Wildlife conservationists have called upon
Roots Party Presidential Candidate Prof. George Wajackoyah to withdraw commercialization of snakes and hyenas in his manifesto ahead of the August 9th general election.
In his released manifesto, Wajackoyah plans to venture into marijuana and snake farming alongside harvesting of hyenas testicles for export to help the country offset its huge debts should he be elected Kenya’s 5th president.
His idea of making money out of wildlife has rubbed conservationists the wrong way as they have strongly disputed a section of his manifesto.
“Those reckless statements by Roots party presidential candidate Prof Wajackoyah have really given appetite to poachers and they are now looking for hyenas and his statement that snakes’ venom has value is endangering lives of people besides putting snakes at the risk of poachers,” Holistic Wildlife Management Project Manager Antony Leaduma told Citizen tv on Friday.
Wajackoyah has been promised a legal battle if he fails to cease profiling snakes and hyenas as a lucrative venture.
“I wish to condemn with the strongest terms possible the recent statement issued by one of the presidential candidates profiling hyenas of having value to an extension up to Ksh. 6 million and this has endangered existence of hyenas in Samburu County,” he said.
Leaduma’s campaign has further been championed by a section of Samburu residents who are calling for the protection of hyenas.
They argue that hyenas among other wild animals are tourist attractions that provide employment opportunities for the communities that interact with the animals.
Hyenas are environmental cleaners as they feed on carcasses of livestock that are left behind without anyone to collect them.
“As a community living in Samburu County, we will fully support Leaduma to move to court to protect wildlife. Our county earns a lot of money from tourism because of wild animals like hyenas,” Pastor David Lenakuapusi said.
Wajackoyah is further challenged to provide meaningful ways that will promote tourism through wildlife and environment conservation other than his idea that will threaten the existence of wildlife.