Lee White: "It's an absolute crisis"

British-born head of Gabon's national parks agency, Lee White, speaking at the Giants Club Summit on the perilous situation facing Africa's forest elephants 

Thursday 12 May 2016 15:46 BST

At the Giants Club Summit, Lee White, head of Gabon’s national parks agency, re-iterated his commitment to saving the continent’s elephants, highlighting in particular the plight of the forest elephant.

Almost entirely covered by thick rainforest, Gabon is home to about two thirds of Africa’s forest elephants despite holding only 12 per cent of the subspecies’ preferred habitat.

White, whose eco-guard force is fighting a bitter war against poachers in the north east of the country, has transformed Gabon’s national park service into one of the continent’s best.

He is one of many conservationists who yesterday joined African heads of state, business-leaders and philanthropists at the Giants Club Summit, a historic gathering to save Africa’s elephants.

He said: “We need rapid high level political intervention, and while we wait for that intervention, we have soldiers act as body guards for the elephants because otherwise we’re going to lose them.”

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