The Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) has secured funds from government to pay all outstanding salaries for Village Scouts countrywide.
By last week most of the Scouts received their January salaries, while the rest for February, March and April have been rolled out this week.
Ordinarily, payments of Village Scouts’ salaries are neither ZAWA’s responsibility nor the government’s. They are a responsibility of Community Resource Boards (CRBs).
But government has released this money to support the continuity of conservation activities in the National Parks and Game Management areas, especially now that hunting has been suspended as a source of revenue.
Government is also committed to continue supporting the scouts until such a time when they can get revenue from hunting and other sources.
ZAWA has also proposed to government to absorb the Village scouts into the mainstream ZAWA as Wildlife Police Officers (WPOs) in order to relieve the burden of paying salaries from CRBs. Approximately 800 village scouts are being considered for adoption into ZAWA.
The Authority would like to thank the Scouts for their patience and commitment to conservation work within their respective localities.
Article by: ZAWA
Photo Credit David Shepherd