Mufasa, a 3-year-old rare white lion, is about to be auctioned off to the highest bidder, which most likely would be one of the country’s popular canned hunting operations. His story went viral with over 300,000 people signing a petition and begging the government of South Africa to send him to a sanctuary.
There are less than 300 white lions remaining in the world. Mufasa is currently living at the Rustenburg Wildlife “Wild for Life” Rehabilitation Centre sanctuary in South Africa. He arrived at the sanctuary as a cub, after being confiscated from a private owner in Pretoria. A lion, Soraya, arrived around the same time and the two have become inseparable over the past three years.
SanWild Wildlife Sanctuary, a 7,000 acre sanctuary, offered to take both Mufasa and Soraya and cover their costs for the remainder of their lives. They would have lived in as natural a state as possible together, but the government turned them down.
“Dr. Tjitske Schouwstra, a veterinarian who cared for the rare white lion, and Carel Zietsman, the attorney for Wild for Life, are embroiled in a legal battle with the South African government,” reports Care2.
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“We believe Mufasa and Suraya (who is also facing the same fate) have the right to live the rest of their natural lives in a sanctuary where they will be as close to free as is humanly possible,” Zietsman told Pretoria News.
People are not giving up on trying to save the rare lions. Mufasa’s fate is still uncertain, but thanks to social media and a generous mystery donor he may have a chance at life. An anonymous sponsor stepped forward and offered to pay for the building of a new enclosure at a sanctuary. However, the government has to agree to end the auction and accept the offer.
“I cannot give you too much detail at this stage as the negotiations are in a sensitive stage, but we’re hopeful that we’ll be able to buy Mufasa and Soraya and relocate them somewhere safe,” Zietsman told ABC News on Nov. 19.
The fight is not over. Hopefully, this generous offer will save the life of Mufasa and Soraya. You can stay updated on the lasted news with Mufasa by following his Facebook page.
Andrea Powell is an animal enthusiast that resides in West Michigan. When not writing, she is exploring the great outdoors with her dogs and horses.
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