Entebbe Municipality Mayor Kayanja Vincent DePaul has appealed to Government to sensitize and educate the masses on the dangers of poaching and Environmental degradation in order to conserve the different wild Life species, plants, animals and trees.
Kayanja who was chief guest at the Wild Life Day Celebrations held on Tuesday March 3 at the Uganda Wild Life Education Centre (Entebbe Zoo) urged Government to partner with Ministry of Tourism, Uganda Wild Life Authority and UWEC to sensitize the masses right from Primary school pupils up to the illiterate local communities in the villages on the benefits preserving Uganda’s natural resources including wild Life.
“We have become enemies of our own existence. We are impacting negatively on the environment through deforestation, Wetland degradation and poaching and this has exacerbated the challenges of Climate Change” Kayanja Stated.
On his part Uganda Wild Life Authority Executive Director Anthony Sseguya called upon Ugandans to work hand in hand with UWA and other security agencies such as police and the army to report poachers who are mercilessly killing elephants and other wild Life animals.
“Protecting and conserving wild life is a responsibility for us all and i therefore call upon all Ugandans to join hands in raising awareness about Uganda’s wild Life heritage” Sseguya stressed.
“I am happy to note that Uganda Wild Life Authority is registering success in impounding illegal wild Life contraband. Close to 829 pieces of ivory have been impounded in the last few months” he noted.
He also disclosed that UWA had gone a step further and formed an intelligence unit of 80 intelligence officers to collect information through working with the different communities.
“We have recruited and deployed close to 700 rangers and improved their welfare to increase their motivation” Sseguya said.
“We have also recruited prosecutors who will work closely with the Judiciary to prosecute all criminals who are engaged in poaching, transportation and selling of illegal wild Life contraband” he continued.
He however expressed his dissatisfaction towards the sentences handed to criminals engaged in illegal wild Life trade adding that the judiciary is still lenient and called for tougher action.
Uganda Wild Life Education Centre Executive Director James Musinguzi thanked UWA, Ministry of Tourism, Wild Life and antiquities, African Wild Life Foundation for partnering with UWEC to promote Wild Life conservation in Uganda and Africa as a whole.
Several activities including exhibitions from Wild Life conservation organisations, skits and poems from Nkumba University, St. Mary’s College Kisubi and St. Thereza Primary school were held to highlight the importance of wild life conservation.