There is need for urgent solutions because Kenya is currently going through a period of rapid economic growth characterized by significant investment in infrastructural development, thus putting pressure on our resources and the environment. “We should proactively work with partners such as East African Wildlife Society (EAWLS) within the appropriate framework in integrating the needs of conservation at the planning stage of these development projects,” Cabinet Secretary prof. Judi Wakhungu has said.
Speaking in Nairobi where she officiated celebrations to mark the 60th anniversary of the “East African Wildlife Society “(EAWLS), Wakhungu noted that since it’s inception in 1961, the society has contributed a lot to conservation in Kenya by electing most of the fences as a way of protecting Wildlife and reducing human wildlife conflicts.
Further, the CS added, EAWLS has also been very instrumental in saving the almost extinct Roan Antelope that are now thriving in Ruma National park. More recently, the work of EAWLS has seen an MOU being signed between the Government of Kenya and Tanzania to reduce illegal cross –border trade in timber.
Wakhungu also commended the EAWLS for their formation and building of Community based Natural Resource Management Associations as the Community Forest Associations, beach Management units, county natural resources networks, water resource users association and community conservancies. They have done this in realization that communities are the custodians of these resources and their participation therefore is key to ensuring sustainability.
Those who also attended the event are Chinese Ambassador to Kenya Dr. Liu Xianfa, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade in the Government of Hungary Dr. Istvan Mikola and Chairman EAWLS Board Mr.Joseph Kibe, among others.