started this petition to
Sen. Mwangi Paul Githiomi -Committee on Lands, Environment & Natural Resource
Organizers of the Koroga Festival are planning to host Koroga Festival – Love Edition on 14 – 15 February 2020 in Kenya’s Hell’s Gate National Park, putting the wildlife of the Park at risk.
Hell’s Gate is an Important Bird Area of international significance. It is home to the only breeding colony of Critically Endangered Ruppell’s Vultures and is used by many other threatened birds of prey, including eagles, falcons, hawks, buzzards, and owls.
The Koroga Festival organizers say the event will not disturb the vultures or other wildlife, but with over 15,000 people expected at the 2-day event, it is hard to see how this can be true. The presence of so many people and the noise of the festival is bound to disrupt breeding and feeding behavior, and might even drive some birds away from the area.
The organizers justify the decision to allow the Koroga Festival to take place in the Park by pointing to the economic benefits it will bring to the area. This is, unfortunately, a short-sighted perspective. It is true that the Koroga Festival will attract large numbers of visitors for the 2 days and make money for the organizers and local businesses. But these short-lived benefits are dwarfed by the potential of the Park to generate sustainable incomes from nature tourism and outdoor recreation for decades to come. This economic potential is completely dependent on maintaining the wildlife populations and unspoiled natural landscapes that attract visitors to the area.
Holding Koroga Festival in the Park goes against the basic purpose of National Parks, which are intended as spaces for the protection and tranquil enjoyment of the natural environment. If this event goes ahead, it could set a dangerous precedent.
Kenya is a big country and there are many other places where the Koroga festival could be held. So the solution is simple: We urge Koroga Festival organizers to put wildlife safety first and leave the National Park in peace, by moving the event to another location in Kenya.
Please sign and share this petition to show your solidarity in keeping our Parks intact.
Posted: 21 January 2020 (Updated: 9 February 2020)