NAPAK- 156 head of cattle reported to have been stolen by the suspected Jie cattle rustlers were recovered in Kotido district by the joint security team led by the Uganda People’s Defence Forces [ UPDF ].
The animals which were reportedly stolen from different kraals in Lorengecora Sub-county in Napak district on Sunday night were recovered on Wednesday morning by the security team.
An unspecified number of the Jie warriors from Kotido are reported to have injured one boy during the raid, even though the boy’s identity has not been established.
Maj. Isaac Oware, Mt. Moroto UPDF 3rd Division Spokesperson said the army responded after the residents reported the unfortunate incident.
“We received an alert from the locals that a lot of cattle had been stolen from Napak district by the cattle rustlers,” Maj. Oware stated.
According to him, the UPDF detachment in Napumpum carried out a two- days operation to recover all the stolen cattle by Wednesday morning.
The stolen cattle were recovered from the areas of Napumpum, Panyangara in Kotido district.
“The 156 stolen head of cattle were recovered by UPDF ground troops, supported by the airforce,” Oware said.
Oware said the UPDF would verify the rightful owners of the recovered animals before they can hand them over.
John Paul Kodet, the LCV chairperson Napak district, applauded the joint security team for the work well done.
He explained that the recovery of the looted animals was a result of a quick response by the joint security personnel comprising the UPDF and other forces in the districts of Napak and Kotido.
Meanwhile, the commander UPDF 3rd Division Mt. Moroto, Brig. Joseph Balikuddembe reiterated that the Force continues to track stolen animals in the Karamoja Sub-region.
“We shall continue working together with local authorities and other security agencies to track down the cattle rustlers and recover more of the stolen cattle,” he stated.
John Bosco Ngoya, the MP for Bokora County called for a review of the security strategy in the area, following increased insecurity characterized by cattle rustling.
Ngoya told this reporter that the security situation in Karamoja is appalling, further stating that government needs to devise a new approach to address the insecurity there.
“There is a need for government to commit to protecting the Karamojong who face the danger of starvation, poverty, and sickness,” he emphasised.
He explained that some citizens in Karamoja cannot sleep at night and that some have failed to herd their cattle because of rustlers suspected to be from Kenya, including the Pokot, Toposa, and other raiders from Somalia and South Sudan.
Simon Lokiru, one of the youth from Kotido district said Karamoja should be given the justice that it deserves.
He said government should train local defence operatives to deal with the cattle rustlers.
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