Proposed Baboon Strategic Management Plan Now Available for Public Comment

26 Jan 2023

SANPARKS, CAPENATURE, CITY OF CAPE TOWN

27 JANUARY 2023

JOINT STATEMENT

Proposed Baboon Strategic Management Plan now available for public comment

The Cape Peninsula Baboon Management Joint Task Team (JTT) has finalised a draft Baboon Strategic Management Plan for the sustainable management of the Chacma Baboon population in the Cape Peninsula. The draft plan proposes a new sustainable approach with the three authorities – South African National Parks (SANParks), CapeNature and the City of Cape Town – leading and supporting the implementation of the plan. It also proposes the involvement of other stakeholders and role players, key amongst which are residents living in areas adjacent to baboons’ natural habitat. 

The draft plan is now available for public comment. Residents, interested and affected parties, and stakeholders are encouraged to submit their written comments by 31 March 2023, and attend a stakeholder meeting at Kirstenbosch on 3 March 2023. Read more below:

The draft plan is the result of the collective effort of the Joint Task Team, comprising representatives of SANParks, CapeNature and the City of Cape Town.

It is informed, amongst others, by research, international best practice and operational experience, as well as the input from stakeholders at Minister Barbara Creecy’s roundtable event at Kirstenbosch on 7 June 2022, and the community engagements undertaken by the City of Cape Town in August and September last year.

The plan and comment form are available for downloading at the bottom of this press statement or online at:

· https://bit.ly/3j9PZTy

· www.capetown.gov.za/HaveYourSay

How to comment:

· Send the comment form to commentscpbmjtt@capenature.co.za

· Attend the stakeholder meeting at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens on Friday, 3 March 2023.

· The closing date for public comment is 31 March 2023.

The draft Baboon Strategic Management Plan proposes, amongst others:

· Seven broad outcomes focusing on a sustainable baboon population; promoting compliance and law enforcement; stakeholder engagement and partnerships to enable local solutions; effective waste management; stakeholder communication, education and awareness; infrastructure and services design to minimise impact on baboons; and adaptive management. It lists the actions to achieve the outcomes, timelines, and the responsible authority

· Joint interventions with affected parties to step-up waste management and baboon proofing of properties and infrastructure, and fencing of strategic hotspots. These interventions include the authorities managing the population sustainably – please see the plan for more details.

· A Joint Baboon Operational Team comprising of representatives from SANParks, CapeNature, and the City of Cape Town, to facilitate joint decision making on operational matters.

· Establishing a Baboon Advisory Group comprising of nominated representatives from community groups, businesses, landowners, advocacy groups and research institutions to regularly engage with the Joint Task Team on behalf of the communities and stakeholders they represent.

"We are very excited to share the draft Baboon Strategic Management Plan with our stakeholders for public comment. It is a product of months’ of hard work by members of the Joint Task Team from the three institutions: City of Cape Town, CapeNature and SANParks. We thank these colleagues and the experts that have developed this draft. We look forward to robust engagement on the Baboon Strategic Management Plan from our stakeholders. We hope the comments will help us improve the plan even further and ensure it represents the best options for people to live in harmony with nature," said Dr Luthando Dziba, SANParks Managing Executive of Conservation.

"With the draft plan now ready for public comment, CapeNature looks forward to receiving and considering with SANParks and the City of Cape Town inputs from other interested and affected parties towards the practical implementation of the plan and setting a new standard for human-wildlife conflict management in the urban-wildlife interface,’ said CapeNature’s Executive Director, Conservation Operations, Dr Ernst Baard.

"The draft plan recognises that we need to be adaptable and flexible to respond to what is happening on the ground – be it with the baboon population, or within our affected communities, and consider the latest research. In this sense I am grateful to see that the plan proposes a permanent forum where community representatives and stakeholders can meet with the JTT to contribute to solutions. I encourage residents to go online, read the draft plan, and submit comments. We need as many people as possible to join this collaborative effort so that we can ensure more sustainable and inclusive outcomes. I also want to confirm that the City is investigating how and in what capacity we can contribute to ensure a smooth transition from our current Urban Baboon Programme to the new dispensation involving all stakeholders, once the draft plan has been approved," said the City’s Deputy Mayor and Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Alderman Eddie Andrews.

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