Lamu, KENYA: The county government of Lamu has been asked to recognize and support efforts aimed at promoting the welfare of donkeys in Lamu town.
The county government has also been urged to set aside funds in its annual budget to enable and boost donkey rearing.
Donkeys are the only mode of transport in the Lamu old town which is a world heritage site that continues to attract scores of tourists who come to behold its richly preserved culture and heritage.
Speaking in his office at the Donkey Sanctuary Lamu offices,Solomon Onyango,the programmes manager at the facility said poverty was the leading cause as to why many donkeys on the island are poorly kept.
Onyango called on the county government to plan on setting aside funds to enable donkey owners to effectively take care of the animals.
He urged donkey owners to make good use of the Donkey Sanctuary and hospital and rush their animals to the facility whenever they fall sick of have any problem.
“let the county government support these donkeys owners so that they don’t feel burdened in taking care of the animals considering their role in the county’s culture.As the donkey sanctuary meanwhile we continue to encourage donkey owners to feel free and bring their animals at any given time for medical attention or any other health related issue and we shall freely attend to them,”said Onyango.
The donkey sanctuary offers treatment both inpatient and outpatient to donkeys on the island at no cost.
Lamu Island alone has a population of more than 10,000 donkeys which are mainly used to transport people and luggage.
In 2013, attention was drawn to the island after more than 900 donkeys died under unclear circumstances.
It was later rumored that the donkeys could have been poisoned.