The president of Uganda Yoweri Museveni has ordered border security at Kidepo Valley National Park in Uganda’s northeastern area to shoot all armed poachers.
He said that those having weapons and cross to poach ought to be shot since people are blaming the national army for not carrying out their work.
President Museveni said that among the reasons why the disarmament process was successful was because his Government had promised the people of Karamoja protection if they handed over their guns back to the army.
A number of people said that if the Karamajongs are disarmed, then the Turkana people will disturb them. They added that there are also guns in the DR Congo, although they don’t cross into Kasese, however if they do so, the president ordered that those carrying guns should be shot.
The president said that There are arms in South Sudan presently, however there haven’t been any reports that they have crossed into Koboko; so because this is his country, it’s his obligation is to safeguard Ugandans.
President Museveni was reacting to claims that groups of armed poachers (particularly the Tipeth coming from South Sudan as well as the Turkana coming from Kenya) have continued to cross into the national parks to poach animals, destroy crops an occasionally kill people.
This was during his address on cerebrations to honor 50 years of the existence of Kidepo Valley National Park held at Napore Open Grounds in Apoka Village within Dodoth West Constituency found in Kaabong District.
The President disclosed Kidepo’s slogan – ‘A true African wilderness’.
He discouraged people from using the park land for agriculture, mentioning that tourism gains the country more revenue compared to agriculture.
He said that as coffee earns the country nearly 400 million shillings annually, tourism brings in UGX1.3 billion and approximately 1.4 million tourists visit the country every year compared to 200,000 back in 1986.
The President added that he was overjoyed that the NRM Government as well as the UPDF who stopped poaching in the different national parks, hastening their recuperation
He encouraged the community to make use the money they acquire from these parks to invest in nice accommodation for the tourists, grow more crops in their communities as well as take part in artisanship to market crafts as tourists’ souvenirs.