Dear readers, as I am writing this I have so many emotions going through me; anger, rage, sadness. In fact as I write this, I am literally welling up with tears.
I haven’t told you this but I stay in Nairobi, Kenya and usually when I say this to anyone, I say it with pride, but today I am putting it down in embarrassment and disgust. I am actually also an Indian and to an extent British, but when anyone asks me where my home is, I say Kenya because I was born and brought up here and so was my mother and her parents,
Growing up I have always heard of the amazing and beautiful animals that one could see in the Nairobi National Park. For those of you who don’t know; Nairobi is the only city in the world to have a national park within it, and saying this gives me great pride. And for those of you out there who have that stereotypical thinking that lions and wild animals roam our streets please know that this is not true, we have buildings, houses, roads, cars, phones and other things that most cities in the world have.
Tourists flood the country during different times of the year to get a glimpse of the beautiful animals. Tourism already brings in a huge amount of income for the country. But the government wants to develop Kenya even more, but at the expense of the beautiful national park.
The National Park is home to Cape buffaloes, baboons, black rhinos,gazelles, zebras, cheetahs, Coke’s hartebeest, hippopotami, leopards, lions, elands, impala, Masai giraffes, ostriches, vulturesand waterbucks and a couple of other animals.
The reason why the national park might be destroyed in the first place is due to the building of railways through it, the people in charge of building this railways are the Chinese. Though few argue that it is only taking up ‘a little’ of the park; I strongly believe, ‘little’ is too much. The numbers of animals in Kenya are already slowly decreasing due to poaching and urbanisation. Building this railway will eventually end up leading to the end of these animals in Nairobi and Kenya over all.
Two years ago I went Masai Mara and to my sadness I hardly got to see any animals. I only say about three elephants and two lions, I dream of living in a Kenya how my mum describes it, where humans, plants and animals live in harmony without disturbing the other.
The fuel of corruption
The debate of whether this railway should be built has been going on since last year and proceedings often stop due to protests. At the moment apparently the proposal by this Chinese company has been rejected, but for how long? The government has clearly shown what side it chooses to take.
Kenya is actually one of the most corrupt countries in the world scoring a meager 25/100 in the corruption perception index in 2015. You may be wondering what corruption has to do with the topic at hand. Well, it is quite easy for companies benefiting form this development to give a bribe to the government, leading to the passing of the proposal. If the President and his MPs really wanted for this not to take place they could have just out rightly refused the plan in the first place. At the moment the proposal is kind of on hold because the president has allowed for environmental impact assessment, to see whether the building of the railway would affect wildlife. This though is pathetic because the obvious answer is yes. It is also quite clear that this test or assessment will be passed because of corruptions, Kenyan MPs are just out to fill their own pockets at the expense of the loss of wildlife. Also the Chinese have also apparently already set up base at the park, waiting.
The original route for this Standard Gauge Railway was different, it is last year that it changed to going through the Nairobi National Park.
This is a call to everyone, not just Kenyans to raise awareness and stand up to these corrupt and money minded people. Whilst doing my research I came across this horrendous comment:
Animals are just as important as human beings, what makes this person think that we are in any way superior. In fact I believe that Humans are the stupidest creatures to roam this earth and because of us this beautiful earth is slowly dying.
What you can do to help
Even if you are not Kenyan you can still help, this is my plea to you. Our politicians are not going to listen to us but maybe to the rest of the world. Wouldn’t you want your grand children and children to have the opportunity to see the beautiful wildlife the Earth has to offer? So my fellow bloggers help spread the word, re-blog this post share it on social media help put a final end to the construction of this railway. If you need more info about this railway construction –http://www.railway-technology.com/projects/mombasa-nairobi-standard-gauge-railway-project/
Search ‘sgr railway construction Nairobi national park’ for more news articles and updates.
Also if you have any suggestions on ways to stop this happening, write them in the comments. Spread the word about these selfish people, tel those around you, re-blog and share on social media.
As late Environmentalist and Kenyan Nobel Peace winner- Professor Wanagari Mathai said;
-“The little grassroots people can change the world”