Obwona kibwa, the Lokung Sub county LCIII Vice Chairperson says traders within Ngomoromo village refused to occupy the market because they alleged its located far away from the trading center with no proper security.
Ngomoromo market in Lokung sub-county, Lamwo district remains
unoccupied six years after it was commissioned.
The market located at Uganda-South Sudan border was constructed in 2012 by
Lamwo district local government at a tune of 52 million shillings with funding
from the World Bank to ease cross border trade between Uganda and south
Obwona Kibwa, the Lokung Sub County LCIII Vice-Chairperson says traders within
Ngomoromo village refused to occupy the market because they alleged its located
far away from the trading centre with no proper security.
He notes that the civil unrest that broke out in South Sudan in 2013 and 2016
made the market unreliable for trading since majority of south Sudanese across
the border fled into Uganda.
According to Kibwa traders have only used the market twice in June and September
last year adding that they have retreated to conduct businesses in Ngomoromo
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Kibwa says the sub-county leadership is currently making efforts to convince
traders to utilize the market in a bid to help them raise revenue through
He notes that some of the market facilities are currently being vandalized
since no one is taking good care for the structure built in place.
Ngomoromo market which is currently surrounded by thick bushes has sanitation
rooms, toilets, stores and concrete stalls and can accommodate more than 60
James Ocen, a trader in Lokung Town council says he relocated from Ngomoromo
trading centre because the market failed to attract traders as he had
“The idea of building the market at the border was brilliant, me and other
traders had high hopes of gaining from businesses at the border but ever since
it was commissioned, traders from the two countries haven’t embraced it,” Ocen
The LCV Chairperson, John Komakech Ogwok notes that business at the
market was disorganized following influx of the South Sudanese refugees who had
been using the same facility as their settlements.
Ogwok says many similar border markets built by government in the district are
not being fully utilized citing markets in Palabek Ogili market, Apiriti,
Padibe East and Padibe west.
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Ogwok says the district is making plans to profile all the markets built by
government to ensure that they make informed decision for their revival.
He, however, called on the sub-county leadership to ensure proper functionality
and management since the markets are in their custody.
Francis Obalim, the officer in Charge of Ngomoromo Police Post says uncertain
security and unsettled disputes over boundaries between Uganda and South Sudan
government along the porous border point has affected trade in the area.
Ngomoromo borders the volatile Ayaci County in south Sudan's Torit state, parts
of which is claimed by South Sudan government. Currently, the Sudan People’s
Liberation Army in Government [SPLA] are occupying areas of Parapdwanya, Apine
and Akwera all in Ugandan Territory.