Chimpanzee Tracking and Bird watching in Kibale National Park also fondly known as the World’s Primate Capital was the major highlight of the Tourism week climaxing in World Tourism Day in Fort Portal, Western Uganda on September 27, 2013.
Uganda’s minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities (MTWA) Dr. Maria Mutagamba was the chief guide for the successful chimpanzee tracking event on September 26, 2013. Flanked by the Toro Princess Elizabeth Bagaya, diplomats from the US embassy, the British High commission in Uganda, and several dignitaries from the Tourism fraternity were able to sight the famous Kanyantale community individuals including Rukara (the one with a dark face) at a close range.
UWA’s Director of Tourism and Business Services Mr. Raymond Engena and the Conservation Area Manager, Kibale, Mr. Edward Asalu hosted the guests.
In the forest, the trackers also encountered a number of other primates, several species of birds and butterflies while UWA’s professional guides explained the medicinal and ecological importance of a variety of trees. Earlier, the Toro royals and Western diplomats combed the forest for the much sought after birds including the green- breasted pitta.
The national Vision 2040 has projected Fort Portal as a tourism city given its proximity to several unique physical features including Kibale, Semuliki, Rwenzori, Queen Elizabeth National Parks, a host of crater lakes, rich culture and diverse people. The leaders have called for upgrading of Saka airstrip to boost air transport.
A week long tourism exhibition showcasing Uganda’s eco tourism attractions and services was held at Boma Grounds which attracted thousands of folks from the region.
The world tourism day whose theme was Tourism and Water: Protecting our common future, was presided over by Mr. Muruli Mukasa the minister of state for security and addressed by the Toro King HM Oyo Nyimba Rukidi IV. The presence of Miss Tourism Uganda pageant contestants added pomp to the celebrations.
His Majesty King Oyo observed that the choice of Fort Portal to host the World Tourism Day was spot on, and that it is not surprising that government has earmarked the beautiful town as the tourism hub. He invited the private sector to invest in Kabarole tourism infrastructure, agro-tourism, museums, and distance education.
The chief guest Hon. Muruli Mukasa praised the Rwenzori region for warm climate, beautiful scenery, unique physical endowments, the strong Chwezi history and lineage plus a strong tradition all of which place the region at a vantage position as a tourism destination.