News, Northern Bahr el-ghazal

Aweil Chamber of Commerce Chairperson out of prison

By Hou Akot Hou



Northern Bahr El Ghazal state Chamber of Commerce chairperson, Deng Makol Athian, has finally been released from Juba central prison.

Makol and dozens of other inmates from Aweil have been driven from Aweil since last year and remanded at Juba Central Prison.

He told this outlet on Tuesday by phone that they were released without being taken to court. No charges were brought against them, and they never knew why they were jailed.

“I am happy to be out, though my business is totally destroyed,” he said. “As I was having some contracts without any charges that I have done nor have I contravened any law,”

Makol decried that his business was no more.

“If I want to start, then I will begin from nowhere. They disconnected me, so my clients have disappeared, as I was having online buyers and NGOs that were having businesses with people seeking out other alternative sources for their supply,” he stated.

The NBG chamber of commerce chairperson said that more than 100 other inmates from other states were with him, including dozens from Aweil who were freed last week.

A source who didn’t want to be named for personal security reasons said that the freed inmates were accused of having a link with holdout groups, something that was not evidenced, which paved the way for their release.

One of the freed inmates is an activist from Aweil, Samuel Garang Dut, who was so vocal about how affairs in the Northern Bahr el Ghazal state are being run that he got arrested last year in Aweil.

He was earlier released and was again arrested in Juba with the ones recently released.

South Sudan’s transitional constitution states that random arrests and detentions are prohibited. It added that anyone arrested has to be produced in a court of law within 24 hours of the investigation.


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