Kataza, the chacma baboon also known as SK11, will be relocated to Limpopo after Cape Nature approved an application by the Cape of Good Hope SPCA (CoGH SPCA) to have the animal moved to a rehabilitation centre.
This is the second time the animal welfare organisation has made such an application – it first proposed translocating the unsettled baboon to Riverside Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre in Limpopo, as it would be in the best interest of Kataza and the public, in October 2020.
He will then be examined and tested before being transported to Limpopo where he will be in the care of primatologist, Bob Venter.
“We will not relocate a baboon like this again – we’ve made it clear to the City that this is the last time,” said Jaco Pieterse, SPCA Chief inspector.
The “debacle” has been ongoing since last year and since then the baboon has been the subject of much public attention, including a petition signed by more than 30 000 people that demanded Kataza be returned to his home in Slangkop after he was relocated to Tokai.
“The way the debacle was handled from the start was incorrect and there should have been more consultation,” said Pieterse.
“Had he not been relocated, the situation would not have been as severe as it is now. We said before he was taken back to Kommetjie that ‘it is not going to work out and we’re going to sit with the same problem, if not worse’, and that is where we are today.”
The relocation was prompted by fears that Kataza’s behaviour was endangering himself and residents on the urban edges of Kommetjie, Ocean View, Capri, Da Gama Park and Sun Valley, which are the areas where the baboon has been roaming since his return to Slangkop two months ago.
Pieterse said the SPCA received several complaints about Kataza and people threatened to harm him because of his raiding and the damage he’s caused to property.
“We’ve had various complaints from various people where he’s raiding homes, and we’ve received an affidavit where a resident apparently shot at him, although we don’t have evidence directly linking the gunshot to an attempt on his life,” said Pieterse.
“A report from Venter [the primatologist] insisted that proactive preventative intervention needs to be taken before a child or member of the public gets seriously or fatally injured.”
The primatologist visited Cape Town to assess the baboon and found that the animal showed signs of chronic stress, he also added that after 80 days of roaming the streets of Tokai, Kataza had been “humanised” even more and this familiarity meant he showed no fear of people or vehicles.
Picture: Facebook / Cape of Good Hope SPCA