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Returnees Still Far from Resettlement in Northern Uganda-New Study :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Returnees Still Far from Resettlement in Northern Uganda-New Study

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According to the study, 55.7% of the people who spent between 1 to 3 years in captivity returned home but were never resettled. The study was conducted between August 2019 and July 2020 in Omoro, Pader, Amuru, Nwoya and Agago district in Acholi Sub Region, which suffered the brunt of the Insurgency.
Bishop Nelson Onono Onweng lauching the report on Tuesday at ARLPI Office in Koro Sub County

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Hundreds of people in Northern Uganda who returned from captivity by the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army-LRA are yet to resettle and integrate in their community, a study by the Acholi Religious Peace Initiative has revealed.

According to the study, 55.7% of the people who spent between 1 to 3 years in captivity returned home but were never resettled. The study was conducted between August 2019 and July 2020 in Omoro, Pader, Amuru, Nwoya and Agago district in Acholi Sub Region, which suffered the brunt of the Insurgency. 

The study points out some of the key factors that hindered the resettlement and integration of the affected people as land conflicts, stigmatization, hatred, discrimination and social exclusion. Dr. Daniel Komakech, the lead Researcher and Director Institute of Research and Graduates Studies at Gulu University, says many of the returnees failed to locate their ancestral homes.  

Komakech explained that the plan for the resettlement only looked at the pre-conflict situation that left out proper handling of the conflicts that emerged later. 

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Moses Ogwang, a Police Liaison Community Officer in Gulu, says many of the returnees have been dragged to police by members of the public mostly on crimes they have not committed.   Rev. Norah Omona, the representative of women in the Diocese of Northern, Uganda appealed to the community to accept integration as parts of the peacebuilding process in the region.

Francis Lukwiya, the Secretary-General Acholi Religious Peace Initiative explained that even the returnees who were resettled met new challenges back home, which forced many to relocate to other areas.  

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Evelyn Amony one of the returnees and the founder of Women Advocacy Network told Uganda Radio Network in an interview that only 20 percent of the 980 returnees supported by the organization were embraced by their communities. She appealed to the government to include resettlement and integration in the peace processes and recovery in the region.  

The over two decade’s insurgency in the region led by Joseph Kony is reported to have claimed the lives of over 100,000 people, 100,000 children were abducted while 2.5 million people were displaced with wanton destruction of property.