393 warriors killed, 291 guns recovered in Karamoja sub region

The latest report compiled by Anti-Stock Theft Unit (ASTU), shared to police headquarter, shows 291 guns have been recovered and 393 warriors killed so far in the ongoing forceful disarmament exercise in Karamoja sub-region.

President Yoweri Museveni ordered the relaunch of offensive disarmament operations in Karamoja on July 24 last year in a bid to restore normalcy that evaded the area for the last two years.

Although Karamoja had been peaceful for over a decade, fresh armed raids resumed mid 2020 and as a result many people have been killed or wounded while their animals such as cows, goats and sheep have been stolen.

With few weeks left to mark a year since Museveni directed police and army to use force to disarm all Karamojong, security indicates that Usalama Kwa Wote operations have also led to the arrest of 6,976 suspected warriors of whom 1,622 have been prosecuted in army courts.

Commissioner of Police Fred Enanga, quoting the report confirms that the operations have also led to the recovery of 21,827 animals that had been stolen by warriors using guns, bows and arrows.

Nevertheless, Enanga explains that warriors are still very lethal because last week they killed five civilians including a Gombolola (Subcounty) Internal Security Officer (GISO) Abraham Lochen.

 Enanga adds that even a UPDF soldier Pte Anesius Nuwashaba was also killed but the security forces responded and killing five warriors.

Also injured was one Abonyo who is a resident of Entebbe municipality and she was moving with Kamuru Subcounty chief John Okuda when they were attacked by six armed Karimojong warriors at around 4pm when they were on foot.

Pte Nuwashaba met his death when warrior attacked UPDF detach in Abim district. Museveni has pitched camp in Sebei and Karamoja sub-regions engaging local leaders in a bid to understand why the unrest has persisted.

There have been various questions raised about the source of guns being used by warriors in Karamoja after it emerged that of the weapons recovered by police and army  over 80 guns bear markings of the security forces.

But Brig Felix Kulayigye, the UPDF Spokesperson, explains that whereas Uganda disarmed all Karamojongs, her neighbours in Kenya and South Sudan did not disarm the Turkana and Tokosa warriors respectively.

During the over 10 years of calm in Karamoja, UPDF recruited a number of LDUs to consolidate security operations. 

But UPDF says many of them disappeared with the guns and instead started using them to attack locals and robbing their animals.

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