More than 80 people have been arrested for illegal entry into Uganda. The group, which reportedly crossed into the Ugandan territory through Nyakabande Sub County in Kisoro district, was arrested during an operation commanded by Kisoro District Police Commander Christopher Ruhunde early today.
Ruhunde says that the operation followed public outcry on insecurity which has resulted in an increase in cases of burglary, theft and assault, among others. He adds that the majority of those arrested had no identifications, while a sizeable number was found in bars, during working hours.
Those arrested include 40 nationals of Rwanda and 28 from the Democratic Republic of Congo. At least 15 of them were Ugandans. Ruhunde, however, adds that although the majority of those arrested are Rwandans, the operation has nothing to do with the ongoing tension between Uganda and Rwanda.
The two countries have been at loggerheads since the beginning of this year when Kigali closed the one-stop-border post at Gatuna and advised trucks from Uganda to enter Rwanda through Kagitumba-Mirama Hills post in Ntungamo district.
But days after the closure of the border, Rwandan officials accused Uganda of illegally detaining their nationals. They advised their nationals against entering Uganda on grounds that their safety couldn’t be guaranteed. There have been various efforts to end the stalemate without success.
On November 27, 2019, 35 people, including 32 Rwandan and three Congolese nationals were deported for illegal entry into Uganda. The deportees were arrested in a joint security operation conducted by the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces-UPDF and Police, in the areas of Russia, MuLine and Karumena in Kisoro district.
A similar operation conducted on November 28, 2019, netted 83 DRC and Rwandan nationals in Kabale district. They were travelling in a bus registration number UAV 118U belonging to Bismarkan Coaches on their way to Kampala from Kisoro district. They included 48 women, 20 children and 15 men.