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Thursday,December 03,2020 11:21 AM

Moyo riots over border

By Vision Reporter

Added 4th September 2009 03:00 AM

Moyo town was yesterday thrown into chaos as residents demonstrated against the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) attack on farmers in Lefori sub-county on the Uganda-Sudan border on Tuesday.

Moyo town was yesterday thrown into chaos as residents demonstrated against the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) attack on farmers in Lefori sub-county on the Uganda-Sudan border on Tuesday.

By Ezaruku Draku Franklin and Frank Mugabi

Moyo town was yesterday thrown into chaos as residents demonstrated against the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) attack on farmers in Lefori sub-county on the Uganda-Sudan border on Tuesday.

Hundreds of demonstrators braced the scorching sun to trek the murram road up to the district headquarters, where Moyo sub-county residents joined them. Local authorities said armed soldiers entered Lefori in the afternoon and harassed farmers in Gwere parish and uprooted crops.

They allegedly ordered the residents to vacate the area, which they said was part of Sudan. The raiders reportedly fired bullets in the air to scare anyone who resisted their orders.

Accusing the Government of “abandoning them amid foreign aggression”, huge crowds marched to the district headquarters where they presented a petition to LC5 chief Peter Iku Dolo, demanding immediate action.

Dolo urged the protesters to remain calm as a solution was being worked out. He said the matter would be resolved through diplomatic means at the central government level.

His advice was rejected by the angry residents who booed him down. Several residents blamed the district leaders for not being on the ground.

The crowd proceeded to Afoji border post where they cut down two huge trees which they used to block the road.

The border post is largely used by Sudanese entering and leaving Uganda through Moyo district.

The residents vowed to guard the place until the Sudanese forces stopped harassing them. Several shops owned by Sudanese nationals in Moyo town were locked up by the residents.

Security in the town has been beefed up. UPDF soldiers from the 409 Brigade took over control of the road leading to the border after dispersing the crowd. More soldiers were deployed as furious residents headed to the main hospital to evict Sudanese.

Army spokesperson Felix Kulayigye yesterday said the Prime Minister’s office was handling the matter, assuring that the incident was “not a security threat.”

Several local leaders condemned the SPLA raid. Moyo sub-county councillor Hilda Abiyo demanded immediate action by the Government.

She threatened to convince the council to pass a resolution expelling all Sudanese patients from Moyo Hospital and other health centres in the district.

She also threatened to move a motion prohibiting Sudanese candidates in different Ugandan schools from sitting UNEB examinations in the district.

For decades, the northern border districts have sheltered Sudanese refugees, many of whom have also attended school there.

The sub-county vice-chairperson of Lefori, Elio Beatrice, said such incidents greatly affected development programmes. She appealed to the Government to provide security to the farmers.

The tension in Moyo is threatening to spread to neighbouring Adjumani, where there is also a big Sudanese community.

Moyo riots over border

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