Update: April 2019 - The building of the railway cutting right through Nairobi National Park could not be stopped, because Richard Leakey - heading the Board of th Kenya Wildlife Service - had signed "no objections" to the Chinese project. But now the government of China has refused to pay the envisaged loan for phase II of the SGR (of which the already built traverse through the National Park is part) and the project will most likely never be completed. Half of the National Park's southern border is now completely cut off from any wildlife migration thanks to high security fences along the railway track and no wildlife underpasses.
If Tourism and Wildlife Minister Najib Balala's phony proposal - to sentence every poacher to death and to carry out the death sentence in Kenya again - had been enacted and would have been expanded to include everyone who disturbs wildlife and damages the natural environment, all the Chinese contractors and their henchmen executing the ill-designed construction of the railway-tract for the SGR would be dead by now.
Their daily detonations to blast their way into Nairobi National Park drive man and beast likewise around the bent and wildlife out of it. Buffaloes, stranded like the other day at Tuala (Oloosirkon) Bridge, are then driven by gunshots back into the Park by Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) personnel. It is a WAR-ZONE and total insanity what is happening there in the name of "development". Something which now also the human residents feel, who are cut off their access roads and electricity.
Some, however, will bring up as argument to maintain their ignorance that Oscar Mann's call below comes years too late, alas the total destruction of NNP can still be stopped.
But only if it is stopped NOW. --
Nairobi National Park Critically Endangered
By Oscar Mann - 25-5-2018
The Nairobi National Park is fairly small, only something like 35 square miles. It is the only park in the World that is within city boundaries and provides tremendous relaxation for residents who visit it and it is usually the first game park that tourists are taken to. It also helps keep Nairobi’s air cleaner and purer than it might otherwise be.
Many animals migrate in and out of the park using the southern and open route that goes all the way to Amboseli and Tsavo.
This free movement is essential for the healthy viability of the park, the animals and the neighbouring humans!
There is a large tract on the southern border of the park, just south of the Athi River, generally known as ‘The Sheep and Goat Land.’ It is ‘owned’ by the Ministry of Livestock and Agriculture. The local community wants it back. Animals brought on foot are usually recovered here from their long overland safaris before being taken to the Kenya Meat Commission factory in Athi River.
Now I see that this land has been subdivided into very tiny plots. There are masses of beacons right along the road that passes through this land from Kitengela to Rongai.
I am told that KILA – The Kitengela Land Association - is demarcating the plots and may be intending to sell them off! I imagine that some of the ‘powers that be’ think that if the Nairobi Park dies, then the city can take over its land as well as that called the Sheep and Goat land. Goodbye park! Who needs it, anyway?!
This would be rather awful! It is illegal and should be stopped! It never should have even been allowed to start!
I have spent my life here and enjoy it all the time. I even chose to live right next to it ….. and love the openness and wildlife that are still abundant here.
Come on KWS, Mr. Makau (the area MP) and the Land’s Department. Something serious needs to be immediately done about it! Nairobi needs to keep its open-spaces for healthy human and wildlife inhabitants and to ameliorate all the pollution generated in the city!
Box 24501 – 00502, Karen, Nairobi
phone: 0772 357 894
Epilogue: The Kenyan conservation lethargy and fear prevailing almost everywhere - except for fund-raising and by wasting money for expensive breakfast meetings in plush hotels - can also be seen in the fact that another invasive, non-native species is choking the National Park and its dispersal areas: Parthenium - also called Feverfew (Parthenium hysterophorus) - is a noxious weed from tropical America, which harms humans, livestock, wildlife and soil and was - like in India - most likely also in Kenya introduced with contaminated wheat sent from the USA to Kenya and here to feed the starving Maasai. The weed's aggressive dominance threatens the biodiversity in Maasailand - including Nairobi National Park as Black Rhino sanctuary - and the economy of the rangelands, but so far nothing tangible is done to stop and eradicate it.
One thing is for sure: The Maasai didn't bring the weed and the Maasai didn't bring the SGR. "Aid" and "development" just walks over them.
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