By Kipchumba Kemei
Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) personnel have impounded six elephant tusks worth Sh1.6 million.
The tusks were recovered at Eore-Kule area along Narok-Mai Mahiu Road while being transported to Nairobi.
And on Tuesday evening, suspected poachers killed two elephants in Koyaki area near the Masai Mara National Park. The killing brings to five the number of elephants felled in less than a week.
Narok Acting Senior Warden Bernard Koruta said the tusks, which were impounded on Wednesday, originated from Oletukat area in Narok North.
However, the culprits escaped into a maize plantation after they realised they were being pursued.
“They abandoned the vehicle and fled into a maize plantation when the rangers alighted from the chase car. Residents claimed one of them was of Somali origin,” said Koruta.
Fire in air
He added the residents said the Somali suspect, who was armed with a pistol, fired in the air several times when a crowd confronted them before they disappeared into a nearby Ntulele thicket.
KWS rangers and police were deployed in the thicket to pursue the suspects. Several roadblocks were mounted along the highway and vehicles inspected in an all-out bid to arrest them.
The vehicle, whose owner Koruta said is a Narok-based businessman, and the tusks were later taken to a police station under tight escort.
“We have identified the owner of the vehicle who will assist us in investigation. He has told us the vehicle was hired,” he said.