In Karamoja, insecurity has become a perpetual and infinite race. The old insecurity curse continues to pass down from generation to generation, destroying any previously established stability. For the region sitting at the top end of Northeastern Uganda, hope has turned to despair, and love has turned to hatred, all because of the need for cows, and the will to survive. Animal thefts are frequently recorded, usually in conjunction with animal and human deaths.
The administration has moved quickly to combat a common vice that is causing hardship for the people of Karamoja by resuming the disarmament exercise that helped to eliminate illicit gun possession in the region before. However, the community is not simply watching the government try to attain the aim on its own. Youthful people have been walking to remote locations to raise awareness about the value of peace. Thankfully, we hosted teenagers at several Karamoja locations in Matany on Saturday last week. They had walked all across the region, passing through the districts of Kotido, Moroto, and Napak. Everybody welcomed them and talked about a variety of things, including the current state of instability and its negative consequences for the region. We also have a difficult time discussing the importance of living in peace in depth. We chatted pleasantries and wished them well on their way back home as the day drew to a close and it became dark and late for them.
Before we can see peace flourish in our society or communicate the concept of peace to others, we must first find peace inside ourselves. It is not anyone’s concern, but everyone’s responsibility, to keep the peace.