Ex-soldiers Meeting in Budaka Turns Chaotic

955 Views Budaka, Eastern Region, Uganda

In short
Angulo says the group descended on Kajara and his accomplices and tried to block them from removing the guards.

There was confusion at Budaka district headquarters on Wednesday after a fight broke out among ex-soldiers. Early this week, Arthur Mboizi, the Budaka District invited the ex-soldiers for a meeting to harmonize their working relationship.
Bonifansi Angulo, a veteran says that all was well until, Yunusu Kajara, the who claims to be head of the Veterans in Budaka showed up for the meeting and attempted to replace the security guards deployed at the main gate. 

According to Angulo, Kajara claimed that the two guards his office deployed to take charge of security at the district headquarters were not respecting his orders and had turned against his administration.
He accused them of paying more allegiance to Arthur Mboizi, the Budaka District LC V chairman who he accused of orchestrating plans to remove him from office. Kajara demanded that the two guards leave and he deploys those loyal to his administration. This didn't go down well with a group of veterans opposed to Kajara.
Angulo says the group descended on Kajara and his accomplices and tried to block them from removing the guards. They also accused Kajara and his group of trying to sabotage the meeting. According to Angulo, the two groups engaged in a bitter exchange of words that culminated into physical confrontations.

Kajara's group was beaten and chased away. Angulo says it took the intervention of Akim Kyengabo, a district councilor to calm down the situation as the npro-Kajara group scampered into different directions. Arthur Mboizi, the Budaka LC V chairman and Resident District Commissioner Geoffrey Macho arrived late after the fight. 

The meeting proceeded normally without Kajara and his group. Mboizi confirmed to URN there was a physical confrontation between the two factions but said the situation was calmed immediately. He said he called the meeting to resolve the leadership wrangles amongst the veterans. He however declined to disclose the outcome of the meeting.

In November last year, more than 200 veterans across the district petitioned the LC5 chairman to intervene into the leadership crisis, abuse of office, corruption, and bribery against the pro-claimed reserve force officials in the district led by Kajara.

The veterans accused Bulukani Guloba II and Yunusu Kajara together with others of fleeing them of huge sums of money, sexual harassment and abuse of office among others. This came to the limelight after Private Olympia Kasa, one of the veterans petitioned the office of the Elgon Regional Reserve Force in Mbale accusing their bosses of sexually abusing her, extorting Ugx 100.000 from each veteran who was recruited Into the Arrow People's Local Defence Force to obtain a certificate as qualification to be deployed to Somalia.

The two have since denied the allegations. The defunct Arrow People's Local Defence Force was a local militia group established by government in Pallisa at the height of the Lord's Resistance Army activities in the region before Budaka district was created.

Upon this background, Mboizi traversed the entire district meeting veterans to hear their concerns, which put him in direct confrontation with the RDC.


About the author

Denis Olaka
Denis Olaka is the URN bureau chief for Lira, in northern Uganda. Apac and Otuke fall under his docket. Olaka has been a URN staff member since 2011.

Olaka started his journalism career in 2000 as a news reporter, anchor, and then editor for Radio Lira in Lira district. He was subsequently an editor with Lira's Radio Wa in 2004 and Gulu district's Mega FM.

He was also a freelance writer for the Daily Monitor and Red Pepper newspapers.

Olaka's journalism focuses on politics, health, agriculture and education. He does a lot of crime reporting too.