By Ijoo Bosco
The Governor of Eastern Equatoria State Louis Lobong Lojore has urged youth in Kapoeta to desist from the culture of cattle raiding and revenge attacks that jeopardizes security situation in the area.
He made his appeal on Thursday as he arrived in Kapoeta town on a tour of greater Kapoeta sub-region to help address the simmering conflict in the region, brought about by cattle raiding that had recently witnessed incidents of cattle theft and killings.
Following the cattle raiding clashes and fighting, the Governor issued a statement condemning the incident and called on the youth to denounce conflict, but rather to engage in productive activities that uplift the welfare of humanity.
Speaking to journalists at Kapoeta Airstrip, Governor Lobong called on the youth of Kapoeta North County and Toposa in general to exercise maximum restraint and allow the government to follow the issue of the raided cattle.
“We are here to deliver the message of condolences to the bereaved families, who lost their sons in the senseless cattle raids,” said Lobong.
The Governor will visit Kapoeta North County and Napak area of Budi County to deliver similar message to the Buya youth of Budi County to end hostilities and live in peace with their Toposa neighbors.
He earnestly called for an end to cattle raiding and revenge attacks in greater Kapoeta and its Payams.
Two weeks ago, an alleged combined force from Tennet, Buya and Murle youth attacked cows’ kraals in Kapoeta North County, where nearly hundred people were reported dead, 104 others wounded and about 15,000 heads of cattle were raided.
Meanwhile last week, Governor Lobong was in the border town of Nimule where he calmed down tensions brewing there following the killing of three people including the area Chief in a peculiar circumstance.
Governor Lobong blamed elites for instigating the recent deadly raid in Kapoeta North County, urging politicians from Buya, Tennet, and Murle communities to desist from planting seeds of discord amongst the communities.
He however said plans are underway to hold a political conference in Kapoeta to enable leaders from Buya, Didinga and Toposa chat a way forward for the communities in the region.
Lobong pleaded with the youth on both sides to stand down and refrain from further confrontations and cattle rustling.
“We don’t want conflict in Eastern Equatoria State. We want to build peace and stability in the State,” the Governor said.
The Governor will also travel to Ikwoto to stabilize the situation there. Although local authorities have contained the security situation in Ikwoto town, he urged the youth to desist from violence.
Lobong was accompanied to Kapoeta by the State Minister of Peace Building, Marko Lokidor Lachapio, State Minister of Finance, Peter Lokuju Lotirmoi and the Chairperson of Toposa Community Union Paul Napwon.
The Governor’s delegation was received at Kapoeta airstrip by Elia Lokuda, the town Mayor of Kapoeta.