MUSANZE — Communities that reside within the confines of game parks have been called upon to put more effort in wild life conservation. This is aimed to boost the tourism industry and tap its benefits.
This is the message that was given to the 20 local leaders who were recently given an opportunity of tracking gorillas of the Volcano National Park for free.
The leaders included sector executive secretaries of Nyange, Kinigi and Gataraga, in Musanze District, representatives of advisory councils and other district leaders.
The free tracking was co-sponsored by ORTPN and Karisoke Research Centre, through the programme of community conservation aimed and creating conservation and biodiversity awareness among the leaders.
“The most secure way of keeping endangered species alive and conserving biodiversity is by first and fore most making the local community to appreciate their responsibility in the conservation,’’ Prosper Uwingeri, the Chief Warden of the park said.
The park warden asked the local communities to desist from poaching, and cutting down trees from the protected area.
And instead take the opportunity of making art and crafts, set up cultural sites where they can display local history in order to get money directly from tourists.
“It was unfortunate to conserve the park and the mountain gorillas in particular yet we had never seen them physically. This made us understand that the animals are fragile and need utmost security,’’ said Pelagia Mukanyandwi, the executive secretary of Nyange.
The local authorities were implored to prepare for the fourth annual gorilla naming ceremony locally called Kwita Izina- slated for later this month.
The ceremony will last for five days during which 12 mountain gorillas will be named.
According to the coordinator of ‘Kwita Izina,’ Faustan Karasira, this years’ gorilla naming will start with a concert in Kigali, then the unveiling of a gorilla monument in Kigali City, launching the community projects funded by ORTPN, sports competition and then the naming ceremony on June 21.