Inaugural Research Symposium Launched in Kasese

Kasese District witnessed a significant event as the first annual research symposium was inaugurated. Hon. Bahinduka Mugara Martin, the State Minister for Tourism, expressed the government’s support for the World Bank’s initiative to construct a state-of-the-art research facility in Katwe-Kabatoro Town Council. The estimated cost for this modern facility at the Uganda Wildlife Research and Training Institute is Seventeen Billion shillings.

Unlike traditional academic research, this facility will primarily focus on applied research in accordance with the government’s policy. Hon. Bahinduka emphasized that the researchers will collaborate with the government to develop policies based on their findings, ultimately enhancing wildlife conservation and promoting tourism in Uganda. Speaking at the symposium, Hon. Bahinduka further highlighted the facility’s potential to address the challenges of human-wildlife conflicts and invasive species, which have been persistent issues in Queen Elizabeth National Park. Moreover, he emphasized that once the research institute is completed, priority will be given to employment opportunities and capacity building for local residents.

During the symposium, Professor John Kasenene, the Deputy Chancellor of Mountains of the Moon University and a prominent speaker, urged stakeholders to utilize research as a means to acquire both economic and ecological knowledge.

Mr. John Bosco Kananura, the Chairperson of the Local Council Three, called upon the government to empower the communities living around Queen Elizabeth National Park. Mr. Robert Baluku, the Principal of Uganda Wildlife Research and Training Institute, highlighted that the research symposium served as a platform for researchers to showcase their work, while also contributing to educational and economic development through networking opportunities.

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In addition to the attendees mentioned, the symposium attracted esteemed figures such as Dr. Sarah Nalule, the Chairperson of the Governing Council of UWRTI, Dr. George Owesigyire, the Acting Commissioner of the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, as well as various academic, religious, and political leaders. Kasese District boss, Mr. Erifaz Muhindi, appealed to higher learning institutions to encourage students to share their research findings with local government authorities, promoting effective planning and decision-making at the grassroots level.

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