By Ivan Mwine
The Commander Of Land Forces of the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba, who is also the Presidential Advisor on Special Operations, has vowed to annihilate all cattle rustlers in Karamoja sub-region.
Lt. Gen. Muhoozi, who has been on a working visit in Cairo, Egypt, during which he held a meeting with President Abdel Fatah Al-Sis, issued a warning on Wednesday through his official twitter account, when he revealed that he is literally taking hell the Karimojong cattle rustlers.
Lt. Gen. Muhoozi wrote thus on twitter; “My Karimojong brothers! We have begged you to stop the life of robbery and violence. We have begged you to stop attacking your neighbours but to no avail! You have refused all our appeals! Well, now we are coming and hell is coming with us!”
He added that; “Karimojong criminals killed my soldiers in cold blood! There will be hell to pay for that!! If they want to avoid retribution they better get in touch with our RDCs and commanders in the region NOW!! Otherwise, let us see who the real men are!”
Although Muhoozi did not reveal when this onslaught on the Karimojong cattle rustlers is starting, it should however be noted that the UPDF has for a long time been conducting disarmament operations in the sub-region, aimed at ending rustling and possession of illegal arms.
During the operations over 250 suspected rustlers have been killed by the army and several guns recovered.
However, the operations intensified a days ago after the rustlers three geologists and two UPDF soldiers in Moroto District.
The attack was discovered after security forces in Moroto District recovered five bodies belonging to three geologists attached to Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development and two UPD soldiers who were attacked by suspected cattle rustlers.
The geologists, one of whom was an intern identified as Edna Musiime from Makerere University, are said to have been attacked and killed alongside their UPDF escorts on Monday afternoon as they were conducting mineral mapping in the area.
The other victims were identified as Richard Kiggwwe, the lead geologist and his colleague, Charles Olweny, while the soldiers are yet to be identified.
They had been assigned to pick soil samples from Lokisilei village in Lotisan Sub County in Moroto District and were attacked about 40 kilometers away from Moroto town.
After murdering the five, the rustlers are suspected to have fled with the two guns from the soldiers.
Brig. Joseph Balikudembe, the UPDF 3rd division commander, said that the geologists and their security escorts were attacked “out of ignorance” by the suspected rustlers who have been wreaking havoc in the sub region for years.