Central Equatoria State, News

Demolition intensifies in Juba city

By Gladys Fred Kole


Demolition of squatters at cemeteries and public spaces continues to intensify in Juba.

Yesterday, the committee carried out an operation in Juba Girls’ primary school near SPLM House.

Mawa A. Moses, the state minister of roads and bridges, who doubles as the committee’s spokesperson, said the illegal settlers are mixing up with the schoolchildren, which is not right.

“We want to inform the general public that the only thing we want is compliance,” he stated. “I want to thank the squatters here today because they have been compliant with us today, and that’s what we expect.”

According to him, this operation will continue to ensure that all schools are free from squatters.

“This school is very important and historic in the country, and when we see the children here mixing out with people around the school environment, it is not appropriate because this space is supposed to be entirely for the kids and the teachers,” the chair of the demolition committee stressed.

After the successful operation at Juba Girls Primary School, Mawa now alerts some of the residents sheltering in other schools compound.

“One of our schools is Juba Commercial; whoever is there, we are coming,” he continued. “We want to assure the national government, particularly the ministry of education, that Juba Girls School is soon going to be free, and anybody who has taken land there, we are going to demolish your structures.

He also sent an early warning to those squatters in graveyards in Hai Malakal and Jebel to vacate before the committee arrived there.

“People occupying places belonging to churches leave before we reach you,” he added.

Mawa advises those who might claim that they were given those lands to seek solace from whoever purportedly gave them them, even if it’s the same government institutions.

He further sent a staunch warning to individuals who are trying to use powerful cartels in government or high-ranking positions during this exercise to refrain, saying they will not entertain any excuse.

“We want to tell you that we have no mandate to discuss with you, and we want to make it clear that we will not entertain any complaints in the field. If you have a complaint, you can either open a case or you will be sorted out,” he echoed.

“We must caution that anybody who interferes with us in this operation will not leave us; we shall deal with you according to the laws of this country,” Mawa reiterated.

He noted that they are going to continue with operations throughout this year as directed by Governor Emmanuel Adil until they are sure that no public land is being occupied by individuals.

“Here we have successfully demonized, but we shall still come back to see if there are still some people who have come back. When we find you, we shall take you to jail, and you will have to face the laws of this country,” he warned.

On Saturday, CES and Juba City Council authorities launched a demolition exercise on illegal structures erected by squatters at graveyards.

This came after the governor formed a committee to inspect the graveyards around Juba and clear them of occupants.

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