Gulu district officials have been earning big from illegal charcoal dealers following the various taxes that have been levied upon the deals.
According to the district’s LCV Christopher Opiyo Ateke, about ten trucks that were carrying close to 1,000 bags of charcoal were arrested and fined for the illegal charcoal operations as of Friday.
These illegal activities have been observed in the sub-counties of Palaro, Paibona, Patiko just to mention but a few.
From the impounded trucks, each bag of charcoal was fined UGX 10,000 while a double sack was fined UGX 20,000. With such rates, five trucks were fined on Friday while five others suffered the same fate on Saturday morning at Gulu District Yard.
Further more, the LCV Chairperson revealed that these operations were triggered by the fact that the men who had been entrusted with managing the road blocks aimed at fining illegal charcoal were instead taking bribes.
In line with the above, he went on to say that fines are expected to be banked in the district’s bank account from which they will facilitate local revenue boost for Gulu district. He even promises that this shall be the norm for as long as the illegal business goes on.
The chairman of Patiko sub-county, Gulu district Mr. Patrick Komakech went on to inform media that illegal charcoal businesses are still rampant especially in the sub-counties of Pawel-Ayiga.
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Cutting, transportation and sale of Shea nut tree products were suspended since the trees were being destroyed massively. This directive was passed by the government in 2018 with constitutional provisions under section 29 (1&2) of the National Forestry and tree planting act of 2003.