Stranded zebra causes excitement in Kitengela town
Residents of Kitengela were on Tuesday treated to a rare spectacle after a zebra strayed onto the Kajiado-Namanga Highway, which cuts through the town.
The sighting caused excited chatter among residents.
The zebra appeared stranded, only occasionally nibbling at overgrown grass on the side of the road.
Some of the residents hilariously joked that the zebra had come to relieve its overworked 'cousin' the donkey, which is a common means of transport in Kitengela.
The close encounter with the zebra offered some of the residents a rare and treasured opportunity to see an animal they have only seen on pictures or on television.
"I have never been to a game park, and I have never seen a zebra in real life. The closest I have come to one is on TV. This is a rare opportunity for some of us," said James Maina, a bodaboda operator, who took a number of pictures using his phone.
According to residents, the animal was first sighted in a drainage trench opposite the Nairobi Women's Hospital, not very far from the heart of Kitengela town.
Simeon Kiminta, a long term resident of Kitengela, said that the presence of the zebra speaks to a serious underlying issue.
"About 20 years ago, before the rapid urbanisation, Kitengela used to be a vast, uninhibited plain, teeming with lots of wild animals, which mingled freely with Maasai cattle," he explained.
“Unplanned development in Kitengela and many other towns along Namanga road, has given rise to human settlement in what used to be wildlife migration corridors, leaving the animals with nowhere to go other than to stray into human settlements,” added Kiminta.
"It is not unusual to find accidents involving motor vehicles and wild animals, along the busy highway, almost on a daily basis," he said.
"We are slowly and surely losing our once treasured natural heritage."
The animal is believed to have walked back to the wild.
Some parts of Kitengela, which borders the Nairobi National National park, served as a migration corridor for wild animals.
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