The Inspectorate of Government-IG has completed investigations into the allegations of bribery and mismanagement leveled against Dr. Andrew Sseguya, the Executive Director Uganda Wildlife Authority-UWA.
The disappearance of 1,300 kilogrammes of ivory from Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) stores pushed President Yoweri Museveni to order the Inspector General of Government (IGG0 to investigate operations of the wildlife body.
Amongst others, President Museveni specifically ordered the IGG to investigate Dr Andrew Sseguya, the UWA executive director and other top officials over suspected criminal conduct.
Munira Ali, the Spokesperson, Inspectorate of Government, told URN over the weekend that the Inspector General of Government, Justice Irene Mulyagonja has already dispatched the report to the president.
“We completed the investigations and handed over the report to the president who is the complainant. We cannot reveal our findings because the report is not ours,” Munira said. On May 2nd 2017, President, Yoweri Museveni wrote to Mulyagonja ordering an investigation into the affairs of UWA. He listed eight issues he needed investigated key among them was that Sseguya authorized the export of Pangolin known as Olugave in Luganda, its meat and scales contrary to international conventions.
He noted that in July 2014 Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) issued a permit for the export of over 7000 kg of pangolin scales to Laos. Pangolin scales, skin and meat are all highly valued, making it the most illegally traded mammal in the wild, according to International Union for the Conservation of Nature-IUCN. Pangolin meat is a delicacy among the newly affluent parts of China and Vietnam.
This is not the first time UWA is being investigated by IGG over missing Ivory. In 2014, Dr Sseguya was sent on leave to pave way for then ongoing investigations into the missing stock of ivory.
The United Nations in June, 2014 raised a red flag about ivory seizures in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. The seizures accounted for 80 percent of what was seized around the world and argued that weak governance and poverty are to blame for the crime. A kilogramme of ivory on the black market costs $2,500 (Shs9 million) while a processed ivory bangle costs $500 (Shs1.8 million).
On May 30, 2015, the Aviation Police at Entebbe International Airport intercepted 740 Kgs of ivory in transit to Singapore on Turkish Airlines.
On July 15 2015, police seized another 48 boxes of ivory en route to Singapore.
In January 2016, police seized another ivory weighing 791 kgs. In May 2017, at Najjanankumbi, off Entebbe highway, UWA and police recovered 1,000 kgs of ivory from three West Africans who were the suspected smugglers.