Friday, October 23, 2020

 

 CS, Mr. Keriako Tobiko, with Laikipia North MP, Hon. Sarah Korere and senior Kenya Forest Officials, preparing to plant a commemorative tree at Orjijo Pri. Sch, Laikipia North.

CS, Mr. Keriako Tobiko, with Laikipia North MP, Hon. Sarah Korere and senior Kenya Forest Officials, preparing to plant a commemorative tree at Orjijo Pri. Sch, Laikipia North.

Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Keriako Tobiko has cautioned private ranch owners in Laikipia, to stop fencing off wildlife migratory corridors which has subjected locals to human wildlife conflicts. “Wildlife do not have migratory routes because the private ranches have been completely fenced off”. CS Tobiko said. Additionally the private ranches have destroyed their space and now want to encroach on the forest reserve, a move that will not be allowed, the CS warned.

The CS was speaking at Orjijo Primary School in Laikipia North constituency where he praised the communities living within Mukogodo Forest Reserve for protection and conservation of the forest. Over the years the 30,189 Ha have had one forest guard and the community have played a big role in its protection. “Environment is life since it provides water, honey, herbal medicine, shed and food, these trees where given to us by God and must be protected and conserved for posterity”. the CS reiterated.

CS Tobiko said Mukogodo Forest Reserve is a national asset and will be protected from encroachment. In respect to this, the Participatory Forest Management Plan is under review and will address community grievances and give them the legal mandate to protect the forest. On the Yiaaku community who are known to be hunters and gatherers, the CS said they will not be evicted from the forest, because just like the Ogiek, they have their rights. The Minister however cautioned them to be careful not to be used to destroy their habitat.

CS, Mr. Keriako Tobiko, addressing residents of Laikipia North, after toiuring the Mukogodo forest.

CS, Mr. Keriako Tobiko, addressing residents of Laikipia North, after toiuring the Mukogodo forest.

 

The CS encouraged the community to plant trees in degraded sites and in schools to fill in the spaces, pledging the Ministry support with seedlings during the short rains. On the issue of invasive species Opuntia, the CS promised to work with researchers to find a lasting solution.

The CS challenged the community to invest in education for the prosperity of their children both boys and girls, saying the times when bows and arrows defined men is gone.

Addressing the same meeting Laikipia North MP Hon Sarah Lekorere requested the CS to support water harvesting technology in schools to address water shortage. Present also were Mr. Julius Kamau, the Chief Consevator of Forests, Benjamin Nzioka, Laikipia North Deputy County Commissioner and area MCA Mr. Daniel Nyausi among other leaders.

An aerial view of the expansive Mukogodo forest in Laikipia North.

An aerial view of the expansive Mukogodo forest in Laikipia North.

 

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