How did ivory seized in Kenya worth Sh4 billion enter from Uganda?

Mon, 2013-07-22 17:38 by Hans

The Independent (Kampala)

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When Kenyan customs officers on July 8 confiscated about 3,500kgs of elephant ivory alleged to have been smuggled into the country from Uganda, the ministry of Wildlife and related organisations in Kampala reacted with unusual quiet.

There was nothing of the usual quickly assembled briefings to journalists over an incident that has obviously put the country on the spot. Instead Tourism Minister Maria Mutagamba and the Uganda Wildlife Authority Executive Director Andrew Seguya have, according to inside sources, opted to conduct a quiet internal investigation.

Among the lines being investigated is the assertion by Kenyan authorities that the ivory was from the so-called 'big elephants', which points to the Democratic Republic of Congo as the origin.

If the DR Congo was indeed the origin of the illicit cache, how did it clear through Uganda and end up in the Kenya port of Mombasa? Which officers, if any, on the Ugandan side were complicit in the smuggling racket?

There have been a series of ivory seizure in Kenya but the July 9 cache was the largest. The consignment was of some 770 pieces, hacked out of elephants. …

Read the complete article at AllAfrica