ARUA. The police of Arua is holding a woman for allegedly stealing a four-year child.

The woman whose identity has been held by police due to ongoing investigations is alleged to have stolen the child from Andivu-Tivu B village, Ajono parish in Vurra sub-county.

The in-charge of Police Child and Family protection unit Arua, Mr Jimmy Anguyo Baiga said the case was reported to police by the child’s mother, Ms Stella Drijaru on 26th of September made the Police Criminal Investigations Department (CID) keep tracing the matter.

Police arrested the suspect at midday of Monday while on her way from Police health Centre three after being traced for over a week.

Her arrest came after a tip-off from locals of Muru cell, Pangisa ward, River Oli division who spotted the child in the area.

Anguyo said investigations are ongoing into the matter so that the suspect is taken to court.

He called upon parents to be vigilant about the safety of their children as the issue of child theft and trafficking is serious in the communities of the West Nile region.

According to father of the child, Mr Michael Aguta, before the suspect ran way with the boy, she was introduced to his home by a friend from the village of Rendo in mid-September.

He said the suspect claimed to have got lost from Yumbe where she stayed with her stepmother for five years and that she was being mistreated, a reason she was looking for ways of reaching her mother in Nebbi district.

Aguta said while preparing to escape with the child, the suspect requested the boy to escort her to fetch water at a nearby borehole point where she decided to escape with the boy leaving the Jerrycan behind.

The suspect claims to be 14 years of age but police say she could be about 20.

But Anguyo said most child traffickers often claim to be underage so that when they clock 18 while in prison, they can be released.

Residents and passersby, however, flocked the police station after the news went around that a child trafficker had been arrested with many wanting to have a glimpse of the suspect.

Residents 07 10 19Residents gather around the child and family protection department at Arua CPS.