By Bida Elly David
A civil society activist is challenging government’s failure to adopt concrete strategies to reduce communal violence that engulfed the country.
In a Press Statement extended to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper over the weekend, Edmund Yakani, the Executive Director for Community Empowerment for Progress Organisation (CEPO) said that government lacks consistency to address communal violence.
The statement came following multiple failures and delays in enacting the laws by parliamentarians that resulted to continued communal violence over cattle and many others.
In the statement, the activist has committed his organization to lobby and support enactment of legislations related to deadly communal violence resolution at the state level.
“CEPO closely observed the stand of the government as executive, legislative and judiciary as not consistent in adopting a concrete strategy for mitigating the continuous armed deadly communal conflicts among the communities across the country. Some good proposals were raised by some leaders such as enactment of laws for addressing some of the triggers for armed deadly violence or in the case of cattle raiding establishment of livestock unit in the police for prevention of armed cattle raiding among the communities keeping head of cattle. CEPO is interested in lobbying for actualization of some of this proposal of enactment of legislations and establishment of the police unit for livestock protection,” he said.
Yakani stated that with the silence of the law makers, armed and inter-communal violence continued escalating resulting to expulsion of citizens out of their homes and intensification of starvation.
He said that, the trend of armed violence is on raise and it is creating serious displacement where majority of the internally displaced persons describe their displacement due to inter-communal violence as painful displacement because it is due to armed inter-communal violence.
“Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) strongly condemned the deadly inter-communal violence like the recent violence in Leer, Wonduruba, Magwi, Mugali, Mowgo and Duk Padit among others,” the release read.
“Further, CEPO viewed the government as a lack of the required capacity for mitigating these armed deadly communal. Media reported on 23rd February, 2022 the national parliament business due to insecurity escalation in the states where eight state governors and two administrators and five national ministers were questioned to answer to the insecurity issues that have been prevailing for the whole of this month (February, 2022) for the parliament to be able to come up with amicable resolutions,” it continued.
Mr. Yakani defined government as weak due to failure to present report by the Presidential committee tasked to investigate the causes of the inter-communal conflicts in some parts of the country.
“Meanwhile at the President investigation committee was established like the one of Leer violence which up to date failed to meet their given deadline for reporting their investigation plus others like of Ngok Dinka and Twic County. CEPO observed enough funds invested on seeking solutions to the armed deadly inter-communal violence across the country since the independence of South Sudan in July, 2011. The efforts never created concrete solutions for resolving the continuous armed deadly communal violence.
However, Edmund echoed that it is for a long term gain to legislate some of the strategies for concrete resolution of the armed deadly communal violence among our various communities in South Sudan.
He added that CEPO will be engaging the legislative leadership of Central Equatoria State on enactment of legislation on cattle migration including other triggers for deadly inter-communal violence.
“The absence of legislations on mitigation of deadly communal violence at the state government level made it for states to respond effectively to matters of deadly violence among our communities. Based on this, CEPO will be lobbying and supporting enactment of legislations related to deadly communal violence resolution at state government level.” Yakani stressed. Finally, CEPO is urging for the leadership of Central Equatoria State to cooperate on enactment of specific legislation on mitigation of deadly inter-communal violence.