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KWS Director urges communities living along Kerio valley to protect wildlife

Date Published: 29 Oct, 2012
KWS Director urges communities living along Kerio valley to protect wildlife

KWS Director William Kiprono unveils a plague at Chechan Primary School in commemoration of the commissioning of a classroom block constructed through the KWS community fund on Friday (October 26, 2012). Looking on is area MP Hon. Jebii Kilimo.

Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Director William Kiprono has urged communities living along Kerio Valley to conserve wildlife and position themselves to benefit from tourism in the region.

He was speaking on Friday (October 26, 2012) while commissioning three school projects in Baringo-Koibatek and Keiyo-Marakwet counties constructed through the KWS community fund dispensed in the past year on Friday. The commissioning ceremony was held in each of the three schools.

Kiprono noted that the large numbers and diverse wildlife population hitherto witnessed in the area has dwindled and required concerted efforts to grow their population and enhance security from poaching threats.  

“This area was alive with elephants and rhinos not long time ago. We must get the numbers back even through restocking designated conservancies to supplement our efforts to secure Rimoi National Reserve,” he said.

He further encouraged communities to partner with KWS in conserving wildlife by establishing conservancies in areas traditionally set aside as wildlife corridors and dispersal areas. He assured them that KWS will ensure communities have capacity for sustainable wildlife management and they will reap economic benefits through its enterprise development strategy.

He noted that KWS is investing in providing school amenities to guarantee students a bright future. He observed that the model classrooms will put beneficiary students at par with those learning in developed schools elsewhere.

Marakwet East MP Hon. Jebii Kilimo, who accompanied the director, noted that the communities in the area will set aside land for wildlife conservation in the area and partner with KWS to ensure their security. She noted that the communities are witnessing the benefits of wildlife conservation demonstrated by the construction of the classrooms block.

“We can only reap more by partnering to secure wildlife in this County. The benefits are there for us to see,” she said.

The Sh13 million projects consists of  two fully furnished modern classrooms and ablution blocks each at Koitilial High in Marakwet West and Chechan Primary in Marakwet East Constituencies. It also consists of a two fully furnished classrooms at Chemura in Baringo North along Kerio Valley. The classrooms will sit 340 students in total.

Besides construction and upgrading of school infrastructure, KWS has dispensed Ksh.150 million across the country in the past year to fund community initiatives towards provision of water, health facilities and training of community rangers from various community conservancies across the country.

The director was accompanied by Senior KWS officers, area District Commissioner, County Director of Education and local leaders.




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