The Kruger National Park (KNP) managing exeutive, Abe Sibiya, handed over a Ultra-Light Bantam Aircraft to Shingwedzi section ranger, Marius Renke, during a ceremonial hand over on June 5, 2012.
The SANParks Honorary Rangers' (HR) Counter Poaching Unit used the opportunity to also hand over anti poaching equipment worth R1 374 327 to rangers in the Kruger National Park (KNP).
“The Bantam and other equipment will considerably enhance the effectiveness of the Ranger corps by providing them with tools to patrol over larger areas. Our anti poaching teams can no longer only patrol on foot, bicycles, motorbikes or vehicles, but must be able to conduct aerial patrols armed with sophisticated field equipment in the huge areas under their responsibility day and night,” said KNP's managing executive Abe Sibiya during his speech at the handover event at the Shingwedzi hanger.
The HRs from various regions donated equipment, which included night vision giggles, torches, thermal binoculars and scope mounts. They also donated funds to build the aircraft hangar and for the running cost of the Bantam to the value of R100 000.
Chris Herbst, an Honorary Ranger from the Pretoria Region, donated R48 000 from his family business towards the maintenance on the Bantam Aircraft.
The KNP has another Ultra-Light Bantam Aircraft operating from the Tshokawne section.