New Vision (Uganda)

In the two incidences, UWA said they recovered ivory amounting to 43kgs and 28kgs bringing the total amount of ivory to 61kgs. #Uganda Wildlife Authority#Policemen#Wildlife Trophies

Gerald Tenywa
Journalist @New Vision

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Five people including three policemen have ended up in hot soup over possession of wildlife trophies including elephant ivory. 

According to Bashir Hangi, the Public Relations Manager at Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA), the suspects were arrested in two different incidences in Kampala and Kapelabyong in Teso sub region.   

Hangi said they netted Samuel Emanu alias Shaban, a police constable and Levi Eliu on March 16 in Kapelabyong. 

This was followed by another arrest of two Policemen, Boniface Okello and Martin Ochen on March 20 in Kampala.

Okello and Ochen are still in police custody as an investigation into their crime continues.

In the two incidences, UWA said they recovered ivory amounting to 43kgs and 28kgs bringing the total amount of ivory to 61kgs. 

“This is a wildlife offence. We are talking about protecting wildlife species,” said Hangi. “It does not matter whether the ivory is from Uganda or not.”   

Hangi added, “As of now we have the suspects and exhibits and we are taking them to Court. We asked them where they got the trophies and they could not explain.” 

UWA Public Relations Manager said the suspects could be sentenced to life imprisonment under Uganda’s new wildlife Act. 

In a related incident, Police is also holding a physically disabled man; Owani Pop also called Mulema from Nwoya who was found with different wildlife trophies including crocodile skin and tips of rhino horns. 

It is alleged that Owani lost his legs in a previous nasty poaching encounter but did not give up his ways. 

Sources also say that he has cut out a niche as a kingpin in the underground world of poaching where he spreads his tentacles to as far as northern Uganda, Kenya, South Sudan and DR Congo. 

He was also taken to Utility Court at Buganda Road on Wednesday to battle charges of illegal possession trophies.

Hangi added, “As of now we have the suspects and exhibits and we are taking them to Court. We asked them where they got the trophies and they could not explain.” 

UWA Public Relations Manager said the suspects could be sentenced to life imprisonment under Uganda’s new wildlife Act. 

In a related incident, Police is also holding a physically disabled man; Owani Pop also called Mulema from Nwoya who was found with different wildlife trophies including crocodile skin and tips of rhino horns. 

It is alleged that Owani lost his legs in a previous nasty poaching encounter but did not give up his ways. 

Sources also say that he has cut out a niche as a kingpin in the underground world of poaching where he spreads his tentacles to as far as northern Uganda, Kenya, South Sudan and DR Congo. 

He was also taken to Utility Court at Buganda Road on Wednesday to battle charges of illegal possession trophies.

 Elephants and rhinos are endangered species meaning that if nothing is done to save their habitat or stop the wildlife trade in trophies, they will disappear from the earth in the coming few years.