Jean-Jacques Cornish

Three Kruger Park employees arrested for alleged rhino poaching

Three employees of South Africa’s premier national park have been arrested for alleged rhino poaching. They’ll appear next week after a joint operation by National Parks Board and police operatives found them in possession of hunting rifles, ammunition and poaching equipment. Most of the nearly 800 rhino poached in South Africa this year have been in the Kruger National Park, a game reserve the size of Israel on South Africa’s north eastern border with Mozambique and Zimbabwe. The arrest of the three employees follows discovery of a rhino carcass. It follows the arrest last week of ten members of a syndicate believed to have poached 84 rhino between 2008 and 2012. The men are being held in custody. Chief executive of the South African branch of the World Wildlife Fund Morne du Plessis told a press conference marking World Rhino Day that to curb poaching it’s vital to target the behaviour of horn users. Most of the horn sourced in South Africa ends up in Vietnam. Once it was used for medicinal purpose. Rhino horn, which is made from the same substance as human finger nails was mistakenly believed to have properties for curing cancer. Now, because if its value, it is being bought by younger customers who hold it as a status symbol or give it as a corporate gift.

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Jean-Jacques Cornish is a journalist and broadcaster who has been involved in the media all his adult life.

Starting as a reporter on his hometown newspaper, he moved briefly to then Rhodesia before returning to South Africa to become a parliamentary correspondent with the South African Press Association. He was sent to London as Sapa’s London editor and also served as special correspondent to the United Nations. He joined the then Argus group in London as political correspondent.

Returning to South Africa after 12 years abroad, he was assistant editor on the Pretoria News for a decade before becoming editor of the Star and SA Times for five years.

Since 1999 he’s been an independent journalist writing and broadcasting – mainly about Africa – for Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape
Talk, Radio France International, PressTV, Radio Live New Zealand, Business Day, Mail & Guardian, the BBC, Agence France Press,
Business in Africa, Leadership, India Today, the South African Institute for International Affairs and the Institute for Security Studies.

He has hosted current affairs talk shows on Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk. He appears as an African affairs pundit on SABC Africa and CNBC Africa.
He lectured in contemporary studies to journalism students at the Tshwane University of Technology and the University of Pretoria.

He speaks on African affairs to corporate and other audiences.
He has been officially invited as a journalist to more than 30 countries. He was the winner of the 2007 SADC award for radio journalism.

He’s been a member of the EISA team observing elections in Somaliland, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Egypt and Tunsiai.

In October 2009 he headed a group of 39 African journalists to the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Peoples’ Republic of China.

In January 2010 he joined a rescue and paramedical team to earthquake struck Haiti.

He is immediate past president of the Alliance Francaise of Pretoria.

Jean-Jacques is a director of Giant Media. The company was given access to Nelson Mandela in his retirement years until 2009.
He is co-producer of the hour-long documentary Mandela at 90 that was broadcast on BBC in January 2009.