• Tue. Jun 28th, 2022

News Excavator

What you missed

MAKANAGA Wetland Eco-tourism site in danger due to poaching

ByDiana Kibuuka

Mar 30, 2021

Makanaga Wetland on Lake Victoria is a potential tourist Eco-system  rich in both wetland flora and  fauna.The  vast wetland cuts across two districts; Wakiso and Mpigi who are entirely in charge of overseeing  the environmental welfare of this  wetland.

It’s however devastating to note that the poaching problem with in the wetland for  mainly the Sitatungas and other wildlife has remained unsolved for a period of close to Ten years.

OJuwi James the deputy chairperson of Makanga  Wetland Eco system Users Association says  they have  decried  this vice to the offices  in charge  at Mpigi and  Wakiso district but they have  always been neglected. He explains that the poachers in the process of hunting for the Sitatungas set ablaze  the wetland which affects other species  especially  the  birds and a case in point  the Shoe Bill bird  that greatly attracts tourists  even  beyond the  Ugandan boundary to  this wetland.

Our neighbors in Luwala village Kamengo  sub county  have done us a great disservice – they  heavily poach the Sitatungas in the wetland and also affect  the multiplication of the Shoe bills ,because when they burn the wetlands they kill the Shoe bill and also burn their eggs – we feel we have accommodated them enough  and we are yet to take actions” noted Ojuwi.

The  chairperson of Bussi  sub county Stanley  Kabuye  added  that tree cutting within the  Makanaga wetland  is another  big problem  that  needs to be addressed  because many tree  dwelling  birds  are migrating, a thing  that is affecting  the tourism potential of the Eco-system.

Education officers from Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education -UWEC  led  by the  Outreach officers Phillip  Katabulawo and  Otiti  Richard  in partnership with different stakeholders from Local council leadership with in  Mpigi  and Wakiso, Makanaga Wetland Eco-system Users Association and other government agencies  have  made  a move to breath in some new life  in Makanga  in line with promoting Eco-tourism.

Uganda Wildlife  Conservation Education Center’s move to promote Eco-tourism in Makanaga was in 2013/14 and this  set the pace till now.

Phillip Katabulawo notes  that there should  be value addition to the tourism services  being offered currently with in  Makanga  so as to yield  more funds and for the  general well being of the residents that directly or indirectly tap into the tourism activities  in this  area.

We need to make sure that Makanaga is a one stop shop center for a tourist – we have to think about establishing Eco-tourism projects such as hotels, shopping malls to mention but afew,so that a tourist be held  in Makanaga for more than one day” explains Katabulawo.

UWEC   and  its partners are drafting plans to make Makanaga a standard Eco-tourism site.The  site harbors more  than 150 bird species, different reptiles and wetland mammals.