stakeholders attending meeting at Ndabibi
Construction of the Mau Eburu fence will start in the 1st quarter of the year 2012.
Funding totaling to Kshs 42.6million has already been secured. Within this figure, materials valued at Kshs 30million have been provided by the Kenyan Government and are to be dispersed by Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS).
The balance of funds secured to date are from donations to Rhino Ark including a Ksh 4.6million tranche provided by Finlays, the agribusiness with tea estates and flower farms in Naivasha and bordering the Mau Forest Complex and from Rhino Ark’s Rhino Charge.
Speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting at Ndabibi in Eburu on 23 November 2011, Rhino Ark Management Committee Chairman Colin Church said, “Rhino Ark’s commitment to fence Mau Eburu has attracted considerable interest from donors. I am confident this interest will translate into further direct support. It will enable us not only to complete the electrified fence quickly but also to create an enabling environment for conservation initiatives, re forestation and a full range socio/economic partnership benefits for Eburu’s forest adjacent communities”.
Co-ordination of the project has been led by the Ministry of Forests and Wildlife and with the full support of the Interim Co-coordinating Secretariat for the Mau Complex (ICS), the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) and Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS).
The Kenya Forest Working Group (KFWG), a member body of the East African Wildlife Society (EAWLS), Save the Mau Fund and other conservation bodies are actively involved.
Mau Eburu forms part of the Rift Valley conservation and ecology ecosystem stretching from Nakuru, Lake Nakuru National Park, the Soysambu Conservancy, Lake Naivasha, to Longonot and Hells Gate National Parks.
Mau Eburu is about 80 km2 of pristine forest – hugely infiltrated by illegal loggers but whose forest edge communities are already trying to conserve its water catchment and indigenous forest. It is also a stronghold of the critically endangered Eastern Mountain Bongo antelope.
Mau Eburu will require a fence of about 50 kms in length – a little longer than the now completed Mt Kipipiri section Rhino Ark undertook in 2008/09. It will cost Kshs 100 million to build.