At the 40th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa (PHASA), a bold and brave step was taken by members within the Association to adopt a new constitution, which bring accountability and credibility to the Association. A total of 79% of our members who voted, endorsed the introduction of the new constitution. Under the new constitution the Executive Committee (EXCO), has the freedom to guide and govern the Association on behalf of the members, but remains accountable for their actions, in accordance with terms and good corporate governance.
The driving factor that necessitated this change was that the previous constitution was no longer aligned with the current Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. PHASA identified an obligation to evolve and accordingly develop the new constitution of the Association in line with modern times. The new constitution is a living document that will enable the development of the Association in conjunction with the relevant Government Departments in a rapidly evolving hunting industry, for the benefit of the South African bio-diversity economy, our communities and our members.
The collective membership acknowledged the importance of being involved in the various segments of the industry. As one of the leading professional hunting association in the world, we need to take responsibility of our industry and provide guidance in the development of rules, regulations and standards. PHASA cannot merely distance itself from various stakeholders and activities occurring within the industry and expect to be in a position of influence.
A concern was that the new constitution would be perceived to condone the hunting of captive bred lions, which is currently a legal activity with in the Republic. Accordingly, a resolution was passed by 65% of voting members at the AGM, in which PHASA accepts the responsible hunting of ranched lions on South African Predator Association accredited hunting ranches within the relevant legal framework and/or according to recommendations of the applicable hunting association. This resolution provides for a more comprehensive standard of industry involvement and endorses industry input from both international and local hunting associations. It is the Association’s belief that the adopted resolution allows for the continuation and further development of close working relationships with local and international hunting associations.
PHASA reiterates its position in which it vehemently rejects any and all forms of canned or illegal hunting.
PHASA endorses all stakeholders to directly engage with our EXCO through the PHASA Office for further comment and/or clarity.
The PHASA EXCO realized the importance of the decisions to be made and introduced a new mobile app to make all relevant information and voting possible to all members.
PHASA realizes that there is a vast amount of misinformation and falsehoods out there and the EXCO plans to set the record straight with all relevant information within the near future.
We request that members realize the dangers of false information on social media and refrain from commenting on or behaving in an unprofessional manner or making uninformed statements.
For further information we request our members and the public to contact Dries van Coller, PHASA president