The residents of Maili Tisa in Olooililai Sub County, Kajiado are appealing to Kenya Wildlife Service to relocate elephants that have become a menace in the area for some time.
The residents complained that the herd of elephants have invaded their farms and destroyed their crops, property as well as water pipes and boreholes.
The elephants moved to Maili Tisa from Olmange, Karero, Koitiko, and Suswa areas leaving behind a train of destruction.
The wild animals, said to be around 20 in number, are believed to have strayed from the neighboring Amboseli National Park.
One of the residents, Moses Rianto said he was counting losses after the elephants invaded his farm and destroyed his bananas and maize which were almost due for harvest.
“My 2 acres of crops have been totally destroyed by the elephants. I had planted bananas, maize, sugarcane and vegetables in the farm, but all have been destroyed. Even the drip pipes on the farm have been destroyed,” lamented Rianto.
Rianto said it was not the first time that the elephants had invaded their farms leaving behind a trail of destruction of crops and they were now living in fear of attacks from the animals.
Another resident Joshua Toret, said that the elephants have cleared all the plants in his farm and yet KWS does not compensate them for the losses.
“They come into the farm at all times, and our lives are at risk while there is no action being taken by KWS. We have been writing to KWS regarding the menace since last year but no action has been taken. We have not been compensated for the huge losses,’” said Toret.
He urged KWS to relocate the elephants immediately to avoid incurring more losses or they would be forced to take matters into their own hands.
Nkashuma Kuntai, revealed that the community has been co-existing with the wild animals but the elephants were now becoming a big threat to food security.
“The Covid-19 pandemic made us turn to farming but the elephants have destroyed all the efforts we put into our farms to ensure we have food,” Kuntai said.
He added that locals are now living in fear of attacks from the Jumbos even as they conduct their day-to-day activities like herding cattle.
However, KWS County Warden Vincent Ongwae, noted that his office had received the complaints and KWS officers were on the ground to relocate the animals and bring a lasting solution to the menace.
Human- Wildlife Conflict is a common occurrence in Kajiado County, especially during the dry season, where wild animals often change their migration patterns in search of water and pastures.
By Diana Meneto and Rop Janet