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UPDF cracks down kidnaps on Ugandan waters

By John Thawite

Added 22nd May 2018 02:11 PM

Suspected Mai Mai from the D.R Congo kidnapped six Ugandan fishermen from Lake Edward near Rwenshama fishing village in Rukungiri district.

UPDF cracks down kidnaps on Ugandan waters

Suspected Mai Mai from the D.R Congo kidnapped six Ugandan fishermen from Lake Edward near Rwenshama fishing village in Rukungiri district.

PIC: Some of the 48 Congolese arrested at Rwenshama for illgegally crossing and fishing in Uganda on Lake Edward. (Credit: John-Thawite)
 
CRIME
 
RUKUNGIRI- The Uganda People's Defence Forces (UPDF) has strongly protested  the practice of Congolese kidnapping Ugandan nationals and hijacking vessels on Ugandan waters.
 
"Such conduct must definitely stop,"  the defence spokesperson, Brigadier Richard Karemire, told New Vision yesterday.
 
Karemire was commenting on an incident in which suspected Mai Mai from the D.R Congo kidnapped six Ugandan fishermen from Lake Edward near Rwenshama fishing village in Rukungiri district at dawn on Sunday May 20. 
 
The six Uganda fishermen were near Rwenshama fishing village when their abductors reportedly pounced on and rounded them up at around 3:00 am, whisking them in engine boats to some unknown place in the DRC. 
 
Residents at Rwenshama fishing village told New Vision that they had seen torches flashing on the waters and heard the fishermen shouting for help.
 
They named those kidnapped, all from Rwenshama parish, as 22-year-old Stillison Byamugisha, Ronald Muhwezi, 38, and Allan Akampurira, 26.
 
Also abducted were Kevin Tumwine, 30, Benard Tumwesigye and Solomon Ainebyona 
 
By press time, the six Ugandans were still missing and their whereabouts unknown.
 
"Since the incident, the abductors have been using some of the phones of their captives to demand for ransom," a security source said on conditions of anonymity.
 
Since early April, the Police-backed UPDF Fish Protection Unit, commanded by Lt James Nuwagaba, has so far 72 Congolese fishermen for illegal entry and fishing on Uganda waters on Lake Edward.
 
Ugandan authorities have been asked to release the Congolese nationals after negotiations with the Congolese authorities.
 
Similar incidents have over the year been occurring on Lake Albert, which sits along the Uganda- DRC border.
 
Fights have periodically broken out between Ugandan and Congolese nationals, resulting into confiscation of fishing gear, abductions and killings.

 

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