By Paul Olinga
ENTEBBE: Zakayo, Uganda’s oldest known chimpanzee on Thursday celebrated he’s 53rd birthday at Uganda Wildlife Education Centre (UWEC).

Mr. James Musinguzi, the Executive Director at UWEC during Zakayo’s birthday called on Ugandan’s to take part in the conservation of wildlife.
“We celebrate the day to highlight to people world over that chimpanzees and plight of other wild animals are of use to us and can contribute self-positive impact, so we do this to promote conservation of wildlife in the world,” he said.

Zakayo’s profile
Zakayo was found abandoned on 10th June, 1964 in Semiliki National Park in
Bundibugyo district and was hand-raised by a white man who surrendered him to UWEC on 19th June 1976 as he was becoming aggressive and difficult to manage.

He used to stay in a cage and visitors would tease him, offer him to cigarettes and alcohol which would make him very excited. He is the father of Shaka.

In 2012, Zakayo lost his alpha male position to Matooke although he still commands a lot of respect from the group, instilling order and peace when there are group fights and making sure that everyone enters the enclosure or exits it before he does which defines his caring character.