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Homes Torched in Amuria Over Veteran’s Death

following the mysterious death of Michael Ariko, a retired UPDF Soldier. Ariko died in the home of his girlfriend’s only identified as Helen Atima, about two hours after he reportedly went to bed on Saturday evening, according to the Ogoria Village LC I Chairperson, James Marin Ojula.

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Angry residents of Abarilela Sub County in Amuria District have torched several houses following the mysterious death of Michael Ariko, a retired UPDF Soldier. Ariko died in the home of his girlfriend’s only identified as Helen Atima, about two hours after he reportedly went to bed on Saturday evening, according to the Ogoria Village LC I Chairperson, James Marin Ojula.  

He narrates that Ariko had gone with the Ogoria Village Local Council Committee to solicit for money from residents for repairing a borehole. Ojula explains that after returning from the hectic exercise, Ariko, still in the company of the village leadership settled at Atima’s home to drink local brew- Ajon before he retired to bed in the same home.    

Ojula notes that moments after the rest of the team dispersed, Atima reportedly joined Ariko in the house but found him gasping for breath, which forced her to rush him to the nearby clinic for assistance but he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Immediately after the incident, the deceased’s relatives stormed the home of Atima’s brother, setting three houses ablaze. Several other property including sheep, goats and food stuffs were destroyed in the fire.  

As soon as the fire was put out, Ariko’s relatives searched Atima’s house where they reportedly found documents from the UPDF Wazalendo Sacco belonging to a serving UPDF Soldier only identified as Peter Ongimu. Atima’s relatives also stormed the home of Ongimu on Sunday morning and torched it in retaliation destroying several items.

Michael Eluluma, the Abarilela Sub County LC III Chairperson, says security quickly deployed nin the area to restore order. He revealed that Ongimu was once in a relationship with Atima after she broke up with Ariko. But Ariko, now deceased reconciled with Atima recently, offsetting Ongimu. 

He notes that Ongima has been at home on pass leave, something he wants security agencies to investigate to pacify the affected villages. 

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By the time of filing this story, Atima’s family had agreed to pay 12 head of cattle to compensate for Ariko’s death. Both the Police and Army had been deployed in the area to calm the situation and ensure the deceased is buried. David Ongom Mudong, the East Kyoga Region Police Spokesman says they are investigating the matter.