According to Longole, the guns were recovered both through voluntary and forceful means from the rustlers, some of whom died in action.
Some of the recovered firearms
Joint security forces have recovered 179 illegal firearms and 642 ammunition in the last 50 days of cordon and search operations in Karamoja.
"It is now 50days down the road since we started a simultaneous cordon and search disarmament operation across the nine Districts in Karamoja on 16/5/2022. We are glad to report that we have managed to collect 179 guns from the hands of the Karimojong rustlers and the operations continue," said Micheal Longole, the Mt Moroto Regional police spokesperson.
He told URN in an interview at his office at the Moroto regional Police office that joint security forces have been busy all over the Karamoja sub-region in their operation dubbed "USALAMA KWA WOTE's literally translated as peace for all. According to Longole, the guns were recovered both through voluntary and forceful means from the rustlers, some of whom died in action.
He said Kaabong district tops the list in the number of recovered firearms with 47 guns and 91 rounds of ammunition followed by Napak with 30 guns, and 195 Ammunitions, Nakapiripirit district with 4 guns and 53 ammunitions, Nabilatuk district with 8 guns and 29 Ammunitions and Amudat district 3 guns and 24 Ammunitions.
"We congratulate the community members for their cooperation, Karamoja leaders who are peace lovers and supportive in the process of disarmament, and to our joint security forces for the tireless effort they have put in pacifying the Sub Region," he said. John Okidi, a resident of Alerek sub-county in Abim district accused security of neglecting them despite the fact that they lack firearms to protect themselves from rustlers.
"We are losing our livestock every day to armed rusttlers who have taken advantage because we don't have guns and security is not bothered to protect us," she said. Mariko Lokut from Sidok sub-county in Kaabong district said the security forces need to bring all the stakeholders on board so that the disarmament exercise becomes the reality.
"Right now it's hard for us to know the truth about this disarmament because many stakeholders are not involved in it," he said. Robino Nangiro, a resident of Natumukathiko ward in Moroto Municipality, said that there is a need for joint efforts from the community, elders, and religious leaders for the smooth disarmament campaign.