Monday, October 31, 2005

Kenya's Park Threatened By Pollution

allAfrica.com -- Pollution is threatening Lake Nakuru National Park due to poor disposal of solid waste by residents and industries, a don has said.

Outgoing Egerton University Vice-Chancellor, Ezra Maritim, said the waste, especially polythene bags from the surrounding slums, threatened marine life in the lake and the wildlife in the national park.

Maritim said this in a speech read on his behalf by deputy Vice-Chancellor, research and extension, Prof S A Abdulrazak, at the weekend.

His speech was to officially open a one-day conference on urban environment organised by the Intermediate Technology Development Group and funded by Japan International Co-operation Agency at Merica Hotel in Nakuru.

He said run-off water from Mau Forest, Menengai and Dundori catchment areas had caused siltation in the lake.

Maritim said River Njoro washed most of the soil into the lake due to sand harvesting and farming along its bunks.

The park is famous as a rhino sanctuary and as an international wetland, besides being home to thousands of flamingos and other birds.

Separately, the Swedish ambassador, Bo Goransson, yesterday urged Lake Victoria stakeholders to make it a resource for health and wealth.

Goransson called on Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania to ensure that the fresh water lake improved the health of the local people besides generating income.

"The three countries should ensure the lake resources are used to generate wealth and ensure the health of the people living around it," said Goransson.

He was speaking at Dunga Beach in Kisumu during the official launch of the Lake Victoria Centre for Research and Development 'Osienala'.

Present during the launch were Henry Kook (Global Nature Fund), Nyanza deputy Provincial Commissioner Aggrey Busena, the director of Osienala Obiero Ong'ang'a and researchers from Ethiopia, Japan, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Philippine, Germany, China, Switzerland and Australia.

Busena called for unity among eastern African countries in tackling issues touching on the lake.

"Let us not look at ourselves as the Kenyan side of the lake but rather Lake Victoria resources," said Busena.

The researchers are in Kisumu for a three-day conference dubbed: African Living Lakes regional conference ahead of the 11th World lakes conference starting in Nairobi today. President Kibaki will open the conference, which will run up to November 4.It will discuss sustainable management of lakes and the ecosystems.

The conference themed "Management of Lake basins for their sustainable use, Global experiences and African issues will be held at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre.

Nakuru is the Anglicised form of the Maasai na-kurro, "that which is scraped bare" (grassless), referring to the bare expanse of soda ash of the lake bed and its rocky surrounds. For years it was popularly, but wrongly, assumed to mean "a place of swirling dust devils", from the clouds of soft dust raised by the wind when the lake is low.
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Flamingos on the shore and Lilac Breasted Roller in Lake Nakuru National Park
Photo 1 Courtesy: Rhino Rescue Trust

Photo 2 Courtesy: Safarimate

1 comment:

wambui's view said...

I am very much aware of the dangers of pollution but I do not understand why you create a link to an article which was published in 1996 !

At the moment all kind of things are going on but the flamingo's are present in big numbers the last couple of years.

This is really desinformation