Six Meru residents, jumbos killed in a month

Elephants destroy crops in Samali, Emali. Photo/File
Elephants destroy crops in Samali, Emali. Photo/File

Human-wildlife conflict has led to the death of at least six people and an unidentified number of elephants in a month.

Meru National Park senior warden Tuqa Jirmo said Kenya Wildlife Service rangers are on the ground driving away animals from villages.

“It is unfortunate we have lost people and animals, but everything is under control now,” he said.

On Monday, residents of Nkuriga in Kirua Buuri subcounty feasted on elephant remains.

They accused the KWS of doing little to control straying elephants.

They said the jumbos have destroyed crops, homesteads and led to many deaths.

“There were three marauding jumbos in our farms. People chased them towards the forest, but one of them got stuck in a pit and broke it’s leg. The KWS rangers came and had nothing else to do but kill it. They removed the ivory and inspected its meat and covered it. People later feasted on it,” resident James Mwirigi said.

Jirmo said he was sure whether the jumbo was from Meru or Mt Kenya national park.

Kithoka chief Judy Manyara said marauding jumbos had become common and “residents had to devise ways of killing and feasting on them.”

The KWS has finally erected a fence.

“The elephants have tried to damage the fence, but they have never succeeded.

Many have been killed by residents through electrocution. Now people can walk at night,” Manyara said.

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