Pastoral Communities flee Conflicts

2099 Views Moroto, Uganda

In short
Security reports indicate that the Turkana have fled about 100 Kilometers to Lodwar town inside Kenya, while Karimojong have moved 40 kilometers South of Moroto district.

More than 8000 families along the Uganda-Kenya border have fled their homes because of the escalating cross border cattle rustling between Karimojong and Turkana. Security reports indicate that the Turkana have fled about 100 Kilometers to Lodwar town inside Kenya, while Karimojong have moved 40 kilometers South of Moroto district.
 
 
The Karimojong have pitched camp at Nakonyen general grazing area, a few Kilometers from Nakapiripirit district. The most affected are Tepeth herdsmen from Tapac Sub County in Moroto District. Fighting between the Turkana and Karimojong broke out three weeks ago leaving 15 people dead during a raiding mission in Lokwakipi, Lokiriama and Namoruputh areas in Kenya’s Loima district.
 

Mike Lomerinyang, the LC V councilor for Tapac Sub County says that the conflict has affected several homes living residents without food or access to basics to life. He says that most of the families are on the move because of the heightened tensions. Lomerinyang says the pastoralists decided to flee their homes for fear or losing their animals to Turkana warriors.  He says the villages that have migrated include Lomelan, Natorongol, and Nakuliet among others.


Emmanuel Imana a local leader in Western Turkana tells Uganda Radio Network that several health centers and schools have closed in the area. He identifies some of the affected primary schools like Lokwakipi, Looya and Lorengikipi. Imana says that both parents and their children have left the area forcing the school authorities to close.
 
 
He appeals to the pastoral communities to stay calm and embrace peace. The North Eastern Regional Police Commander Okot Obwona advises the Karimojong to desist from saying action will be soon taken against them. He says peace efforts are underway to get Turkana community to dialogue with their counterparts in Karamoja.

 

About the author

Olandason Wanyama
Olandason Wanyama is the Karamoja region bureau chief. Amudat, Nakapiripirit, Moroto, Abim, Kotido and Kaabong districts fall under his docket. Wanyama has been a URN staff member since 2012.

The former teacher boasts of 20 years journalism experience. Wanyama started out as a freelance writer for the Daily Monitor newspaper in 1991 in Entebbe. Wanyama also wrote for the army publication Tarehe Sita, the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) magazine and The New Vision. While not on the beat, Wanyama taught child soldiers at Uganda Airforce School-Katabi.

Wanyama is very interested in conflict reporting, climate change, education, health and business reporting. He is also an avid photographic chronicler of vanishing tribal life in the East African region.