Published online by Cambridge University Press: 04 June 2019
THIS CHAPTER provides a synopsis of the law relevant to elephant management in South Africa. The authors provide an assessment of the law as a subset of the broader enquiry undertaken in the Assessment of Elephant Management in South Africa (‘the Assessment’), and in so doing, highlight shortcomings that impact on the efficacy of elephant management practices and strategies.
The Assessment is intended to inform the Authorising Body (policy makers) by way of the provision of high level expert advice in order to develop policy and law to regulate the management of elephants in all of its facets in South Africa. This chapter assesses the current status of elephant-related law in order to assist management and limit the risks associated with policy formulation or promulgation of legislation and regulations.
In making policy decisions, the Authorising Body is often presented with differing interpretations of the law that appear to present options or alternative approaches. This chapter is intended to help policy makers act in accordance with the law, or where the law is seen to be lacking, they are given a sound legal basis for departing from conventional approaches or are able to consider legislative intervention. The authors accordingly base their conclusions on judicial interpretations of the law, state the law as it is generally accepted to be, and indicate where compliance is mandatory. The opinions of the authors have been clearly distinguished from statements of existing law.
THE AUTHORS’ RESPONSE TO THE BRIEF
In giving effect to the requirements of the Assessment, the authors have adopted the following approach:
An accurate statement of the law is provided. This is based on conventional legal principles and is as far as possible free of the authors’ personal opinions or analyses, except where this is required by the context. Where reference is made to legal texts, the wording of the relevant statute or court judgement is used as far as practicable. Paraphrasing that may lose the import of the statements made is avoided unless the syntax otherwise requires.
The authors provide a summary of their conclusions and analysis of the law (strengths and weaknesses) in so far as it relates to elephant management and wildlife management generally. The conclusions of the authors are presented in such a way as to ensure that these are distinguishable from the legal texts themselves.