Thomas Ojok Akala, Wol Sub-county LCIII Chairperson in his report to the police on Friday noted that the deceased and the suspect had been engaged in cutting trees for producing charcoal in Atut parish.
Patrick Jimmy Okema, the Aswa River Region Police Spokesperson reveals that their recommendations are based on thorough investigations that have undoubtedly pointed out to the factors causing the sudden fires.
The decision was approved by the District Executive Committee and seeks to promote environmental conservation in the district by protecting local forest reserves, community and private forests which were on the verge of exhaustion by the massive destruction of forests.
Dr. George Oming, the Kotido Natural Resources Officer, says over 200 bags of charcoal leave the district daily. A big bag of charcoal in Karamoja costs between Shillings 10,000 and 15,000, while a small bag costs between Shillings 5000-8000.
Ambrose Lotuke, the district chairperson Kotido says charcoal burning was embraced by communities especially in new settlements as a source of livelihood. He observes that much as several people have been apprehended by police, the existing laws are weak in punishing charcoal dealers.
In November 2016, the district conducted a community campaign to stop the indiscriminate cutting of trees. But just over a month after the campaign, charcoal burning and selling wood fuel remains high in the area. The activities are mostly common in the sub counties of Arapai, Katine, Gweri, Asuret and Kamuda.
Water and Environment minister Samuel Cheptoris says the non issuance of the production and export permits is aimed at restoring the forest cover in the region that was heavily encroached on in the last 20 years.
A number of women in Busoga region are reaping big from making environmentally friendly energy-saving charcoal briquettes. Charcoal briquettes are made from charcoal dust, cassava flour and wood dust by groups of women. They sell them to people at 50 and 100 shillings for a small and a big briquette respectively.
The ongoing massive felling of trees and charcoal burning in Nwoya Sub County, Nwoya district has begun to take its toll on the residents who are now asking the local leaders to intervene to discourage the practice.
Arua district local government on Wednesday auctioned up to 150 bags of charcoal which was impounded from dealers. The impounding of the charcoal followed an ordinance passed by the district to control deforestation which was blamed on increased charcoal burning.