Impact of construction of Bujagali hydro power plant on tourism resources in Jinja
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This study was undertaken to assess the impact of construction of Bujagali hydro power plant on tourism resources at Jinja. The objectives of this study were; to identify the different tourism resources found at Bujagali falls before and after the construction of hydroelectricity power; examine the effects of Bujagali power plant on tourism resources around Bujagali falls; and to examine the effects of Bujagali power plant on tourism development around Bujagali falls. Various research methods were employed including questionnaires administered to both local residents and local leaders and tour companies since they were the key beneficiaries. Interviews were conducted with local officials like District LC1, District Community Development Officer tourism officers among others because they were the key informants and possessed vital information related to the study. Personal observation was also used as a basis to capture information that was not covered by the above two methods. The study was based in selected village of Naminya and it included a sample of 40 respondents. They were selected using random sampling technique while the key informants like local officials were selected using purposive sampling technique. The research found out that tourism resources available includes River Nile, hills, caves and stones, local culture, aquatic animals, scenic viewing among others. These allow different tourist activities such as sport fishing, boat cruises, scenic viewing, quad biking and others to take place. It was further revealed that Bujagali dam provides jobs to local community, improved supply of electricity. However before construction of the dam different resources like white water rafting, Bujagali falls and vibrant local culture which later disappeared after dam construction existed. The findings also identified the negative impacts of the dam on tourism development such as, loss of aquatic animals, migration of aquatic species and loss of local cultures. It is recommended that marketing campaigns should be done by both government and private tour operators to promote the existing tourism resources at the river to again increase visitation, as well as sensitization of the people, and tourists so as to enlighten them about the values / benefits of the resource and tourism in general and how they can tap these benefits to enhance the well being of the environment.