Lamwo, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | At least twelve grass-thatched huts have been torched in an ethnic attack in Pobura parish, Madi Opei sub county in Lamwo district. The LCV chairperson, Sisto Ocen Oyet says that the clashes occurred on Wednesday night in Wigweng village, involving the members of Pobira and Pobura clans.
It all started when a member of Pobira clan knocked a member from the rival clan while riding a motorcycle from Guda village. The accident victim was rushed to Madi Opei Health Center IV in critical condition. Tonny Okeny, an eye witness says the injury of the accident victim prompted a section of his relatives from Pobura clan to mobilize and revenge against the members of Pobira clan where they torched twelve huts and destroyed household property worth millions of shillings.
Ocen says the incident follows a protracted dispute between the two clans over a large chunk of farmland in Wigweng and Labalokodi villages in Pobura Parish, Madi Opei sub county. According to Ocen, the two clans have for years been embroiled in a protracted land dispute that has been characterized by fierce fights and the destruction of houses and household property.
The worst altercation in 2021 led to the displacement of Pobura clan members. Over 150 displaced persons, mostly the elderly, children, and women sought refuge at Kwon Cok Primary School from April 2021 until May 2022 which affected learning for a year after the occupants refused to evacuate the school for fear of fresh attacks if they returned to their ancestral homes.
Lamwo Resident District Commissioner, Geoffrey Osborn Ochieng, says that it took the intervention of the police and other sister security agencies to calm down the fresh tension. The officers are currently monitoring the situation to avoid any further and possible violence.
According to Ochieng, although no arrests have been made in connection to the attack, the police are investigating the cause of the attack besides tracking the perpetrators of the chaos. Ochieng condemned the incident and called on the two aggrieved parties to always explore peaceful coexistence and desist against taking up the law into their hands and inciting their clan members to promote violence.