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WWF on human rights abuse charges

The charity Survival International is reporting that the OECD is going to investigate allegations that WWF has been funding human rights abuses in Cameroon.

Survival submitted the complaint in February 2016, citing numerous examples of violent abuse and harassment against Baka “Pygmies” in Cameroon by WWF-funded anti-poaching squads. Survival also alleges that WWF failed to seek communities’ free, prior and informed consent for conservation projects on their ancestral land.

This is the first time a non-profit organization has been scrutinized in this way. The acceptance of the complaint indicates that the OECD will hold WWF to the same human rights standards as profit-making

WWF funds anti-poaching squads in Cameroon and elsewhere in the Congo Basin. Baka and other rainforest tribes have reported systematic abuse at the hands of these squads, including arrest and beatings, torture
and even death, for well over 20 years.

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Reader Comments (19)

Imagine that, an NGO actually working against a native population. Who would have thought something like this was even possible?!?!??!!

Jan 5, 2017 at 10:42 AM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

This is not at all surprising. I doubt that there is one NGO that actually does anything for the local people, everything they do are vanity projects that fit their agenda and/or give enough publicity to bring in more money to fund the executives pension funds.

Examples, one NGO drills a well for water and leave it as a standpipe. They show a 'grateful' number of villagers collecting water - rah -rah. What they should have done is drill the well, laid pipe to every house, fitted taps and sinks with drains and then used those drains to irrigate the gardens. That way the villagers would have safe drinking water where it is needed. Unfortunately, dong things like that raises the living standards of the 'poor natives' and diminishes the feel good mentality of the NGO.

In fact all NGOs should be working towards putting themselves out of work by doing real projects that actually bring those they are 'helping' up to western standards.

Jan 5, 2017 at 11:13 AM | Unregistered Commenterivan

As I understand it, the ultimate aim is to get designation as a National Park giving development control to the World Wide Fund under patronage of the Head of State. Income derives from game shooting. Displacing the locals just follows normal property development pattern of the unscrupulous.

Jan 5, 2017 at 11:23 AM | Unregistered Commenterssat

Meanwhile the Department for International Development give WWF over £3million a year.

I wonder how much of this is spent on anti-poaching squads.

Jan 5, 2017 at 1:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS


Sadly that pretty much sums up the vast majority of NGO's and (even worse) EVERY SINGLE human rights NGA in Israel. They should all be investigated thoroughly...and by investigated I mean bent over an apple cart and shown what for!


Jan 5, 2017 at 2:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

This is small potatoes compared to some of their antics.
1) Convincing leaders in African countries where people are starving to turn down an offer of GMO grain. Vanity.
2) Getting to World Bank to stop funding electric power plants.
3) Opposition to golden rice
4) The whole malaria saga.
5) Basicly opposing development in general.
6) Local food sourcing pushes in Europe that have cut back on food imports from Africa--removing a market for development.
7) The fair market coffee campaign: a farmer can only stay in the program if he does not buy modern equipment. In addition, certain middle-men have reaped most of the benefits. It forces farmers to stay primitive.
These sorts of things kill millions, not just a few.

Jan 5, 2017 at 3:59 PM | Unregistered Commentercc

Whaddya expect from any Corporation. They all lie unless collared and jailed.

Jan 5, 2017 at 4:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlecM

It is about time Pandas decided to stand on their own two feet, and disassociated themselves from this bunch of greedy zealots.

Jan 5, 2017 at 6:16 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

How do they help the pandas anyway?

All the pandas are owned by the Chinese state. What can the WWF do for the pandas?

Do they have China in their hand?

Jan 5, 2017 at 9:16 PM | Registered CommenterM Courtney

Here we go again. Alternative, and more truthful, WFF logo. I think BH commenter annonymouse was the creator of this piece of art which speaks ten thousand words.

Jan 5, 2017 at 9:41 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

M Courtney, I think the Panda represents a triumph. If my memory serves well, Edward Heath as Prime Minister welcomed the first Giant Panda to London Zoo, called Chi-Chi. Blue Peter were involved. Great publicity all round.

Years later it was admitted that Chi-Chi was a bad tempered brute, and not that popular with the Zoo Keepers. I suppose most humans would be a bit bad tempered, if kept in isolation half way around the world.

The Chinese then learned about capitalism. Pandas were in demand, and China had a monopoly on supply. I think to this day, foreign zoos "rent" Pandas from the Chinese, and perhaps it is to China's advantage that breeding programmes outside of China have been of limited success, whilst the Chinese remain quite successful, thus continuing to restrict supply and maintain their monopoly on this money spinner.

The Polar Bear and Giant Panda Bear were chosen as great symbols of conservation, for all purposes including Global Warming. Unfortunately, these pesky critters seem rather less cute, and distinctly more resilient than the PR Departments envisaged.

The WWF might want to place the WWF on the endangered list.

Jan 6, 2017 at 12:09 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

The true root of all evil.

Jan 6, 2017 at 1:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Smith

John Smith.
Alternatively Goodism might be considered an overarching canopy that shields despotic acts from the light of day. But other acts of true benefit also go unseen.

Jan 6, 2017 at 7:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterSupertroll

Sorry if this seems to be a pitch ('taint so) or old news. I can't speak to the veracity or lack in the following book, but it seemed pretty reasonable and, I'd think, be verifiable if necessary:
: : "PandaLeaks: The Dark Side of the WWF" by Wilfried Huismann (2014)
It was a very easy read for me. I got it for my Kindle, but it may be in your local library.

Jan 6, 2017 at 7:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterOldUnixHead

...the OECD will hold WWF to the same human rights standards as profit-making corporations.

WWF funds anti-poaching squads in Cameroon and elsewhere in the Congo Basin. Baka and other rainforest tribes have reported systematic abuse at the hands of these squads, including arrest and beatings, torture
and even death, for well over 20 years....

Ah. So the OECD's human rights standards work in the following manner:

1 - obtain reports of systematic abuse
2 - wait 20 years
3 - announce that you might be going to do something about it....

Jan 7, 2017 at 12:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer

Yesterday at six o'clock
I went to Senna Square;
There they flogged by knout
A young peasant woman.

Not a sound came from her breast,
Only the whip whistled, playing....
And to my muse I said: Behold!
There is your own, your beloved sister.

H/t Nikolai Nekrasov, in 1848.

Jan 7, 2017 at 4:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Dodgy geezer

The difference now is that the OECD has started realising that WWF are not the saintly bunch they were previously seen as.

Is this anything to do with the very non-PC arrival of Donald John?

This could be another small breach in the dam. Sadly I am not holding my breath.

Alec J

Jan 7, 2017 at 10:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlec J

My first direct experience with green NGO people was in the mid 1980s and the NGO was WWF. They and I were to give evidence to an Australian Senate select committee. It was then that I saw the real face behind the cuddly mask. Their serious task was to curtail the start our plans to mine uranium, by seeking national park and world heritage declarations, inter alia to turn the local indigines against us and to influence unwitting politicians. Even senior judges were involved once one searched hard enough.
To this day I do not know who was the real power behind WWF, but it had important tentacles established in Australian structures by 1980, maybe earlier.

Jan 8, 2017 at 8:42 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeoff Sherrington

@AlexJ ...Dodgy geezer

The difference now is that the OECD has started realising that WWF are not the saintly bunch they were previously seen as....

Er...No. OECD has decided that all these lies about the saintly WWF need to be found to be completely untrue, and have to make a pretence at investigating before issuing the pre-written statement that the WWF is whiter than white...

Jan 8, 2017 at 1:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer

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