Fear has engulfed Adjumani District leaders and security officials following unconfirmed reports that a group of spies from South Sudan infiltrated refugee camps in the district to carry out espionage refugees who have settled in Uganda.
Mr James Leku, the chairman of the border district said his office received information about South Sudan spies who repeatedly cross into the district to spy on their fellow citizens with the intention of repatriating those who are suspected of being involved in subversive activities against the war-tone state.
“I have heard of strange people who have entered into our district with ill intentions of arresting and repatriating refugees to South Sudan to torture and jail them,” Mr Leku said.
He warned that spying on refugees in a country where they sought asylum is criminal and those involved, if arrested, would be dealt with under the laws of Uganda.
He was on Monday speaking during a public dialogue at Multi-Purpose Youth Centre in Adjumani.
Ms Josephine Angucia, the police spokesperson for North Western region, during recent community policing in refugee settlements in Adjumani District dismissed reports of South Sudan spies infiltrating refugee camps.
“Refugees are protected by the law. Anyone who tempers with their peaceful stay in Uganda will be arrested and taken to court,” Ms Angucia said.
Mr Wilson Manyok, the Adjumani Refugee Welfare Council chairperson said his office has not received complaints about intruders who are spying on the refugees.
“I have not moved to all the settlements but it may be true because some refugees shy away from sharing security related threats for fear of being victimised,” Mr Manyok said.
There are over 180,000 South Sudan Refugees living in 18 settlement centers in Adjumani district alone