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Former LRA abductees demand construction of memorial sites

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In struggle to not let go off the lives of those who died due to the many atrocities committed by the Lord Resistance Army rebels in northern Uganda, West Nile Region and other African countries, victims survivors of these war are calling for governments to supports them in commemorating and memorialization of some of these key places in the particular country were such cold blood killings were made.

Taking for the case Northern Uganda and particularly Acholi that has been on a serious attack by Lord Resistance Army LRA for the past 22 years, the war victims are urging the Ugandan government to construct for them the memorial sites were their beloved ones were killed in unexpected large numbers so that the site can keep them to remember and memorialize the deaths that they are spiritually still leaving with them.

Patricia Authure a lecturer said that the governments of most of these countries have failed to address this concern yet most of them are taking their interest in prioritizing other useless items.
“The government should act positively in order to promotes such sites in the country so that it promote healings and transitional justice on lives of the victims”
Ambrose Olaa ,the Prime Minister of Acholi said memorialization keeps adversity reading in the minds of the people and the victim survivors should close the chapter forget the past and move forward for positive healings.

David Acire area local councilor one of Lukodi Village in Gulu district one of the site were atrocities were made in May 2004 said it is like the government has failed to meet the interest of the citizen most especially for the special category of the people like the former returnees and urging the government to take action in ensuring that the issues to do with reparation begins with memory and memorialization of the lost dear ones.

Stella Lanam a former LRA abductees in Northern Uganda narrates that as victims they usually goes through a lot of pains and challenges expressing that they are not happy with what the government is taking them as victims because some of them were abducted when they were young and came back from captivity with children whose fathers are even not there due to the sexual crimes the top commanders were committing on them but the government is not giving them any aid even to pay their children in schools.

She says they are appealing to the government through CSOs to help advocate for the rights of these children plus embracing the memorial sites recommending that there should also be memorial day for children who are born from captivity.
From West Nile Region , Stephen Acidri a victim of the 1981 Ombaci massacre explains that the fight between the national Liberation Army and Idi Amin has affected the entire west Nile region not only Arua district as it was said as a revenge fight, depending on the languages you speak and was ethnic.

Over 1,000 People were killed in Ombaci massacre and for over 32 years nobody and even the government never thought of memorializing this until some non-governmental organization started documenting the sites, he proposed that there should be prayers for yearly at the site as they commemorate the dates at the site also urging that the government should give support in term of material tangible stuff for these victims to console them from the deep wound of pain they sustained.

Meanwhile Christ Ongom who works at Victims Foundation Uganda said as CSOs they are working to see that they develop victims survivors networks in orders to keep them in solidarity, adding that they will keep learning from each and every individuals to see what they can do for the victims urging the government for national memorial days of such atrocities in the national calendar
Lino Owor Ogora the founder at foundation for justice and development Initiatives an organization that sees holistic justice through peace building and development submit that they are in struggling to continue lobbying and dressing the victims wounds as they intends to promote healings from victims and center will be open for wider discussion .

Acholi and West Nile region has over 10 memorial sites that needs to be documented and constructed by the government as monument to remember the lost ones during atrocities
These are Lukodi , Bar-lonyo , Atiak , Abok in Acholi sub region and known Ombaci Massacre in west Nile among others .
Other African countries that suffered from these atrocities includes, Kenya with Mau – Mau uprising, DRC, Burundi and Rwanda genocide in 1994.

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