By Candia Stephen
Arua-The Member of Parliament for Obongi County Kaps Hassan Fungaroo has blamed the RDC Arua for maneuvering ways for some cattle keepers to remain despite Presidential directive to expel them by mid next month.
While addressing the press at Arua Air filed on Monday, Fungaroo said while the directive does not select the affected Balaalos, the RDC Arua Peter Debele with some accomplices are trying to frustrate the eviction of some Balaalos.
“There are some of our own leaders here in Arua who are trying to protect some of the cattle keepers at the expense of their own people, and the RDC Arua is one of them,” MP Fungaroo said.
The MP’s outburst follows reports that some of the cattle keepers are already conniving with locals in Arua, Yumbe and Moyo to offer them work as shamba boys so that they can avoid the eviction.
MP Hassan Kaps Fungaroo. All Photos by Candia Stephen
In parts of Yumbe and Moyo, some of the Balaalos are being employed as cattle keepers in exchange for milk by the prospecting farmers.
But speaking to West Nile Press Online, Peter Debele the Resident District Commissioner Arua, has distanced himself from any maneuvers to protect some of the Balaalos saying all the LC 3 chairpersons, the GISOs and other security personnel were given a copy of the letter from President Museveni, which they are to oversee.
“We are soon going to the field to check on the compliance to this directive by the Balaalos and those who have opted to remain will do so at their own risk,” Debele said.
The RDC further explained that: “We have asked our Police and GISOs to go to the affected areas and give us a report, but according to what I hear, some of the Balaalos in Rhino Camp are already leaving ahead of the 15th March deadline.”
Accused: The Arua RDC, Peter Debele.
However reports are that the Balaalos who were in the region before and are tending to the animals of the locals will remain.
Recently the MP for Lower Madi Ismail Ogama decried the menace and destruction to crops caused by the Balaalo cattle, adding that their efforts to evict them was being frustrated by some locals who rent their land to the cattle keepers.
President Museveni, while on a Country tour to rally people to support the Land Amendment Bill in West Nile pledged to direct the army to peacefully return the Balaalos to where they came from.
Early last month, the president wrote a letter to RDCs of the affected districts directing for the eviction of the Balaalos by 15th March lest they are forcefully returned to their home districts by force.