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Omoro District Speaker, 7 Others Charged with Criminal Trespass

The eight were arrested by the local community while on their way to a so-called mercury detection mission at Awere Hill in Odek Sub –County.
Damascus Odongo, the Omoro district speaker moving out after the full council meeting -Photo by Jesse Johnson James
The Omoro District Speaker, Damasco Odongo and seven others have been charged with criminal trespass.

The eight were arrested by the local community while on their way to a mercury detection mission at Awere Hill in Odek Sub –County. Police from Odek Sub –County rescued them from an angry mob who wanted to lynch them. Odongo was in possession of a mineral detector machine in a small box in Ajan Village, Lamola Parish, Odek Sub –County in Omoro district.

Jimmy Patrick Okema, the Aswa River Region Police Spokesperson, says that the other suspects charged along with Odongo are Robert Opiyo, Thomas Owiny, Michael Okello, Julius Twinamasko, James Asimwe, Michael Adia and Kaifa Okot, a police officer attached to Luwero Police Station.

According to Okema, Police recovered a mineral detection machine and an Audi car registration number UBD 388Z which were already taken by the mob.

Okema says the eight suspects are still in police custody in Lalogi Police Station as investigations in the matter continue.

Samuel Owor, the Chairman of Ajan Village says when the locals inquired where Odongo and his colleagues were going, they said they were going to detect mercury in Awere Hill, prompting the locals to arrest them.

Awere Hill is where it is believed that the Lord’s Resistance Army Rebel Commander Joseph Kony got his divine powers to go to the bush to rebel against the government in the 1980s. The hill has several myths and tales due to its purported miraculous powers. It is however not clear whether there are mineral deposits beneath Awere Hill, or the suspects were under an illusion.

The seven were paraded before the Ajan Clan Leaders who later handed them over to police in Odek Police Post for further inquiries and investigations.