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17 hours ago

Friends of Zoka

On world environment Day 2020.

Our future without the greenery of the plants, animals, birds and insects within our environment is bleak, with rising sea levels, floods, drought, wildfire, swarm of locusts and now a devastating pandemic within our door steps nature has had it enough, ours is to respond and protect what is left of the environment.

#savemothernature.
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2 weeks ago

Friends of Zoka

Environmental Crime alert

We in the strongest of terms condemn the impunity being exhibited by top security leadership of Moyo district against those standing to defend the defenseless Environment.

We learnt of an incident that took place on Wednesday, 20/May/2020, in which our own activists Friends of Zoka, Journalists, Metu Sub- County leaders and Security, together with Moyo district Chairman Mr. Williams Anyama(Pictured below), who were detained briefly at a roadblock mounted by UPDF and LDU officers from Padiga village detach, commanded by later be identified intelligence officer of the detach.

This incident followed an operation led by the district Chairman Anyama to an illegal cross border log collection point in Hweyo village Metu Sub-County, where the team discovered two separate collection point of 50 and 124 pieces of logs of the endangered Afzellia Africana tree and apprended two loggers who were forcefully set free by the Army at the Padiga village road block.

By Thursday morning, Moyo Resident district Commissioner, Labeja Bob William, ordered Chairman Anyama, to hand over his official Vehicle before 8:00am, in an attempt to retard his good fight against illegal logging.

On 30/April/2020 in a desparate bid to contain cross border logging authorities in Kangapo Sub- County, Yei River State of Kajo-Keji County in South Sudan, wrote to security leaders in Moyo district banning transit of logs through Moyo from the former, to the contrary in a letter dated 11/5/2020, RDC Lebeja cleared transit of a consignment of logs in a truck registration number UAT 795 G, which was later intercepted and impounded by Metu Sub County leaders, the truck is currently being held at Moyo Central Police station.
We call upon the superiors of Moyo RDC to restarin or reprimand him in the interest of saving the local environment hence the livelihood of indegenous Ma'di people.

Chapter Four UG UPDF Spokesperson East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project
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4 weeks ago

Friends of Zoka

Environmental Crime alert

Under the cover of COVID-19 lockdown, illegal Charcoal business has increased exponentially in Adjumani district, affecting mainly the remote parts of Pakelle and Itirikwa Sub Counties, charcoal dealers and loggers aided by officials in the district local government and security, are until now abusing the government blanket waiver on Cargo transportation for trading illegal Charcoal and logs in and out of Adjumani district.

These illicit actions, is increasingly striping local environment in the affected sub counties bare, further inflicting a hummer blow to local recovery efforts of endegered tree spieces notably Afzellia Africana and Shea nut, let alone destroying habitats for incalculable spieces of birds, insects and animals, also grimly depleting the local environment, on impact depriving indegenous Ma'di people of their identity and livelihood.

The loggers and Charcoal dealers are taking the advantages of the absence of local community vigilantes, who have been kept home by governments COVID-19 measures, hence laying unchecked waste to the defenceless environment.

On average, ten(10) trucks leave the bushes of Itirikwa and Pakelle Sub Counties daily, with an unaccounted for number of charcoal bags and logs, some armed with clearance permit from Adjumani district local government authorities, others guarded by local security organs.( See pictures: trucks stationed with charcoal along Odori road in Adjumani Town).

On the advent of COVID-19, Adjumani district local government dragged it's feet, when asked for emergency response fund from its local revenue pull by chairperson local COVID-19 task force who also is the Resident district Commissioner Mr. Taban Peter Data, the district chief administrative officer Mr. Bwayo Rodgers, said there was no money from local revenue, on a later date the district contributed only Two million shillings, from its local coffers to combat COVID-19.

The above implies that revenue that have been collected in defence of logging, Charcoal business and environmental abuse in Adjumani is largely misappropriated, dispelling the claim that district gets revenue from Charcoal and logging, it's possible that revenue from environmental abuse goes in individual coffers of those in management of the district.

We therefore, ask government of Uganda, through National Forestry Authority Uganda, line ministries, to institute an audit into the long standing environmental abuse in Northern Uganda particularly in Adjumani district, we further ask government of Uganda to ensure that COVID-19 recovery plan must embed practical mechanisms of tackling climate change and environmental protection.

#savemothernature
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