Akol says that on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th of June this year, a group of armed arsonists stormed the area, assaulted and injured twenty-seven people, burnt down 300 huts, and looted several household items, livestock, and poultry noting that it would keep them in abject poverty.
The attackers who have been roaming the area since Saturday last week looted and destroyed household items including ox-ploughs, and solar panels among other items saying that the occupants were illegal in the area.
Binya had gone to meet the leaders of Oyanga Sub-village in Apaa Township in Oyanga Sub-village to negotiate for the purchase of chunks of land and fund the construction of roads in the area to facilitate development.
The campaign seeks to defend the vulnerable, document land, offer legal and advisory services to the vulnerable people in the Acholi Sub-region as well as reclaim lands that have been fraudulently acquired from their owners by the government, investors, and people with selfish interests.
The residents especially men from the villages of Juka, Wee-Yoo in Kal Acut, and Junction say that they have abandoned their homes and fled to the bushes or homes of relatives for fear of being arrested by security personnel or attacked by their counterparts the Madi tribesmen of Adjumani district.
Residents in the area have asked the government to create a semi-autonomous Sub County of Apaa that will be under the supervision of the central government and overseen by a Deputy Resident District Commissioner.
Wilson Acuma, the Coordinator of Local Council I Chairpersons in Apaa says the attackers are part of a larger group of Madi people who are being incited by their political leaders to evict the Acholi community through violence.
Anthony Ocaya, the Apaa Township LC II Chairperson told URN that a scuffle ensued after security rejected the demands by traders prompting residents to pelt them with stones claiming that they were segregating between the Acholis and Madi.
Kenneth Opoka the Local Chairperson for Lulai Village says that hundreds of farmers in his area have resorted to small scale farming majorly around their homesteads for fears that they may be attacked while cultivating in distant places.
Wilson Acuma, a member of the local council executives also told URN that they have submitted a fresh list of the over 5000 residents to the district health department through their village health teams.
Our reporter saw many other charcoal camps scattered across the area. The illegal dealers told URN on Wednesday that they are from Eastern and Central Uganda and are buying each tree from the residents at Shillings 8,000 to burn for charcoal.