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.
Residents want Apaa Township to be turned into a semi-autonomous
Sub County to curb conflicts over ownership of the area.
Ancestral ownership of the Apaa township which borders Amuru and Adjumani
districts measures approximately 42 square kilometres and is highly contested
between the Madi of Adjumani and Acholi of Amuru districts respectively.
The same area is also claimed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) who says
that it is within the East Madi Wildlife Reserve while the National Forestry
Authority (NFA) also claims that part of it is located in the Zoka Central
Since 2012, when violent conflicts over ownership of the area broke out, at
least 20 people have reportedly been killed, dozens injured, several household
properties and livestock destroyed.
The conflicts have also greatly affected access to social services due to the
closure of the only serving Apaa Health Centre II in the area and the halt in
the operation of over 18 community schools.
Residents in the area have added their voices and 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
They say that this will not only mitigate conflicts and rights abuses arising
from ownership claims of the area but also bring better services to the
residents since it will be directly provided by the central government but not
the conflicting districts of Amuru and Adjumani.
Wilson Acuma, the Chairperson of the Disaster Management Committee in Apaa says
that the area has approximately 32,116 people with 5,034 households, a number
that he says can even call for the creation of a district.
Acuma disclosed that the worst affected areas include Acholi Ber, Oyanga,
Lulai, Gaji, Juka and Lutoyo sub parishes.
He explained that the solution to the problems is turning Apaa Township into a
semi-autonomous Sub County to mitigate violence from natives of Madi and Acholi
as modalities for a lasting solution is designed.
//Cue in: ‘’dong peko tye…
Cue out: …room wai district.’’//
Richard Kinyera Ojul, another resident says that Apaa Township is currently in
a state of lawlessness coupled with violence that is perpetrated by leaders from
He noted that turning Apaa into a semi-autonomous administrative unit will
prevent the violence since the area will be free from the two districts.
//Cue in: ‘’Apaa pe tye...
Cue out: …tye I Apaa.’’//
Eighty-Year-old Onek Atunya, another resident added that the government can
only end the loss of lives and destruction in Apaa by relinquishing its claim
of ownership from the districts of Amuru and Adjumani.
//Cue in: ‘’an dong ikum…
Cue out: …kwo pa dano.’’//
However, Chief Justice Owiny-Dollo who previously headed a delegation of
leaders from the Acholi Sub Region to meet President Museveni at State House
says that the recommendation to turn Apaa into a semi-autonomous Sub County
entirely relies on the judicial commission of inquiry which is yet to be
established by the President.