Author and conservationist Kuki Gallmann shot in Kenya

Author and conservationist Kuki Gallmann shot in Kenya

NAIROBI, Kenya — The Italian-born author and conservationist Kuki Gallmann was shot at her Kenyan ranch and airlifted for treatment after herders invaded in search of pasture to save their animals from drought, officials said Sunday.

Gallmann, known for her bestselling book “I Dreamed of Africa,” which became a movie by the same name starring Kim Basinger, was patrolling the ranch when she was shot in the stomach, local police chief Ezekiel Chepkowny said.

Her driver also survived the attack and drove her to the airport in Laikipia, where she was airlifted to the capital, Nairobi, for further treatment, Chepkowny said.

Richard Constant, the deputy chairman of the Laikipia Farmers Association, said suspicion falls on herders from the Pokot community who have invaded Gallmann’s ranch several times. Lodges belonging to Gallmann were burned by the herders last month.

This East African nation is facing a drought that has affected half the country and has been declared a national disaster.

Herders and large-scale farmers in parts of Kenya’s Rift Valley have been desperately waiting for seasonal rains that were to start last month to ease the drought and conflicts over grazing land in which more than 30 people have died.

Kenya’s military and police have been working to disarm and drive the hundreds of herders and their animals out of ranches they’ve invaded, but their actions appear to have escalated the violence. The Laikipia Farmers Association says when the military and police drive herders from one ranch they move into another.

The association’s deputy chairman has accused politicians campaigning for the August elections of inciting the herders to invade the ranches, saying the owners’ leases have come to an end and that herders can take over the land and distribute it among themselves.

The land invasions started late last year. British national and ranch owner Tristan Voorspuy was killed last month when he went to inspect damage done by the herders on one of his lodges.

Many of the ranches, some of which double as wildlife conservancies, were acquired during the period of British colonial rule, some as early as 1900, according to a government report. Others were purchased after Kenya became independent in 1963.


This version corrects the last name to Gallmannn.

Tom Odula, The Associated Press

Just Posted

One man airlifted to hospital following incident on Chilliwack River Road

Chilliwack River Road closed off as police investigate

Garrison store going to new heights for children’s charity

Save-On Foods employees raising cash for BC Children’s Hospital, by throwing managers from airplane

Tourism Chilliwack brings home industry award of excellence

Sto:lo Welcome Figures carving project outside the Visitor Centre loomed large in the win

UPDATE: Dying days for 25-bed mental health facility on Chilliwack/Abbotsford border

Closure of Mountain View criticized by NDP in opposition but hasn’t reversed Fraser Health decision

B.C’s Indigenous tourism sector takes centre stage in Chilliwack

One-day workshop will look at ways to embue the industry with authenticity

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

5 to start your day

A woman takes issue with students’ attempt at a joke, a suspicious package at a tax centre, and more

Fat joke on B.C. school’s sign not appropriate, woman says

Surrey mother says weight issues are no laughing matter

Missing Vancouver man may be in Vernon area

Brent Galster, 62, last seen at a Vernon ATM in December

McMaster out, Bolton in as Trump’s national security adviser

President Donald is replacing National security adviser H.R. McMaster with John Bolton

Two killed, dozen hurt in French supermarket hostage-taking

French counterterrorism prosecutors are taking charge of the investigation into the shooting of a police officer in southern France

Canadian women move to No. 4 in FIFA world rankings

Canadian women match all-time high, move back to No. 4 in FIFA world rankings

Supreme Court rules former Stephen Harper aide guilty of influence peddling

A one-time senior aide to former prime minister Stephen Harper has been found guilty of influence peddling by Canada’s highest court.

Annual inflation rate rises to 2.2% for its fastest pace since fall 2014

Statistics Canada says the consumer price index in February was up 2.2 per cent compared with a year ago

Most Read