Authorities in Kapoeta North County have recovered at least 19 cows after they were forcefully taken from traders over the weekend in Eastern Equatoria state.
On Saturday, some cow owners from Kasengor who were taking their cows to the market in Kapoeta town were stopped at gunpoint by armed youth.
The raiders drove away with 20 cattle without harming the traders.
Jacob Lopeo is among those whose cows were forcefully taken.
“Those youths were many and we were only 2. They had guns and they took away our cows. I later came and reported it to the authority in Kapoeta North here,” he narrated.
The matter was reported to the Commissioner of Kapoeta North County who mobilized local youths and chiefs to trace the whereabouts of the stolen animals.
Commissioner Emmanuel Lolimo Epone told Singaita FM that they managed to recover 19 animals from the raiders.
“The traders were attacked at a place called Natikai that is Naakwa Payam. These cows belong to the youth traders of Kapoeta North County, and when we learned about it….the chiefs and the youths were able to get the perpetrators and they exchanged gunfire, but in the process, they were able to recover 19 out of 20 cattle,” he disclosed.
Commissioner Lolimo said no one was killed during the exchange of gunfire between the youth and the raiders.
He, however, mentioned that the suspect managed to escape but are being pursued by the government.
“This is not the first such incident. Last year in April, cattle belonging to traders were also stolen at the [place] where the stole these ones. But we were able to trace and recover them. So this is the third time the traders have been robbed. We are engaging the community to respect laws and respect the properties of traders because we don’t encourage that to happen in Kapoeta North County,” Lolimo underscored.
Mr. Lopeo whose animals were returned appreciated the authorities for their swift response.
“These are my cows, they were 20 but I received only 19. I appreciate the government because I have been selling cows for about 12 years now helping my family.”