Don’t bring cattle keepers home yet, Jonglei State told
Jonglei State human rights activist has criticised the area deputy governor for calling back cattle herders living in Central and Eastern Equatoria states to return home.
Deputy governor Jacob Akech Dengdit last week called on Jonglei State pastoralists to return home with their cattle.
“We need to help to implement the decree made by the president of the Republic of South Sudan that cattle should return to their home state and peacefully resettle in their home state,” Jacob said.
He called on the youth to help county commissioners implement the order made by the president.
However, Bol Deng Bol, the chairperson of the Jonglei Civil Society Network, faulted this initiative, arguing that the state was not secure enough to support the return of the herders.
Bol hinted that the state government should not force cattle keepers to return home knowing they have failed to normalise security in the state.
“It should be understood that the pastoralists in question left their kraals and pastures and migrated in their thousands to Central and Eastern Equatoria states because of the 2020-2021 devastating floods.
“This very disaster claimed human lives, livestock, and properties.” a phenomenon where the government did little or nothing to mitigate its impacts,” Bol argued.
The activist said the government should facilitate resettling them in Mangalla IDP camp in Central Equatoria State until such a time when the prevailing circumstances improve in most parts of Jonglei State.
Bol stressed that the protection of the civil population is the sole responsibility of the government.
“The issue of security is still resting on the shoulders of the government. It is a challenge for them to be the ones accountable,” he said.
In recent months, there have been tensions between farmers in Eastern Equatoria State and cattle keepers from Jonglei State.
Despite the presidential order for deportation of cattle from the Equatoria region, several herds have declined to leave, citing a lack of security back in their respective states.