Tension was high on Saturday at the disputed Migingo after Ugandan security forces lowered a Kenyan flag at the island on Wednesday.
Although Kenyan security organs downplayed the situation, residents and fishermen who have been perpetually harassed by Ugandan police said their businesses have been shut down.
“When the Kenyan police tried to raise the flag on Wednesday, it was pulled down by the Ugandan police who warned them against trying to raise it again,” said Ochieng.
He said they were being harassed by the Ugandan forces.
“We do not understand why the government is silent on this issue,” he said.
Migingo Island on August 9, 2018. [Caleb Kingwara, Standard]
Migingo Beach Management unit chairman John Obunge said they had raised the matter with authorities.
However, Migori County Police Commandant Joseph Nthenge dismissed the claims. “Our officers at the island have not reported the incident,” he said.
Last week, Nyatike MP Tom Odege accused the government of failing to end the dispute that started in 2004.
“Ugandan forces continue to make arbitrary arrests of Kenyan fishermen and police officers, yet the government remains silent,” he said. Senate Minority Leader James Orengo said the Migingo row should be taken to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for arbitration.