Updated by Faith Barbara Namagembe at 10:05 EAT on Monday 28 March 2022.
Helpless residents look on as their huts burn to ashes
Over 800 people in Locheker East village in Kaabong district, northern Uganda are currently homeless after their homes were burnt to ashes by suspected armed Turkana warriors from neighbouring Kenya.The unfortunate incident in Kurao parish, Kalapata sub-county took place on Sunday morning at around 7 am. Peter Chegem, secretary of defence in Locheker village said the Turkana attacked the village, shot dead one person and burnt 50 houses and looted several items such as saucepans, sorghum, millet and maize harvests that people had stored in their granaries.
“We lacked the strength to defend ourselves because we didn’t have guns, and even the fire spread so fast given the current wind in the region,” he said.
Kalapata sub county speaker Samuel Locoro said the Turkana were acting in revenge following a raid by Dodoth boys who had gone and raided animals in the Turkana kraals.
“I understand some boys from Kalapata had gone and raided animals from Turkana kraals, so the Turkana followed the footsteps up to Locheker village, unleashing mayhem until they burnt 50 houses,” he explained.
Kaabong district chairman Jino Meri said the general insecurity in Kaabong and Karamoja sub-region at large is worrying. He said the burning of the village in Kalapata further worsens situation that the people of Kaabong go through daily.
According to Meri, many people now don’t sleep at their homes and whenever it reaches 5 pm, people leave their homes and go to sleep in the trading centres for safety. Micheal Longole the Karamoja regional police spokesperson said a team of detectives have been sent to assess the situation.
The Commander land Forces Lt General Muhoozi Kainerugaba warns “As Land Forces we are giving an ultimatum to the Turkana! They were partly responsible for the death of my soldiers (and our geologists) a few days ago! If they do not leave Uganda immediately they will get what they are looking for! We have warned them!”