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Poverty, Corruption blamed for the return of Balalo Pastoralists in Acholi Land

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By Ivan Tolit Ivan

A section of cultural and political leaders in Acholi Sub region have blamed the return of Balalo pastoralists in the area on poverty and corruption.

The region has seen an influx of the Balalo pastoralists with their animal in the last one month, six month after they evicted from the area following the directives by the President Yoweri Museveni in November 2, 2021.

The directives came after leaders and community members of the Acholi raised concerns that the Balalo herdsmen had illegally occupied their land in the area and caused insecurity as well as fueling land wrangles and destroying their crops.

Robert Akena, the chairperson Kal Pupano Clan in Palaro Sub County said the residents have invited the Balalo back because of poverty and laziness.

He said people don’t want to work and see Balalo as their sources of money since they give them quick money through hiring of their land.

Gilbert Olanya, the Kilak South Member of Parliament Amuru District blamed corruption by security operatives and poverty for the return of the Balaalo in huge number in the region.

According to Olanya, evicting Balaalo pastoralists won’t be an easy thing, unless community change their attitude towards work to fight poverty than waiting for money from Balalo.

Brigadier General Bony Bamwiseki, the UPDF Fourth Division Commander has equally admitted that poverty and corruption are the major reasons the pastoralists have defied presidential directives.

He adds that they are e stuck because they can’t evict them since the community claim to be the owners of the cattle that are back.

It is estimated that the numbers of animals that have returned has doubled the over 20,000 evicted last years by the security.

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