Customs Updated:
31 Jul 2017

12 Officers Accredited in the Illegal Wildlife Trade

The World Customs Organization (WCO) informed that an Accreditation Workshop was conducted between 26 and 30 August 2019 in Lusaka, Zambia, under the auspices of the INAMA Project with the support of the COPES and Mercator Programmes.

The event gathered 14 pre-accredited and recognized experts in the field of Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) from 12 different countries in Anglophone and Francophone sub-Saharan Africa, as well as Asia. The countries represented are Angola, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Malaysia, Mozambique, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Togo, and Zambia.

This workshop is the culmination of various Train-The-Trainer and Regional Customs/ Police Enforcement training events. The workshop in Zambia represented the final step for the accreditation process of participants’, who were identified during Train-The-Trainer and Accreditation Workshops conducted in the three regions, the global Operation PRAESIDIO, and other events.

Some of the participants previously co-facilitated expert missions in several INAMA beneficiary countries, whereas others delivered a training on IWT to Zambian officers in the framework of the Accreditation Workshop. The training was also intended to build on the results of previous WCO-mediated risk management engagements in Zambia under the Mercator Programme and the INAMA Project, as well as enforcement training delivered under the COPES Programme.

During the event, candidates were requested to give several prepared and unprepared presentations, especially related to CITES/ IWT, and were evaluated by WCO accredited experts based on technical customs knowledge of the topics and facilitation/presentation skills.

Following the workshop, 12 officers were accredited, and one was pre-accredited as Operational and Technical Advisers in the field of IWT, thus enhancing the pool of local experts and ensuring long-term impact in the three regions.

This event was funded by the US Department of State and the HMRC-WCO-UNCTAD Programme.

Story by: Riaan de Lange