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Three Sub County Chairpersons in Amuru Arrested for Arson, Malicious Damage

They are accused of torching seven makeshift huts, burning 240 bags of stacked charcoal and hundreds of heaps of piled charcoal logs, killing poultry, damaging two solar panels and clothes belonging to Michael Okema Opilo the former Chairperson for Elegu Town council.
Samuel Akera, the Attiak Sub County LC3 Chaiperson looks at a burning heap of logs.

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Three Sub County Chairpersons in Amuru district have been arrested for arson and malicious damage.

They are Kenneth Okot of Atiak Town Council, Samuel Akera of Atiak Sub County, and Peter Lukwiya of Opara Sub County. The three were arrested by the police from within their different areas on Friday and are being detained at Otwee Central Police Station.

They are accused of torching seven makeshift huts, burning 240 bags of stacked charcoal and hundreds of heaps of piled charcoal logs, killing poultry, damaging two solar panels and clothes belonging to Michael Okema Opilo the former Chairperson for Elegu Town council.

Opilo told URN that the trio among others on January 11, 2022, intruded and raided his farmland in Ogom ‘’A ‘’ Village in Okidi North Parish and destroyed the properties without his consent. 

He explained that he had cleared his 230 acres of land and burnt part of the trees for charcoal since the land was due to be opened up by the Atiak Sugar Factory for the plantation of sugarcane, as an out-grower.

//Cue in; ‘’owoto I area… //

Cue out…kunu dok aye.’’//

Opilo added that the trio among others again raided the same place on Thursday and destroyed several of his bags of charcoal, logs, and workers’ makeshift dwellings, something which prompted him to draw the attention of the police leading to their arrest. He is now demanding compensation of twenty-four-million shillings in damages adding that the trio and their counterparts that trio is arraigned before courts.  

The complainant also accused one Justine Olak who was part of the team of injuring five of his cattle during a subsequent raid on the 12th and 13th of January this year. Olak was later arrested and released on police bond. David Ongom Mudong, the Aswa River Region has confirmed the arrest noting that investigations are ongoing. 

On Thursday this week, the security team and the leadership of Greater Atiak raided an illegal charcoal dealers' camp in the same area and destroyed hundreds of logs, dozens of makeshift dwellings, and impounded two power saws. 

Opilo who is the complainant in the case was the former councillor for Atiak Sub County between 2012 and 2016. He also served as the Councilor for disability and Chairperson Elegu Town Council until last year when he quit participation in elected positions.

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