Wildfire destroys more than 200 hectares of sugarcane plantation in Atiak

AMURU – Police are investigating yet another fire incident at Atiak sugar plantation that has reportedly destroyed more than 200 hectares.

The Aswa River Region Police Public Relations Officer, David Ongom Mudong in a press conference on Monday afternoon said, the fire started in the farm on 10th December, 2021 and took three days.

He revealed that 200 hectares of the plantation has so far been destroyed, 14 grass thatched houses belonging to the Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF 71) battalion which are providing the security in the place equally got burnt.

However, he noted that the police fire brigade failed to put down the fire in the plantation saying the plantation does not have paths for the trucks to pass through mostly in the hilly terrain.

“We don’t know why the management haven’t considered any of the recommendations that the police have issued to them in the management of the place in regards to the persistent fire outbreak,” he said.

He added that police have picked up investigations into the incident but the management of the plantation has failed to liaise with police and the local leaders in the District.

However, he noted that the fire is believed to have been set by unknown people, a matter which is being investigated under a CRB 15/12/12 /2021 at Atiak police outpost.

Meanwhile, the factory equally lost 60% of its plantation in December last year in a similar incident as the company reportedly suffered a loss of Shs.3 billion in the year according to the 2020 police Annual Crime Report.

The Director Agriculture and Plantation at Atiak Sugar, Mahood Abdi when contacted on telephone declined to speak on the incident.

Atiak sugar factory is located 17kms north of Atiak, off the Gulu-Nimule road in Gem village, Pachilo parish, Atiak sub-county in Amuru district. The factory has the capacity to crush 1,650 tons of raw sugarcane daily, producing 66,000 tons of sugar annually.


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