By Caroline Chebet, Standard Media
Kenya’s efforts in combating illegal wildlife trade through ports have improved with no reported seizures at the Mombasa port for the past three years.
According to Traffic, a global wildlife trade monitoring network, Kenya has been a major transit route with its airports and seaports being flagged as major exit points for trafficked illegal wildlife products from other countries.
“Kenya played a big role as an exit route for trafficked wildlife products in the past and featured prominently in the global reports as per seizures. Currently, there is more awareness and Kenya has moved in to tighten loopholes especially in its aviation sector and sea ports,” Richard Thomas, Traffic’s communication coordinator, said.
Between 2007 and 2017 Kenya had reported 797 ivory seizures to the Elephant Trade Information System more than any other African country and third only to China (3,984) and the USA (1,531).
“Whilst there have been no reported seizures linked to the Port of Mombasa since 2017, this does not mean there has been no illegal wildlife trade moving through the port — only that no seizures have been made, or that any seizures that have been made have not been reported,” the report noted.
Kenya, as per the Traffic analysis, was identified as a transit country for illegal wildlife products from other countries.