By Collins Kweyu, Anthony Gitonga
Authorities have launched a probe to ascertain claims that Al-Shabaab is benefitting from the proceeds of poaching in the country’s national parks.
Director of Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) William Kiprono said with rampant poaching there is a need to establish whether or not Al-Shabaab is receiving funding from poaching.
Kiprono spoke during the launch of an elephant census in Kenya and Tanzania at the Amboseli National Park in Kajiado County yesterday.
He cautioned local communities not to be used by foreigners to kill animals, as proceeds from the sale of ivory may be used to cause harm in the country after funding groups like Al-Shabaab.
“The problem of poaching does not only involve foreigners but is done in four stages – from local level, financiers, exporters up to consumers – and our people are used to kill the wild animals. I urge them to stop this habit as it is primitive and aimed at destroying nature, which cannot then be enjoyed by the next generation,” said Kiprono.
The KWS boss said the government would at the end of this month recruit 600 more rangers to help in the fight against poaching in national parks and game reserves.
Kiprono said the census would be carried out in one week at a cost of Sh12 million and communities living around the park would be sensitised on the need to co-exist with the animals and be encouraged to establish sanctuaries that could create employment. More....