Title: Uganda: Police On High Alert As Ugandans Plot to Attack Sudanese
Author: SudaneseOnline News
Date: 09-02-2013, 04:20 PM
By Zurah Nakabugo, Bernard Bakalu and Dennis Elamu, 1 September 2013
Following the crackdown on Ugandans in South Sudan, the police here has said that some people are planning retaliatory attacks on South Sudanese leaving in Kampala.
The police cites complaints from South Sudanese living in areas of Katwe, Bwaise, Makindye and Kamwokya, that Ugandans are planning to attack them.
"There is credible information that due to the expulsion of boda boda riders from South Sudan, some wrong elements are mobilising to attack Sudanese residing here to destroy their property and businesses," the Deputy Police Spokesperson Patrick Onyango told The Observer last week.
Ugandans accuse South Sudanese nationals of harassing them back in Juba, the South Sudan capital, and other areas. According to Muhammad Lukwago, a boda boda cyclist who has just returned from Juba, the South Sudanese are very hostile.
"Some of them pose as police officers and ask Ugandans to display their identity cards to establish their nationality. If they find out that you are a Ugandan, they attack you at night and assault you. They also ask you to leave immediately or surrender your motorcycle," Lukwago said.
Onyango said they had deployed heavily in city suburbs with a concentration of South Sudanese.
"We call upon Sudanese to continue reporting to police any possible attacks. We shall not fear to arrest the suspects. We shall not ban boda boda cyclists of Sudanese origin working here," Onyango said.
Hundreds of expelled Ugandan cyclists rode in groups from Juba to Kampala, a distance of about 600kms. According to an August 16, 2013 order, by the minister for Interior and Wild Life Conservation, Aleu Ayieny Aleu, government agencies were stopped from licensing motorcycles owned by foreigners in the country.
The ministerial order warned that anyone caught flouting the order would lose his/her motorcycle. The order comes on the back of increased boda boda-related thefts of passengers' properties and accidents. The Observer caught up with a convoy of motorcycles as it reached Kasana Luweero last Sunday.
"I was attacked by three Sudanese men at night and was pressured to leave or else surrender my bike, although his licence was still valid up to mid 2014," Samuel Asiimwe said as he rested on his motorcycle.
Godfrey Nsamba said that he was shocked to see five armed people in civilian clothes asking him to leave the country at night.
According to Abraham Ojok, the chairman of motorcyclists in South Sudan, the move was aimed at Ugandans. He explained that of the 5,000 registered motorcyclists, more than half are owned by foreigners. Ugandans own 1,600 followed by Eritreans and Ethiopians at over 1,200 and Kenyans at least 100.