FORUM FOCUS 1604 - page 8

community members were able
to voice their concerns about the
various challenges affecting their
fence sections.We worked with these
stakeholders to identify problems
associated with their fence sections
and to come up with solutions. The
issues raised by those at the meeting
weremany.
8
April 2016 IssueNo. 7
CONSERVATION INACTION
Arewe
going to
get jobs?
What are
thematerials
for?
Who is in
charge here?
Mmmh;
why are people
gathering at
the chief‛s camp
so early?
West Laikipia Fence - What Next?
Content developedby
LaikipiaWildlifeForum
P.O. Box 764, Nanyuki
Tel: +254 -20 2466626
Mobile: 0726 500260
Published anddistributedby:
CountyMediaGroupLtd.
P.O. Box 1148 - 10400NanyukiKenya
FenceUpdate:MendingFences
W
onderingwhat theCounty
is up to in its obligation
to help build fences that
protectwildlife, people, andproperty?
Here’s a quick update of the status
of the two major fence construction
projects supportedbyLaikipiaCounty
Government, Space for Giants,
ranchers, communities, BATUK, and
theLaikipiaWildlife Forum.
Rumuruti Forest Fence
The Rumuruti forest covers an
area of 6,500 hectares. It is managed
by the Kenya Forest Service (KFS)
in conjunction with the Rumuruti
Community
Forest
Association
(CFA).Most of the local communities
living adjacent to the forest rely on it
for their daily needs. There are more
than 67 km of fence surrounding this
forest, and the fence is divided into
sections.These sections havedifferent
lengths and face different challenges,
making the maintenance of the entire
fence aparticularly complicated issue.
The sections of the fence include
seven community sections - Melwa,
Lorien, Salama, Mahianyu, Rwathia,
Siron and Bondeni.About 2 thousand
householdsare impactedby this fence.
Because of the various wildlife and
access challenges facing each section
and its corresponding community,
the County Government of Laikipia
has decided to assist. They have put
aside 97 million towards upgrading
the fence. To date, only two new
sections have been installed but are
not complete. Some of these new
sections have had more success than
others.TheMahianyu sectionhasonly
experienced one breakage since the
new fence was installed. The Melwa
section has suffered many challenges
due to lackof community engagement
and ownership, conflicts with grazers,
poor solar power supply and political
interference.
LWF has had a hand in mitigating
some of the problems facing
community members living by the
fence. We have given out fence
maintenance materials to the fence
committees of Siron, Bondeni,
Matigari, Lorian, Mahianyu and
Salama. They have all worked very
hard to maintain their fences but still
face many challenges in mending
them.
In aFebruarymeetingheldbyLWF
for the Rumuruti Fence stakeholders,
Constructing wildlife fences and
keeping them maintained is a real
cost to any community. That is why
the planning that goes into such
wildlife fencesmust carefully address
both wildlife and community needs.
Some of the resolutions reached
during the Rumuruti community
meetings included assigning roles
and responsibilities to different
stakeholders for the construction
and maintenance of these fences.
A decision was made to identify all
the challenges, and work towards
finding solutions. The area chiefs
together with KFS, KWS and LWF
will hold community barazas in all
the seven sections of the fence to
create awareness about the Rumuruti
Fence Project going forward. This
team will encourage the community
• Fence ownership.
• Community participation.
• Repairs andmaintenance.
• Vandalism byherders.
• Lack of resources for fence
committees.
• Reluctance byRumuruti
communities to support forest
conservation, anti-poaching
and sustainableuse of forest
resources.
• Lack of clear ownership of the
forest and the fenceswhich
causes confusion about who is
responsible formaintenance.
Key issues affecting community
fences around theRumuruti Fores
t
fence committees to take charge of
the fence and to understand the costs,
the organization, and the roles and
responsibilities of each partner in the
success of awildlife fence project.
West LaikipiaFence
The West Laikipia Fence was
originally constructed by LWF
in collaboration with KWS and
surrounding landowners, through
funding from theKenyanGovernment
and the Royal Netherlands Embassy,
in 2007. Currently, over 70% of the
sections of this fence are performing
poorly, or absent completely.
Last year (2015), with the
assistance of Space for Giants,
the Laikipia County Government
formed a Human-Elephant Conflict/
West Laikipia Fence Task Force to
address the problems with the West
Laikipia Fence. The Task Force
includes private land users, KWS,
LWF, BATUK, Space for Giants,
and County Government. Three
sections of the West Laikipia Fence
are targeted for repair/reconstruction:
ADC, Ngorare, and Laikipia Nature
Conservancy. After two years, these
new fence sections will be privately
owned and maintained in partnership
with communities outside the fence
sections. 43 Million Kenya Shillings
from County Government have been
committed to this fencing project.
The balance of the 90+ million KSH
project is coming from Task Force
partners.
Asof thebeginningofMarch2016,a
consultingfirmcontracted tocomplete
theEnvironmental ImpactAssessment
submitted its report. The EIA was
sent to the National Environmental
ManagementAuthority for approval.
During the first three months
of 2016, the County Government
awarded a contract for the supply of
fencing materials. The new fence
construction will start at the Laikipia
Nature Conservancy. The Task
Force received the first delivery of
fencing poles procured by the County
Government at the District Officer’s
compound atKinamba.
The Task Force uses five tools
to ensure the success of the West
Laikipia Fence; (1) fence construction
agreements with ranches; (2) fence
maintenance contracts with ranches;
(3) community engagement protocols;
(4) fence vandalism protocols that
are enforced under the law will
be developed with county law
enforcement officials; and (5) public
information and awareness efforts.
Stay tuned for more Mending
Fences update in future editions and
onourwebsite at
.
Communitymemberswereable tovoice theirconcernsabout thevarious
challengesaffecting their fencesections.
Fencebreakingelephants
1,2,3,4,5,6,7 8
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