Ngamba Chimpanzee Sanctuary Island has been ranked as the best chimpanzee sanctuary in Africa by Jane Goodall, a United Nations ambassador of peace.
A powerhouse primatologist, ethologist and anthropologist, Goodall is also the founder of the Jane Goodall Institute.
She says she based her ranking on the kind of attention and care accorded to the primates, which are highly threatened by extinction.
There are 29 chimpanzee sanctuaries in the whole of the African continent. Two of these were founded by Goodall under her Jane Goodall Institute. She has been supporting the other 27 through funding.
Found majorly in the tropics, you will find these sanctuaries in Uganda, Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, DR Congo and Rwanda.
There are also some in South Africa and Sudan.
Speaking at her 80th birthday which was held at Lake Victoria Island, Goodall said she observed that the 47 chimpanzees on Ngamba Island were loved and treated with so much care like no other on the planet.
“For the last couple of years, I have been moving from one sanctuary to another across the continent, but never have I seen chimpanzee caregivers treat the primates with so much care and love before.
“They have fully acknowledged the fact that chimpanzees are man’s closest relatives and treat them with so much love and attention. I am overwhelmed,” she the delighted octogenarian.
The sanctuary’s top ranking is seen as potential pull for the local tourism industry.
According to Lilly Ajarova, the sanctuary’s executive director, Goodall’s recognition of Ngamba as the top sanctuary in the continent could be a positive turning point, which could attract more tourists.
“Owing to the fact that Goodall is an inspirational figure who commands over 10 millionfollowers worldwide inclusive of tourists and conservationists, her credit of Ngamba is destined to fire up its annual tourists turn-up from its annual 4000 to 5000 to nothing short of an impressive influx,” she says.
Ajarova is quick to add that, this will play an instrumental role in the conservation of the primates whose population across Africa country is dwindling at a high as many people continue to hold them in captivity and degrade their habitat.