LRA and ADF Rebels Form an Alliance

4151 Views Arua, Uganda

In short
Congolese government forces capture two suspected LRA rebels. The rebels claim an alliance has formed between the Allied Democratic Forces and Joseph Kony's LRA.

The Lord’s Resistance Army and the Allied Democratic Force have formed an alliance to fight against the Ugandan government.
 
This information was revealed this week by two members of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) who were captured by Congolese government forces in the town of Bunia.
 
The LRA fighters are 27-year-old Clovis Kayondo of Fort Portal and one only identified as Emmanuel of Ibanda town. They were arrested by the Congolese army last week and handed over to the Ugandan government on Thursday.
 
Ibrahim Abiriga, the Arua Resident District Commissioner, received the suspected rebels from the Congolese government. He says they are being held at Arua military barracks for questioning on their involvement with the LRA. They will be transferred to Kampala for possible prosecution.
 
Abiriga says the Congolese army initially arrested five men, but three of them were released when it was discovered that the had no link to the rebels.
 
In an interview from his holding cell Clovis Kayondo said he was a member of the LRA for five years. Speaking a mixture of Runyakitara, Luganda and Kiswahili, he says he was initially recruited as a rebel fighter by the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF). He claims that the ADF have formed a coalition with Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army to fight against the Ugandan government.
 
Kayondo says the rebels were initially intercepted by Congolese forces in Beni while on a mission to steal guns for another group in the Maituni Forest. He says the result was a fierce gun battle, which resulted in his capture near Bunia.
 
General Fal Tshikabwe, Commander General of Oriental Province in the Democratic Republic of Congo, says the LRA is just one of numerous rebel forces destabilizing his country. He says the increased cooperation between Uganda and Congo on combating the rebel force is helping to bring attacks in check.
 
It isn’t known exactly how many LRA fighters are in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
 
According to the Congolese Minister of Defence, Mwando Simba, there are no more than a dozen LRA in the area. He says his government’s intelligence force has found that there are just about ten or 20 LRA fighters in the area.
 
The local civil society organizations contest this report.
 
Abbot William Abiandora, president of the civil society organizations in Haut Ulele, says residents cannot travel beyond five kilometers of their homes because of fear of attack from Joseph Kony’s forces. He notes that this month alone 11 cilivians were killed, 24 were injured and 13 were abducted.
 
Abiandora says it is highly unlikely that this among of violence is the work of 10 rebels.

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About the author

Ronald Batre
Ronald Batre is so passionate about journalism that he did not wait to finish school before he started his career. This is how he started with Radio Paidha, The West Niler, Daily Monitor newspapers and later with Radio Pacis as Assistant News Editor.

To be allowed to practice his passion, Batre had struck a deal with his parents. He would complete his education. He kept his word and went through school while suporting himself with his journalism.

Entering the workplace so young attuned Batre to the plight of the youth and those who seek employment. Apart from that, he is interested in reporting about politics, local government, business and the environment. A witness to some of the destructive impact of the Lord's Resistance Army rebellion in northern Uganda, Batre is interested in reporting about peace building efforts too.

Uganda Radio Network's former Gulu bureau chief, Batre is now based in Kampala. He is URN's main politics correspondent. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.