Amuru, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Time is finally out for two hippopotamuses that have have continued to destroy food crops and even kill domestic animals for two years ever since they invaded Gaya parish in Pabo sub county of Amuru district.
Following persistent cries from the people of Amuru and apparent failure by Uganda Wildlife Authority to control the two hippos, the district chairperson Michael Lakony has pronounced himself on the matter. The hippos are to be killed as soon as possible.
The death sentence has apparently been welcomed by most residents. To Silvester Odong, LCI chairperson of Pukwany village, the two hippos have so far killed 4 cows, 10 goats and destroyed over 20 acres of food crops along River Unyama banks. Odong’s recollection of the hippos rampaging activities date back to May 2019.
According to Odong, they are now advising locals of the area to keep watch of their animals to avoid being attacked and killed by the wild animals.
To Christine Apio, a resident of Pukwany, the order to kill the hippos is music to the ears. She says she lost 5 acres of rice to the stray hippos last year and again lost another 5 acres to them this year. Apio is now worried about where she is going to get money for her family having invested over 1.5 million shillings in the past two years.
Michael Lakony, the Amuru district LCV chairperson says they have written several letters to Uganda Wildlife Authority to come to the rescue of the people but all in vain.
According to Lakony, the wild animals have been causing mayhem in an 8km stretch of Unyama river from Pabo to Atiak sub county. That is why the community has been called upon to hunt and kill the animals since “UWA has failed to come to the rescue of the local people”.
Lakony observes that the biggest challenge is that the affected community members can’t get compensation for their destroyed crops and animals.
Our efforts to contact Hanji Bashir, the UWA communications manager were futile as his phone went unanswered.
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