By Timothy Eodu
The joint security forces of the Uganda Police Force (UPF) and Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) have beefed up operations around Abim and routes into the district ahead of the cultural event next week on 30th August 2022.
According to the Mt. Moroto regional police spokesperson Michael Longole, this event will attract over 10,000 people from within the region and other dignitaries from Turkana in Kenya, Toposa of South Sudan and also the Iteso among others who join for a cultural tour.
He said they have enhanced both motorized and foot patrols along major routes entering Abim, made strategic deployment along identified hotspots to curtail any interference by the Karimojong armed warriors who have been victimizing the people of Abim.
“And whoever knows he’s going to cause chaos at the event, let them be warned because we are ready to combat anything. Our intelligence team is already on the ground and our forces are doing patrols, Longole said.”
He employed people to exhibit discipline and calmed during the event and report any suspicious criminal elements who may disturb people’s peace.
Meanwhile, the UPDF 3rd Division spokesperson Isaac Oware noted that it’s the forces mandate to secure all supply routes in and out of the region.
“We shall ensure normal traffic flow of persons and goods at all times, as such there should be no cause of alarm, Oware said.”
He boosted that the current situation in the region has normalized as the joint forces continue to mop up the region.
According to Simon Nangiro, one of the incubators of the cultural Galla and also the Chairperson Karamoja Cultural Association, they have had several planning meetings towards this event and are optimistic that its return will have an impact on the current security trends in the region.
The Karamoja Cultural Event was started way back in 2014 by the Karamoja Elders Association (KEA), a body that brings together all elders from the nine (9) districts in the region with the main core of uniting the Karimojong people.
This occasion is used to discuss issues affecting the Ateker Cluster communities, showcase different talents including dressing code, food and language diversity. During the celebrations, elders council with Karamoja Cultural Association leadership to discuss how to promote culture and unite for development among others.
The celebrations will run from August 30th to 3rd September with support from the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development; Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities in collaboration with Karamoja Cultural Association, other partners and elders.