News, Upper Nile State

South Sudan faces new influx frontier


Yien Gattuor Mead Kuich

South Sudan’s Upper Nile state faces more new frontier of hunger-stricken refugees and returnees from Ethiopia amidst the continued Sudan influx.

According to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper’s reporter, Longchuk County of Upper Nile State faces challenges of more than 7,000 South Sudanese returnees in dire humanitarian situations, who arrival from Sudan and Ethiopia.

The ongoing wars in Sudan and Ethiopia, have forced returnees and refugees to seek shelter in parts of South Sudan.

James Tut, a representative of the returnees from Ethiopia, spoke to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper, giving insight on their plight and elaborating the desperate conditions they are facing.

“People started arriving in June without food or shelter. Life is difficult. Imagine the difficult journey, all the way home from a war zone, only to stay in the open” he said.

“We are really suffering without food or shelter.” James pleaded for immediate aid, urging the government and aid agencies to provide shelters for the vulnerable returnees.

“We started our journey by footing.  We spent four days in ahead of longchuk from Gambella region refugee camp of Ethiopia” James explained.

Nyador myang, another returnee, also shared his distressing experience, revealing that they lost many children along with personal belongings during their arduous journey to South Sudan.

He points out that another significant problem affecting the returnees in lokchuk County is the shortage of medicine.

Nyado calls upon the government of national Unity and national NGOs that operate in Upper Nile state, to step in and basic need to alleviate the suffering of the displaced people.

The returnees had a challenging journey; trekking on foot from Sudan to Renk County and then to Makalal town before the last leg of their trip to Longechuk County in the second week of July.

Mr. Dak Tut, Longchuk County commissioner confirmed that they have received over 7000 returnees, but the conditions they are facing remains dire due to the lack of basic necessities.

He highlighted the efforts made by the county to assist the returnees in settling down but stressed the need for external support from partners and aid agencies.

“When the war started in Sudan, and Ethiopia we started receiving returnees. Since they arrived, we have helped settle them, but nothing has been provided to them. We are engaging our partners so that they come to their aid,” Tut said.

Thuok Joack, the county Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (RRC) coordinator also added his voice to the plea for aid. He revealed that a large influx of returnees from Sudan has overwhelmed longchuk town.

“We received a large influx of returnees with 600 households 3,000 individuals from South, and households 1000, returnees, 4, 000 from Gambella region to Longchuk town,” he said.

He said that the people were miserable conditions.

“They need food and shelter as well as measles vaccination campaign to rescue lives of the children,” the relief officer noted.

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