Foreign ranch owners in Laikipia County are on the spot for harassing locals after a Kenyan wildlife conservationist was roughed up while on an animal viewing adventure.
Dr Mordecai Ogada, a carnivore ecologist who has been involved in conservation work for many years in Kenya, says that he was labelled a poacher for being black while on a game drive over the weekend.
Dr Ogada took to Facebook to narrate his ordeal accusing foreigners from Ol Jogi ranch of threatening to shoot him for taking wildlife pictures along public Nanyuki-Kinamba road.
Dr Ogada details that he was in the company of his children watching birds and animals when an armed man in a Land Cruiser with registration number KBK 184Q approached him and asked him to drive off as no person is allowed to photograph wildlife along the road.
“I calmly told him who I am, where I am from and that I am taking my kids for a game drive. The fellow told me to move on because I am not allowed to photograph wildlife along the road passing by Ol Jogi, ” he said.
After refusing to move, the security man accused him of being a poacher and threatened to open fire.
“The fellow radioed for reinforcements, stepped back and took the gun off his shoulder pointing it directly at me and my kids, saying that poachers are “people like us” (whatever that means). His colleagues quickly arrived in tactical mode, guns at the ready, ” he said.
It’s after Dr Ogada threatened to report them to authorities that they backed off.
“I refused to get out of the car and threw my card at them, informing them that they shall be hearing from me. I refused to get out of the car, looked at them and dared them to shoot or back off, then one of them suddenly realized that they’re out of their depth, ” he added.
“It was the hardest thing to maintain my happy Dad/ uncle demeanour for the rest of the game drive, but I managed and we got back home safely. We cant take this nangsengs in our country with our children (sic).”
Dr Ogada said that to prevent such from happening to many Kenyans now and the future he will report the harassment incident to authorities tomorrow, Monday, July 2020.
“I start at the OCS Nanyuki on Monday. All channels, all authorities will be involved. We’re going to fix this sh***. These plantations called conservancies have to back off, ” he said.
Armed white men in Laikipia who own large pieces of land have often been accused of harassing locals with the government doing little to stop the “colony” menace.