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Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park

Central African Republic
Factors affecting the property in 1997*
  • Illegal activities
  • Livestock farming / grazing of domesticated animals
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Heavy poaching;
  • Lack of management plan;
  • Possible transfer of the management of the site to a private foundation
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1997
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Information presented to the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee in 1997
The Bureau recalled that the Committee, at its twelfth session (1988, Brasilia), inscribed this property on the World Heritage List, following assurances given by the State Party in respect of its commitment to improve the conditions of integrity of the Park, notably with regard to poaching and illegal grazing. A 10-year project, financed by the European Union at a cost of US$ 27 million, and launched soon after the inscription of this site on the World Heritage List, was expected to show positive results in the new future. 

The Bureau was seriously concerned that uncontrolled poaching by heavily armed groups, from within and outside of CAR has resulted in security problems, leading to the deaths of four Park staff in early 1997. According to IUCN, 80% of the Park's wildlife has been illegally harvested for commercial purposes. Deteriorating security conditions have brought tourism to a halt and the 10-year EU Project appears to have generated very few tangible benefits for the conservation of the site, and the existing management plan is inadequate. 

The Bureau welcomed the efforts of the Government of CAR to assign site management responsibility to a private foundation and encouraged the Foundation to continue its efforts to raise funds and strengthen management of this vast World Heritage area.

Action Required
The Bureau recommended the Committee to adopt the following:

"The Committee decides to inscribe the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger and requests the Centre and IUCN to contact the State Party and the private Foundation to prepare a detailed state of conservation report and a rehabilitation plan for this site."
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1997

The Bureau may wish to recall that the Committee, at its twelfth session (1988, Brasilia), inscribed this property on the World Heritage List, following assurances given by the State Party in respect of its commitment to improve the conditions of integrity of the Park, notably with regard to poaching and illegal grazing. Moreover, the Committee had expressed the wish that a 10-year project, to be financed by EEC/FED at a cost of US$ 27 million, which had been launched at the time of inscription of this site on the World Heritage List, would soon show positive results. Two of the Committee members had however, expressed a reservation about the timing of this site's inscription on the World Heritage List.

At present, an emergency situation exists in the Park due to uncontrolled poaching by groups originating from within CAR, and from CAR's borders with Sudan, and Tchad. Poaching groups are heavily armed, enter the Park at will, set up camp and move large quantities of meat. No effective anti-poaching force exists in the Park and four Park staff had been killed in early 1997. In 1996, tourism came to a halt due to deteriorating security conditions and the EEC/FED Project has not provided any tangible benefits. The Government of CAR has given most of the site management responsibility to a private Foundation, which is hoping to raise US$ 700,000 in the first year of its operations. The Director of the Park and an assistant belonging to the Foundation are attempting to manage this vast area and have contacted the Centre to express their wish to include this site in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1997
21 COM VII.C.32
SOC: Manovo-Gounda-St.Floris National Park (Central African Republic)

VII.32 Manovo-Gounda-St.Floris National Park (Central African Republic)

The Committee recalled that it inscribed this property on the World Heritage List in 1988, following assurances given by the State Party in respect of its commitment to improve the conditions of integrity of the Park, notably with regard to poaching and illegal grazing. A 10- year project, financed by the European Union (EU) at a cost of US$ 27 million, and launched soon after the inscription of this site on the World Heritage List, was expected to show positive results in the future.

The Committee was seriously concerned that uncontrolled poaching by heavily armed groups, from within and outside of CAR has resulted in security problem, leading to the deaths of four Park staff in early 1997. According to IUCN, 80% of the Park's wildlife has been illegally harvested for commercial purposes. Deteriorating security conditions have brought tourism to a halt and the 10-year EC Project appears to have generated very few tangible benefits for the conservation of the site. The efforts of the Government of CAR to assign site management responsibility to a private Foundation were welcomed and the Foundation was encouraged to continue its efforts to raise funds and strengthen management of this vast World Heritage area.

The Committee decided to inscribe the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger and requested the Centre and IUCN to contact the State Party and the private Foundation to prepare a detailed state of conservation report and a rehabilitation plan for this site.

21 COM VIII.A.4
Properties included on the List of World Heritage in Danger

VIII.4 The Committee examined the state of conservation reports contained in Working Document WHC-97/CONF.208/8BRev and decided to include the following natural properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:

- Okapi Faunal Reserve (Democratic Republic of the Congo)

- Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo)

- Manovo-Gounda St. Floris National Park (Central African Republic)

The Bureau may wish to transmit the above report to the Committee for examination and recommend the following for adoption:

"The Committee expresses its serious concern over the integrity of this site and decides to include it in the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Committee requests the Centre and IUCN to contact the State Party, relevant authorities in EEC/FED and the private Foundation currently responsible for the management of the site and prepare a detailed state of conservation report and a rehabilitation plan for this site."

Report year: 1997
Central African Republic
Date of Inscription: 1988
Category: Natural
Criteria: (ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 1997-present
Exports

* : The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.


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