5 Vehicles, 20 Motorbikes to boost wildlife protection – Kenya News Agency
As part of an initiative to combat poaching and illegal wildlife trade in Kenya, the State Department for Wildlife handed over five patrol motorbikes and 20 motorbikes.
Prof Fred Segor, Principal Secretary of the State Department for Wildlife, stated Monday that Kenya Wildlife Services (KWS), is the implementing partner and leads the project. He also outlines a long-term solution to poaching and illegal trafficking within the Maasai Mara and Tsavo environments.
“There is need to guard the landscapes of Maasai Mara and Tsavo as they are the last frontiers for wildlife in Kenya and the provided vehicles and motorbikes will help increase the capacity to co-ordinate and respond to the anti-poaching fight,” said Segor.
According to the PS, the anti-poaching project was funded by Global Environment Facility Trust Fund through United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It has a highly coordinated approach between wildlife management and law enforcement agencies, county governments, and wildlife conservancies that have been established by local communities.
“This handing over of vehicles marks a critical step towards increasing the effectiveness of protected areas, conservancies, and local law enforcement agencies to reduce poaching and illegal wildlife trafficking in threatened species,” said the PS.
According to the PS: KWS will receive 2 vehicles and 4 motorbikes to use in Tsavo Conservation Area. Narok County government will receive 2 vehicles for use within Maasai Mara National Reserve, while Maasai Mara Wildlife Conservancies Association will receive 1 vehicle for use within the conservancies that form the buffer zone surrounding Maasai Mara National Reserve. Taita Taveta Wildlife Conservancies will receive 6 motorbikes to use on the Taita–Taveta Ranches.
The PS noted that elephant poaching has declined from 61 to five in 2016 to five in 2020. According to the PS, the project will help to ensure that numbers remain low by strengthening capacity of project partners through continued support and equipment provision.
“KWS has actively been involved in combating poaching and is modernising its equipment to ensure they are ahead of poachers,” stated Segor.
By Moffin Opilio, and Manu Mumba