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Police hunt for Echuya forest 'arsonists'

By Vision Reporter

Added 26th July 2016 10:09 AM

Hundreds of vehicles were seen parked by the roadside waiting for the smoke to clear.

Police hunt for Echuya forest 'arsonists'

Visibility was so low due to the thick smoke from the forest fire

Hundreds of vehicles were seen parked by the roadside waiting for the smoke to clear.

By Bwogi Buyera

The Police in Kisoro district are on the hunt for the people who set Ecuya Forest reserve on fire last Sunday.

Kigezi Police publicist Elly Maate told New Vision that they have initiated investigations into claims that the fire was deliberately started by honey harvesters from Rwanda.

He said they engaged the services of Fire Brigade to put out the fire.

‘'As we try to fight the fires, I would like to advise motorists and other road users  from both sides to make use of  alternative routes such as  Rubuguri  as thick smoke is making visibility difficult," Maate had said earlier.

On Sunday, transport between Kisoro and Kabale towns was paralyzed due to poor visibility from the smoke along Kabale-Kisoro road potion.

Hundreds of vehicles were seen parked by the roadside waiting for the smoke to clear before they could continue their journey.

The forest, once the home of the Batwa community, is considered to be home to some of the most rare and endangered bird and plant species.

Achilles Byaruhanga, the executive director Nature Uganda, which is engaged in conserving the forest reserve, commended the Police for their effort to put out the fire.

He called upon the Uganda Forest Authority to increase police patrols in the forest to conserve it.

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