The Police have dispatched an elite squad from the Tourism Police, to reinforce the security teams at Queen Elizabeth National Park, and actively pursue, a group of four unknown gunmen who allegedly kidnapped an American tourist and a Ugandan senior guide who were on an evening game drive, ACP Polly Namaye, the Deputy Police Spokesperson has said.
This incident occurred yesterday, Tuesday 2nd April, 2019, along the Edward track, a section located between Katoke gate and Wilderness Camp in the park between 6 – 7 pm.
unknown gunmen put the tourists on gun point, and grabbed two out of four
tourists, before disappearing with them. The victims include Kimbley Sue
Endecott female 35 years and Jean Paul the driver. The remaining tourists, an
elderly couple of Martin Julius and his wife Barbel contacted to the camp
manager, who rescued them and they are very safe,” Namaye said.
She added that the American Embassy in Kampala, has been informed about its missing citizen and the efforts directed towards his safe recovery and that of our tour guide. The kidnappers, using the victim’s phone have demanded 500,000 USD (UShs1.8bn).
“We strongly believe this ransom is the reason behind the kidnap. The tourists were travelling in motor vehicle registration number UAR 777E of World Frontiers Safaris Uganda. Their vehicle was left parked and the kidnappers went away with the key,” she said, adding: “We want to inform the public and all visitors in the country that the Joint Security teams have cut off all exit areas on the border between Uganda and the DRC in search for the victims, since the park is along the border. We strongly believe the perpetrators, and victims could still be trapped within our search area, and we are hopeful that our efforts will lead to their successful recovery.”
She revealed that this is the first of incident of this kind registered in such a very peaceful setting, and those planning to visit the National Park and its surroundings should not be discouraged.
“Strengthened safety measures have been put in place for both the local residents and visitors. We appeal for any information that could lead us to apprehend the suspects and rescue the victims,” she said.