Two UPDF soldiers among the total of four killed by Karamoja warriors

Monday, July 3, 2023

Confirmed reports indicate that a group of unidentified individuals suspected to be Jie warriors has carried out a deadly attack in Uganda’s Karamoja Sub Region, resulting in the deaths of four individuals, including a local leader and two UPDF officers.

According to authorities, the warriors allegedly had around six AK-47 guns in their possession when they opened fire at Lopuyo Trading Centre. Among the victims was Moses Lomuria, the chairperson of Longaroe Sub County LC3. Additionally, Lieutenant Issa Mayende and Private David Mwanika, both affiliated with the 43 Battalion under Brigade 3 infantry division, lost their lives during the 3pm assault, as stated by UPDF 3rd division deputy spokesperson, Major Moses Amuya. The fourth individual killed was Peter Lokol, a civilian who was in the company of the military personnel, carrying a briefcase. Lokol had played a crucial role in mediating peace talks between the suspected armed warriors and the security forces in an effort to pacify Kotido District and Karamoja, as mentioned in a statement by the UPDF.

The attack has been deemed “regrettable” by Paul Lokol Lotee, the chairperson of Kotido District LCV, who disclosed that intelligence reports indicated that the warriors had been pursuing Lokol due to suspicions of him being an informant for the UPDF. Lotee also highlighted Lokol’s dedication to development, noting that he had successfully lobbied for a water project worth UGX 900 million from UNICEF. Unfortunately, Lokol’s life was cut short before he could witness the fruition of his efforts, Lotee lamented.

Major Amuya confirmed that the perpetrators behind the attack are still at large, though efforts are underway to apprehend them. The District Resident Commissioner (RDC) of Kotido, Ambrose Onoria, expressed his dismay over the incident, emphasizing that it occurred during a period when they were striving for peace among the nomadic pastoralist communities of Tanzania and Kenya. Onoria urged the armed Jie warriors to surrender, cautioning that those involved in criminal activities would face the full force of the law.

This recent attack took place just three weeks after a peace meeting convened by the UPDF’s high-ranking officials from the 3rd division, along with local police, in neighboring Napak District. The meeting aimed to urge the Karimojong people to put an end to gun violence. Over the past five years, hundreds of Ugandans have lost their lives in the Karamoja Sub Region due to attacks carried out by armed warriors. These violent incidents have also led to the theft of thousands of livestock.



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