Traders blame Obongi security operatives as thugs raid shops

Traders blame Obongi security operatives as thugs rob over 12 shops clean

BY ANDREW COHEN AMVESI        

October 3, 2022

OBONGI. The business community in Obongi town council, Obongi district has come out to blame security operatives for the continued robbery of their merchandise in Obongi town.

This is after thugs broke into more than 12 shops in Obongi town on the night of Monday 26th September 2022 and walked away with goods and cash worth millions of shillings without any intervention from police and other sister security forces within the town.

The incident allegedly occurred days after police had been forcing traders to close their shops at 8:00pm despite the ban imposed on curfew more than a year ago.

 

Fungaroo stresses a point during the traders’ meeting over the robbery in Obongi over the weekend

Speaking during a community meeting convened in Obongi town over the weekend, traders accused security operatives of having a sinister motive by always sending them home early.

Rashul Agele, a businessman who lost over seven million shillings worth of stock to the robbers, expected the police to have intervened to save his merchandise on the fateful night.

“As police send people home, that means they might be the very people who steal people’s property and that is why they didn’t turn up for this very meeting,” Agele claimed.

Godfrey Andrua Omvia, another trader who lost an un-estimated amount of stock to the thugs also blamed the security organs for letting them down.

“I can’t tell the exact figure of my goods stolen because that day, I was just tired so, I had to shut the door and moved home, only to open the door the following morning and found most of our doors were opened at night yet the government has organs in place to protect our goods. We all do different things to support the government but if one hand is letting the system down, I can’t say much,” Andrua said.

Similarly, Rashid Aliga, the area councillor, blamed the police for failing to turn up for the security meeting that was organized to find a lasting solution to the problem.

He said invitation letters for the meeting were extended to Matata Buga, the Obongi RDC and the DPC but they both failed to show up for the meeting, an act that has raised more suspicion on the side of the locals.

During the meeting, Hassan Kas Fungaroo, Obongi County MP Emeritus wondered how thugs could drive into the town, rob people and sit to booze in the next shop before driving away without any intervention from the security forces in the area.

“The police station is just 100 to 150 meters from these buildings where the shops were broken into and the thieves operated here. They even collected alcohol and drank here when the police were at their police station. They never intervened to save the merchandise of the traders and yet during the evening hours, they chased away all the people from the town,” Fungaroo noted.

Fungaroo called for an action to be taken against the RDC and the DPC for sleeping on their job if the growing cases of insecurity are to be minimized in Obongi district in general.

However, when contacted on phone, Ignatius Dragudu, the North West Nile region police spokesperson refuted the allegation of imposed curfew by the police, saying the officers have merely been patrolling the area.

“Our officers have been conducting normal patrols in Obongi town based on the insecurity caused by thugs. This has nothing to do with curfew,” Dragudu said.

Meanwhile RDC Buga expressed ignorance about the robbery, saying the DPC never briefed him on the incident. When asked about the community meeting, Buga said he received the invitation letter on the day of the meeting yet he already had a scheduled program to attend to.

But the business community went ahead to resolve that they are going to start defying security directives to leave the town by 8pm (curfew time) at the expense of their property. They also called for the immediate transfer of the DPC and RDC for peace to prevail in the area.

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