Government agencies accused of failure to control wildlife
26 August 2016, 16:09
Nairobi - Residents living near Marmanet and Lariak forests in Laikipia County have accused Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and Kenya Forest Service (KFS) of failing to address human-wildlife conflict in the area.
The villagers, who were allowed to grow crops in sections of the forests earlier destroyed by fire and also plant trees to rehabilitate them, said their crop were being destroyed by elephants.
“We entered into an agreement with KFS that allows us to cultivate sections of forests destroyed by fire. We in turn take care of tree seedlings in the forest to rehabilitate it on conditions that KFS protects our crops from elephants,” said Solomon Wangai, a resident.
Wangai added that crops worth thousands of shillings, belonging to about 200 farmers have so far been destroyed by elephants in the past few weeks.
Another resident, Lucy Wambui, said KFS was yet to show commitment to assist them deal with the menace despite allowing them to cultivate in the forest.
Lariak forest experienced sporadic fire incidences in 2009 after unknown people set it ablaze destroying about 15,000 hectares.
The KWS in partnership with Community Forest Associations and other stakeholders came up with the programme in an effort to rehabilitate the forest.
In the agreement, the residents were allocated parcels of land to plant trees and take care of the forest as they tend to their crops
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