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Govt Contradicts Self on Kasese Rebel Talk

Ofwono Opondo, the Director of Uganda Media Centre, says preliminary intelligence reports link the attacks to ADF rebels. Opondo claimed that some of Mumberes guards were in touch with ADF rebels on the day of the attacks. Opondos statement contradicts that of Internal Affairs Minister, General Jeje Odongo, who on Tuesday downplayed the involvement of ADF.

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Government officials have issued contradicting accounts on the involvement of rebel groups in the November 27 attacks in Kasese district that left up to 100 people dead.

On Saturday, November 26th, 46 people died when security forces raided the administrative offices of Rwenzururu Kingdom in Kasese town to disarm King Charles Wesley Mumbere's guards. The dead included 16 police officers many of whom became victims of reprisal attacks in different parts of the district. On Sunday, more than attacks 60 people died when the army attacked Mumbere's palace and arrested him together with 146 of his guards.

Mumbere has since been charged with murder at Jinja Chief Magistrate's Court and remanded till December 13.

And government officials have been issuing contradicting statements with some linking the clashes to the involvement of rebel groups such as the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) and March 23 Movement, commonly known as M23.

While appearing in last night's NBS Television Frontline programme, Ofwono Opondo, the Director of Uganda Media Centre said preliminary intelligence reports link the attacks to ADF rebels. Opondo claimed that some of Mumbere's guards were in touch with ADF rebels on the day of the attacks.

Opondo's statement contradicts that of Internal Affairs Minister, General Jeje Odongo, who on Tuesday downplayed the involvement of ADF rebels in the attacks.

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Gen. Odongo contended that the actions of the Kirumira Mmutima, the Rwenzururu cultural guards, were inspired by Omusinga Charles Wesley Mumbere.  

Opondo further argued that the simultaneous attacks on police officers was meant to divert attention and stretch the military deployments at the border points of Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo as a leeway for the rebels to infiltrate Uganda.

According to Opondo, after the clashes, security personnel answered a phone call to one of the dead royal guards believed to be from ADF commanders enquiring ‘if the mission was accomplished.'

On November 26th, the cultural guards allegedly attacked joint security patrols in Kasese town and police posts in the sub counties of Ihandiro; Kisunga, Bwesumbu, Kyabarungira, Maliba and Ibanda Township located in Bugoya Sub County.

For fear of military offensive, the attackers reportedly retreated and regrouped at the palace of Rwenzururu Kingdom where Mumbere reportedly declined to surrender them to security despite pleas to do so. 

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