The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has bemoaned the killing of a family of 11 elephants for their ivory in Tsavo National Park, in Kenya by poachers.
The family was slaughtered on January 5, in the single worst incident of ivory poaching recorded in Kenya.
In a statement issued by WWF and copied to Ghana News Agency on Thursday the Fund said: “As we approach the one year anniversary of the elephant massacre in Cameroon last year, we are saddened to hear of yet another mass killing of elephants, this time in Kenya.”
It said the incident is possibly one of the largest single incidents of elephant poaching in Kenya’s history.
The statement spoke against the epidemic of elephant killings that has ravaged populations in Central Africa and now spreading to Kenya.
It said it is troubling because Kenya in recent years has largely had a solid track record of elephant management and protection.
“We must do more to make sure this alarming and sad trend does not continue and we must do everything we can to make sure poachers are brought to justice.
“Kenya’s weak and antiquated wildlife laws must be modernised as swiftly as possible to ensure that poachers receive appropriately stiff penalties for their heinous crimes,” the statement said.
WWF reiterated the need to stop the poachers in their tracks, adding: “They are stepping up their game, and we must do the same and we cannot continue to let these massacres happen, or else we risk creating a future where our children will only hear of wild elephants in story books.”
The statement held that WWF is committed to helping the Kenya Wildlife Service adopt the latest systems of law enforcement monitoring, and also supporting the country to work more closely with its neighbours to counter regional poaching syndicates.
It called for a curb in the demand for ivory carvings and trinkets.
It said the current demand for wildlife products which is causing elephant slaughtering is largely driven by growing wealth in Asia – most notably from China.
WWF is an international non-governmental organisation working on issues regarding the conservation, research and restoration of the environment.
It is the world’s largest independent conservation organisation with more than five million supporters worldwide, working in more than 100 countries, supporting around 1,300 conservation and environmental projects.