Museveni Vows To Crush Cattle Rustlers As He Camps In Karamoja Amidst Escalating Attacks

By Uganda Online Media

Kampala: President Museveni has camped in the Eastern and North Eastern regions to devise new means to deal with Karamojong cattle rustlers.

Over the last two months, the suspected warriors have staged several attacks in both Eastern and Northern districts killing several people and taking with their cattle and other properties which has prompted Museveni to hold a meeting with security forces in the area to curb the current threat of re-insurgence of cattle-rustlers.

During the meeting that was held at State Lodge in Kapchorwa on Wednesday, Museveni applauded security forces who have since doubled deployments in the region coupled with intelligence-led operations to curb cattle rustling, he however noted that this has not wiped out the wrong elements.

“We thought this could react and destroy raiding parties and abort their missions. However, cattle rustling is now commercial, when people steal cows, they want to sell them for slaughter. There are not many roads here, mount roadblocks so that they are intercepted,” Museveni said during the meeting with security at State Lodge in Kapchorwa on Wednesday.

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According to Museveni, there are increasing crimes including murder and rape, police must establish rapid response units per sub-county to address the situation.

“Even without enough manpower, we can deal with that problem. The bigger man-power, the bigger wage bill! We can’t build roads and other infrastructure if we have to deal with cattle thieves,” he said.

The rustlers have since changed raid tactics in a network that involves criminals with guns, bows and arrows, stick-squads that drive the cows and corroborators (spy network).

The resurgence of violence has left a trail of death, rape, and destruction, threatening the peace and security in the region with severe attacks on residents day and night.

The nine districts of Karamoja had a decade of peace after the army disarmed gun-wielding rustlers in the early 2000s but in the last two years, the raiders have resurfaced, killing hundreds of people and stealing the cattle which are their livelihoods.

 A fresh disarmament campaign launched by the army in July 2021 has so far failed to stem the violence while drawing allegations of human rights abuses by the same security operatives deployed by the government.

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