62 ADF rebels surrender as UPDF, DRC army open up new axis
What you need to know:
- For over a month now, the joint operation has captured ADF’s six main camp bases. Some ADF rebels have surrendered while others have been killed
Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) and Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC) have opened up a second axis against Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) rebels in Eastern DR Congo.
The ceremony took place on Monday after the UPDF convoy entered DR Congo through Lubiriha-Kasindi border point.
The Operation Shujja first axis was the Bubandi-Nobili border point but the second axis, according to Maj Peter Mugisha, the public information officer for operation Shujja, said is Kasindi-Butebo to Beni route.
However, Maj Mugisha said in the first phase, the joint operation managed to capture several camp bases of ADF rebels, including their main camp Kambi Ya Yua.
He added that 62 ADF rebels also surrendered to FARDC in the first phase.
During the launch of the second axis, the UPDF soldier convoy was led by Col Christopher Columbus Tumwine, the 222 Brigade Commander.
At Lubiriha customs post, UPDF soldiers were received by Col Endubu Madawa Danny, the joint operation Shujja coordinator.
Speaking to the gathering at Lubiriha, Col Tumwine, urged the people of DR Congo to maintain the support to the joint forces through reporting ADF base locations.
“The days of ADF terrorists are near, I am advising them to surrender or wait for our wrath. We are going to hunt them from every corner be it along this road or deep in the villages. We shall do this with our brothers FARDC and you the people of DR Congo,” Col Tumwine said.
Col Madawa said: “The joint forces agreed to open up this front in order to flush out ADF remnants as well as protect the Kasindi-Beni-Butembo road construction project.”
On January 15, Maj Gen Bombelle Camille Ehola and Maj Gen Kayanja Muhanga while in a meeting at Hotel Kasindi, designed a mechanism of opening the second axis to enable the joint forces attack ADF.
The term axis in military means depicting an approach route of advance.
Because of too much pressure mounted on ADF rebels, on January 11, rebels started abandoning their camps to relocate to Rwenzori mountain in DR Congo.
To reinforce the operation Shujja, last week a total of 420 UPDF soldiers, who were being trained in mountain warfare at Mountain warfare training school in Karugutu, Ntoroko District, were passed out.
DR Congo residents speaks out
Mr Muhammed Wulimwengo, 37, a resident of Kasindi Town, said the coming of Ugandan forces to join DR Congo army was a positive gesture for lasting peace.
“We are tired of running up and down for fear of ADF. They abduct and kill people at night. We want peace,” he said.
Ms Jesline Kolongo, 24, a resident, appealed to the army to first deploy in villages before deploying on Kasindi-Beni road.
On November 30, last year, the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) soldiers launched airstrikes against Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) rebels in eastern DR Congo after agreeing to start joint operations with DR Congo army.
For over a month now, the joint operation has captured ADF’s six main camp bases. Some ADF rebels have surrendered while others have been killed.