Conservancies in the Mara are governed by the local community for their benefit

Narok, 6th February 2019: Maasai Mara Wildlife Conservancies Association (MMWCA) is a membership organization that collectively supports and represents the wildlife conservancies in the Greater Mara Ecosystem.

From 2009 to December 2018, Mara Naboisho and Mara North Conservancies were managed by a contracted private company, after which the contract elapsed.  The private company then handed over the management to a conservancy-owned company that was created by the respective Boards of Directors to self-govern.  While aspects of this matter are pending in court, MMWCA has initiated a taskforce that is comprised of MMWCA board members to address concerns raised by the community members.

Mara Naboisho and Mara North Conservancies were formed through an open, inclusive and participatory process, and are democratic institutions representative of the participating land owners. Day-to-day management of the Conservancies is overseen by paid rangers most of whom are members of the conservancy.

Each of the 1400 land owners has decided to lease their land to the Conservancies in exchange for payments, land management and grazing rights. These two Conservancies generate over KSH 216 million annually for the land owners in the form of lease fees, KSH 4.5 million annually for school bursaries, KSH 4 million to a livestock predator consolation scheme, hundreds of jobs, and grazing land for community livestock. Each conservancy is a legal entity governed through an equal partnership arrangement between land owners and those leasing use of the land. MMWCA is working to register all conservancy leases under the Land Act and a majority of the leases in these conservancies have already been registered, with others in process. More than 12 years after the leases were created, there has not been one case brought by a land owner against the Conservancies for selling or misappropriating land.