Ahmed the Elephant was a majestic pachyderm who once roamed the forests of Marsabit National park. He was huge, in fact, the replicas and his remains at the Nairobi museum make you feel puny in comparison standing next to it.

He was born in 1919 and lived to a grand old age of 55 when he died in 1974. His tusks when weighed each came in at 67.2kgs.

President Jomo Kenyatta wanted to protect one of the last great tuskers from poachers and ordered a 24-hour armed guard to be placed around him in 1970.Ahmed was the only elephant in history to have been protected by presidential decree. He was still able to roam freely in Marsabit Park and got used to the presence of his guards.

And when he died he was found leaning against a tree trunk supported by the weight of his great tusks.

Marsabit residents have in the recent past asked for the remains of Ahmed to be brought back to Marsabit. However when the possibility was explored back then by  the County government of Marsabit in 2015, it was found not to be feasible due to how brittle his remains (bones) were.

There are options. A replica of Ahmed can be made and put at the KWS museum. This can be done through a concerted effort involving the county government of Marsabit, The KWS and the National Museums of Kenya.

KWS is now building a museum at Ahmed gate. How appropriate would it be to bring him back to the place named after him. A place that he once roamed freely.

Marsabit was a tourism hub from the 70s to early 90s. Thereafter there was a big slump in tourism numbers.  But the number of tourists visiting Marsabit has seen a slight increase recently(before the Corona pandemic).Mainly due to the tarmacking of the A2 highway which has made accessing Marsabit easier.

Moving Ahmed back to Marsabit, either his remains or even a replica would greatly help in increasing these numbers and inject some money into the local economy.