Number of Students, Locals Killed by ADF in Kasese Rises to 37

Photo Courtesy of killed students

The number of students and locals who have been confirmed killed by suspected Allied Democratic Forces -ADF rebels has increased from 25 to 37. Earlier on, Senior Commissioner of Police -SCP Fred Enanga the police spokesperson, and Brig Gen Felix Kulayigye the Uganda People’s Defence Forces -UPDF police spokesperson said 25 students of Lhubiriha secondary school in Mpondwe town had been killed.

Mpondwe town is located about 2 km from the Uganda-DRC border. It is said the ADF rebels yesterday raided the schools as early as 10:30 pm, shot dead students and others were killed in the inferno set of the school dormitory.

However, the latest statement by Brig Gen Kulayigye shows more bodies of students and civilians have been recovered thus bringing the number of deaths to 37. Enanga and Kulayigye have not yet established the number of students who were abducted by ADF.

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It is said that the school had 63 students in the dormitory but some were forced to carry sacks of maize flour and beans which the rebels collected from the school stores. Brig Gen Dick Olum the commander of the operations Shujja in DRC has said the ADF rebels arrived in the area days ago.

Brig Olum said the ADF plan was to burn UPDF trucks but after failing in their mission, they decided to unleash anger on innocent students. The Army has said there are collaborators in the area who will be dealt with accordingly.

Ugandan forces comprised of military and police are currently trying to pursue the ADF rebels to rescue the abducted students. This is a repeat of the 1998 incident where ADF attacked Kichwamba technical institute in Kabalore district and killed 80 students as well as abducted over 100.

UPDF entered the DRC jungles in November 2021 after terrorists linked to ADF successfully detonated Improvised Explosive Devices -EIDs in Kampala killing nine people including three suspects suicide bombers.

At least a policeman Amos Kungu was among the dead persons. Over 40 people were injured in the bombs that went off in Kampala. Ugandan military said entering DRC jungles was the only solution to neutralize ADF.

However, ADF attack in Kasese has raised questions of how UPDF failed to detect the movement of the rebels to the extent of wreaking havoc on innocent students. Ugandan leader, Yoweri Museveni, has since directed Chief of Defence Forces -CDF Gen Wilson Mbadi and Land Forces commander- Lt Gen Kayanja Muhanga to rush to Kasese and conduct on spot assessment.

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