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Five Mistakes Museveni Gov’t Has Failed To Iron Out To End Gun Violence In Karamoja

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By Steven Ariong

MOROTO: Insecurity in Karamoja sub region has been persistent and recurrent for decades now, despite several attempts to snuff it out by the government. So far the Museveni government has carried out three rigorous disarmament in Karamoja.

The first was in 2001, the second was in 2003 and the third was launched on 17th of July 2021.

All these were pushed with the aim of securing a peaceful Karamoja, but the security situation is not ending, simply because government is  treating symptoms of removing guns but it has not done thorough investigations on why Karimojongs still carry out raids.

The second mistake is that the security advisers to President Museveni have failed to give detailed reports on how to get rid of guns in Karamoja using a voluntary means. All these advisers seem to be interested in seeing Karamoja in total chaos so that they continue benefiting.

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The 3rd mistake that government has failed to avoid is conducting meetings with only political leaders, religious leaders and security leaders of Karamoja and sideline the real youth carrying out criminality.

The 4th mistake is that government keeps on awarding criminals items that they didn’t request for. It should be noted that the decision to distribute goats and iron sheets to the youth in Karamoja was not a decision that came out from the Karimojong youth themselves it was something which was imposed on them by some political leaders and those in the office of the prime minister.

The fifth greatest mistake the government has continued making is carrying out physical disarmament and forgetting to carry out mindset disarmament.

Benson Owili a resident of Alerek sub county in Abim district noted that as long as government keeps quiet from carrying out mindset disarmament among the Karimojong, the conflict will continue in Karamoja. Owili further advises government to stop deciding on what’s good for Karamoja without involving the Karimojongs themselves

“What government is doing especially arresting and prosecuting criminals in Karamoja is a good move, but it will not be sustainable because the same rustlers return back after finishing their jail term and they come back to continue with criminal activities”-Owili has advised

It has also failed to notice that there is a need to sustain the deployment of soldiers in the region and also forget to deploy troops to monitor the  international borders well knowing that Turkana pastoralists of Kenya who live only 30 kilometers away from Karamoja, were armed.

Francis Angella another conflict resolution worker pointed out that, government needs to do operations review with the leaders of the region.

“There’s need for government to always sit down with all the stakeholders and review the progress of the operation and this is where may ideas will be generated”-Angella noted.

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