Lake Ol’ Bolossat is the only lake in central Kenya, located in Nyandarua County. It is the 61st IBA and was gazzetted as a protected wetlands in 2018 under EMCA. The Lake Olbolosat Management Plan was developed through a consultative process involving all stakeholders both national and county level. The document was launched on the 17th March 2022 in a colourful ceremony officiated by the Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko and his host Governor Nyandarua County H.E Francis Kimemia.
Kenya being a signatory to the Ramsar Convention is expected to conserve and manage its wetlands resources through a multi stakeholder approach. The process of developing Management plans is comprehensive interms of scope and public participation. They management plan is designed to ensure management of the ecosystem for the long-term well-being and the benefit of people.
The process of developing L. Ol Bolossat management plan was led by NEMA- CMF in collaboration with Nyandarua County Government. NEMA Ag. Chair Dr. Lul Abdiwahid accompanied CS to the Launch of Lake Olbolosat Management Plan in Nyandarua County. The Acting Chair NEMA Board noted that the plan will facilitate rehabilitation of degraded areas; enhance ecological integrity, conservation, and sustainable utilization of the lake for the current and future generations.
The Governor expressed optimism in the manner in which the ministry and its departments have worked hard in environmental management and in particular the Lake in the County. The Governor added that the County has 22% tree cover and has planted 2 million trees annually. Governor Kimemia noted that the CS should gazette a committee to spearhead implementation of the integrated Management Plan. He added that the Lake forms the arc of livelihoods for the locals. Hence the need to safeguard and protect it for the benefit of the locals.
The CS echoed sentiments geared towards recognizing Lake Olbollasat as a Ramsar Site of ecological importance which he said is an instrument to ensure the protection of the resource for perpetuity. The CS stated that the Lake willl have an electric fence to wade off Hippopotamus from destroying crops and requires urgent surveying of the boundary to minise encroachment. He further noted that his ministry will form a taskforce to oversee successful implementation of the management plan.
Development of the Lake Ol Bolossat Integrated Management plan was anchored under EMCA provisions. The plan development underwent all stages as guided by the Ramsar Convention including stakeholder consultation, expert field assessments and observations, focus group discussions, expert working groups and stakeholder validation.