By Gad Masereka
Nyowa: Atleast a herd of 20 marauding elephants from Uganda’s loved Murchison Falls National Park have raided and destroyed several acres of crop gardens in Nwoya district in Northern Uganda.
The affected are residents of Yagopino and Golla Villages in Pawat Omeru West parish, Purongo Sub County who outcried that elephants have eaten and destroyed several acreages of rice; cassava and maize plant crops.
The disappointed Purongo sub-county LCIII Chairperson Ben Okot Lutinga said, the community scouts has joined the affected residents to scare the elephants but their attempts have proved unsuccessful.
Lutinga said they have contacted the area community conservation officials under Uganda Wildlife Authority – UWA to intervene but were told that the team is facing human resource constraints.
Every year, households in neighbouring Lii, Alero and Kochgoma sub-counties that border the park have grieved food insecurity and strained economic livelihoods following persistent destruction of crops by stray wild animals.
Families have also tried planting peppers, use of beehives, digging trenches along the park boundary and clustering crops together among others to deter the animals but the methods have disappointed the community.
Nwoya LCV Chairperson, Patrick Okello Oryema appealed to government to prioritize the welfare of citizens in order to bring an end to the continued human – wildlife-related conflicts that have dragged on for too long.
Attempt to get comment from Wilson Kagoro, the Conservation Warden of Murchison Falls National Park was futile as his phone was switched off.