GAPIN Workshop for frontline Officers working at seaports
Durban, South Africa, 28-31 August 2012
A total of 23 Customs officers from 12 African countries – Benin, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa and Tanzania - participated in a workshop organized in Durban, South Africa, for frontline officers working at seaports in the context of Project GAPIN*. Furthermore, members of the Gendarmerie of Togo, the South African Police Services (SAPS), the South African Department of Environmental Affairs and Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries attended the workshop. The event was hosted by the South African Revenue Service (SARS).
During this GAPIN event, Customs officers were able to receive practical training from Customs experts from South Africa, the Netherlands and Australia as well as from an expert from the TRAFFIC East/Southern Africa Regional Office. The training focused on the CITES Convention, the legal and illegal trade of wildlife, detection and investigation techniques, risk analysis and x-ray image analysis. A visit of the Port of Durban was organized by SARS in cooperation with SAPS.
An awareness raising session on integrity in Customs was also on the agenda and led to productive discussions amongst the participants who acknowledged the importance of integrity in the context of this project
Once again, cooperation with national institutions, neighbouring countries and all relevant stakeholders was emphasized to successfully tackle wildlife trafficking. Integrity in Customs was also stressed as key to slow down this illicit lucrative business that is disseminating wildlife in Africa.
*Project GAPIN (Great Apes and Integrity) is funded by the Swedish Government.