The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), is planning a multimillion-hotel project in Nairobi National Park.
The project is part of the 10-year management plan for the Nairobi National Park in which KWS is proposing to build an eco-lodge and a high-end restaurant in the park.
It remains unclear how environmental conservationists will react to the move which is subject to public participation. KWS has said that all stakeholders have until April 19 to submit their views on the plan, raising questions as to why the process comes at a time when public movement is limited.
In 2016, environmentalists contested the government’s decision to use part of the park for the standard gauge railway.
In 2018, the Kenya Railways Corporation also used the park to construct a 4-kilometre road connecting the Inland Container Depot (IDC) to the Southern Bypass. The road hived off approximately 20-acres off the park.
According to the Nation, KWS has said it did not need to involve the National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) since the agency has the capacity to carry out its own impact evaluation.
The 70-year old Nairobi National Park, which covers approximately 28,860 acres, has been under pressure from private and public entities who have time and again encroached on the park’s land.
This has in the past, led to human-wildlife conflicts including wildlife roaming outside the park. According to the Guardian, the park’s biological diversity which is increasingly at risk, is greater than that of some countries.