Religious leaders meet over Rwenzori attacks


Police and the army have so far recovered 13 guns since the government promised amnesty to perpetrators of the recent attacks in Kasese, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts.
About 20 guns were lost by the security forces during the attacks in Kasese, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts on July 5.

The army spokesperson for the Rwenzori sub-region, Lt Ninsiima Rwemijuma, yesterday said eight people who allegedly participated in the attacks have surrendered to the UPDF at a reception centre in Kasese District, but did not surrender with any weapons.

“The amnesty given by the government is already effective. In Kasese, we received eight people by Sunday evening. Some of them are wounded and they will be treated well. They did not return with any weapons,” said Lt Rwemijuma. He said the UPDF and other government security agencies will follow the amnesty laws by not taking those who surrendered to courts of law. No one has so far surrendered in Bundibugyo or Ntoroko districts.

Rehabilitation plan
Kasese District leaders, together with security agencies, have drawn a rehabilitation plan for those who will surrender before they are allowed back in the communities.

The district chairperson, Lt Col Mawa Muhindo, said those surrendering will be interviewed and taken to a rehabilitation camp at the former National Union for Youth Organisation (NUYO) institute in Kyahundu village, Maliba Sub-county, for vocational studies. “It is crystal clear that most of our youth were lured into such nasty activities because they have nothing to do,” Lt Col Mawa said.

Kasese Municipality Mayor Godfrey Kabbyanga, who was in Bundibugyo District at the time of the attacks, said the attackers, armed with spears and machetes, were each carrying grass in the mouth on top of the other grass rings around the heads and arms.

“Me and Kibanzanga saw these boys and girls as some of them were donning T-shirts written on Esyomango Sy’Obusinga (Rwenzururu youth wing). They vowed to attack the Bamba and their king. Kibanzanga wanted to confront them but we stopped him because he would be killed,” Mr Kabbyanga said.

More guns recovered
On Sunday evening, Defence minister Crispus Kiyonga said he last week met the Bakonzo and Bamba elders in Bundibugyo separately which led to more guns being recovered. “The Bakonzo elders confessed, saying the children have ashamed them and promised to cooperate with the government. So far, yesterday (Saturday) four guns were recovered in Kasithu Sub-county with the help of those elders,” Dr Kiyonga said.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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