Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Malawi announces ivory burn

28 March 2015

Categories: Homepage News, Elephants Campaign News, Lilongwe news, Wildlife Trade News

Hot on the heels of the Ethiopia Ivory burn on the 20th March, today the Government of Malawi announced that they will destroy all 4 tonnes of their ivory stockpile on Thursday 2nd April.  Head of State, His Excellency Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika, President of the Republic of Malawi, will set light to the ivory in a show of political will and a demonstration to the world of Malawi’s commitment to combat illegal wildlife trade. 

Just before the destruction, the President will accept signatures from over 7,000 people who recently joined the Lilongwe Wildlife Trust’s ‘Stop Wildlife Crime.  Protect Malawi’s Wildlife’ campaign.  This move will recognise both the public support galvanised through the campaign and the importance of engaging all sectors of society in the fight against wildlife crime moving forward.

Jonathan Vaughan, Director of Lilongwe Wildlife Trust, said “the 4 tonnes of ivory that will be destroyed equates to roughly 500 elephants. Malawi’s current elephant populations stand at around 1500, declining at such a rate at the hands of poachers that they may well be extinct within a decade.  And it’s not just Malawi’s death toll that this stockpile represents.  We know that the confiscated ivory comes from a variety of sources, including Tanzania, Zambia and Mozambique, showing that Malawi is being targeted as a transit route by traffickers moving over 500kg at a time.  There have been 36 seizures of between 5 and 100kg at the country’s two international airports in the past 5 years.  We hope the world stands up and gives Malawi the recognition it deserves for this symbolic act, a call to put ivory out of commercial use for the sake of Africa and its elephants.”

Malawi is known for its vibrant culture and friendly people, and the occasion is expected to reflect the warm heart of Africa, the nation’s love of wildlife and a renewed commitment to protect its natural heritage.

Born Free’s Wildlife Consultant, Ian Redmond, OBE, today said, ‘As elephant numbers plummet across Africa, this is no time to repeat the mistakes of the past – Malawi is to be congratulated for sending a clear signal to the world – the fashion for ivory is over!   Wildlife crime will not be tolerated.   Criminals will be prosecuted and their contraband destroyed.’

For the official Government press release and more information on the event please go to


Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

Share | |