John Makombo, the Director of Conservation in UWA, who represented the Executive Director at the signing of the addendum, said that the partnership is expected to foster changes including a boost in wildlife species, deployment of more rangers, and community collaboration in the preservation of the reserves.
The Ugandan Wildlife Authority- UWA has signed an additional
agreement with Space for Giants, a new international conservation organization
to raise capital for the restoration of Pian- Upe Wildlife Reserve.
The new partnership brings on board six other district local
governments in Karamoja, Teso, and Sebei sub-region and the local communities. The
first conservation agreement was signed between UWA, the Karimojong Overland
Safaris, and the Nakapiripirit District Local Government in 2008.
At the time,
Amudat and Nabilatuk districts were still under Nakapiripirit district. But the new partnership extends to Napak,
carved out of Moroto district in Karamoja, and brings on board Bulambuli and
Kween in Bugisu and Sebei sub-regions, Bukedea, Katakwi, and Kumi in the Teso sub-region.
John Makombo, the Director of Conservation in UWA, who
represented the Executive Director at the signing of the addendum, said that the partnership
is expected to foster changes including a boost in wildlife species, deployment
of more rangers and community collaboration in preservation of the reserves.
Makobmo said that they are expecting a boost of USD 8 million approximately UGX. 28 billion as an investment from the new partnership. According
to Makombo, the Pian- Upe Wildlife Reserve will be operating on an annual
budget of UGX. 4.3 billion for the next five years.
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Makombo noted that in addition to the financial support, the
partnership with Space of Giants comes to give technical support to the management
and conservation of Pian- Upe wildlife reserve.
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Dr. Max Graham, the Chief Executive Officer of Space for
Giants, says that they came into Pian- Upe wildlife reserve when President
Museveni joined the giant’s club in 2015. He notes that Space for Giants works to
attract investors in the tourism industry and mitigation of human-wildlife conflict. Graham added that their partnership with the government is to market Pian-
Upe to the world after almost three decades of conflict with the communities.
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Paul Lokol, the Nabilatuk District Chairperson, says that the
partnership is key in resolving conflicts between the communities and the
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The Pian- Upe Wildlife Reserve is the second largest state
protected area after the Murchison Falls National Park. It was established in 1964
and covers more than 2,000 square kilometers of land.
Currently, Pian- Upe
wildlife reserve has 525 bird species and 163 mammals including Uganda’s widest
diversity of plains mammals, the cheetah and the endangered African wild dog. The
conservation area also keeps a rare species of roan antelope and Rothschild
giraffes. However, more than 150, 000 people have encroached into the Pian-
Upe Wildlife Reserve over the years.