Security agencies in Northern Uganda are hunting for suspected Karimojong cattle rustlers who shot dead two UPDF soldiers in Agago District.
The attack took place in Paimol, Lai Muto town council in the wee hours of Wednesday, September 7, 2022, where the armed rustlers also made off with several heads of cattle.
UPDF fifth Division spokesperson Amos Nsamba also said several other soldiers were wounded in the attacks.
He identified the deceased as Patrick Odong and Bashir, both attached to the 5th Division in Acholi-Pii in Pader district.
He expressed confidence that they would arrest the culprits.
Another attack from Karamojong raiders was also reported in Lapono Sub County, leaving two civilians dead.
This comes as Agago and its neighbouring districts in East Acholi are registering resurgence of armed cattle thieves from neighbouring Karamoja region.
A section of cattle farmers in Agago district wants UPDF deployment in the area to protect them from cattle rustlers from Karamoja
Recently, State Minister for Internal Affairs Gen David Muhoozi said intelligence agencies have been tasked to identify the hotspots/crossing points of Karimojong warriors into Agago District and the security gaps so that the UPDF can be deployed.
Early this year, six livestock farmers in Lacwa East, Leladwong and Locum villages in Paimol Sub County sustained severe injuries after being shot with bows and arrows in a foiled cattle theft by Karamojong rustlers.
Relatedly, a farmer identified as Willy Oyet a resident of Pakinyi village in Rudi village, Agoro Sub County was severely beaten and left for dead by suspected cattle thieves from South Sudan.
The region has experienced continuous waves of cattle raids mainly fueled by revenge attacks among the communities of Jie, Bokora, Pian, Dodoth, and Matheniko.
Despite the heavy security deployment in the mineral-rich north eastern region — with the First Son who doubles as the UPDF commander Land Forces, Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, promising hell to the cattle rustlers — armed attacks on civilians and soldiers by suspected Karimojong warriors have continued.
In July last year, UPDF and Police renewed their disarmament operations and arrested several suspected cattle rustlers. By March 2022, the forces said they had recovered 209 guns amidst resistance from the suspected rustlers.