KAMPALA: Police has revealed today an ivory contraband worth Shs5 billion was intercepted at Entebbe International Airport on Sunday in transit to Singapore through Turkish Airlines.

Police spokesperson Fred Enanga told journalists the contraband weighing Shs740 Kilograms was intercepted by the Aviation Police, hidden in six boxes. The ivory was detected using the airport radiography machines shortly after being cleared.

“We are looking for the clearing agent who is on run after the cargo was intercept with hopes that he will reveal the company or individuals behind the smuggling of this Ivory,” Mr Enanga said.

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The ivory, according to Mr Enanga, worth Shs54 billion ($1.8 million) is believed to have been passing through Uganda possibly from Tanzania.

Civil Aviation officials said they were looking into the matter; how the ivory was cleared before being detected.

This is the second time this year Police is bursting ivory smuggling at the airport. In February ivory contraband worth shs1 billion was seized at the airport en route to Asia

The development also comes on heels of an ongoing wide ranging investigation by the Inspector General of Government (IGG) of the police, airport and Uganda Wildlife officials over the recent increase in ivory smugglings.

Last year unknown people broke into a Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) store and took off with ivory worth Shs10 billion seized from various operations.

The United Nations last year in June raised a red flag about ivory seizures in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania which it said accounted for 80 percent of what was seized around the world. The reasons exacerbating ivory trade, the UN said, are weak governance and poverty.


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