Lake Mburo communities benefit from revenue sharing
Uganda Wildlife authority has fulfilled its pledge of returning some funds or revenue to the local communities living closer to National Parks in Uganda. According to The Weekly observer, over two hundred and fifty million Uganda shillings has been handed over to three districts surrounding Lake Mburo National Park of Isingiro, Mbarara and Kiruhura.
These funds will be invested in projects selected by communities in these districts such as construction of healthy centers, road and many others as deemed important. The revenue sharing project was started by Uganda Wildlife Authority in its in devour to improve her relationship with the local communities around Uganda National Park. Before National parks were gazzetted, local communities used to utilize them directly through hunting, collecting firewood, herbs, honey among others but once they were closed off, the community lost out on all these direct benefits something that fueled a conflict between protected areas and the local communities around.
In the case of Lake Mburo National Park, the case was not different. This area which was later turned into a National Park used to be communally owned and the hima pastoralists used to used it for grazing their Ankole long horned cattle but when it was gazzatted, they were stopped from accessing the park. This resulted into a serious conflict between the hima and the park authorities which led to the killing of all lions in Lake Mburo National Park. All prides of lions were poisoned to extinction which resulted into a need to sit and discuss with the local communities staying closer to national parks.
From these discussions, it was agreed that a certain percentage from gate collection at every National Park should be given to the local communities most especially those affected by the presence of these National Park. Since then, this has been implemented as one of the strategies to improve on parks and communities.
Lake Mburo National Park is popularly known for its zebras and impalas among other animals. One can enjoy a boat cruise on the lake, or taking a game drive as well as a safari walk in the wild. Lake Mburo National Park is also a popular birding site and some lodges like Mihingo also offer activities such as horseback riding.
There so many lodges in Lake Mburo National Park which include, Mihingo Lodge, Mantana Tented Camp, Rwakobo Rock, Arcadia Cottages, Lake Mburo Safari Lodge, Rwonyo Camp and many others.
Lake Mburo National Park is the closest of all National Parks from Kampala. It is approximately 4 hours drive from Capital city Kampala a journey that takes you through the beautiful country side of Uganda decorated by road side markets selling fresh vegetables and fruits, drums such as those at Mpambire royal drum makers. You also get a chance to stop over at the equator for photography and simple experiments. You will also not miss the hima grazing their Ankole long horned cattle and if there is time, you could stopover and share the experience with them.
For all those visiting Uganda for gorillas and have some more time, we recommend that you spend at least one night at Lake Mburo National Park to enjoy this beautiful national park as well as break the long journey from Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park