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SOS Rhino : In the News : Arsonists Strike Against Private Wildlife Reserve

Arsonists Strike Against Private Wildlife Reserve


The Nation (Nairobi)
April 14, 2003
Posted to the web April 14, 2003
Nation Team

Arsonists invaded a private game sanctuary in Eldoret and burnt 30 acres of grass before they were repulsed by guards.

The owner of the sanctuary, Mr George Smith, who showed journalists the affected area, said Keiyo South MP Nicholas Biwott's fence was also destroyed for the sixth time in a year.

Mr Smith urged the government to take action against the arsonists who, he said, were well known to the locals. He said the attack on his farm was the fifth in the past year.

He said he had invested Sh4 million in the game sanctuary, including setting up an electric fence which has been destroyed several times.

The farmer said the government should offer the necessary support to investors to promote tourism.

At the same time, a cycle race raised more than Sh500,000 towards conservation of Lake Nakuru National Park at the weekend.

About 26 cyclists took part in the fund-raiser, dubbed "Cycle with Rhino", with game rangers providing security to the cyclists.

Mr Alex Seccomb, the chairman of Rhino Rescue UK, who was the chief guest commended the participants for raising the amount.

A wildlife conservationist and a lecturer at Egerton University, Dr Fred Waweru, said there was need to intensify campaigns towards conservation of the endangered black and white rhinos.

Lake Nakuru Rhino Sanctuary has 64 black and 43 white rhinos.

Ms Ann Kahihia, a senior warden at the park, who also took part in the race, said the money collected would go towards the rehabilitation of roads in the park and improvement of the sanctuary.

She said Sh11 million was needed for rehabilitating the park's electric fence and buying a park patrol vehicle for use by security officers.

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