At least 219 prisoners on Wednesday evening escaped from a jail in moroto, bringing business to a standstill.
The prison break occurred at around 5pm. Johnson Byabashaija the Uganda prisons boss said the “inmates overpowered staff and took off with guns from the armoury.”
reports indicate they stole 15 AK-47 rifles, 20 magazines and other ammunition.
Reports indicate the prisoners fled towards Tapac and Loputuk sub-counties. It is said the inmates attacked an officer on duty and broke into the armoury.
Gunfire rocked Moroto town for at least 30 minutes as the army, police and prisons engaged the armed inmates in a gunfire exchange.
Army spokesperson said two inmates had been captured and two killed.
Byabashaija said 215 escapees are still are at large.Moroto prison has about 620 inmates
“It’s a mass escape … these were hard-core criminals,” she said, adding they included murderers, robbers and rapists. said army mouth piece
In a tweet, UPDF spokesperson, Brig Gen Flavia Byekwaso asked the population to remain calm.
‘ ‘The operation by UPDF in pursuit of escapees from singila prison in moroto to re arrest them and recover the stolen guns continues.the population therefore is advised to stay calm’’ she said
The army and prison officials are pursuing the escapees, who reportedly made off with 15 guns.
The prison facility is built on the foothills of Mount Moroto, on the edge of the town.
According to an Associated Press report, the inmates took off their distinctive yellow prison uniforms and fled naked into the hills to avoid detection.
Local reports say the shoot-out has brought business in Moroto to a standstill.
Most of the escapees are warriors who were recently arrested in military operations countering cattle rustling in Karamoja.
UPDF also apprehended at least 146 suspects involved in the violent cross border crimes, some of whom were being held at Moroto Central Prison. the moroto prison escape is country’s third prisoner escape since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in March as fears of contracting the virus in cramped jails spurred inmates’ efforts to break out.
The operation by UPDF in pursuit of escapees from singila prison in moroto to re arrest them and recover the stolen guns continues.the population therefore is advised to stay calm. pic.twitter.com/eUu6KpH6x9
— Brig Gen Flavia Byekwaso (@UPDFspokespersn) September 16, 2020