The rescue of kidnapped tourist Kimberly Sue and driver guide Jean Paul was completed yesterday evening on Sunday 9th April 2019. Both captives are back and in safe hands.
Tuesday last week on the 4th of April 2019, it was reported and confirmed that a female American tourist Kimberly Sue and local guide Jean Paul were kidnapped by unknown gunmen in Queen Elizabeth National Park West of Uganda. These were ambushed by the four ruthless gunmen while on a game drive in the Ishasha region.
To many people’s surprise, there were seven occupants in the safari van, six tourists and one guide but a one Kimberly 53 years old and local guide Jean Paul were only taken by the gunmen. The left ones were terribly terrified of the disgraceful event and many of the tourists narrated that they had never been in such a situation like they had that fateful day.
The news of the kidnap first broke through rumours from local travel blogs and then The Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) the two government bodies known for managing tourism in Uganda together with Uganda Police Force (UPF) confirmed through a joint press release that Kimberly sue and local driver guide Jean Paul had been kidnapped by four gunmen who ambushed them while they were doing a game drive in queen Elizabeth national park.
The rescue operation stated right away being led by the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) and helped by the Uganda Police Force (UPF) since it had become a security matter. While the security organization were doing their job, the kidnappers called Ishasha wilderness camp the accommodation facility where the tourists were staying through the abducted guide’s phone asking for ransom of $50000 (1.8bn Uganda shilling). The security forces followed through the phone call lead to trace the kidnappers till yesterday when they rescued them.
The security forces have not yet come out for a presser to let the public know how the two were rescued from the kidnappers. But one thing that is confirmed is that Kimberly and Paul are safe and sound and also Uganda is safe and free for tourists to enjoy it to the fullest.
We thank our security agencies who participated in the mission. This was a one off and isolated incident. Our national parks have been and remain safe to visit.