- Soldiers from the Uganda People Defense Forces (UPDF) patrol near the border, file photo (AFP)
Private Ibrahim Congo, attached to Gbari army detach, died of gunshot wounds sustained in shoot-out with the armed men who drove away more than 800 cattle, security officials told Daily Monitor.
“It is unfortunate that one of our soldiers got injured and died after during the time they were pursing the militias. We shall keep on the alert and civilians should alert us in time so that we react in time,” Maj. Teresphor Tuhame, the UPDF 4th Division spokesperson, said.
Initial reports reportedly suggested that the raiders may have succeeded because Uganda’s security deployment was lax and reinforcement delayed for few troops who pursued the invaders.
This information could, however, not be independently verified.
Meanwhile, South Sudan rebels claimed insecurity along Uganda-South Sudan border was being caused by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), who allegedly raided several heads of cattle from Metu sub-county in the Ugandan northern district of Moyo.
“There is no such thing as cattle rustlers in the Madi or Kuku areas. These are peaceful communities being destroyed by the regime [in Juba]. These cattle raiders came from across the Nile in and around Pageri and Lobonok where they are herding thousands of cattle belonging to Salva Kiir, Kuol Manyang Juuk, Marial Chinoung and Makuei Lueth,” Gabriel Paul Lam, the rebel’s deputy military spokesperson told Sudan Tribune by phone on Tuesday.
“Therefore, the regime should take responsibility for raiding cattle of innocent civilians in Metu. Some of these cattle raided can be found amongst the cattle of Salva Kiir and his cliques in Pageri and Lobonok,” he added, although such claims could not be verified.
The rebels have also declined an offer for a national dialogue meeting initiated by the governor of South Sudan’s Yei River state.
Governor Emmanuel Adil Anthony has asked the rebels to lay down their guns and join talks with government in a grass root approach.
However, the armed opposition faction loyal to ex-first vice president, Riek Machar declined the approach, insisting the High-level Revitalization forum was the best chance to end the ongoing civil war.