The Greater Tonj peace conference concluded on Thursday with a call for peaceful disarmament among communities in Tonj North, Tonj East and Tonj South counties in Warrap State of South Sudan.
Over 400 participants attended the three-day conference held under the theme “Laying foundation for peaceful, stable and resilient communities”.
Speaking at the conference closure, Warrap State governor Manhiem Bol Malek said the conference deliberated on issues affecting communities, citing cattle raids, revenge attacks and elopement of girls, among others.
“The three-day conference highlighted all issues that cause conflict between communities in the Greater Tonj counties and its neighbours and advocated for an end to disputes through peaceful co-existence,” he said.
Malek said all resolutions from the conference would be fully implemented.
A consortium of six partners, including, UNMISS, WFP, UNDP, Adventist Development Relief Agency (ADRA), The Organization for Children’s Harmony (TOCH) and Peace Canal are implementing Kong-Koc project.
The Executive Director of TOCH, Marko Madut appealed to communities, government and local authorities to support the implementation of all resolutions reached at the conclusion of the three-day peace conference.
“The consortium partners will continue to advocate for other gaps or needs identified by communities and all resolutions will be implemented,” he said.
Madut, speaking on behalf of the consortium members, said TOCH and partners will work with agencies and donors to support gaps in the project.
Meanwhile, Agor Malang Agor, the Tonj South County commissioner, said peaceful disarmament is the only solution to bringing violence to an end.
“We were discussing peace to increase awareness when we go back to our respective counties so that people do not fight again. We will continue talking to our communities to hand over guns to the government,” he said.
The urgent need to establish a special court for trying crime-related conflicts, organize a triangle peace, provide livelihood activities to conflict-affected communities and the provision of vocational trainings for the youth in the greater Tonj counties were some of the conference resolutions.
The Kong-Koc project, funded by the South Sudan Multi Partner Trust Fund for Reconciliation, Stabilization and Resilience (RSRTF), aims at laying the foundation for building peaceful, resilient and stable communities in the traditionally conflict-prone region of the greater Tonj counties in Warrap.