NOVEMBER 24, 2009: 34 Kony Rebels Surrender to Army

34 Kony Rebels Surrender to Army

SOURCE: Monitor

By James Eriku

Gulu — The army yesterday paraded 10 former fighters of the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) who surrendered last week to government soldiers.

The development means the recent military operation code named 'Operation Lightening Thunder' against the LRA in South Sudan and parts of DR Congo is yielding results, the army added. They are part of 34 rebels, under the command of Capt. Samuel Oblaim, who surrendered to the UPDF on November 18 in DR Congo.

At least 22 of the defectors are Congolese, 10 are Ugandans and two are South Sudanese. The 4th Division spokesman, Capt. Ronald Kakurungu, told journalists at the army's Child Protection Unit in Gulu yesterday that the rebels surrendered with 12 guns, 11 mobile phones and two walkie talkies.

Capt. Kakurungu said the UPDF handed over the Sudanese and the Congolese to their respective governments for psychosocial support before their reintegration into the community. "We are going to hand them (the Ugandans) over to World Vision and Gulu Support the Children Organisation to rehabilitate them as their resettlement packages are also being looked into," Capt. Kakurungu said.

He attributed the rebels' massive desertion to both the military and the psychological wars the UPDF is fighting through radio stations in DR Congo and South Sudan, which the rebels listen to. "Its like everyone in the rebel ranks wants to surrender because they don't see any hope in staying in the bush, their commanders are not in coordination," he said.