Getnet Ygzaw is the recently appointed head of communications for the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority (EWCA)
How did you come to get involved in EWCA? Was your background in communications/journalism, or in wildlife conservation?
I was assigned by the government last year to be the Director of EWCA communications, but my background is in tourism and heritage management.
Is it difficult to raise public support for wildlife conservation in Ethiopia?
Yes! Because communities who live around protected areas do not benefit from them. We need to engage people better.
Are you optimistic about the future of Ethiopia’s elephants?
Absolutely, I am optimistic, because we’ve started an aggressive public mobilization in the campaign to save our elephants.
Do you feel that Ethiopians who live near elephants see them as troublesome... or as creatures to be proud of? Or perhaps both?
Some people see them as terrible! That’s because, around the protected areas, there is always conflict between wildlife and people.
Ethiopia is famous as a country of great beauty…do you have a personal favourite location or national park?
Yes, of course, my special favourites are the Simien and Bale Mountains National Parks. The geology has created such interesting fauna and flora.