Local Community and MKEWP Members Voice Concerns at the 2017 Camel Caravan
Some of the participants of the 2017 Camel Caravan before embarking on the walk
The MKEWP was proud to have participated in the 2017 edition of the Ewaso Ng’iro Camel Caravan. Marvin Githuku, part of the MKEWP team, joined participants in the challenging five-day walk along the Ewaso Ng’iro River where together they engaged numerous communities around Kipsing, Oldonyiro, Koija Ranch, Westgate, Kalama and Archers Post. The overall objective of the camel caravan was to promote and facilitate shared understanding of human induced threats facing the river and, the cooperation and collaboration between the upstream and downstream users to mitigate these threats.
During the walk, local community and MKEWP members voiced their concerns about challenges facing the Ewaso landscape, some of which were as follows:
- The proposed mega dam construction, they insisted, would block the river and lead to a dry Ewaso Nyiro River. Steps must be taken to ensure that this does not happen.
- Sand harvesting along the banks of the Ewaso Ng’iro River must be curbed.
- Peace and cohesion among community members living in the landscape has not been given the priority it deserves. This is what hinders development and governments must play a more prominent role in supporting peace and security.
- The local government should involve communities in the decision making process, especially in projects such as the proposed mega dam.
- Human wildlife conflict continues to plague communities in the area and this needs to be addressed.
The Ewaso Ng’iro camel caravan was initiated in 2013 with the first edition funded by various stakeholders including: Partners for Resilience, IMPACT (Indigenous Movement for Peace Advancement & Conflict Transformation) and Merti Integrated Development Program (MIDP).
MKEWP will continue to engage in dialogue with these stakeholders in support of conservation efforts for the Ewaso Ng’iro River of which so many lives depend on.
MKEWP to Support Development of Water Allocation Plan for Teleswani Sub-Catchment through Watershed Program
MKEWP’s Coordinator, James Mwangi (forefront holding red folder) and Peter Hetz (Back line with green jacket) join Teleswani WRUA members after signing their WAP contract
Teleswani Water Resource Users Association (WRUA) will be the first WRUA in Laikipia to develop a Water Allocation Plan (WAP) for its sub-catchment. This will be implemented through a short term contractual agreement with the Water Resources Authority (WRA) – Nanyuki Sub Region and the Mount Kenya Ewaso Water Partnership of which the Laikipia Wildlife Forum (LWF) serves as secretariat.
This is a great win for Teleswani WRUA as it will allow members to participate in the process of sharing the available water resources reflecting an important component in the management, control and regulation of the water resources. The development of this WAP will also have a significant bearing on the availability of water resources in meeting basic human needs, the needs of the environment, economic development, water security and alleviating water use conflicts.
The agreement is financed by Wetlands International through the Watershed Program at a cost of Kshs. 850,000 and will run for a period of 2 months ending November 30th 2017. During the signing of the Contract ceremony held at Teleswani WRUA on 5th October, the WRUA’s chairman Mr. Joel Mwariama highlighted that this was a priority activity within the WRUA as they look towards a guiding strategy for water resources allocation in an efficient and transparent manner. In his remarks, he added “ this is a crucial task coming at a time when the WRUA and WRA are managing a resource that is under immerse pressure from increasing demand, climate change and catchment degradation”.
MKEWP Joins OPC and FFI in Implementing Important Socio-Ecological Project
Representatives from Fauna & Flora International, Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Mount Kenya – Ewaso Water Partnership and the Laikipia Wildlife Forum join community members in discussions about the project
Fauna & Flora International (FFI), Ol Pejeta Conservancy (OPC), Mount Kenya – Ewaso Water Partnership – MKEWP and the Laikipia Wildlife Forum (Secretariat to MKEWP) on 26th September officially met with representatives from local communities set to benefit from the Cattle, Water & Wildlife: Enhancing Socio-Ecological Resilience in Laikipia Project. NDMA, Water Resources Authority (WRA), County Government of Laikipia, Space for Giants and other key stakeholders were also present. This important initiative will see approximately 8,000ha of dispersal area secured for rhino, elephant and predators; grazing and water resources managed for local communities and pastoral well-being, and resource conflict reduced across the wider OPC landscape.
The project involves an inclusive approach to strengthening rangeland and water resource management and will contribute in reducing natural resource conflict, safeguarding pastoralist cattle based livelihoods, supporting innovative livelihood diversification by smallholders, and extending dispersal areas for endangered wildlife in Laikipia. The project will also have the following objectives;
- Establish a healthy rangeland to support grazing needs of community livestock and wildlife;
- Improve water availability for domestic use, livestock and wildlife;
- Enable community cattle to market system, support pastoralists’’ lifestyles and reduce stocking densities;
- Support community based fodder production system and diversification of small scale famer livelihoods;
- Ensure vulnerable and endangered species are under effective protection.
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Maji Yetu, Jukumu Letu! Our Water, Our Responsibility