LIRA, UGANDA: Lira Urban Transporters have lined up over 20 Buses to transport mourners to the burial of the late Minister Col. Okello Engola on Saturday, May 13 in Awangi village, Iceme sub-county, in Oyam district.
Mr Anyeko Benard, the spokesperson of Lira Urban Transporters’ while addressing the media on Thursday afternoon said the buses will be made available at Mayor’s garden in Lira city on Saturday morning at 6:00 AM to help transport mourners to the burial and return them back.
‘‘My appeal is that all owners and drivers of buses of Institutions, Hotels, Secondary schools buses and all vehicles meant for public transport in all forms, are encouraged to kindly transport mourners to the burial site in Oyam district. This is to show that we are united in giving a descent sent off, of our Father, Son, elder and leader on the 13th of May, 2023 at Oyam, Iceme at their ancestral home in Awangi village.
Anyeko additionally praised the late Minister for being a Courageous and peaceful leader who transformed the Lango sub-region into a peaceful area from the LRA war-torn zone in the early 2000s.
He said during the LRA insurgency in Northern Uganda, drivers were the most killed people on the way in ambushes that were laid by the LRA fighters for several years but they were really rescued by the effort of (rtd) Col Engola who provided a military escort to accompany a convoy of civilian vehicles/drivers.
Anyeko further appreciated the late Minister for the sympathy he had for the people of Northern Uganda during the LRA insurgency and for promoting the current peace and harmony between the people in uniform and the civilians in the Lango sub-region and Northern Uganda as a whole.
“I do remember very well how I reported the issue of mistreatment of our local workers by the company working on Rwengkunye-Apac-Puranga road To Minister Okello Engola as line a line minister of Labour, whereby a number of casual workers were tortured, terminated illegally and generally mistreated by the construction team last year,” said Anyeko, adding that he reported the matter to the Minister in May 2022 to intervene as they fall under his docket.
Anyeko added that the Minister responded and took action when he visited the two camps including Akalo and immediately initiated a meeting between the workers and the constructors’ team that led to the awarding of contract agreement letters and appointments letters for the employee because others spent a good period of time without being paid and others were illegally terminated from their work.
This intervention according to him was a real problem-solving approach from a leader like the late Engola who was pro-people.
“He was a good mediator in the land conflict of Laminicwida between the Langi and the Acholi of Puranga in Pader district that brought harmony to the two tribes in Northern Uganda up to now,” he expressed.
Lastly, Anyeko said Minister Engola also advocated for the project of building a church and nearly over 70% of the contribution was purely from him according to him, the minister was supposed to wed in June 2023 only to be cut short by an unexpected death.
Col. (rtd) Okello Charles Engola Mac-Odwogo, the minister of state for Labour, Employment and Industrial relations was shot and killed by his body guard Pt. Wilson Sabiiti Last Tuesday, May 02, 2023, at his residence in Kyanja, a Kampala suburb.
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