PAKWACH. Police of Pakwach district with the help of the local community have arrested the local council one (LCI) chairperson of Wanglei A village in Pakwach town Council in possession of two live Pangolin at his home.
Mr Michael Okumu was arrested with John Odoki, a resident of Purongo village in Nwoya district who is alleged to be a potential buyer of the Pangolins.
According to Mr Frank Muzoora, the Pakwach district police commander, the residents tipped off police after the duo started quarrelling over the price of the mamals.
He said in a telephone conversation, the suspects first agreed on shs2m but later on meeting, fresh negotiation started and ended up in quarrel prompting locals to inform police of the illegal business thus arresting the two.
While at Pakwach central police station, Okumu denied the claims of attempting to sell the Pangolins for himself, arguing that he was merely acting on behalf of a rich businessman in Kampala.
But police accused Okumu of abetting the extinction of wildlife in his capacity as an office bearer.
Speaking to West Nile Web in an interview on Friday, Dr Erick Enyel, the conservation area Manager Murchison falls National Game Park to which Pakwach district is attached expressed worry over the rate at which Pangolins are being hunted for their scales.
He noted that over forty Pangolin poachers have so far been arrested and convicted in the courts of law.
Enyel confirmed that the case file of the duo has already been transferred to Kampala where they will appear before Kampala road Magistrate’s court to answer charges of abetting the extinction of wildlife.
He warned locals against the quest for quick enrichment, saying that it comes with a cost.
In Pakwach district, officials say Pangolins are common in the villages of Pakwinjo and Ragem in Wadelai Sub County and Mukale Parish in Pakwach Sub County.