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Authorities must take action to end poaching

19 March 2014, 13:32 Pancras Mutuma

The last few weeks have seen an upsurge of poaching in our National Parks and Game Reserves.

We have seen pictures of animals that were slaughtered by reckless and inhumane people who are keen on making a quick coin at the expense of our heritage and national treasure.

The current rise in poaching has gone on unabated despite the government’s awareness of the said activities.

All we have been engaging in as these injustices to our animals keep happening, is reducing the wage bill and other debates that do not necessarily create solutions to the problems brought up.

It would be expected that we could engage on the wage bill, yes, but also take concern on other issues that are affecting in one way or the other, the wage bill and in this sense, the issue of poaching.

Since the government of the day took over power, all we have heard from the president in regards to poaching was during a tour to China where he claimed that he acknowledged that poaching was a menace in Kenya and that he would work closely with the Chinese government who would help to curb the same by donating drones and other equipment that would help improve surveillance in our national parks and game reserves.

This however, is evidently not helping, if it has already been effected. Ever since the proclamations were made, all we have seen is a rise in poaching activities.

Tourism is one of the key sources of revenue in our country. This has been the case over the years.

Each year, we boast of hordes of tourists who tour our country to get to see our wildlife among other tourist amenities.

Each year, revenue is generated through our wildlife. Unfortunately however, we do not seem to place any value on this.

We do not seem to hold in any good regard, our wildlife.

Throughout the latest onslaught on our wild-animals by poachers, the government has done very little to curb the menace.

Issues of human-wildlife conflict have arisen over the years.

We have encroached on these animal’s liars and the vice-versa.

We have upset the ecosystem.

Ways through which the same can be controlled need to be addressed and executed by those in authority.

If we have citizens encroaching on our forests and other natural reserves where animals are meant to live, then the government has a responsibility to resettle its people.

If the animals appear to be encroaching on the abodes of the citizens, then it is also important for the authorities to take care of the same by ensuring that the animals are captured safely by Kenya Wildlife Personnel and transferred to the National Parks and Game reserves to ensure their safety.

The sale of or dealing in any wildlife products should be severely punished.

Hardly do we hear of any persecutions of people caught engaging in poaching activities.

As we talk about devolution and cutting down the wage bill, let us also think about the resources that we have as a country that could go a long way into ensuring that we generate revenue.

If we kill our animals, we kill revenue. We kill our pride. We kill our livelihoods.

Let the authorities come out and curb this menace.

We, the citizens of this country must call for action. The president’s silence on this matter is deafening.

Pancras Mutuma is a Public Relations Consultant.

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