Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Yoweri Museveni has announced that the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces will soon redeploy troops in Karamoja in order to solve the current security crisis in the area.
These will boost the several UPDF detaches that have been established along the Karamoja borderlines to curb the rampant cattle rustling in the region that has hit new heights in the last three months.
In recent weeks, Members of Parliament from the northern and eastern regions called for a fresh disarmament process in Karamoja in order to reduce the number of guns in civilian hands. It is estimated that there are about 500 illegal guns being kept by the suspected rustlers.
The MPs have reported deaths in their constituencies, coupled with cattle rustling and intimidation of the public by warriors and criminals. But President Museveni says that the Karamojong issue will soon be solved.
Earlier David Muhoozi, the Minister of State for Internal Affairs said that because of the para-military operational nature of the cattle rustlers, it has been difficult to curb cattle rustling in Karamoja and parts of Teso. However, he added that intelligence organizations had been tasked to identify hotspots for deployment, especially for cattle rustlers coming into Agago district from the Karamoja region.
The joint security forces comprising both the army and police have also reported that it killed up to 251 suspected cattle following the relaunch of disarmament operations in the northeastern sub-region last year. In the same period, at least 1,626 suspected rustlers were arrested, and a total of 14,898 livestock were recovered. Security forces also recovered at least 160 guns.
Meanwhile, President Museveni has commended Ugandans for standing with the government in the fight against Covid-19. He said that Uganda was able to contain a virus that put the entire world on its knees because nationals listened to advice from the governments and from scientists.
In his Easter message released this morning, Museveni sent out heartfelt condolences to the families who lost their loved ones due to COVID-19 and other natural causes in the last two challenging years.
“I want to congratulate Ugandans for standing with us in the fight against corona. Up to date, we have lost only about 3,000 people. The number would have been higher if you had not cooperated with us,” he said. The President said that if it were not for the indiscipline of some opposition groups that sparked off the second wave immediately after the general elections, the number of those who died would have been much lower.
On the issue of terrorism, President Museveni said that the government is giving them a bloody nose and all of them will be no more soon. He saluted the Uganda People’s Defense forces for fighting hard to defeat terrorism. “We have given them a hard lesson, we are pushing them hard in Congo and the operation is continuing. We are now at the third phase. We shall defeat them,” he said.