MIKE All Africa Regional Meeting Held
Fifty representatives from 26 African elephant range States met in Kenya to deliberate on the implementation of the CITES programme, Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE) across the African continent. It was the first time in almost a decade that the range States came together from across Africa to discuss progress made and new initiatives. The meeting was possible due to the support from the European Union.
Over the last five years, the CITES MIKE CCU, in collaboration with various partners, have been implementing the EU project called “Minimising the Illegal Killing of Elephants and Other Endangered Species” or MIKES. This project is coming to an end in December 2019 and the CITES Secretariat appreciates the commitment by the EU to ensure continuity with a new project starting just as the existing project is coming to an end.
Under the MIKES project, eight focal sites received additional support in terms of law enforcement capacity building, including provision of infrastructure, equipment and training. The CITES MIKE CCU also developed a MIKE Online Database with the assistance of the UNEP Science Division that will not only support data submission and management, but also enhance the use of the data by range States to inform decision making at the site and national level.
At the MIKE Regional meeting, the CITES MIKE CCU with support from the new statisticians on the MIKE ETIS Technical Advisory Committee also shared progress made with the review of the PIKE trend analysis methodology. The review is timely; especially considering the amount of data available for analysis and developments in terms of statistical analysis. The new statisticians on the Technical Advisory Group have made an important contribution to this process aimed at ensuring the statistical robustness of the methodology.
Range States also discussed the current MIKE site network in sub-regional engagement sessions outcomes of the session will inform the review of the MIKE site network initiated earlier this year. For the next phase of the MIKES programme, also funded by the EU, there will be an emphasis on closer collaboration between the CITES MIKE CCU and the range States, and continued support to the MIKE site network to strengthen monitoring and management practices relating to elephants as well as other target species.