President Emmerson Mnangagwa has expressed displeasure in the rejection of the SADC proposal on the sale of elephants.
He threatened to pull out of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) saying that the rejection of the SADC proposal was very unfair.
He also said that it is not ideal to have elephant matters presided over by Europeans who failed to conserve their own wildlife.
His remarks come as the 18th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES underway in Geneva, Switzerland, rejected a proposal by Sadc countries to open trade to clear existing stockpiles of ivory.
The president said that Zimbabwe had more than 84 000 elephants when its carrying capacity is only around 56 000.
He added that clearing the ivory stockpile would also create revenue amounting to about US$600 million.
Speaking at the ceremony for the upgrading of a 6,5-kilometre stretch along the Harare-Chirundu Highway financed by Japan, Mnangagwa said:
We have an excess population of elephants, but they bar us from selling. Just the day before yesterday they were saying we cannot sell products from our wildlife, but we rejected that. We cannot be denied such a privilege by people who no longer have the elephants. They now know elephants from pictures and films.
He also said that Zimbabwe could engage Japan and China on the sale of ivory.
More: The Chronicle