By Simon Abaho
President Museveni has urged the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) combatants to surrender now before it’s too late.
On November 30, 2021, the UPDF and the Congolese army, FADRC launched air and artillery offensives against the ADF bases in DRC and these were followed by ground troops that have captured several camps.
Addressing the country on Friday, the president noted that with little or no resistance, the Ugandan army has occupied several ADF camps, including Kambi Ya Yua which was the biggest of all.
Museveni however noted that the operation to pursue the rebel group will continue until they are completely wiped out.
“The terrorists are now fleeing and killing villagers. That will not save them. If the Congolese Government allows us, we shall hit them even if they go up to Kisangani or Buta or beyond,”Museveni said.
“Their only choice is to surrender so that the peoples of Congo and Uganda have peace and they also get rehabilitated and learn how to earn an honest living in the four sectors of commercial agriculture, small industries, services and ICT, instead of being parasites on the population.”
President Museveni’s remarks come on the backdrop of a similar warning by the Commander of Land Forces in the UPDF, Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba a few weeks ago.
“You have seen what we (the joint UPDF/FARDC forces) are capable of. Operation Shujaa will continue until your terrorism ends. Many of your ‘leaders’ have already fled the bush and abandoned you to your fate. Surrender now before it’s too late,” Lt Gen Muhoozi said last month.
In an operation code named Shujaa, a Kiswahili word for “bravery” the UPDF together with the Congolese forces are combing Eastern DRC forests in a bid to dislodge ADF rebels from their hideouts.
The rebel group which was a few years ago declared as a terrorist group in 2014 swore allegiance to the Islamic State, a radical Sunni military group that claimed responsibility for the recent twin bombings in central Kampala.
According to the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, the ADF has used the name Madina at Tauheed Wau Mujahedeen (City of Monotheism and Holy Warriors—MTM) to emphasize its links to the Islamic State.
In 2019, the Islamic State claimed responsibility for an ADF attack and first referenced a “Central Africa Province.”