Poor road network cut food supplies to Pibor
Greater Pibor Administrative Area (GPAA) has lamented the torrential rainfall in the area, rendering the main roads impassable for relief and commercial supplies, leading to an increase in market prices.
Speaking to The City Review, GPAA Minister for Information, Jay Adingora Alual, said the road from Pibor to Juba had been interrupted since the start of the rainy season three months ago.
He said the prices of goods in Pibor have doubled due to poor roads as well as the recent increase in the dollar exchange rates.
“The price in the whole country has increased because of the situation that the country is in, but it is worse in Pibor because all the roads that connect the capital Juba to Pibor have been cut off by the rain,” Jay said.
Currently, in Pibor, 20 litres of cooking oil costs SSP 32,000, 50 kg of maize flour costs SSP 38,000, and 50 kg of sugar costs SSP 38,000.
However, in the neighbouring Jonglei State, 20 litres of cooking oil cost SSP 22,500, 50kg of maize flour costs SSP 20,000, and 50kg of sugar is SSP 23,000.
Mr Jay reiterated that the people in Pibor are in a dire situation that needs assistance. He urged the locals to focus on agriculture instead of depending on the market.
“Most of the locals are now surviving off of wild fruits and animals, which may not benefit all of them. So, we have been encouraging them to cultivate and most of the people have now cultivated something that they may harvest at the end of the season,” Jay stated.
However, he stated that medical facilities are lacking drugs and markets ran out.
The officials said some traders have resorted to importing goods using commercial planes which later prove too expensive for the local citizens.
Mustafa Daw el Bat, a resident and a businessman in the Greater Pibor Administrative Area, said commodities are expensive due to the poor roads that lock out the movement of traders.
“More rain is expected to come and the only means of transport now is air. The prices will remain high like that or even double because the commodities in the market will get finished soon,” Mustafa said.
“The citizens are experiencing hard life now and there is nothing we can do. We urge the government to construct a road that connects Juba to the Pibor Administrative area.”