Barely 2 weeks ago were conservationists up in distress as a rhino was brazenly murdered in the Nairobi National Park, which lies just 4.3miles from the capital and the headquarters of the governmentâ€™s Kenya Wildlife Service.
Now the rant is that another six rhinos have been murdered in yet another poaching attack in Lake Nakuru National Park, one of the main Rhino sanctuaries, Solio Game Reserve near Mweiga in Central Kenya, Ol Pejeta Conservancy and Ol Jogi all among those counting their losses!
Earlier in January, life imprisonment and much heavier fines were introduced in new laws, as we struggle to salvage our rhinos but this just goes to show the scale of the challenge that remains in protecting our nation’s threatened wildlife.
South Africa has been on the high end when it comes to rhino poaching, with over 1,000 rhinos being killed last year however with such unparalleled figures, this rings an alarm among the conservation fraternity, raising surveillance and intelligence gathering to higher levels to prevent more such incidents.
It is yet to be seen how the new laws work will work for us, considering the first ivory smuggling case resulted in the maximum fine of approximately KES 30,000 for a Chinese suspected man, even though subsequent cases enigmatically saw verdicts such a million Kenya Shillings fine and, inspite of admitting additional offenses, being let off the hook by a magistrate, causing an uproar directed to the Kenyan Judiciary.
Currently, unconfirmed figures estimate that nearly 60 rhinos were hauled last year for their horns, a trend that if not stopped could end up wiping out the over 1,000 rhinoâ€™s left in Kenya in just but a few years.
The question posed is what do you think we should do to stop poaching in Kenya before all our rhinos become extinct?