The cancellation of the tender for 19 hunting blocks in Zambia has thrown its hunting industry into turmoil, especially following on so soon after from the hunting ban announced in Botswana. The reasons for the cancellation were the result allegations of corruption in the tender process conducted by the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) and some safari operators. A number of other existing areas and private ranches are unaffected and are continuing hunting as usual in 2013.
The cancellation of the tender has triggered a number of important events that hopefully will be beneficial to the Zambian industry as a whole. First, it became clear that ZAWA was in disarray and unable to fully address its mandate, especially with regard to its obligations to communities residing in Game Management Areas. Secondly, the responsible Ministry has taken steps to educate itself about the hunting industry, especially with regard to the financial and social impacts on rural communities. A new Board has been appointed, and the Ministry has commissioned an audit of the organisation including a thorough review of the management and administration of the hunting industry.