Archive for April, 2016

by @salisha_ww

Today approximately 60-80 people gathered outside KWS to honour Mohawk. It was a morning filled with overwhelmingly raw emotion – there were not many dry eyes as the lady from Kitengela read out her poem, the tears would not stop as the lady guitarist sang that haunting melody…we all laid our flowers, lit candles and paid our respects. This outpouring of emotion was needed – we all needed that moment. At one point, a friend turned to me and said I wonder if he (Mohawk’s) watching us…and I thought I sure hope he is …that way he can see how much he is loved and the dignity we are giving his life.

IMG_4587Please note that todays event was about honouring Mohawk and paying our respects and it was fantastic that everybody who came observed the sanctity of the moment.

Please also note that most of us there are also going to ensure that Mohawk’s death is not in vain – there has to be change and we are going to fight for that. More on this later.

The below is the statement we shared with the press this morning.


Today we are all here to honour and celebrate Mohawk’s life. Mohawk was one of Nairobi National Parks most iconic male lions, named such because of the shape of his mane when he was but a young boy. He was also the only lion who had a black mane.

In his years on this earth, Mohawk spent much of his time with the well-known “Ivory” trio – Sam, Cheru and the late Simbeo. But he also liked his time alone and would often go out of sight for a few weeks. Mohawak was a great hunter who could take down a fully mature eland bull all on his own. He also helped to sustain the Nairobi Park lion population by siring the Kingfisher cubs (both present and previous litters) and Elsie.

With the untimely death of Mohawk, we are now down to two mature males of the nine that had previously been there. Sam, Cheru, Mpakasi and the sub-adult males are now the future of Nairobi National Park.
Many of us would have loved to see Mohawk continue to roam the plains of Nairobi National Park, but this is not to be. We only hope that he may RIP and that his genes live on in the cubs he sired.

We have gathered here today in our green shirts to bring peace to his soul, to show him how much Kenya loves him and to send him off with dignity.

We will miss you greatly, MOHAWK. May your soul R.I.P



Kenyans United Against Poaching (KUAPO Trust) along with several other organisations and Kenyans are demanding that an inquisition be held into the events that led to the killing of Mohawk. We believe that his death is symptomatic of the systemic issues within the Kenya Wildlife Service specifically around human-wildlife conflict and problem animal control. Furthermore, we believe that concerted efforts need to be made to secure the broader Nairobi National Park ecosystem for the safety of both our wildlife and our human population.

We share the outrage of Kenya and world citizens at the senseless killing of Mohawk as well as the avoidable injury to the motorcyclist. Mohawk’s death must not be in vain. We must learn from this experience and ensure that such a situation is not repeated again. For this a proper understanding of the events is required to reform policy and take concrete actions. This should also involve joint dialogue with all stakeholders. We want to help make this change. We can help make this change.

For more details, please read our full joint statement of demand to the CS, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the DG, Kenya Wildlife Service. (…/demand-for-inquisition-…)

KUAPO, Eseriani Wildlife Association, Ulinzi Africa Foundation, Walk With Rangers, Lights For Life,Jane Goodall Institute – Roots & Shoots Kenya, Safari Exposure Tours Ltd, A Walk for Wildlife, Athi Kapiti Wildlife Conservancies, Lion Entry Deterrent Systems

Artwork by Ken Cunningham