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Title: Unveiling the challenges of curbing wildlife crime in Kenya : evaluating the 3Cs solution
Author: Mureithi Ngatia, Peter
ISNI:       0000 0004 7426 2505
Awarding Body: University of Bolton
Current Institution: University of Bolton
Date of Award: 2018
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This is an original thematic research thesis that investigated the causes that lead to the current unprecedented escalation of wildlife crime in Africa that threatens to destroy our global environment by decimating and driving our wildlife which is a global heritage to extinction. The research study which was conducted both in Kenya and in the United Kingdom, has developed unique and distinguishable proposals, methods and recommendations, referred to as the 3Cs solutions, which can be effectively utilized in combating and curbing wildlife crime at a global scale. Nature has provided very delicate and sophisticated ecological systems where all plants and animals have very important roles that they play which keeps this planet Earth’s environment habitable. The realization that the future of this World and the entire human race is greatly linked to these global ecological systems and their biodiversity balance has caused a new global awareness and eagerness to view these eco-systems and the entire global environment as one and to halt destruction of any of these eco-systems taking place anywhere on planet Earth. Wildlife crime is currently the greatest threat to the ecological system and its bio-diversity balance in Africa and by extension to the global environment, as it is destroying an ecological and bio-diversity system of a globally important biome and green belt area south of the Sahara. East, Central and Southern Africa have been identified as the largest source markets that supply illegal wildlife trophies to the consumer markets in the Far East Asia, Western Europe the Middle East and the USA. Yet some of these supply source countries have functioning legal systems that have failed to curb this crime. Kenya is one such country. Kenya was selected for this study because it is the region’s major logistics and trading hub for illegal wildlife crime trophies. Kenya has a functioning Criminal Justice System mandated to combat wildlife crime yet it has badly failed to do so. The three departments within that Criminal Justice System which are mandate to protect wildlife by enforcing wildlife crime laws in Kenya are Kenya Wildlife Services (KWS) warders for policing, the Prosecution and the Judiciary. The main purpose of this study was therefore to investigate and understand why a functioning legal system is unable to combat wildlife crime by determining the challenges it faces in curbing this vice. The study focused on wildlife crime committed for commercial export purposes and identified 5 prime species that are targeted for their trophies for illegal export which are the elephant, rhino, lion, leopard and cheetah herein after referred to in this study as the ‘Charismatic Five. The study employed Empirical research methods to conduct the research and to answer the research questions. Qualitative and quantitative research techniques were utilized. The study adopted the descriptive survey research design in order to assist the researcher achieve the objective of the study. Five national parks were selected for the study being the parks where the charismatic 5 wildlife species are abundantly found and therefore the targeted parks by poachers. The population of the study were therefore Kenya Wildlife Service Wardens in the selected national parks, Magistrates and Prosecutors serving in the courts where these parks are located. A peer review of this study’s research tool was first done followed by pilot study carried out at the Nairobi National Park in Kenya, which tested and found the research tool to be suitable, reliable and valid to achieve the overall research objectives. The main survey was conducted in Kenya and took over 4 months for data collection to be completed. Data analysis was done in the United Kingdom. Inferential statistics were used in drawing conclusions. Out of the 156 questionnaires distributed, 152 were completed and returned, representing a 97% response rate due to massive interest shown on the topic by the respondents. The study identified 20 causes and challenges being experienced within the criminal justice system and made recommendations for each challenge that offers the best solution to resolving that challenge. This research study has developed and promulgates some conclusive proposals as its original contributions to knowledge. These contributions are supported by analytical and empirical evidence from this research study and are as follows: Firstly, it challenges the Apocryphal Cause that corruption is the cause of the escalation of wildlife crime. Based on the evidence collected through this research, it can now be categorically and authentically proved that the sudden upward surge of demand in wildlife trophies in the consumers markets of the Far East Countries is the leading cause of escalation of wildlife crime in the source markets like Kenya. Secondly, this study has developed a new concept called ‘The 3Cs’ concept, through which it proposes and offers new methods for combating wildlife crime. The concept is conceptualized and propounded in a pack consisting of The Concept; The 3Cs Test; The 3C’s Model; and, the 3 Cs Application Tool Kit. Overall, it is sincerely hoped that the finding of this research will dominate discussions in the global arena dealing with wildlife crime and contribute tremendously as a solution to this global cause.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available