Celina Ayunu, a 75 year old widow says that she was forced out of her home at Alwa parish on Sunday last week when her neighbors attacked her home and destroyed her houses, livestock and other property over suspicion that she was responsible for the death of some residents of the area who had perished in a fire.
A family of ten from Kaberamaido district is stranded at Soroti central police station following their expulsion over suspicion of witchcraft.
Celina Ayunu, a 75 year old widow says that she was forced out of her home in Olio village, Alwa parish on Sunday last week when her neighbors attacked her home and destroyed her houses, livestock and other property over suspicion that she was responsible for the death of some residents of the area who had perished in a fire.
The attack followed an incident in which five family members, including three children, died when fire gutted their hut while they were asleep.
Those who died in the April 11th fire included Richard Okwaju, 43, the head of the family and his three children; Ejang Lydia 10, Aguru Josephine 8, and Agwang Evelyn aged one year.
Okwaju’s wife, Hellen Aligo also died three days later at Lira Regional Referral Hospital where she had been rushed in critical condition.
In the inter-clan clashes that followed, one person was killed and 11 grass-thatched houses burnt.
According to Juma Hassan Nyene, the Mid Eastern Police spokesperson, Sam Eyoro 39,was beaten to death during the clashes, while his mother identified as Celina Ayunu was also beaten severely by Aligo’s relatives.
Nyene said the relatives of Aligo reportedly organized and attacked the family members of the prime suspect, Denis Odongo, who is still on the run.
But Ayunu says the residents have for long accused her of witchcraft, a practice she denies. Her body bears bruises she attributes to the assault on her and her family members in which she also sustained a fractured rib.
The family comprising young children and women are presently taking refuge at the police station cooking in the shade by daytime before retreating to the corridors of the police block to take shelter from the night’s cold.
Ayunu says she has nowhere to go and is appealing to well wishers to help her and her family members acquire land somewhere to help them resettle and begin a new life away from the vengeance of her neighbors.
She says that presently she lives on donation from well wishers and occasionally collects empty water bottles that she sells to make a living.
Aruk Maruk, the Soroti District Police Commander says that they offered the family shelter at the police station because they had nowhere to go adding that the facility is the safest place and resort for anyone with no place stay.
He says the family is free to stay at the police station until when they find a place to relocate.
kaberamaido inter clashing
kaberamaido inter clan clashes