Lawmakers warn against cross-border cattle raid

Lawmakers warn against cross-border cattle raid
A section of lawmakers are calling on national and state governments to control cross-border conflict which they blame on armed youth from the South Sudan.

A lawmaker in the Reconstituted Transitional National Legislative Assembly (RTNLA) says that cross-border cattle raids could worsen the security situation in the country.

Elias Samuel, a Member of Parliament (MP) for Bor County, submitted a motion on alleged atrocities by cattle raiders from a Pibor community in Jonglei and other states.

He accused armed youth from the community of wreaking havoc not only in the neighbouring communities but also across the borders with South Sudan and Ethiopia.

“The bandits are causing havoc not only in the listed borders but also across regional borders, such as in the Gambella region of Ethiopia. The national and the state governments should coordinate with the governments of Ethiopia to effectively handle the trans-regional crimes that are being committed by our bandits on common borders.”

Meanwhile, Gabriel Rooric, who seconded the motion, warned that unless that govern take action, the situation could deteriorate.

“That is a terrible issue connecting the two governments.” If the people of Jonglei go and raid cattle in Ethiopia? This should go to foreign affairs to make sure that this thing has to be settled because it will put us in jeopardy.

“[It is a] very big problem on the border because foreign policy is something very important that if you don’t have a proper gate, your house will be looted every time,” Gabriel warned.

He said the bandits should be cleared off the borders with Ethiopia and Sudan to maintain a good relationship with South Sudan.

” Yesterday I heard Makuei talking over the radio about sanctions and embargos. These are the people near us. Let us create more and more friendships to go and lobby so that these sanctions and embargoes can be loosened.”

“This one will only make things very difficult for us because if the gangs are coming into the country, they come through the borders. This one needs our border security to know which gangs are coming in. We have the embargo, where do they get these guns? “he urged.

The UN Security Council approved a resolution on May 26, 2022, to extend an arms embargo against South Sudan for another year, until May 31, 2023, as well as targeted penalties such as travel bans and asset freezes against individuals and businesses.

Last Friday, South Sudan’s Minister of Information, Michael Makuei, told the media that if the arms ban is renewed, it will be impossible for the government to graduate the necessary united forces with arms rather than sticks.

He claimed that the government had some close friends who had promised to back them with ammunition once the embargo was lifted.

“We have been longing for this arms embargo to be lifted so that some of the good Samaritans who have promised us to give us arms, but now with the renewal of the sanctions will force them (unified forces) to graduate with sticks,” said Makuei in a press briefing, Friday.