By Darious Magara & Clare Muhindo
An environmental radio has been launched by the National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE) in Hoima, Western Uganda.
The Ugandan community radio will be broadcasting in affiliation with Liberty radio on 89.0 in Hoima.
James Ogoola, a retired principal judge and judge of the East African Court who presided over the launch, asked the regional governments to respect the judgments of courts of law.
He said the East African court recently passed a judgment that halted plans by the Tanzanian government to construct a road through Seregeti National Park.
Ogoola said the case was filed by a Kenyan citizen and supported by nationals from East Africa, emphasizing that environmental law knows no border and should be preserved.
Frank Muramuzi, who is NAPE’s executive director, said the new radio has been established to fill the gap left by many other radio stations in Uganda in covering issues on environment.
“The environment is a very critical sector for us all but the current media in Uganda have not made environmental issues a top priority,” he said.
The region, he mentioned, that was once endowed with huge forests, rivers and swamps was being degraded at a very high rate most because of unsustainable methods of agriculture.
“Large commercial methods of agriculture for example tobacco farming has contributed largely to environmental degradation in Bunyoro region,” he said.
Allan Kalangi, NAPE’s programme officer in charge of radio implementation, said the radio project belongs to the communities in Bunyoro region.
Serengeti National Park, comprising 1.5 million hectares of savannah, has at least four globally threatened or endangered animal species which include; black rhinoceros, elephant, wild dog, and cheetah.
The nationals park is also a UNESCO world heritage site.