Nwoya, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Acholi Chiefs and elders have asked President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to arbitrate over the land row between the Alur and Acholi ethnic communities in Nwoya district.
The chiefs made the resolution on Monday during a day-long meeting convened at the Acholi Cultural Institution headquarters in Bardege division, Gulu Municipality. It follows recurring attacks by the Jonam people on Acholi community along the Eastern shores of River Nile.
John Mills Odur, the Ariya-Payira clan land committee chairperson said the Jonam people on numerous separate occasions uprooted sign posts installed at the Pakwach bridge border by then Gulu district local government.
The Clan chief of Alokolum, Rwot Peter Oola Ojigi II, also chairperson of all the Clan Chiefs who chaired the meeting said historically, River Nile has been the boundary between the Alur and Acholi people and extending the border is a direct ethnic provocation.
Ambrose Olaa, the Chiefdom Prime Minister explains that the escalating conflict over the land boundary between the two ethnic groupings is beyond what the local and cultural leaders from both parties can handle.
Walter Okidi Ladwar, the Chiefdom’s Legal Representative contends that the resolution of the chiefs also seeks an end to cross border movement of gangs that have been persistently masterminding the deadly attacks.
It is alleged that the conflict by the Jonam people from Nebbi, Pakwach and Zombo districts that has already left four people dead and scores injured seeks to forcefully extend Pakwach district borders beyond the River Nile.
Last month, the Jonam people attacked soldiers guarding the farm belonging to Commander of Reserve Forces Lt. Gen. Charles Otema Awany in Bira and Yagopino villages in Purongo sub county over 10 kilometres from the boundary River Nile.
In 2007, a deadly rift emerged between the Acholi in Nwoya and the Alur people in the then Nebbi district when the Alur erected a signpost at present-day Got Apwoyo sub county, about five kilometres away from the River Nile boundary.