Heavy LDU deployment scale down cattle rustling in Karamoja

Lt Gen Mbadi and Brig Joseph Balikudembe 3rd division commander (behind) inspecting a guard of honour mounted by LDUs at Olilim training school on January 24. Photo by Steven Ariong

What you need to know:

  • Mr Joseph Lomong, the Napak District LCV chairperson, said the passing out of LDUs and their consequent deployment has boosted the effort of UPDF soldiers on the ground to handle the issue of cattle theft.
  • Maj Telesphar Turyamumanya, the UPDF 3rd division spokesperson confirmed total reduction of cattle raids since the deployment of the Local Defence Unit personnel in the sub region.

The deployment of Local Defence Unit personnel to fight cattle rustlers in Karamoja sub-region in north eastern Uganda, has registered a success.

Between October 2019 and early January 2020, the Karimojong warriors resumed inter-clan cattle rustling, creating panic among the general public who had enjoyed peace for over 10 years after successful disarmament exercise.

The cattle rustling affected the region economically as tourists feared traveling to Kidepo National Park for leisure.

The leaders in the sub region blamed cattle rustling to lack of manpower by the army on the ground to deal with the armed Karimojong.

However, on January 24 UPDF passed out 3,000 Local Defence Unit personnel at Olilim army training school in Katakwi District and they were immediately deployed to various corridors of cattle rustling in Karamoja. Since then, no single case of cattle rustling has been registered.

Mr Peter Logiro, the Kotido Resident District Commissioner said since the deployment of LDUs on the ground there is a relative peace in Kotido.

“Kotido was the most affected district whereby cattle rustlers from neighbouring districts including those from Turkana in Kenya could raid daily, but for the last two weeks we have not registered any raid,” Mr Peter Logiro, the Kotido Resident District Commissioner, said.

Mr Ambrose Lotuke, the Kotido District LCV chairperson said the district had lost over 30,000 heads of cattle to rustlers since the raid broke out.

Mr Joseph Lomong, the Napak District LCV chairperson, said the passing out of LDUs and their consequent deployment has boosted the effort of UPDF soldiers on the ground to handle the issue of cattle theft.

Maj Telesphar Turyamumanya, the UPDF 3rd division spokesperson confirmed total reduction of cattle raids since the deployment of the Local Defence Unit personnel in the sub region.

“I can confirm that our LDU and UPDF soldiers are working tireless to restore peace in Karamoja sub region,” he said.

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