Unity State: Locals Continue to Fault Each Other Over Recent Conflict

A hut burned down completely/ Photo by Yien Gattuor

By Yien Gattuor Mead

The communities in Unity State continue to accuse each other over revenge attacks amidst formation of investigative committee by the President.

This week, the commissioner of Koch County Gordon Koang Biel condemned the violence that erupted in his county in Mirmir area.

The commissioner said since he was appointed as Koch County Commissioner, he vowed to mitigate, maintain and prevent any violence that may happen in his area of responsibility.

“What really happened in Mirmir Payam/Cantonment, was between the SPLM-IO themselves, they fought with their officers over administrative issues because they turned the cantonment into County administration. They fought with General Gatkhor Chuol until they smoked him out from Mirmir” Koang said.

“Gatkhor went and regrouped his soldiers and attacked Mirmir again, eventually they smoked him out again, and this time he went and regrouped his forces and declared himself to Kitgwang of Simon Gatwech Dual,” Koang continued.

Nevertheless, he expressed his dismay and the unfortunate violent situation among the State’s population. He accused SPLM-IO section for carrying the attack.

Nevertheless, he commended the leadership of the State for preventing the last incidences that happened in Mirmir and subsequently to Leer and Mayiandit counties.

He proposed to the Governor through the Ministry of Local government and Law Enforcement Agency to divide the eleven paramount Chiefs in Koch County into the Government and SPLM-IO.

Saying four paramount chiefs out of eleven have been assigned as chiefs to Payams nominated from SPLM IO, and the rest he assigned them to government. He also said that, he divided the County administrators the same way.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson of SPLM-IO in Unity state, Dhoal Koryom refuted the statement made by the Commissioner of Koch County, saying it is all false.

Speaking to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper via telephone call in Juba, he said what the commissioner said was not true because they were first attacked by people from Koch County.

He stressed that their cantonment site has been taken by the forces loyal to the Commissioner of Koch County.

“As SPLM-IO, we are waiting for the national committee for investigation, who will be the only people to find out what happened on the ground and the root causes and other issues raised.” Dhoal said.  

The SPLM-IO County Spokesperson, Dhoal said that there were no Kitgwang forces in Unity state, but the commissioner is using that name because their interests are in Koch and Mayiandit counties.

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