Warning: Trying to access array offset on value of type bool in /usr/www/users/urnnet/a/story.php on line 43
Lamwo Leaders Call for Tightened Security Over Cattle Rustlers Incursion :: Uganda Radionetwork
Breaking

Lamwo Leaders Call for Tightened Security Over Cattle Rustlers Incursion

Charles Obong Okwera, the Madi-Opei Sub-county LCIII Chairperson on Thursday said that lack of security personnel deployed at Tufungi, the Ugandan border point with South Sudan is facilitating entry of rustlers in the district.
Animals grazing in Madiopei Subcounty, Lamwo District. local leaders in the district have called on the army to boost security at porous border points to avert cattle rustlers. Photo By Julius Ocungi

Deprecated: trim(): Passing null to parameter #1 ($string) of type string is deprecated in /usr/www/users/urnnet/a/story.php on line 663
 Leaders in Madi-Opei Sub-County, Lamwo district have called for more deployment of security personnel at the porous Uganda-South Sudan border over fresh incursion of armed cattle rustlers.

This follows last week’s raid by armed south Sudanese cattle rustlers in Orobo village were five cattle were looted from local livestock farmers. The rustlers reportedly sneaked into the district and fled back to Tseretenya in Ikotos County in Imatong state minus being detected by security personnel.

Charles Obong Okwera, the Madi-Opei Sub-county LCIII Chairperson on Thursday said that lack of security personnel deployed at Tufungi, the Ugandan border point with South Sudan is facilitating entry of rustlers in the district.

He says the Anti-Theft Stock Unit [ASTU], Uganda People’s Defense Forces and Police are deployed at Apiriti Immigration point some 13 kilometres away from Tufungi.

Okwera says currently many of the rustlers who disguised as produce buyers have invaded many villages in Madi-Opei and neighbouring Agoro Sub County looking for cattle to loot.

He says insecurity along the porous Uganda-South Sudan border point has for long left, many residents in his area unable to be productive adding that it needs to be addressed once and for all by the army. 

“We are scared that these rustlers may strike at any time because they are within our villages disguised as produce buyers.  They gain easy entry because there is no deployment of personnel right from Tufungi border point,” Okwera says.

In April, Maj Gen Paul Lokech, the then commander Land Forces, now UPDF Air Force Chief had accepted to deploy soldiers at tufungi but gave a condition to the district leadership to drill a borehole for his men.

However, Okwera says the condition hasn’t been fulfilled, a move he says could have seen no deployment of soldiers at the border point.

He also adds that the animals that were looted have never been recovered but noted that they are liaising with the Imatong state governor and traditional chiefs to ensure recovery of the animals.

The Lamwo District LCV Chairperson John Komakech Ogwok says the sub-county leadership should submit in a formal request to the district notifying the need to have a borehole sunk to facilitate deployment of security personnel.

Lt Hassan Kato, the Fifth Infantry Division Spokesperson says they will forward the suggestion of the local leaders to the army leadership for proper planning.

He, however, notes that security personnel deployed at Apiriti border point is capable of handling any intrusion by the rustlers from South Sudan.

“All we want to appeal to our people is that they should be vigilant and report early enough to security personnel of any threats. The army is always alert and ready to handle matters of security,” Lt Kato said.

Majority of households in Lamwo District largely depend on crop growing and livestock keeping.

The recent incursion of cattle rustlers is likely to distort the relative peace farmers in the sub-counties of Madi-opei and Agoro had been enjoying several months after they had abandoned farming over insecurity.