By Chol Makol Riak
Police authorities in Jonglei state’s capital Bor have reported that two children have died and four others wounded after a grenade explosion over the weekend.
The incident happened on Saturday morning at Langbar “D” suburb where six children were involved in the incident.
Maj. Majak Daniel Tuor, Jonglei state police spokesperson says the six children were playing in a local house and the grenade exploded in the hands of the children.
“The incident happened yesterday morning in which two children passed away on spot and the other four were rushed to Bor state hospital where they are receiving treatment,” Maj. Majak Said.
Maj. Majak said investigations are yet to be carried out in order to know where the children got the grenade.
“Currently I can’t tell you clear information about where they got this grenade because yesterday when this incident happened, the owner of the plot collapsed, so there was no proper investigation made. The investigations will be conducted tomorrow (Monday),” he added.
Maj. Majak advised the public to keep harmful weapons away from the reach of children to avoid such incidents.
“My advice to the general public is that please keep harmful weapons such as grenades, guns and any other weapons away from children because they are not mature and they may use it as an item for playing which may result to loss of lives,” he added.
He urged parents to “be watchful whenever they see such explosive objects in the hands of children immediately remove them away from them and report them to the concerned authorities”.
However, Dr. Bol Chau Manyang, medical director at Bor state hospital said three children are responding to medication meanwhile one child has been referred to Juba.
“Two children are in good condition and they are responding to treatment, one child has been referred to Juba because he has some shrapnel and thus needs X-rays and operation,” Bol said.
He said the child is expected to be taken to Juba today (Sunday) for further management.
Incidences of explosions have been common across South Sudan in recent months.
A 13-year-old boy was reportedly killed and his two younger sisters critically injured after a grenade exploded in Northern Bahr el Ghazal State in February. Also, in March, two people died after a man threw a grenade in a bus park in Rumbek town of Lakes state, in January 2020, at least 22 people died in a grenade explosion in Wau, Western Bahr el Ghazal State and November 2021 three children died and seven wounded after a grenade accidently exploded in the area.
According to the United Nations Mine Action Service, more than 5,000 South Sudanese, including 249 children have been killed or injured by landmines and unexploded ordinance since 2004.