Business has resumed at several cooperative Societies in Abim district with various members holding their first meetings after about one month of inactivity as calm returns to the area following a period of unrest.
For over a month, the security situation in Abim district had deteriorated due to an increase in rustling by suspected cattle thieves from Kotido district. As a result, many residents had been forced to flee their homes, an outcome that affected various activities including cooperatives.
However, the situation has now calmed down after the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces intensified operations in the district. By Wednesday morning, UPDF soldiers had killed two Jie warriors from Kotido who had allegedly gone to raid animals in Abim.
Jessica Acheng, one of the residents and a member of Rackoko Village Savings and Loans Association, said they were able, on Tuesday this week, to hold their first meeting in more than a month.
“All our members have come back after the UPDF intensified its operations against cattle rustling. On Tuesday we held our first meeting peacefully and resumed our savings,” she said.
Ms. Acheng added that, in the same meeting, members who had borrowed money prior to the outbreak of violence paid up all their outstanding dues with the requisite interest.
“Five of our members were supposed to clear their loans last month, but were forced by insecurity to run away for a while. They returned recently, and on Tuesday paid back the money in full, a total of Shs. 600,000,”she confided .
Mr. Richard Okori, the sub County chairperson of Abim, confirmed that peace had returned to the area, but called for continued deployment of the forces in the district.
Mr. Samuel Hashaka Mpimbaza the Resident District Commissioner, Abim, assured the public and the members of cooperative societies that the army was in control of the situation.