NEBBI. The Nebbi resident district commissioner (RDC) has apologized to the people of Agule over the long standing land conflict in the area.
Mr Bob Williams Labeja faulted the district security personnel for failing to resolve the conflict which recently resulted in to the forceful eviction of the residents from their ancestral land in Ndew Sub County.
Speaking during a meeting with the locals on Thursday, Labeja noted that before their eviction, the people of Agule sought for intervention from security officials and different district leaders but nothing was done to save them.
“What happened on May 15, 2018 that resulted into the killing of Gabriel Jakisa was unfortunate and I’m very sorry about it. The situation wouldn’t have reached to that extend had the security personnel responded in time,” Labeja said.
He observed that resettling the affected people has taken over six months and yet they have been left homeless with nothing to hold on to as if there is no government.
But Labeja promised that he is going to work hard to see that the people of Agule resettle on their land before the end of January, warning that anyone who tries to stop them will be arrested.
However, Mr Bosco Okwai, the LC III chairman Ndew sub county said the root cause of the land dispute started in 2013 when the Chief of Acer, Festo Owilo Ouchi Chivur attempted to lease over 500 acres of land belonging to the people of Agule.
He said since that time, they have been struggling to settle the dispute but the people of Acer Owilo have continued to remain adamant.
“On the fateful day in May, the people of Acer Owilo gathered at Owilo primary school and rung the school bell and blew trumpets at around 8:00am in the morning as they asked the Acer women who are married to Agule men to crossover, saying it was time for war,” Okwai narrated.
“When I called police, they took about 4 hours to come and that was when Jakisa was killed. Police just came and picked his body and left without stopping the looting and torching of houses which was ongoing,” he added.
However, Mr Justus Toshobya, the Nebbi district police commander said although police was slow to respond, they managed to record statements, a reason 14 cases were opened against the perpetrators who are now battling different charges in court.