The Government requires about Sh1 billion to compensate victims of wildlife attacks.
This amount is for settling 800 claims, lodged by people who have been injured or families of those killed by animals since 2013, according to Wildlife and Natural Resources Principal Secretary Margaret Mwakima.
Ms Mwakima told The Standard on Friday in Taita Taveta that the Sh245 million set aside for compensation this financial year is not adequate to compensate all claimants.
“We are currently talking to the Treasury to give the ministry more than Sh1 billion to pay the relatives of those people killed or those injured including property destroyed by wildlife. The number of victims of wildlife attacks has been increasing steadily,” said Dr Mwakima, who added that that Kenya is among the countries worst affected by human-wildlife conflict.
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She asked the Treasury to release additional funds immediately so as to clear the huge backlog of human wildlife conflict cases.
“Compensation of victims of wildlife attacks is now the priority as provided for by the Wildlife Conservation and Management Act 2013,” she said.
The PS noted that delay in operationalisation of the 47 County Wildlife Compensation Committees due to lack of resources is to be blame for the delay in compensating victims. The committees are charged with the responsibility of verifying compensation claims.
She said that there are more snake bite cases in the country than other animals like elephants, lions and buffaloes.
The PS was accompanied by Governor John Mruttu, County Commissioner Onigoi ole Sosio and Kenya Forest Research Institute Director Ben Chikamai, among others.