Government Stiffles Wildlife Conflict Mitigation Project

1640 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
The UGX 8.9 billion project was first launched in 2010 after a string of destructions and sufferings caused to wildlife by communities living near the game parks and reserves.

The Human Wildlife Conflict Mitigation Project suffers a blow as a result of government’s failure to release required funds to facilitate designed activities in the initial project period.

The UGX 8.9 billion project was first launched in 2010 after a string of destructions and sufferings caused to wildlife by communities living near the game parks and reserves.

It was aimed at promoting tourism and wildlife in Uganda, promoting conservation through attitude change and livelihoods improvement and promoting value addition to wildlife resources outside protected areas.

Upon its completion, the project will have One hundred and fifty Kilometers of trenches around Protected Areas covering all hot spots, Fifty Kilometers of live fence around hotspots in Bwindi and 100 kilometers in Lake Mburo National Park,  One hundred and seventy youth trained as vermin guards in 17 districts prone to wildlife related crop damage and Sixteen kilometer buffalo wall reconstructed in Mgahinga Gorilla National Park among others.

However, with a year left to the end of the project life, less than a billion shillings has been released for its implementation.

Barirega Akankwasa, the Principal Wildlife Officer at the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities says over the years, government has shifted  its priorities, in turn affecting the project‘s implementation.

//Cue in: “We haven’t covered…
Cue out: …than ten percent.”//

Akankwasa adds that so far, the little amount that has been released is being used to construct trenches in Murchison falls and queen Elizabeth National Park. He is nonetheless optimistic that the project life may be extended to ensure that all pending activities are dully covered.

//Cue in: “It may extend…
Cue out: …are more critical.”/

However it remains to be seen whether all these will be achieved with slow release of funds for the project.