By Andrew Irumba
The government of the Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday surrendered 35 boat engines, plus over 5 fishing boats and gear that had been stolen from Uganda by armed Congolese militiamen.
The boat engines were robbed between from fishermen on Lake Albert February 2018 and June 2019 by Congolese militiamen from various landing sites Hoima, Kikuube, Buliisa and Kagadi districts.
However, the boat engines were recovered by the Congolese authorities in Ituri Province, in the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC) following an engagement between the Ugandan and DRCongo officials and the release of two militiamen who had been arrested in Uganda .
The recovered boat engines and boats were handed over to Ugandan security officials led by Hoima Deputy Resident District Commissioner, Richard Tabaro at a function held at Kaiso landing site on Sunday evening.
Tabaro said the boats and boat engines were returned at no cost, explaining that efforts are still on find the remaining fishing gear stolen by the militiamen.
Fred Mujuni, the Chairperson Hoima Fishing Community, said after this gesture, there is likelihood of restoring sanity on the Lake because of the ongoing dialogue between the two countries.
Pius Wakabi, the Bugahya County Member of Parliament called for joint operations between Ugandan and Congolese security officials on the Lake if attacks on Ugandan fishermen by Congolese militiamen are to be stopped.