Pope Calls for Quick End to Lra Conflict
August 19, 2002
HUNDREDS of mourners cried as they prayed for the victims of the Lord's Resistance Army's 16-year war in northern Uganda.
In a written message from the Vatican, Pope John Paul called for an immediate end to the bloody conflict.
The emotionally charged inter-faith prayer, organised by the Uganda Joint Christian Council (UJCC) and the Acholi community in Kampala, was held at the Lugogo Indoor Stadium.
It specifically prayed for the victims of the recent massacres in which over 60 people were killed at Mucwini, Kitgum district.
Representatives of the Roman Catholic Church, Church of Uganda, the Orthodox Church, Bahai, Hindus and Sikhs condemned the massacres.
A survivor of the Mucwini attack, Livingstone Obonyo, moved the audience with a harrowing tale of how the rebels killed his three children, looted property and set their home on fire.
The retired bishop of Kitgum, Macleod Ochola, whose wife was murdered by the LRA in 1997, moved the congregation to more tears.
The state minister for education and sports and member of Parliament for Chwa, Okello Oryem, appealed to the LRA rebels to give peace a chance.
©Copyright 2002, New Vision (Kampala, Uganda)