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Police to Create Special Divisions in Refugee Settlements

Most of the refugee settlements in the country have more than 200,000 people. At least 2000 refugees cross into Uganda from South Sudan daily. Bidibidi settlement in Yumbe district is home to more than 690,000 South Sudanese, making the biggest refugee settlement in the world.
Uganda Police is to create to create special policing divisions around refugee settlements across the country, the Inspector of Police Kayihura has revealed. 

According to Kayihura, once created, the special policing divisions will be independent of the Police stations in the district.

He announced the move while receiving 12 patrol vehicles at the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kampala this morning, Kayihura said he had learnt a lot after camping at Nakivale Refugee settlement in Isingiro District.

“We shall start from Nakivale then created them into policing divisions," Kayihura said. There are more than 20 resettlement camps in 12 different districts. The move is aimed at addressing the security challenges resulting from the overwhelming number of refugees.

 

Most of the refugee settlements in the country have more than 200,000 people. At least 2000 refugees cross into Uganda from South Sudan daily. Bidibidi settlement in Yumbe district is home to more than 690,000 South Sudanese, making the biggest refugee settlement in the world.

 

Security challenges in the refugee settlements range from internal wrangles among the refugees and land feuds with residents. For example in Isingiro more than 40,000 residents are said to have encroached on Nakivale settlement land. 

Nakivale, which sits on 71sq Miles of land, is home to 200,000 refugees. Engineer Hilary Onek, the Minister for Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, says there is need to protect the settlement land since it belongs to government.

"When these refugees return to their homes, the land they are using can be used for industrialization. That is why police needs to protect it from encroachers." Onek says. Adding that, "the refugees also need protection from police."

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