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KWS successfully completes Black Rhino translocation
Date Published: 28 Jan, 2012
The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) in collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has successfully completed the last phase of the black rhino translocation from Mugie Rhino sanctuary and Solio Ranch in Laikipia to Ruma National Park. The six million shilling exercise saw a total of 21 black rhinos introduced into Ruma National Park in two phases. Speaking during the translocation exercise, Forestry and Wildlife Minister, Dr. Noah Wekesa, noted with great concern the magnitude of the escalating poaching and its effect on the critically endangered rhino species. “I want to send a strong message to the poachers that they shall be dealt with severely according to the law,” Dr. Wekesa said. He reiterated that his ministry will ensure that the current penalties for wildlife offenders are quickly reviewed and made more punitive to discourage poaching. The introduction of rhinos in the park is seen as a move to enhance tourism in the Western Kenya tourism circuit and unlocking tourism potential in the area. Dr. Wekesa encouraged all players in the tourism sector to invest heavily in the region. He appealed for aggressive marketing of the national park along with other tourism sites like the famous Thim Lich Ohinga ruins, the famous Luo legend, Gor Mahia, the Lake Victoria, the rich Luo culture and the Homa Hills hot springs of Simbi Nyaima.
The translocation has come at a time when the world is witnessing an increase in the illegal killing of rhinos. A worrying note is the sophistication and the level of organization of illegal traders in the rhino horn.