A recent investigation has brought to light a significant cyanide scandal, implicating authorities in allegations of shielding a mysterious Chinese businesswoman named Li Song. Li Song is reported to possess an extensive network of high-level connections spanning political, diplomatic, state security services, and business circles. The scandal revolves around the illicit procurement of cyanide, ostensibly to cover up charges of foreign currency externalization, while also highlighting the grave threat it poses to wildlife due to poaching activities.

According to The NewsHawks report, a staggering 40 tonnes and a pallet containing 1.1 tonnes of cyanide were clandestinely and unlawfully stored at a warehouse in Bulawayo. Despite this flagrant violation, law enforcement agencies, including the police, Environmental Management Agency, and government officials, have failed to take decisive action against Li, the alleged mastermind behind this audacious criminal enterprise.

Cyanide, commonly associated with mining, is also utilized in illicit poaching activities. The consequences of such actions are dire, with reports indicating the poisoning and subsequent deaths of elephants in Matabeleland North, home to a significant portion of Zimbabwe’s elephant population. Tragically, this has resulted in collateral damage, exemplified by a distressing video depicting an entire pride of lions succumbing to death after consuming poisoned elephant carcasses.

The illicit wildlife trade, fueled by poaching, is a lucrative industry, estimated to be worth billions of dollars globally. Zimbabwe, renowned for its diverse wildlife, has unfortunately emerged as a hotspot for rampant poaching and illicit wildlife trade. This nefarious activity involves not only unscrupulous individuals but also high-profile state security personnel, further exacerbating the situation.

The revelations from The NewsHawks investigation underscore the urgent need for authorities to address the cyanide scandal and combat the scourge of poaching and illicit wildlife trade threatening Zimbabwe’s natural heritage.