Crime & Investigation

Interpol Bolsters Uganda’s War on Human Trafficking

Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) boss Andrew Seguya has been fired after impounded ivory worth shs2.6bn was stolen from the institution’s strong room in Kampala.

According to a letter dated November 21, visit web drug which Chimpreports has seen, cheapest the Minister of Wildlife, viagra Tourism and Antiquities Maria Mutagamba directs that Seguya keeps away from office pending investigations into the scandal that riled the nation and attracted worldwide condemnation.

Titled “Alleged Ivory Scam,” Mutagamba’s letter reveals the Board of Directors has agreed that she appoints “Mr Raymond Engena, the Director of Tourism and Business Services to take charge of the organisation as Acting Executive Director for the period Dr Seguya will be on leave so as to facilitate a smooth investigation exercise.”

She added, in a letter copied to the Prime Minister, Chief of Defence Forces and Tourism Permanent Secretary: “By copy of this communication, Dr Seguya is asked to proceed on leave effective today November 21 until investigations are complete.”

UWA recently suspend five staff after it emerged that 1,335 kilograms (2,943 pounds) of ivory had been robbed from their stores.

Seguya has since distanced himself from the theft, saying the blame should not be heaped on the entire institution but individuals charged with the ivory’s safety.

He also revealed that UWA was determined to take a stronger punitive action against the staff who could have collaborated with ivory traders in the theft.

Mutagamba also confirmed that President Museveni has directed the IGG to carry out an inquiry although that position is not yet officially communicated to her.



“Prior to that decision by the President, I had officially requested the Minister of Internal Affairs to constitute an investigative team to identify the culprits,” added the Minister.

“So the two teams may move in at any time, please make sure that your staff and the internal audit team cooperates.”

She further recommended management to have regular audits of ivory.

At a recent London conference, countries across the world signed the declaration to eradicate the market for illegal wildlife products; strengthen law enforcement efforts and ensure that effective legal frameworks and deterrents are in place; and promote sustainable livelihoods through positive engagement with local communities.

Poaching and trafficking are increasingly controlled by organized criminal networks that undermine the rule of law and good governance and encourage corruption.

Experts say trafficking does not only devastate species populations, but also takes the lives of rangers, impedes countries’ economic development and destabilises society by driving corruption.

An estimated 35,000 elephants are killed across Africa every year for their tusks which are sold to ivory traders in different countries mainly Asia.
The Interpol Smuggling Training and Operation Program (Stop) has been launched in Entebbe, approved Uganda to fight migrant smuggling in the country, Chimp Corps report.

The Deputy Director of the National Contact Bureau (NCB) Interpol Kampala, Mr Elly Womanya and the Criminal Intelligence Officer from Interpol headquarters in Lyon, Mr Jean Gatabazi, officially opened a five-day training exercise on Monday.

With 22 participants drawn from different agencies including Directorate for Citizenship and Immigration Control (DCIC), Uganda Police Force, NCB Interpol Kampala, Internal Security Organizational and External Security Organization, members will be trained over next five days on theoretical and operational aspect of fighting migrant smuggling led by the certified Interpol trainer coming from the Integrated Border Management Task Force (IBMTF) department.

STOP is a multifaceted response to criminal activities in the field of people smuggling – also referred to as “smuggling of migrants” or “facilitated illegal immigration”.

It comes at a time when Uganda is grappling with trafficking of people especially women to work as sex slaves and maids in foreign countries.

Moses Binoga, the coordinator of the anti-human trafficking task-force at the Ministry of Internal affairs recently revealed that government, in conjunction with civil society organizations is preparing to put in place an independent financial scheme to help out victims of human trafficking who are financially challenged.

“Once this scheme is put place, it will help all those people who are stuck in foreign countries without money for air tickets back home and to rehabilitate the victims,” Binoga noted.

Binoga also advised Ugandans to only look for foreign employment opportunities through registered companies since most organisations that have mistreated Ugandans abroad are unregistered briefcase companies.

“In Uganda we have only thirty registered labor export companies and it very rare for these companies to get involved in any fraud because they fear to damage their reputation and their image in the public since all their data is captured in the ministry of Gender,” said Binoga.

He said government is strengthening capacity of the Police force to fight human trafficking acts as well as signing agreements with foreign countries to only accept labor from recognized companies.

The Interpol programme aims at supporting member countries in streamlining their border management regimes.

Officials stressed the urgency of continuous capacity building and information sharing which they said are vital in fighting all forms of cross border criminal activities.

Back to top button
Translate »

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker