The concrete jungle
In 1899, the railway line construction from Mombasa to Lake Victoria found a good midway watering point that soon became a busy village called Nairobi (from the Maasai phrase Enkare Nyirobi, meaning “the place of cool waters” ). It quickly grew into a large town to become the capital city, despite no seaport or major river or mining industry around it.
For thousands of years, wildlife thrived on the Athi plains in great numbers, and the seasonal migrations were magnificent beyond description. Simply speaking, this area was a wonderful paradise created by God.
For hundreds of years, the African people lived in relative harmony with nature, then ‘civilisation’ arrived. As trees were destroyed and wildlife killed, so the city grew. In 1946, the Nairobi National Park became the first of its kind in Kenya, largely due to the bold actions of Mervyn Cowie. At only 117km square, it remains a small yet vital ecosystem, constantly battling against a growing megacity. The park has become a “green island in an ocean of concrete”.
Developing a strong economy requires an efficient transport network. There are plans to build a destructive railway line through this beautiful, tiny national park. I pray that those in authority listen to their conscience and wisely reconsider alternative routes around the park.
If Kenya keeps destroying its natural resources for “progress”, the nation will slowly lose its soul. We pray 2046 will be a year to celebrate the right choices of this generation, as the “green jungle” is balanced with the “concrete jungle”.
SGR and lions.