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Uganda’s Murchison Falls

I would like to correct a statement made in the letter titled “Uganda Wildlife,” regarding “the shooting of the tourist on Nov. 8, 2005, in Murchison Falls National Park. . . within the park boundaries” (Aug. ’06, pg. 83).

We were in Murchison Falls National Park, Oct. 30-Nov. 2, 2005, staying at the Red Chili Rest Camp. We spent some time with the owner of the camp, Steve Willis, a 40ish expat Brit who had remained in Uganda after 10 years with the British government in Kampala.

While we were there, we also talked to a crew from New Zealand filming a documentary about the Nile. After many weeks on the job, they were almost finished, and the next day they were planning on airlifting their gear and boats up the Nile above Murchison Falls, which would take them OUT of the park and into an area off limits and known for LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army) activities.

During the operation of moving their gear, one of the crew had an accident and broke his leg. Being familiar with the “off limits to tourists” area, Steve Willis, a resident of Uganda and not a tourist, volunteered to go with the Ugandan militia to help the injured person, but on the way out they were ambushed by the LRA, resulting in his death.

This should not deter anyone from traveling to Uganda. It is a wonderful country both in scenery and wildlife.

Fullerton, CA