Seven Tororo cult members arrested

Tororo, Uganda - THE Police in Tororo district have arrested seven members of the Gospel Church, a cult that bars its believers from going to school and going to hospital.

The officer in charge of the criminal investigation department, David Wamunyerere, identified the suspects as Stephen Otabong, Joseph Othieno, Dismas Ofamba, John Etonet, Richard Oketcho, David Ejakait and John Obella.

Wamunyerere said the Police made the arrests at the church’s premises at Milonani trading centre on the Tororo-Mbale highway following complaints by the residents about the activities of that church.

He said the barring of children from going to school and patients from seeking medical care sabotaged government programmes of free access to education and health care.

Wamunyerere said the church leaders argued that identification numbers given to children in school were evil. He added that the suspects would be charged with illegal assembly.

The Constitution provides for freedom of religion, however, the Government imposed some restrictions like requiring that all religious organisations register with the Non-governmental Organisations Board

Following the 2000 killing of over 1,000 members of the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments, a cult in Kanungu in the western region, the Government has increased vigilance against cults that seem to isolate their members.