SSPDF soldiers allegedly beat civilians in Yei River County

By Taban Henry

A Member of Parliament representing Yei River County in the Reconstituted Transitional National Legislative Assembly, Peter Lomude has accused the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces for reportedly beating and looting people’s properties in Abegi area along Yei-Lasu road.

According to Lomude, the incident was triggered by a member of the army who was reportedly missing after he went to the area to drink alcohol.

This angered his colleagues who invaded the area and started beating civilians and accusing them of having hand in the disappearance of their soldier.

“I condemn the beating and the looting of the civilian’s properties by the SSPDF soldiers and I am calling the leadership of the SSPDF to withdraw all the forces from Abegi because the presence in the area is creating problems with the people of that area. People should be allowed to stay peacefully in that area,” he said.

Lomude revealed that he raised the issue to some members of parliament representing Yei River County adding that he alerted CTSAMVM to investigate the issue to be in picture of how the soldiers came to the school, “now there is a problem between the soldiers and the civilians and they are occupying civilian centres”.

“The President issued a statement demanding the return of the refugees from the camps to their areas of origin. What message will this give to the people especially the refugees? What hopes will they have that their people are being displaced, looted and beaten?” he questioned.

The MP accused the commissioner of deploying SSPDF forces to occupy civilians’ centres.

He demanded immediate withdrawal of the forces from the civilian occupied areas so that people have to live free without any threat and interference.

He added that the deployment of the mobile forces in Abegi primary school is totally a violation of the peace agreement.

“The civilian’s surveillances centres should not be turned in military bases”. Meanwhile Michael Machar, SSPDF’s Civil Military and Public Relations Officer in Yei said he is not aware of the incident.

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