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Stray Buffaloes Cause Panic in Agago

Adilang Sub-county LCIII Chairperson Muhamad Okwir says that the buffaloes are roaming around River Agago and have destroyed crops in several gardens.
A Buffalo. Courtesy photo
Residents of Adilang Sub-county in Agago District are leaving in fear following the invasion of stray buffaloes in their areas.

Local leaders say that four buffaloes suspected to have strayed from Kidepo Valley National Park invaded the villages of Bar-olwedo and Bar Lajwa in Nam Paris about two weeks ago.

Adilang Sub-county LCIII Chairperson Muhamad Okwir says that the buffaloes are roaming around River Agago and have destroyed crops in several gardens.

He says locals in the areas where the stray buffaloes are roaming are now living in fear of being attacked by wild animals.

Okwir has called on Uganda Wildlife Authority-UWA to dispatch wildlife rangers to drive away from the wild animals from human settlements.

He also noted that UWA should consider compensating some of the local farmers whose maize, millet, and rice crops have been eaten and destroyed by the buffaloes.

Bashir Hangi, UWA Communications Manager however says he isn’t aware of the buffaloes’ invasion.  He says he will liaise with UWA officials in Kidepo Valley National Park to establish facts.

The invasion of the buffaloes comes just two weeks after over 50 herds of elephants invaded human settlement areas in Orom Sub-county in Kitgum District.

The elephants that strayed also from Kidepo Valley National Park invaded the three parishes of Gule, Lungayura and Lolwa and destroyed several farmlands.

Local leaders in the area tasked UWA to establish electric fences around the national Park to curb down the persistent invasion of wildlife animals into community land.

But Hangi noted that the installation of electric fences that is already ongoing in Queen Elizabeth and Murchison Falls National Parks is an expensive venture and can’t be undertaken at once in all the national parks.

For instance, Hangi says installing only a kilometre of electric fence costs UWA shillings 50 million.

“This project is on-going but we can’t do it everywhere at the same time, we work in one place and go to another place, if we handle all the places at once we will fail because it’s a massive project,” he said.

UWA is expected to install electric fences on a 30 kilometre stretch at Murchison Falls National Park and more than 50 km at Queens Elizabeth which have been prone to Human-wildlife conflict over the years.

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