In Napak, group of suspected Karamojong cattle rustlers from Nabilatuk district on Thursday daringly attacked a heavily protected kraal under the joint security forces of police and army and took off with 40 heads of cattle.
The incident that took place at 11pm in Lokitelarengan village, Kalokengel west parish in Lotome sub county in Napak district has left residents questioning the benefit of having security personnel in the region. The forces were deployed to protect people with their properties.
Pascal Lote, a resident of Lokitelarenga village said the rustlers outsmarted the security forces and victoriously drove out the animals from the heavily protected kraal.
“Its really challenging my thinking for this looks like it was organized between rustlers and security personnel because this kraal has a total number of ten soldiers and ASTU police and on top of that it is just near the army detach but these rustlers drove animals away as if security was not noticing,” he said.
“I don’t know where to start life from because these three cows have been my livelihood and saviour from this hunger because I was getting milk from them just for survival,” the devastated mother said.
Micheal Longole, the Karamoja regional police spokesperson confirmed the incident saying the joint security are following the foot marks of the animals which he said are moving towards Nabilatuk district.
He said the security could not follow the raiders at night since they could not know the number of raiders.
“You know these rustlers are clever, they move in four groups, one group carries bows and arrows, another group moves with sticks, the third group use mobile phones for coordinating while the fourth group moves with guns,” he said.
Longole explained that the group that moves with sticks, their work is to drive animals while those with bow and arrows escorts those driving animals.
He added that the group which is armed lays ambush against forces, tracking them while those coordinating using mobile phones give updates to the warriors about the movements of the security forces.
“With all that background, our security personnel had to remain put and wait till morning and they are now following the animals and I believe by the close of the day we would have gotten back all those cows,” he said.
URN has learnt that this is not the first time for the Karamojong cattle rustlers to successfully attack heavily protected kraals in Karamoja. Last week, suspected Jie rustlers from Kotido attacked an army-protected kraal in Lotisan sub-county in Moroto district and raided about 50 heads of cattle.
The incidents of cattle rustling have persisted in Karamoja despite the presence of heavily armed police and army carrying out disarmament exercise in Karamoja region.