Residents of Apaa, in Amuru district, have petitioned the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga over the continued presence of security operatives in the area.

This follows a heightened conflict in Apaa, the contested boundary between Amuru and Adjumani, which recently forced more than 200 residents out of their homes into the United Nations offices in Gulu.

The residents told Kadaga on Wednesday, 15 August 2018, that Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF), Uganda Police Force and Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) have created roadblocks and continued to intimidate the people of Acholi Ber, Juka Center, Juka C and Apaa Centre.

The lead petitioner who is an Elder in Apaa, Sabino Ochan, said that such acts contravene Parliamentary resolutions especially the recent one of 29 March, 2018 which halted evictions in the contested area until the issue is resolved by President Yoweri Museveni.

“If court has given an order of temporal injunction, Parliament halted evictions and even His Excellency the President halted the evictions, then why should Police, UWA and UPDF evict the people. We demand withdrawal of the security organs,” said Ochan.

Ochan also demanded that Government goes back to re-open or re-affirm the boundary between Amuru and Adjumani as directed by the Speaker of Parliament on 21 June, 2017.

Hon. Anthony Akol (Kilak North) said the deployment of security forces has affected the livelihoods of the people of Apaa.

“The roadblocks have denied residents access to their gardens while children cannot go to school because they have been destroyed,” Akol added.

Kadaga promised to address the issue with President Museveni.

“It seems there have been many attempts to resolve this matter but they have not been concluded. I will bring it to the attention of the President,” said Kadaga.

In 2015, Government demarcated the boundary between Amuru and Adjumani amidst protests from the people of Amuru. The leaders of Amuru said that the process only involved people from Adjumani, and that the boundary was extended inside Amuru. Since then, the area has witnessed conflicts leading to deaths, destruction of property, as well as displacement of residents.