By Juma Magino
At least 305 people claiming to be victims of insurgency in Busia District have petitioned President Yoweri K. Museveni seeking compensation for the atrocities committed against them by a rebel group known as “Force Obote Back Again- FOBA” in the late 1980s.
The victims raised their concern yesterday, 11/4/2023 while meeting the District Resident Commissioner Mr. Michael Kibwika, at Macho-Chango Hall in Busia Municipality, Busia District.
As early as January 1986, local leaders prepared for an uprising led by Nelson Omwero and Charles Korokoto, they organized a rebel group known as “Force Obote Back Army” or “Force Obote Back Again” (FOBA). However, FOBA quickly began to lose popular support and to splinter after beginning its uprising.
The first counterinsurgency operations by the NRA, now the new national army, came late in February 1986. NRA units rounded up civilians and suspected remnants of the recently defunct UNLA in Tororo District.
However, Led by their Chairperson, Mr. Stephen Sasaki, the victims of the insurgency in Busia claimed the government had earlier promised to compensate the category of those people who were greatly affected who among them include members of the Local Resistance Councils- RCs namely, RCI, & RCIIs. He says they have not been compensated to date.
Sasaki added that many of them lost their property, lives of their loved ones, and others faced torture which resulted into permanent disability on their bodies. According to him, it is very unfair to hear that the government has compensated victims of the same in other regions like Lango, Acholi and Teso leaving Bukedi sub region unattended too.
Zakariya Wanyama, a victim of insurgency, told our reporter that he lost 3 of his family members which included his father following an attack at their residence in Nangwe Village, Dabani Sub County. He says he managed to escape the rebels but lost his hand during the process.
On his part, the RDC, revealed to this reporter that the government is aware of the victims’ concerns. He said that his office recently received communication from the office of the Presidential Press Secretary directing him to verify names and details of all the victims.
He asked for calmness and assured them that their issue is under consideration through the security agencies that are harmonizing the list which will be submitted to the office of the President.