By Caesar Abangirah

Reknown British primatologist Jane Goodall has today Wednesday, June 6, jetted into the country to grace the 20th anniversary celebrations of Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary.

The celebrations, to be officiated by First Lady Janet Museveni, are slated for Thursday, June 7 at Speke Resort, Munyonyo.

Dame Goodall is best known for her six-decade study of wild chimpanzees worldwide and has worked extensively on conservation and animal welfare issues.

It is for this, and many other reasons that the United Nations set aside July 13 as World Chimpanzee Day with the first day to be celebrated this year.

According to Lilly Ajorova, the Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary Executive Director, Dame Goodall’s inspiration, dedication and significant contribution to chimpanzee conservation advanced the establishment of Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary.

The sanctuary is home to 49 chimpanzees rescued from around East Africa.

‘She (Dame Goodall) last graced our 10th anniversary in 2008, and it is an honour to see her return as we mark our 20th anniversary. Her works create a legacy as she passes on her vision to the world of conservation,” Ms Ajorova added.

Upon arrival, Dame Goodall, who preferred to use the ordinary arrival gate although the VIP area had been secured for her, said, ‘I founded Ngamba, so I had to be here to celebrate the 20th anniversary.’

An accomplished writer and multiple awards winner, Dame Goodall has served on the board of the Non Human Rights Project since its founding in 1996.  She was also named a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2002.