KWS Under Fire Over Another Botched Operation

  • The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) team which falls under Tourism Cabinet Secretary (CS) Najib Balala's docket has landed in trouble again.

    This is after an operation to search for the body of a 10-year old school girl, Mawia Mwendwa King'ola, who was reportedly killed by a crocodile in Kiambere dam went wrong.

    Following the girl's disappearance, the KWS wardens launched a search for the killer crocodile with the precincts of the hydroelectric power reservoir.

    [caption caption="KWS officers stand guard as the suspected crocodile was slaughtered"][/caption]

    On Thursday, the KWS officers killed one of the crocodiles they suspected of having eaten the school girl following an attack at 6 pm.

    Residents narrated how they desperately watched as the crocodile ate the girl's body: "They were tearing the body as we watched at night. We tried shining light using torches and peltering them with stones but they were unmoved,"

    "There was nothing we could have done. These animals are very vicious. They have been attacking our livestock," a source quoted one of the witnesses.

    However, on slitting open the animal's stomach, the officers did not find the girls body as they had earlier suspected.

    This rattled a section of Kenyans given that the flop came days after the country lost 11 black rhinos at the Tsavo East National Park following a controversial relocation.

    Netizens questioned why the operation did not observe enough diligence such as conducting x-rays and ultrasound scans on the crocodile before killing it.

    You can't make this shit up! https://t.co/AnYCjymgl5

    — Ngugi Njuguna (@nate_ngugi) August 9, 2018

    Why couldn't they beat him (crock) photocopy first or even exray before slitting stomach and kill innocent crock!!? https://t.co/aTAP5ERR5r

    — Reagan Onyango (@rigs12) August 9, 2018

    I have only heard of Doctors opening up someone to look for the sicknesses but not KWS killing what they are paid to protect to look for humans. Supposing there were ten crocks? A crock with a full stomach could go to rest elsewhere or go to sleep.

    — Wilson Okall (@oakalls) August 9, 2018

    It's very painful that some people can be this stupid and ignorant in this time and age..but the leadership has shown them the way @tunajibu @kwskenya See your protege's are learning very Quickly.....What are X-Rays for??Simple logic...@WanjikuRevolt

    — Ndung'u Mugweru (@kadistone) August 9, 2018

    Although many of the tweeps have argued on the impossibility of finding the girl's body intact inside the crocodile's body, it is worth noting that in many cultures, the process of burial is seen as an attempt to bring closure to the deceased's family and friends.

    Psychologists in the US funeral industry claim that by interring a body away, the pain of losing a loved one can be lessened.

    Besides, in many cultures, burial is considered as an act of respect for the physical remains of the deceased - an argument that may well explain KWSs commitment in finding the killer reptile.

    An American publication, Slate, argues, "Animals-even endangered species-that attack or kill humans have to die, not just as an act of vengeance or as a necessity for ridding the community of a man-eater but also as protection for other members of its species.

    "There is a brief opportunity after an attack to capture or kill the responsible animal. If authorities hesitate to act in time, the locals tend to take matters into their own hands. Vigilante justice will be broad and indiscriminate," the publication notes.

    [caption caption="Locals and KWS officers looking for the girl believed to have been killed by a crocodile"][/caption]

    An example is a retaliatory attack in July 2018 where a crocodile killed a man in Indonesian. His village slaughtered 292 crocodiles in revenge attack - an incident that could be easily evaded with an operation like the one carried out by KWS.

    Kenya wildlife slaughter aka kws. https://t.co/rJEKgA5vWy

    — neodelam (@neodelam) August 9, 2018

    Eh, hii Kenya yetu ina mamba https://t.co/BF1ygjHSoI

    — Wasega (@iGen_1) August 9, 2018

    Did you mistake this for a python? https://t.co/kpCMEomMWS

    — parkside roadsafety (@PRSA_Roadsafety) August 9, 2018

    A CROCODILE KILLS GIRL,KWS KILLS CROCODILE,really? no solution just more loss. =zero wisdom

    — DOUBLE BLACK MEDIA (@media_double) August 9, 2018

    Here is an idea @kwskenya. continue killing them, one by one, until you find the child. isnt that brilliant?

    — Eric Mwangi (@Smogeric) August 9, 2018

    Yeah, but we have lost 11 precious rhinos, what is one troublesome crocodile? https://t.co/acDfwqsEIS

    — GRACE MUMBI (@GRACEMUMBI4) August 9, 2018

    How do you expect to find a body in a crocodile's belly, the animal does not swallow its meals whole, I thought KWS wardens should know this!

    — Dave Amolo (@AmoloDave) August 9, 2018

    They just wanted meat smh https://t.co/2yMjrzJkv4

    — JichoDaSingh (@JICHOdaDOG) August 9, 2018

    wrong crocodile? so kill any crocodile they come across until body is found? https://t.co/2nJ3o7R19z

    — Robert Nagila (@Rnagila) August 9, 2018

    Xray would have helped. Easy.

    — kinoti wa Mwirigi (@mkenyharisi) August 9, 2018

    Does a crocodile swallow it's meal whole? WTF is wrong with KWS https://t.co/WjvWq2xX6f

    — Babu Michael (@Babu_yao) August 9, 2018

    @kwskenya tell me this is not true please @paulakahumbu ?

    — The Agronomist (@ClementSnr) August 9, 2018

    you mean they were hoping to get and save her wonders shall never cease...

    — Naitoren (@kiugunanis) August 9, 2018

    A clear case of mistaken identity.... https://t.co/nZjsQCLt1w

    — Kim Joseph (@josekimotho) August 9, 2018

    What a waste!they should have ultra sound the animal before killing it.Dont we have the technology in kenya???

    — freeman (@MwangiriM) August 9, 2018

    Unfortunately, @kwskenya Has no X-Rays or Ultrasounds for wildlife for such unique situations! Food for thought, coz next time it will be searching for a child swallowed by a rhino......! https://t.co/NVH2dRcZXq

    — Eric Otieno (@ericotienoN) August 9, 2018

    To preserve life!!

    — Eric Otieno (@ericotienoN) August 9, 2018

    so the crocodile was at the wrong place at the wrong time ama?? How do you expect to find a body in a crocodile's stomach?

    — yakub ousman (@YakubOusman) August 9, 2018