KWS drives out herders from Kora National Park
The Kenya Wildlife Service had launched a massive
drive to kick out illegal herders from the Kora National Park. The operation, being led by warden-in-charge Wilson Njue kicked off on Friday. By yesterday, thousands of animals have been driven out. The crackdown of the
illegal herdsmen follow complaints that armed bandits in Tseikuru and Kyuso have been hiding among herders.
At a security meeting held Mwingi town on January 19, following
the Killing of five people in Kaningo and Musavani areas, it emerged that armed bandits hide in the park. The meeting was chaired by Kyuso DC Peter Maina. DCs Martin Mwaro (Mwingi East), James Kianda (Mbalambala), Stephen
Momanyi (Tseikuru), Reuben Loyotaman (Tana north) also attended the meeting.
The meeting unanimously made a proposal that a massive
disarmament exercised to mop up illegal guns among criminals perpetuating
banditry and rustling in peripheral areas of Mwingi region. It was
agreed that it was prudent for the government to confiscate firearms held by
criminal hiding in Kora National Park.
It was further agreed during the meeting that all illegal
squatters living inside the Kora Park and Mwingi north from where gunmen who reign
terror on innocent residents emanated, be driven out to create a permanent
security buffer zone and end banditry and rustling. KWS’s Njue consequently announced at the meeting that within a week’s time all suspected criminals masquerading as
herders would be forcefully moved out of the Kora Park as well as the Mwingi North Game Reserve unless the
Yesterday, Njue confirmed that the operation to kick out the
illegal squatters and herders kicked off last Friday and already a
considerable numbers of animals and
pastoralist families were now out of the Kora Park. “It is true operation to drive illegal occupants from the
Kora National Park has kicked off in earnest and a considerable numbers of
families and animals have been moved out. We are continuing this operation to
ensure that all illegal persons are completely out of the park,” said Njue on
He however said that the operation has not yet been extended
to the Mwingi North National Reserve because it was under the jurisdiction of the
Mwingi County Council with whom the KWS has signed a Memorandum of Understanding. “We are in consultations with the Mwingi County Council to
get the best way to drive squatters out of the reserve. The Mwingi North
National reserve is being managed by the
Council which should come out with the
best way to address the squatter problem,” said Njue.