“LA VISION DE SHELL GABON” appears to have faded. Even more difficult to read, the “MISSION” which concludes with “…RESPECTUESE DE L’ENVIRONEMENT” appears to have faded beyond recognition.
The gentle giant Tchibanga, or Solitaire for some of you, has been labelled, once again, as aggressive.
Even though veterinarians have been consulted on several occasions, and have concluded this elephant is a normal, healthy male that does not behave in an aggressive manner.
Perhaps aggressive has been confused with opportunistic.
Tchibanga tips household bins of garbage. Yenzi residents have been advised to not leave bins streetside overnight, to not place trash in bins that cannot be collected on the same day. Some Yenzi residents cannot be bothered to comply with rules.
Sanivit has been contracted to pick the trash every day. Sanivit has had problems fulfilling this contract.
The bins behind Yenzi Club and Economart have been placed in reinforced enclosures to prevent access by elephants. A good start to addressing this problem, the problem of trash being available to elephants. Though trash in not always located to these enclosures, and enclosures are not always closed properly.
Some people leave baguettes in their car, unattended, in the vicinity of elephants, which can proceed to break a window for access to baguettes.
This is not aggression. This is people neglecting to take appropriate precaution where elephants are living. The problem lies with people, not elephants.
And then there is the accusation of aggression.
Tchibanga charging after children who are throwing things at him. Tchibanga charging towards Yenzi residents taking pictures of him with flash cameras. Tchibanga becoming upset by Yenzi residents getting too close to him. Employees taunting and laughing at him until he charges the new barricade at Economart.
The problem lies with people, not elephants.
Some members of the Yenzi community, and Gamba community, have shown a lack of respect, demonstrating that we are unable to live peacefully with the natural environment. People are again calling for this elephant to be killed, for behavior we have created and then misinterpreted.
Kill Tchibanga and another elephant will follow. Maybe this is what Gamba ultimately wants. Some Plaine village residents are sharpening their knives…
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