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Lamwo residents in fear over influx of South Sudan armed men

Jameson Oryema, a resident of Oryang village who was hacked by suspected South Sudanese armed men last week in Madi Opei sub county. Courtesy photo

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Residents of Madi-Opei sub-county in Lamwo district are living in fear over the continuous influx of suspected South Sudanese armed men in the area.

This follows an attack on a 45-year-old man and theft of six cattle from livestock farmers in a space of only one week in Oryang, Guda, Orogo and Lawiyeoduny villages.

The victim is Jameson Oryema, a Village Health Team-VHT in Oryang village, Pobura parish in Madi-Opei sub-county whose legs were severely hacked with a machete last week.

Oryema says that he was attacked by three men armed with a machete and an AK47 assault rifle at around 9 pm while riding a bicycle back home.

He says the unidentified men robbed him of his wallet containing an unspecified amount of money and mobile phone before cutting both his legs with a machete.

Oryema who is receiving medical treatment from Kitgum general hospital in Kitgum municipality says the incident has left him unable to fend for his family of five children and a wife.

He appealed to security personnel to consider increasing deployment in Oryang village which has been a gateway for the armed men crossing from South Sudan.

Charles Obong Okwera, Madi-Opei sub-county LCIII chairperson says the armed men invade the area every evening in search of cattle as the festive season approaches.

He says the armed men have beaten security deployments which should have blocked them from infiltrating into the various villages and secure areas of Madi-opei trading center.

He says residents are currently unable to move in the evening hours for fear of being attacked.

Okwera says they have already informed the anti-theft stock unit commanders and Local Defense Unit-LDU Commanders of the current wave of the influx of South Sudanese armed men and plans to scale up night security patrols.

Lamwo District Police Commander, Moses Akena notes that security is working hard to contain further attacks. He says they are also investigating the attack on one of the locals to ensure the culprits are found.

Early this year, the army opened up four new detachments in Madi-Opei sub-county to counter the resurgence of cattle theft by armed south Sudanese thugs in the villages of Orogo, kurukuba, Lawiyeoduny, Kirombe, and Lotuku.

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