Kenyan Fishermen Accuse Uganda of Murder in Lake Victoria

  • An image of boats
    Boats at the shore of Lake Victoria.
  • Fishermen in Homa Bay held demonstrations after one of their own was allegedly killed by Ugandan security forces.

    The irate fishermen called on the government to protect them from what they termed as harassment by the Ugandan officers during fishing expeditions in Lake Victoria.

    According to the fishermen, Haraphat Okinyi Nguka, was allegedly shot dead by the Ugandan security officials and his body thrown in Lake Victoria.

    Fishermen offloading their catch in Kisumu.
    Fishermen offloading their catch in Kisumu.

    Reports indicated that Nguka was among three other fishermen who went fishing on Wednesday, August 4 evening near Ringiti Island.

    But while on their way back on Thursday morning, the fishermen were allegedly confronted by Ugandan security forces and ordered to stop, an order they did not comply with.

    The officers started chasing the fishermen and one of them allegedly shot Nguka in the head. This comes barely a month after Kenyan authorities arrested a Ugandan soldier.

    Kampala, however, negotiated with Nairobi for the release of the soldier in exchange for 18 Kenyan fishermen that had been captured by Uganda.

    The exchange happened on Monday, July 19, 2021 under the supervision of Bondo Deputy County Commissioner Richard Karani. 

    The fishermen had been arrested by Ugandan officials on Friday, July 16 in Usenge Beach and were driven to the neighbouring country where they were detained.

    The 18 individuals had been fishing in Lake Victoria prior to being set upon by Ugandan police officers and their boats confiscated.

    In the same incident, a Ugandan national had been ordered by Ugandan police officers to transport a different party of Kenyan fishermen to Sigulu Island during the arrests. 

    The Ugandan national who had donned official Ugandan marine regalia lost direction to Sigulu and in a comedy of errors, asked the Kenyan fishermen in his custody for directions. 

    However, upon realizing he had lost his bearing, the fishermen tricked the Ugandan national by giving him the wrong directions.

    They directed him towards Honge Beach where they overpowered him and took custody of him. Police officers rescued him from an angry mob who had intended to execute him.

    Uganda Police officer who was arrested by Kenyans on July 16, 2021
    Uganda Police officer who was arrested by Kenyans on July 16, 2021
    dead harass arrest killed