UWA Seeks UGX 11.5 Billion for Chopper, Drones

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In short
Dr. Andrew Sseguya, the UWA Executive Director, says currently they depend on vehicles and sometimes the UPDF chopper to handle emergencies like deployment of rangers, which is not sustainable .

Uganda Wildlife Authority- UWA is seeking Shillings 11.5 billion for the purchase of a chopper and drones to ensure appropriate response in managing wildlife at the Park. According to the breakdown, the Authority wants Shillings 7 billion for the purchase of a choppers and Shillings 4.5 billion for drones.


Dr. Andrew Sseguya, the UWA Executive Director, says currently they depend on vehicles and sometimes the UPDF chopper to handle emergencies like deployment of rangers, which isn't sustainability. Dr. Sseguya told the Tourism, Trade and Industry committee of parliament this afternoon that the helicopter will help to respond to incursions in the parks quickly as opposed to waiting for vehicles that take hours to arrive.

 

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He was presenting the authority budget for the 2017/2018 financial year worth Shillings 66 billion. The Bufumbira East MP, Nsaba Buturo supported the move by the Authority to acquire a chopper, says its advantages are overwhelming.

 
Dr. Sseguya also said they need drones to monitor the park. He cited the challenge they find in monitoring Murchison falls national Game Park, which is 1,344 square miles. He says with drones, officers can sit in office and view images of poachers and wildlife in the parks.

 
According to the proposal, UWA also want a fixed winged aircraft of between 8-12 seaters, for conducting wildlife aerial census, surveillance and monitoring. Fixed-wing light sport aircraft generally cost between USD $60,000 and $130,000.

 

About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.