The Great North Rift Elephant campaign walk.
The Great North Rift Elephant campain walk took 31 days. The walk started on November 16th 2021 and concluded on December 17th 2021 in Mt Elgon National Park . The walk was led by Jim Nyamu O.G.W, The Executive Director, Elephant Neighbors Center.
Mr Jim Nyamu was flagged off at the St. George’s Girls Secondary schoool by Tourism and Wildlife Principal secretary Prof. Fred Segor. “I applaud the work done by the civil society and individuals such as Jim who remind us of a responsibility in wildlife and environment conservation”says the P.S.
The walk started in St. George’s Girls secondary school Nairobi towards Ewaso Kedong, Narok, Bomet, Kericho, Chemelil, Nandi hills, Kapsabet, Eldoret, Kitale and finally to the Mt. Elgon National Park.
Jim Nyamu, a scientist, has walked 17,776kms since the campaign started in 2013. He has walked extensively in Kenya and across Africa to Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi and Botswana. He has also walked in the United Kingdom and United States advocating for elephant conservation.
“It’s worrying that elephants are wiped out day after day and our parks have become battlegrounds for illegal poachers and security agencies. “Kenya in 1979 had 167,000 elephants but the number has dropped to 35,000 following high demand for ivory in some asian contries. Some countries lost their elephants completely, countries like Eritrea, Somalia and Senegal and it is a true sad state of those nations.”
While holding community meetings in Narok, Jim had a hard time talking to those who felt like they have been left to suffer wildlife loss due to delay in compensations . He challenged them to visit other areas such as Shombole and learn more on community conservation , practices and governance in wildlife conservation. “In his opinion he states there’s lack of sincere leadership in wildlife conservation. It is time to agree that we have to come together and chat the new conservation path toward a new conservation models.
This was his14th walk edition , he did not tire nor surrender. He stated that the world is facing the biggest problem than before , climate change is a reality ! . The world needs to know that we need to preserve the natural resources and environmental issues are areas of major focus.
The Great North Rift Elephant campaign that cris crossed 11 counties , challenged the county governments to implement environmental and conservation policies at their discretion . Environment is now devolved to County governments and there is a need to have a multi sectoral implementation and enforcement approach , the campaign identified gaps in the enforcement between National and county governments .
The campaign observed the following with great concerns:
1. Washing of vehicles in all major rivers along the routes and in major towns
2. Bush meat consumption and practice in Maasai Mara and her environs.
3. Encroachment of Sitatunga habitas I.e. King’wal swamp in Nandi county.
4. In adequate resource distribution in KWS station’s and outposts
In the 31 days, he visited 36 schools where he planted and donated a total of 18,456 ingenious trees with a huge support from regional Kenya Forest offices. Urging the students he often used the phrase “Sisi ndio tuko” making them understand that they are the generation to save and secure the environment ” There is simply no issue more important. Conservation is the preservation of human life on earth, and that, above all else, is worth fighting for,” says Nyamu.
We must let the global community know that African elephants are in danger from man. Extinction is forever and we cannot imagine Africa without elephants .
The Elephant Neighbors Center is a non profit organisation whose mission is to protect the african elephants and secure landscapes for elephants outside protected areas. Kindly visit www.elephantcenter.org for more information on elephant conservation and my campaign dubbed “Ivory belongs to elephants”