Cattle rustling: UPDF deploys more troops along Kenya, South Sudan borders

Cattle rustling: UPDF deploys more troops along Kenya, South Sudan borders

courtesy photo

The Uganda People’s Defence Forces continue to receive more troops that will be deployed in the troubled areas within Karamoja and along the borders of Kenya and South Sudan to curb cattle rustling.

On 15th April, the first two battalions arrived in the region and were deployed along the Teso-Karamoja border to stop suspected Karamojong warriors from raiding livestock from Teso.

Major Isaac Oware, the UPDF 3rd infantry division spokesperson said that they are continuing to receive more troops throughout this week amounting to a battalion that comprises 740 soldiers.

Oware says the soldiers will be expected to boost the existing manpower and prevent alliances of Karamojong warriors and the Turkana which fueled the mayhem in the region.

‘’We are receiving the second batch of troops to enhance our operations in the most troublesome places in karamoja and along the borders. ’’he said.

Oware says that despite the heavy deployment, they shall continue to work with local leaders and communities to end the cattle rustling and promote lasting peace.

On Thursday last week, the state minister for Karamoja affairs Agnes Nandutu met a community in Nakiloro village Rupa sub-county in Moroto district to discuss how best they can cooperate to end the insecurity in Karamoja.

During the meeting, Mark Lopuke a resident of Nakiloro village revealed to the minister that they don’t own guns but instead they borrow from their friends in Turkana for looting and return back.

Lopuke also admitted that their friends in Turkana keep their guns for security purposes and they don’t use them for dubious acts, but it is hunger and poverty forcing Karamojong youth to borrow guns from Turkana just to look for survival.

URN has learnt that the ongoing deployment has met opposition from a section of leaders who call for a total change of top army leadership to stop the cycle of cattle raids.

Joseph Otita the LC3 chairperson Rupa sub-county in Moroto district reiterated his  dissatisfaction with the ongoing deployment because of the existing top army leadership whom he claims is corrupt.

Otita noted that although there have been some changes made in the security organs and the current deployment, he’s not convinced because he wants to see the old system reshuffled so that they can vet new ones coming on board.

He said corruption by some security officers is the one keeping the insecurity situation alive in the region, adding that all these wrong elements should be swept away.

President Museveni is expected to pitch a camp in Karamoja where he will meet various stakeholders to explore ways of ending the current insecurity.

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