MOYO. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has blamed the unpredictable rain pattern in West Nile on massive destruction of the environment by what he termed as ‘money minded’ people in the region.

He said several forest reserves and swamps (wetlands) have encroached basically for timber, logs and settlement.

The President made the remarks while addressing journalists at Moyo multi-purpose training centre after a rally on wealth creation at Moyo Boy’s primary school playground in Moyo town on Thursday.

According to Museveni, it is the forests from DR Congo and swamps from South Sudan that are now helping the region to receive some rain.

He, however, blamed the local community for having a negative attitude towards the government when it comes to protecting forests and wetlands.

Mr Museveni also criticized the media for spreading propaganda on government when it comes to struggling to protect the environment.

The President said on several occasion, he has been abused by some journalists instead of attacking those who are destroying the environment for their personal gain.

He cited an example of bad fishing methods which nearly led to the depletion of fish in Lake Victoria but later restored by the government intervention amidst criticism from the media.

Museveni said much as there are rules and regulations geared towards protecting forest reserves and wetlands, people have continued to encroach into the areas hence resulting in conflicts between the government and the encroachers.

Zoka forest is one of the forest reserve areas in the region that has suffered massive encroachment with a resultant conflict between the people of Adjumani and Amuru districts.

It is for this reason that President Museveni called for unity among all stakeholders if the environment is to be protected.

He warned that it will not take time for the government to throw encroachers out of the affected forest reserves and wetlands in case they resist the call to peacefully vacate the areas.