546 Guns Recovered from Karamojong Warriors

Mt Moroto PRO, courtsey pic

The joint army and police forces have so far recovered 546 guns from Karimojong warriors in the last 14 months. President Yoweri Museveni ordered Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) and Anti-Stock Theft Unit (ASTU) to go offensive against warriors in July 2021 after the mechanisms to sweet talk them yielded no results.

Mike Longole the Mt Moroto police spokesperson explains that in the first 365 days that started on July 17, 2021, up to July 17, 2022, have seen the police and army forces recover 334 guns. The second phase that started immediately from where the first one ended has led to the recovery of 212 more guns thus making a total of 546 weapons.

Longole explains that the armed operations against warriors will continue until all the people who have caused insecurity in the entire Karamoja region are arrested or until they surrender themselves to the forces.

“We would like to inform the general community that, joint security forces are still going on with disarmament operation USALAMA KWA WOTE to mop up the remaining hidden guns. We need usual cooperation from stakeholders and the general community in identifying criminal elements who are still resisting handing over their guns,” Longole said.

A lot has been done in Karamoja by both warriors and government forces. Many civilians have been killed in fire exchanges between the government forces and warriors. In fact, many civilians especially women have accused soldiers of subjecting them to physical and sexual assaults and torture.

But Brig Gen Joseph Balikudembe who is the overall commander of the operations against warriors has refuted accusations against men in uniform. Brig Gen Balikudembe has consistently blamed women for concealing their partners who raid residents for their cattle and also hide deadly weapons used in such illegal acts.

Longole has praised locals who are now apprehending their fell residents who are seen with weapons especially guns used in raids. Some of the locals who have arrested armed warriors in villages like Lokoriot, Nadunget Sub-County, in Moroto.

“We are happy about the community action in Lokorirot village, Nadunget Subcounty, Moroto District who managed to chase away their village mate who entered their village at night armed with a gun. Last month, a warrior was arrested in Kanakomol village, Loputuk Subcounty, Moroto District by women with his gun and handed to security forces,” Longole said.