MINISTER ASSURES OF UGANDA’S SAFETY FOR TOURISTS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Kanungu - July 24, 2020 – The Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities Hon. Tom 
Butime has assured the public that Uganda’s national parks are safe to visit because the 
safety of tourists is given number one priority.

The Minister gave the assurance today while receiving 12 unit ranger accommodation 
facility from the European Union (EU) delegation to Uganda to accommodate park rangers 
in Queen Elizabeth National Park.

He said that security in the national parks has been boosted to ensure that when the 
country opens its borders to international visitors, their safety is guaranteed. “I want to 
use this opportunity to assure the public and the international community that our parks 
are very safe and secure. The security of tourists in the parks is a high priority for the 
government and we shall continue to make strategic and operational interventions to 
ensure that our parks and other recreational facilities are safe for tourists”.

He said that Uganda’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic is unrivalled and the country is 
one of the safest for people to visit. As a country, we are exemplary in the management of 
COVID-19 with a higher rate of recoveries. Our exceptional performance in managing 
COVID-19 coupled with amazing attractions especially in our protected areas makes 
Uganda the safest place that should be visited by any person intending to travel.

He revealed that the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities is working together with 
other relevant Ministries and agencies to come up with a mechanism of opening the 
country’s borders to allow international visitors into Uganda in a safer way.

Hon. Butime said that it was important to have the outpost in Ishasha given the strategic 
nature of the area. “This new Ranger post at Simama is very strategic and key in 
controlling poaching and other illegal activities in this part of Queen Elizabeth National 
Park. This area was identified as one of the key hot spots for poaching during the 
preparation of the Park’s Law Enforcement Strategy a few years ago and for UWA to 
dominate the area and address the poaching threat, they needed a ranger post, which has 
now been built”. He observed that tourists to the national park want to feel that they are 
safe and the existence of outpost provides that assurance.

The Minister expressed gratitude to the European Union for funding the construction of the 
ranger outpost and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in collaboration with
International Union for Conservation of Nature Netherlands (IUCN NL), for supervising the 
construction.

The EU Ambassador to Uganda His Excellency Attilio Pacifici handed over the facility to
Hon. Tom Butime at Simama Ranger out post in Ishasha Sector, Queen Elizabeth National 
Park.

His Excellency Attilio Pafici was flanked by ambassadors from Italy, Ireland, Belgium, 
France, Austria, Hungary and the Ugandan ambassador to the Nordic countries Nimisha
Madhvani. He said the EU is supportive of the growth of Uganda’s tourism sector and they 
are supporting wildlife protection because Uganda’s tourism is largely wildlife based. “We 
know you have made great strides in conserving Uganda’s wildlife and we want to support 
you to do a better job of protecting the animals in the parks because your country’s 
tourism depends a lot on wildlife”.

He further said that ambassadors from EU countries are supporting the quick recovery of 
Uganda’s tourism sector after COVID-19 so that the country continues to earn the much 
needed foreign exchange and create jobs for the citizens through tourism.

The Executive Director Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) Sam Mwandha thanked the EU 
and IFAW for the support saying that the facility will motivate the rangers to work harder 
to ensure that wildlife in the area is protected. He added that wildlife in all the national 
parks has been protected and all savannah parks are now open to the public.

The facility will accommodate rangers and facilitate closer monitoring of wildlife, enhance 
transboundary patrols, including intelligence sharing and strengthening law enforcement 
capacity. It will curtail illegal activities along the Uganda-DR Congo border.

The facility will accommodate rangers and facilitate closer monitoring of wildlife, enhance 
transboundary patrols, including intelligence sharing and strengthening law enforcement 
capacity. It will curtail illegal activities along the Uganda-DR Congo border. 

It was funded by the European Union and supervised by International Fund for Animal 
Welfare (IFAW). The facility will ensure the existence of our personnel in the area and 
enhance operations aimed at fighting illegal wildlife activities. 
 

For Inquiries;
Bashir Hangi
Communications Manager
bashir.hangi@wildlife.go.ug
0414-355315
0772-446115