Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo | URN | Six Ugandans are incarcerated and languishing in prison in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The Ugandans mainly from Lango Sub-region were detained in Aruu Prison since April 2018 and to date, they have never been tried in court.
Internal security officials from Arua that visited the prisoners in Aruu’ identified the Ugandans as Francis Omara and Odong Omara all from Lira who were arrested for allegedly stealing 9 million US Dollars from a gold dealer in a Lodge in Ariwara town.
The others are Nyeko Angako, Leo Odong, Kenneth Ochan and Hussein Swaib whose places of origin have not been established due to lack of identification documents. These reportedly broke into UNHCR stores in Aruu and stole three motorcycles and computers.
Stephen Dravu, the Deputy District Internal Security Officer-DISO Arua confirmed the detention of the Ugandans in Aruu and said the Congolese authorities told them that they do not have the jurisdiction to try the suspects and are waiting to transfer them to Bunia where they can be tried.
He also noted that from the time they were arrested, no relatives have bothered to follow them up.
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According to sources this publication spoke to who have links in DRC, many Ugandans, who are engaged in illegal businesses have been arrested and detained in ungazetted detention facilities in Eastern DRC.
The sources also disclosed that because of too much money demanded by the Congolese security authorities, many remain incarcerated without trial for very long periods leading to death.
“Those whose relatives follow them and pay the required money are able to secure release of them since government of Uganda cannot help in such a case where there are no proper documents,” a source told this publication in relation to the detained Ugandans in DRC.