Low Turn Up As UWEC Marks One Month After Reopening Centre

The Indian community has been donating food and non- food items to the centre that made losses of about shillings 2 billion when it was closed. The centre was closed for 5 month due to COVID-9 concerns.
UWEC officials receive food items from the Indian Community

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Uganda Wildlife Education and Conservation Centre - UWEC, commonly knows and as the Zoo, has been receiving few visitors, a month after reopening. 

The center, which has over 600 animal and bird species, was closed on March 27th as a way of combating the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), but reopened last month.

However, though the centre expected to receive a maximum of 300 visitors a day, it has been getting less than 50. As a result, management of the centre is relying on the government and donors to boost its revenues. 

James Musinguzi, the Executive Director of UWEC says the centre is  following strict guidelines which include limiting the number of visitors, enforcing hand washing in various areas of the centre and also banning visitor interaction with animals and birds. 

Also, only visitors who are above 6 years and can ably wear masks, are allowed to access the centre. UWEC has maintained entrance fees at shs5,000 for children under 14 and sh10,000 for adults.

UWEC used to receive an average of 400,000 visitors every year especially foreigners and school-going children. The the centre made a loss of about shillings 2 billion in the five months it was closed.   

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Musinguzi told Uganda Radio Network - URN this week about the developments at the centre after receiving a donation from the Indian community. 

The community led by Vim Patel, donated food items including  bananas. water melons, pineapples and a cheque of shillings one million on Thursday.

Patel says the community was moved to donate the items because UWEC has been badly hit by the closure of schools and Entebbe International Airport that contribute the largest number of visitors to the centre. 

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