The National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) is devastated that the Johannesburg Zoo have brought in another two elephants into a captive environment that is detrimental to any elephant’s well-being. The NSPCA are currently consulting with their legal department for a way forward.
In spite of the NSPCA addressing legal communications to the Johannesburg Zoo, and enquiries with the permitting official, Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD), two elephants were relocated to the Johannesburg Zoo on 12 June 2019.
The NSPCA had lodged official enquiries with GDARD in relation to the permit applications for elephant by the Johannesburg Zoo. The NSPCA were advised to apply for information via the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) and were informed by GDARD in the late afternoon of 12 June 2019 that the Johannesburg Zoo had applied for permits to import elephants. On the morning of 13 June 2019 – the NSPCA had received reports that the elephants were already at the zoo.
It is impossible to fulfil the basic five freedoms for elephants in captivity, from environmental requirements to social needs – a life in this zoo that is conducive to the elephants’ welfare is unattainable and it is completely irresponsible of the Johannesburg Zoo, and GDARD, to deprive these elephants of a good life.
The NSPCA remains of the opinion that wild animals belong in the wild.