Kenya’s first independent inventory of the National Stockpile of Ivory and Rhino Horn has successfully been completed.
This was officially announced earlier yesterday by Kenyan Cabinet Secretary, Environment and Natural Resources, Professor Judy Wakhungu.
It followed the president’s action of signing the Elephants protection initiative in July and burning 15 tonnes of ivory this year with a message of urging other countries to put ivory beyond economic use.
“The inventory has confirmed that Kenya’s national stockpile is 137 tonnes. Kenya recognizes that securing the future of our elephants is dependent, not only on protecting them in the field, but also preventing the illegal trade in ivory.” She confirmed
commissioned by Kenya Wildlife Service’s Board of Trustees, the inventory was led by a joint team from the Kenya Wildlife Service and Stop Ivory, and involved a multi-disciplinary team including experts from the NGO Save the Elephants, international advisory firm Ernst & Young, Kenyan IT firm Bityarn Consult and students from Nairobi Technical University, as well as a consultant approved by the CITES Secretariat.
During the process, all rhino horns were sampled for DNA as well as being marked in line with RHODIS. A representative sample of the entire ivory stockpile was sampled for DNA, over and above the mandatory sampling of the large scale seizures made by the Kenyan authorities at the port of Mombasa earlier this year.
According to KWS chairman, Dr. Richard Leakey, the historic exercise confirms that the structures put in place by the Kenya Wildlife Service for the safe keeping of stockpiles are robust and that the Kenyan stockpile remains