By Ijoo Bosco
Over 18 community leaders in Eastern Equatoria State have petitioned the national government over the recent series of killings in Mugali and Kapoeta North County of Eastern Equatoria State.
The leaders issued their joint petition calling on the national government to respond immediately and address the rampant killings allegedly perpetrated by the Jonglei cattle herders with no stringent measures been taken by government against their brutal acts.
The communities had warned that their patience will soon run out if the government did not rescue the appalling situation imposed on them.
They said that it will make them to desert their appealing peace-loving hearts and react to the provocation carried out by the herders.
Representative of community leaders, father Ausilio Odume called on the national government to intervene before the indigenous communities in the State take laws into their own hands.
Father Odume stressed that communities in EES can be forced to go into senseless war that they don’t want.
He urged authorities in national government to stop the ongoing crisis being perpetrated by a single community before they act as he explained.
“It’s true that there has been series, we didn’t, we don’t react because we respect peace. We need peace to prevail in South Sudan, it’s enough. But, the killing carried by Jonglei cattle herders and their collaborators, that is why we are calling on the government,” he said.
“If our government really knows what is happening to us, the question is are we not the people of South Sudan, this people and their collaborators are forcing us to a senseless war and we are still rejecting this war we don’t want it,” he continued.
He stated that the population of Eastern Equatoria State are people, and they can write but this is meaningless.
Similarly, he added that they are forced to war which they don’t want, and therefore they are calling the government to intervene before they act, adding that they don’t want to go back to war.
“It is enough why a particular community torturing people on daylight and nothing is happening so we don’t react it’s because we are peace loving people and we want peace to prevail in Eastern Equatoria State even if Eastern Equatoria State is forced to do this we still call our people to remain united and in solidarity with the people who are being killed and we call on our government, our people to quickly solve this issue,” he further said.
Meanwhile, Koma John Silvester one of the community leaders who read out the joint petition said, the people of Eastern Equatoria State have strongly condemned the ongoing act of violence and brutality by Jonglei community members, against innocent people in the State.
In the statement, Mr. Koma said the communities in the State denounced continued promotion of hate speeches by community of Jonglei against Eastern Equatoria State citizens being circulated on social media.
“Several hate speeches made by this people, Jonglei herders against the Equatorians being circulated on social media, we want the government to bring them to face court without delay,” he said.
The community in their petition has extended their deepest heartfelt condolence to the families of those who lost their lives and properties during incidences of the cattle raiding.
Further, Mr. Koma reiterating that, communities of Eastern Equatoria State are peace loving, and shall act on self-defense in case there are continued attacks and killings of innocent communities.
“We the communities of Eastern Equatoria State are peace loving communities and shall act on self-defense in case they continue to kill our people and refuse to leave Eastern Equatoria State with immediate effect,” he said.
However, Toposa leaders of Kapoeta counties based in Juba earlier called on authorities in Eastern Equatoria State to hold accountable over 70 wounded raiders which are undergoing medical treatment at health facilities in Napak area.
The suspected raiders reportedly sustained injuries after attacking cattle camps in Kapoeta North County last week.
They are currently receiving treatment at the Napak and Kimotong Primary Health care centers of Budi County in Eastern Equatoria State.