KENYA WILDLIFE SERVICES DROPS COMPLAINT AGAINST ECO-TOURISM CEO
Just before leaving Kenya yesterday for Uganda did news reach that the criminal complaint filed by Dr. Julius Kipngetich against Eco-Tourisms Kahindi has been dropped, following an apparent change of heart but very likely also because of the massive protests and opposition the action generated in the first place.
A meeting between Eco-Tourisms CEO and Board with a delegation from KWS had taken place last week and contentious views and opinions were reportedly candidly addressed and resolved.
While Kahindi stood by his assertion, that the real poaching figures were significantly higher than those reflected in published KWS statistics, Dr. Julius in turn assured the Eco-Tourism leaders, and the public at large, that his organization was doing all in their power to control poaching, combat it, disrupt the illegal ivory trade and establish exactly how many elephant have been killed in the past. Both organizations also agreed on an improved flow of information from both sides to share intelligence and data in the future with the aim of providing the public and stakeholders in conservation and tourism with accurate data.
When the news broke the Kenyan, and in fact East African conservation fraternity took a combined breath of relief that this unsavoury and potentially hugely damaging situation was amicably resolved, which could have seriously damaged the otherwise positive and engaged partnership between Kenya Wildlife Service on one side and conservation NGOs on the other hand.
In the meantime it was also confirmed from a usually well informed source at KWS in Langata that the wildfires in the Aberdare Mountains and on Mt. Kenya have been put out with the combined efforts of KWS personnel, government personnel, firefighters from nearby and a huge contingent of volunteers who put their own lives at risk to save the fragile environment. Congratulations and sincere thanks to all of them. Watch this space.