Wildlife attack victims receive KES 2.1 million compensation
20 February 2015, 11:47
Kwale - At least 27 families of people affected by human-wildlife conflicts in Msambweni sub-County received cheques worth KES 2.1 million from the KWS under the government's wildlife compensation program.
Speaking during the issuance of cheques at Msambweni sub-County commissioner’s office Wednesday, KWS Senior warden in Kwale County, Mohammed Kheri said they are saddened by deaths and permanent injuries inflicted on locals by the animals.
He urged the affected families to accept the money and convert it into meaningful gains that will support them and their siblings.
Kheri noted that even if the amount of money given is not enough compared to the damage caused, it can be useful if spent wisely.
His sentiments were echoed by Msambweni sub-County Commissioner, Mwangangi Mwania who asked the KWS to organize sensitization forums at grassroots level.
He said it was through such forums that community members can be made fully aware of their rights and also be in position to embrace safety precaution measures.
Mwania also asked the County wildlife conservation and compensation committee to speed up disbursement of the funds.
He said it is not fair that compensation to victims of human-wildlife conflicts took ages to be effected.
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According to Kisite/Mpunguti Warden John Wambua, among the compensated families, there were five deaths and 22 cases of injuries.
Wambua said the compensation was done using the old Wildlife Conservation Act where each injury case had to be compensated with KES 50 000 and KES 200 000 for death.
“The current Act suggests a maximum of KES 2 million for minor injuries, injuries causing permanent disability KES 3 million and death KES 5 million,” he said.
Cases of wildlife conflict in Kwale County and especially the area bordering Shimba-Hills national park and rivers infested by crocodiles have been on the rise.
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