Swamp within Mau to be gazetted as wetland

Cabinet Secretary for Environment Keriako Tobiko (centre) plants a bamboo tree at Enapuiyapui swamp in Mau Forest, during World Wetlands Day on February 2, 2020. [Harun Wathari, Standard]
Enapuiyapui swamp within Eastern Mau forest is set to be gazetted as a wetland following a directive by Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko.

In efforts to conserve the swamp that has been faced with massive challenges, Mr Tobiko also ordered for felling of exotic trees surrounding the swamp that lies within Kiptunga forest, mapping and gazetting of the wetland to up its conservation.

The move to fell exotic trees was part of the solutions to the hardening swamp that is a source to many rivers and has since been fenced to bar livestock from grazing within.

The swamp breathes life to Mara and Nyongores rivers, that flow to Lake Victoria and the headwaters of the Nile. Besides being critical in supporting one of the seven wonders of the world, the swamp is also critical in supporting East Africa Community.

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Wetlands Day

“Enapuiyapui swamp is a wetland of national importance and even through it lies within a gazetted forest, it has not been gazetted and has lacked adequate protection,” Tobiko said when he toured the swamp to mark International Wetlands Day.

The Kenya Forest Service, the Cabinet Secretary said, will conduct a survey and boundaries so that the swamp is gazetted as a specially protected area. The gazettement will pave way for the site to become a Ramsar site and enjoy international protection. 

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A representative from the EAC, Dr Ali-Said Matano said the community has been spearheading talks on ways to conserve the swamp that is critical to Lake Victoria.

“For the past few years, Kenya and Tanzania have been holding meetings and conservation of Enapuiyapui has been on the agenda. We will join efforts to partner in projects that will ensure conservation of the swamp since, it is a lifeline to many rivers within the EAC community,” Dr Matano said.

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Enapuiyapui swampKeriako TobikoWetlands Day