West Nile: URA kills two people in three days

This is not the first such incident.

By Moses Alinda

Arua: The Uganda Revenue Authority enforcement team has killed two people during their enforcement in Arua city and Koboko district in a space of three days.

During the Koboko incident that happened on Friday last week, the deceased, who was shot dead by the enforcement team, was identified as 24-year-old Jackson Geriga from Menya village, Ponura parish, Lobule sub-county in Koboko district.

Similarly, during enforcement in Arua City on Tuesday evening, Margret Ondia, a resident of Ayoo village in Adra parish, Offaka subcounty, Madi Okollo district, died in an accident after the drivers of URA vehicles parked and blocked half of the road next to Rhema hospital as they were chasing a fuel dealer and left two others hospitalized.

Those in the hospital are Patrick Bulea, who was riding motorcycle number UFP 940T, which was carrying the deceased, and her sister Chandiru Beatrice.

According to Wama Sylivio, the husband of the deceased, he was shocked after receiving a call from Christopher Oliya, who told him that his wife had come to pick up parish development modal money from the bank together with her sister Chandiru Beatrice, who had been knocked down by the URA team, and the wife had died.

During the heated meeting in the office of the deputy resident city commissioner chaired by Ezama Ham Muzamil, the deputy resident city commissioner, between the leaders and URA officials, the following resolutions were made: the Uganda Revenue Authority should stop field operations immediately until the high-level meeting with the Commissioner General scheduled for Saturday this week.

‘’Uganda Revenue Authority must support the bereaved family through the burial process, foot the expenses, and also take care of the two hospitalized people,’’ Ezama said, adding that the police should do a thorough investigation into the incident and produce a report of their findings.

He also noted that the operations commander should produce the officers who were in the two vehicles and the drivers who parked in the middle of the road to make statements to the police, among others.

Ronald Debo, chairman of the Chamber of Commerce in Arua City, says the Uganda Revenue Authority should find an alternative way of collecting taxes in a harmonious way rather than causing tragic incidents in the region.

Speaking on behalf of URA, colonel Cassette Wamundu, the head of intelligence at URA, they said they are ready to support the family with burial expenses and that they will not interfere with the police investigations in the matter.

This is not the first such incident.

In March 2021, the URA enforcement team shot one person in Koboko district, and in June 2021, an enforcement officer was beaten to death in Ayivu East after it was alleged that the vehicle of the URA knocked on someone in Ayivu East.

In September, two incidents happened in Arua district, which left two people injured and one person, Jurua Bosco, a resident of Arivu subcounty, shot dead by the URA enforcement team.

In March 2022, a boda boda rider lost his life after he was shot dead in Koboko by the URA enforcement team.

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