The Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) Gen. David Muhoozi and the deputy Inspector General of Police (DIGP) Maj. Gen. Sabiiti Muzeeyi, have expressed their determination to counter all forms of raids and counter raids in order to bring perpetrators of such acts to justice.
They made their commitment at the 3rd Divisional Headquarters in Moroto following concerns about growing insecurity and violence due to raids and counter raids in the Karamoja region by legislators under the Karamoja Parliamentary Association.
The DIGP and his team embarked on a critical security assessment in the entire Karamoja sub region, where all detaches and deployments along the borderline and within our borders were thoroughly reviewed; areas for the construction of border posts to regulate entry and exit were identified, the re-positioning of our forces through the creation of new detaches, additional logistical and manpower supplies to ensure better response to armed raids, better surveillance of intelligence led processes.
In last two months of December and January, out of the 31 incidents reported to police, 287 stolen cows were recovered and efforts to recover 616 still in place.
The major concerns raised include; fears of counter raids from across the borders between Uganda, Kenya and South Sudan due to the porous borders, inadequate police and military presence, gun trafficking and the re-emergence of guns, hostile alliances among ethnic groups to mention but a few.
According to the statement released by police, the two security agencies resolved to reorganize and boost manpower, use of aerial capabilities like aircraft’s and drones to counter raiders, regulation of entry and exit through the creation of border posts, faster recovery of raided animals through quicker response, troop mobility and continuous forceful disarmament in grazing areas, identification of violent warriors and perpetrators of raids for arrest and prosecution, training and retraining of personnel.
“ police and UPDF agreed to carryout continuous sensitization and awareness programs across governments, diversifying means of survival through education and commercial farming, dialogue and peace committee meetings to reduce acts of violence, regulating Turkana movements in and out of the country, opening up security roads, effective use of Interpol and the EAPPCO mechanisms in the recovery of raided animals, creation of special courts with deterrent punishments for perpetrators and the possibility of legalizing the Nabilatuk resolution.” reads in part of the statement.
All stakeholders strongly condemned the acts of raids and counter raids and the violence committed by armed criminal groups, from the neighboring countries and also from within the local communities in Karamoja. Members emphasized the importance of a comprehensive approach to combating the threats posed by raids and counter raids including hostile alliances and the illegal re-arming of criminal elements in the community.