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Two UPDF Soldiers Arrested Over Loss Of Gun In Fire

Two UPDF soldiers attached to Odramacaku army detach at the Uganda border with Democratic Republic of Congo have been arrested and detained after losing a gun with 120 rounds of ammunition in a fire suspected to have been started by a rejected woman.

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Two Uganda People's Defence Force (UPDF) soldiers attached to Odramacaku army detach at the Uganda border with Democratic Republic of Congo have been arrested and detained after losing a gun with 120 rounds of ammunition in a fire that burned down the soldier's hut.

Lance Corporal Martin Chekwot and his commander, whose name the army refused to disclose, were arrested on Thursday after the grass thatched hut belonging Chekwot got burnt together with the gun on Wednesday night. In the same fire Chekwot lost all his military attire.

According to reports from the army detach, the hut was torched by an unknown person when Chekwot was not present at the army detach.  But before the fire, Chekwot had separated from his long-time girlfriend. The couple had cohabited for months until it emerged that she was engaged in a relationship with another soldier too.

However, when contacted Lt. Mark Mutono, the UPDF Spokesperson for West Nile, said the two officers in their custody acted outside the UPDF code of contact and they would be charged with failure to protect government resources.

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According to Mutono, preliminary investigations into the fire so far indicate that the fire could have been started by the rejected girlfriend. Mutono said if this turned out to be the case, the UPDF soldier would be held personally responsible.

The army declined to release the name of the woman.

Records from 409 UPDF brigade based in Arua indicate this is the first time in West Nile a UPDF soldier has lost a gun in a fire accident.

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