Leakey quits

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, March 1994:

NAIROBI––Accused of
corruption, racism, and misman-
agement by 23 influential cabinet
ministers eager to exploit wildlife
and habitat, renowned paleontolo-
gist Richard Leakey resigned
January 14 after five years as head
of the Kenya Wildlife Service.
Leakey’s vigorous attack
on corruption and defense of
endangered species brought more
than $150 million in aid to Kenya.

Supporting Leakey in an appeal to
Kenyan president Daniel arap
Moi, who did not immediately
accept the resignation, was lead-
ing environmentalist Wangari
Maathai. She warned arap Moi
that without Leakey’s command-
ing presence, the cabal opposing
him would “loot the game parks”
and use the heavily armed anti-
poaching patrols for “ethnic
cleansing” against minority tribes.
In the 15 years before
Leakey was appointed, the
Kenyan elephant population fell
from over 100,000 to 19,000.
Under Leakey, whose wardens
shot to kill, ivory poaching virtu-
ally ceased.
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