Kenya Power expresses regret over Soysambu giraffe deaths


Kenya Power engineers at Soysambu Conservancy on February 21, 2021.
Kenya Power engineers at Soysambu Conservancy on February 21, 2021. PHOTO | COURTESY

In Summary

  • In 2010, Rothschild’s giraffes were classified as Endangered and of high conservation importance on the IUCN Red List.
  • The Soysambu Conservancy's Giraffe Program works to assist in restocking areas of Kenya where the Rothschild’s are indigenous.

Kenya Power has expressed regret following the death of three Rothschild giraffes after they were electrocuted by low hanging power lines.

One of the endangered giraffes was electrocuted on Sunday while the other two died in a similar incident on Friday.

“We regret this incident because we recognize that wildlife forms an integral part of our natural and cultural psyche and, we appreciate the feedback shared by various stakeholders on this matter,” said Bernard Ngugi, Kenya Power Managing Director and CEO.

“Ensuring that we adhere to the highest forms of safety in all our undertakings, is a prerequisite for us. We thus take any electricity related accidents seriously and we wi ll u se the lessons gleaned to avoid a recurrence of the same,” he added.

On Monday, Kenya Power engineers were spotted at the conservancy in what the firm explained as the beginning of enhancing clearance of the electricity distribution infrastructure to forestall a recurrence of the incident.

Kenya Power said it is undertaking the exercise in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), Soysambu Conservancy’s management and other stakeholders.

An audit of the entire infrastructure within the conservancy is also to be undertaken to make any other rectifications that may be required.

Soysambu currently hosts a population of approximately 124 giraffes. As of August 2018, the conservancy had identified 50 males, 41 females and 33 young.

According to the conservancy, another magnificent male named Argos was killed by a power line on August 27, 2018.

“These electrical lines are deadly to the tallest terrestrial mammal. Argos is the sixth endangered giraffe killed by power lines in the past 10 years,” a statement on the Soysambu Conservancy website reads.

In 2010, Rothschild’s giraffes were classified as Endangered and of high conservation importance on the IUCN Red List.

The Soysambu Conservancy’s Giraffe Program works to assist in restocking areas of Kenya where the Rothschild’s are indigenous.

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