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Previous studies by the authors of attitudes toward justice in Uganda, Iraq, the DRC, and the CAR show that respondents’ views are context-specific and may change over time. Changes in views are especially likely to occur in a place such as northern Uganda where the situation has evolved dramatically between 2005 and 2010. In all three surveys, we asked whether accountability was important. The affirmative responses varied from 77 percent in 2005, to 67 percent in 2007, and 84 percent in 2010. The lower percentage in 2007 may be explained by the fact that the peace process was ongoing at that time, and respondents may have feared that demands for accountability would put it in jeopardy. The three surveys further asked who should be held most accountable for violence during the conflict. The proportion of respondents implicating the government has increased significantly. The government was mentioned by 64 percent of respondents, while 19 percent mentioned the LRA leadership only, and 5 percent mentioned all of the LRA. This does not suggest that respondents do not want to see the LRA held accountable. However, only the group whom respondents wanted most to see held accountable was recorded (one answer).

The most appropriate mechanisms to hold perpetrators accountable, according to respondents, are the ICC (29%), Ugandan courts (28%), the Amnesty Commission (25%), and traditional mechanisms (8%). These statistics are similar to the 2007 results for the Acholi districts (ICC, 25%; Ugandan Court, 28%; Amnesty Commission, 25%; and traditional mechanism, 4%).

Figure 26: Measures Dealing With the LRA

Figure 26 - Measures Dealing With the LRA

Focusing on the LRA, the survey asked what should happen to LRA members responsible for the violence in northern Uganda. Respondents most frequently said they should be persuaded to “come out of the bush” (24%) and be pardoned and/or given amnesty (23%). At the same time, one out of three respondents wanted to see them arrested and put on trial (16%) or captured (13%).

 These responses suggest that a majority of respondents favor seeing the LRA reintegrating with the community over seeing them arrested and/or punished. When asked directly whether the respondent has already forgiven the LRA, about three quarter (73%) said “yes.” Among those who did not forgive the LRA, 22 percent said “nothing” could be done to help them forgive the LRA, 16 percent said the LRA must be punished before it can be forgiven, and 14 percent said LRA members must apologize. Most respondents (87%) further said it should not be possible to prosecute former combatants who have received amnesty.