHASA members exhibiting in Las Vegas.

Craig Kauffman and Hermann Meyeridricks PHASA President-elect
Craig Kauffman and Hermann Meyeridricks PHASA President-elect

Lions and lion hunting remain on the front burner as a major concern of SCI and our efforts will have an effect on lion hunting in South Africa. Last December the anti-hunters filed a petition to uplist the African lion to “endangered” through the Endangered Species Act.

The African lion is not endangered, and SCI has already raised more than $1.2 Million dollars to prime a war chest for the coming battles over lions. We reported to PHASA that some of that money had already been spent for on-the-ground studies of lions and, as this battle could be one that is fought publicly, we have also conducted focus groups on what the public thinks of lion hunting and how to fight this battle so that facts prevail over emotion.

We still have several days of important meetings ahead of us, plus more in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Namibia, and I look forward to bringing you regular reports as the information and Internet connections are available.– Craig Kauffman