Kenya suspends poaching officials

2013-02-06 16:25

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Nairobi - Kenya's wildlife authorities have suspended two top officials in the midst of investigations into rampant poaching that has decimated elephant herds and other wild animals, officials said on Wednesday.

Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) said in a statement that the officials were ordered "to take leave to facilitate internal investigations into the wildlife security situation".

Poaching has spiked recently in East Africa, with whole herds of elephants massacred for their ivory.

"The suspensions had to be done to pave way for investigations... we are waiting for the final report," KWS spokesman Paul Mbugua told AFP.

He stressed that no charges have been brought against the officials, Peter Leitoro, the deputy director of security, and Benjamin Kavu, deputy director of wildlife and community.

Last month officials in the Kenyan port city of Mombasa seized more than two tons of ivory, which had reportedly come from Tanzania and was destined for Indonesia.

Last year poachers killed at least 360 elephants in Kenya, up from 289 in 2011, according to official figures.

At least 40 poachers were killed last year as rangers battled the raiders.

The illegal ivory trade is mostly fuelled by demand in Asia and the Middle East, where elephant tusks and rhinoceros horns are used to make ornaments and in traditional medicine.

Trade in elephant ivory, with rare exceptions, has been outlawed since 1989 after elephant populations in Africa dwindled from millions in the mid-20th century to some 600 000 by the end of the 1980s.

Africa is now home to an estimated 472 000 elephants, whose survival is threatened by poaching as well as a rising human population that is causing habitat loss.

Read more on:    kws  |  kenya  |  poaching  |  east africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Millions of plastic particles in our food!

Scientists and researchers believe that almost five million tons of plastic is dumped in the oceans every year and it’s affecting our food.



Plastic on your plate
Prince George the green prince?
Lean, green, drifiting machine
One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

Trying to keep time for your social commitments and friendships as well as taking care of work and health obligations can be more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.