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Odonga Otto drags police to Museveni over illegal charcoal dealings

According to the former legislator, police in the area is working with a group of charcoal dealers armed with pangas, iron bars, knives and other deadly tools to attack anyone who seeks to stop their illegal dealings. This, he says is by offering them (the dealers) syndicated police protection.

The former Member of Parliament for Aruu County; Hon Samuel Odonga Otto

PADER, UGANDA: The former Member of Parliament for Aruu County; Hon Samuel Odonga Otto has sought the intervention of President Museveni accusing police of working with a section of charcoal dealers in a syndicated militia approach to protect their illegal trucks.

According to Otto, police in the area is working with a group of charcoal dealers armed with pangas, iron bars, knives and other deadly tools to attack anyone who seeks to stop their illegal dealings. This, he says is by offering them (the dealers) syndicated police protection.

Otto’s plea to the president was made in a statement released by the RPP in which he implored his army of environmental vigilantes to remain calm and continue to be law-abiding Ugandans.

“The Leadership of RPP under the Stewardship of their Principal, Hon.Dr. Odonga Otto has sought an audience with His Excellency The President of The Republic of Uganda to swiftly address this complex Emergency. RPP stands out clearly to the Respect of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda,” Otto said in a statement on behalf of RPP.

The opposition FDC-affiliated politician was in trouble last week after he was accused of leading a mob to beat to steal money, vandalize a vehicle and severely injure three charcoal businessmen; Charles Ssemanda, Yusuf Wagwana, and Takafa Erisata in Atanga Sub-County, Pader District.

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He, however, denied the allegations arguing that he has been out of the Acholi Sub-region for the past two weeks.
“Let the records be straight the last two weeks and on the days of the alleged offences, I have been in Kampala. We will lawfully win the fight for our environment,” Otoo tweeted before he later voluntarily handed himself to Aswa Regional Police where he was charged with aggravated robbery and released on bond.

Mr Odonga Otto is the current chairperson of the Ribbe Pi Paco (RPP), a group of environmentalists in Northern Uganda that is enforcing the ban on Commercial Charcoal Trade issued by the Government of Uganda on the 24th February 2023 by the Minister of State for Environment Hon. Atim Beatrice Anywar.

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Otoo has vowed that through this environmental youth advocacy and activism group, they are never going to back down in their fight against illegal charcoal trade in Acholi.

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