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Friday,September 25,2020 08:07 AM

UPDF deploy on Kenya, Sudan border

By Vision Reporter

Added 27th December 2001 03:00 AM

UGANDA has deployed six battalions on the Kenya - Sudan border to protect the Karimojong from external aggression and curb illicit gun-trafficking, sources said yesterday.

UGANDA has deployed six battalions on the Kenya - Sudan border to protect the Karimojong from external aggression and curb illicit gun-trafficking, sources said yesterday.

By Felix Osike and Alfred Wasike UGANDA has deployed six battalions on the Kenya - Sudan border to protect the Karimojong from external aggression and curb illicit gun-trafficking, sources said yesterday. A battalion has about 1,000 troops. State minister for defence Ruth Nankabirwa yesterday said, “We are setting up barracks along the borders in about seven places. The army will be permanently in those places. We shall not allow the Turkana and the Pokot to cross to Uganda with guns again,” she said. President Yoweri Museveni on Monday called a special Cabinet meeting in which he briefed the ministers on the disarmament process in the volatile Karamoja area. Sources said Museveni promised to return to Karamoja in February. The meeting considered offering ox-ploughs and certificates to Karimojong who surrender arms voluntarily. Another proposal is to give 40 iron sheets to the kraal heads. Finance minister Gerald Sendaula told the meeting that the US had donated $100,000 (sh170m), through the World Food Programme, to assist starving Karimojong. The British High Commission has also donated US$10,000 (sh17m) to buy ox-ploughs. The agriculture ministry is expected to provide fast-maturing seeds. Museveni also directed the foreign affairs ministry to liaise with their Kenyan counterparts on the possible disarming of the Pokot and Turkana. He told the Cabinet that the Government was soliciting for funds to open up roads to the borders. He said the Karimojong should be licensed to mine alluvial gold in their area. He said the South African gold company, Branch Energy, did not come out with positive results after five years of prospecting. All routes used by the Kenya Turkana and Pokot to raid Karimojong are being sealed off. Key areas for deployment include Koten Lotea in the east of Kotido, Loro in Moroto, Mt. Moroto area, Kalapata in Dodoth, Karenga on the border with Sudan and Nakiloro. Other entry points to be monitored include Amudat, Lutukei, Nepeyes, Agor and Sereten. Nankabirwa said there would be other deployments in the affected districts of Teso region. Other measures include the deployment of 60 local defence unit men at every sub-county to take charge of internal security. The inter-ethnic cattle raids among the Karimojong have left thousands dead. After the disarmament, Karimojong herdsmen will only be allowed to graze in neighbouring districts after being cleared by district bosses. Nankabirwa said at least 7,000 illegal guns had been recovered since Museveni launched the exercise on December 2. A recent report from the US State Department said there are about 40,000 illegal guns in Karamoja region.

UPDF deploy on Kenya, Sudan border

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