Home | News    Sunday 27 November 2011

Released S. Sudanese journalist describes detention ordeal


By Toby Collins

November 25, 2011 (LONDON) – One of the journalists released on 19 November, uncharged, after 18 days of widely-condemned detention has described his torture at the hands of South Sudan’s security services in a statement released on Friday.

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Ngor Garang, Juba, November 20, 2011 (Mading Ngor/ST)

Ngor Garang, a Sudan Tribune journalist, was arrested as deputy editor of The Destiny newspaper, which published an article criticising the marriage of the daughter of South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, to an Ethiopian man.

Ngor says that he was captured on 1 November at a meeting in The Destiny newspaper offices under the pretence of attending a meeting with Akol Koor Kuc, the head of South Sudan’s National Intelligence service. He was held in a cell at Jebel Kujur in Juba.

During his ordeal Ngor describes “callous treatment”, “unwarranted beatings” and lying on the ground while an interrogator wearing boots walked on his back.
Ngor said he was denied access to medical treatment despite being evidently ill due to physical abuse. He also states that he was denied access to his family.

Ngor describes being detained in a dark, unventilated cell in which prisoners shared 1.5l of water and a single piece of bread a day; food and drink delivered by family members being either eaten by the guards or discarded.

On 17 November Ngor was told he would have his day in court on 18 November. However, the inspector general of police, Acuil Tito Madut, decided to send a member of the ministry of interior and employee of the criminal investigations department, General Madut, to speak to Ngor and the other detainees.

Madut told Ngor that President Kiir had resolved to have them released without charge. On 20 November Ngor attended a dinner with Kiir’s family "to restore trust and understanding to foster peace and harmony."

Reporters Without Borders have said the "arrests highlight the difficulties of working as a journalist in South Sudan and the risks that media personnel run in this young country, in which no law protects them".

The Committee to Protect Journalists said it was "alarming to see the world’s newest nation already arresting journalists under vaguely worded accusations".

Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch as well as local organisations the Association for Media Development in South Sudan, the Community Empowerment for Progress Organization and the South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy all criticised the illegal arrests and campaigned for his release.


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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.
  • 27 November 2011 07:01, by omoni jr.

    hahahah,take it easy buddy,at least you had dinner with presdent’s family which is good ,and just forgive and forget.Let it go.....

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    • 28 November 2011 16:36, by Manyieldit

      I thought Ngor was a journalist but to my dismay he is not. how come he gave in his right for a dinner? Ngor if you are very hungry b’coz of sharing piece of bread in the prison you shouldn’t compromise the ethic of journalism. you should ’ve asked one of your colleague to help u with food. now ur month is close and u should not talk again or claimed to be a journalist any more. u re a houseboy

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  • 27 November 2011 07:45, by Alier42

    "Nyor"Were you called for dinner in return of your torture?.i know kiir is very good in bribing.you might have been given some money to calm down public outcry for your arrest, and if you are indulged in that business ,then your career is coming to an end simply.

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  • 27 November 2011 09:01, by Bush

    Those Journalists must stop bragging a lot about their detention and that’s exactly what I have been saying that they just want to use their arrest to create headlines.Nothing more for them than to cause confusions and instigate hatred among them communities.

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    • 27 November 2011 19:18, by Ahmed Chol

      Journalists are the ears and eyes of the public. Those who silent them are against the rest of us, they are against the public and the whole world.
      We should all speak and stand behind them we somebody mistreats them.

      Ahmed Chol, whatever begins in anger ends in shame

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      • 28 November 2011 06:38, by $ 10,000,000

        Kong Chol,
        You are right brother. Just keep it up! From now ahmed will be excluded from your name. Let your name be as I put it to be Kong/Garang/Simon Chol

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  • 27 November 2011 09:31, by Daniel Buolmawei

    None of my family turned his back to Dr. John Garang during the civil war including myself who fought until I came to the United States for further studies. If any one feels hurt about this, it is me. There’s nothing laughable about this senario. Laughing about it is in itself hatred incitful or instigating. You can’t torture someone and turn around call him to a dinner for appeacement. continues.

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    • 28 November 2011 01:53, by omoni jr.

      what further studies are you talking about?
      are you not one of lostboys? you went to U.S in the name of lostboy not further studies as you claime.
      YES,am laughing because your so called journalist was so hungry so, he decided to critize the president for allowed his daughter to get married to the foriegner,therefore he was given ham burger and pototes salad to heal his pain.
      so, what’s up?

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      • 28 November 2011 10:01, by Daniel Buolmawei

        omoni jr, whichever way I came to the United States does not justify your stance of promoting torture and abuse in South Sudan. It shows that you are illiterate.

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  • 27 November 2011 09:37, by Daniel Buolmawei

    "Madut told Ngor that President Kiir had resolved to have them released without charge. On 20 November Ngor attended a dinner with Kiir’s family "to restore trust and understanding to foster peace and harmony."

    What kind of peace these young men will have with the President. Are we allow to use power to humiliate the weaks? We people outside know that arresting people and release them—continue

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    • 28 November 2011 06:51, by $ 10,000,000

      The president is right to have them arrested and tortured but is known to everyone that Ngor is right unlike Dengdit Ayok who created all the problems. Ngor was arrested for his failure to convince Dengdit from publishing nonsense. It is perceived that they both agreed on publication of those nonsense. Those nonsensical writings should cease completely

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  • 27 November 2011 09:43, by Daniel Buolmawei

    might mean something happened behind bar. Because we are stupid, most of us laugh without realizing if that will not happen to you, it will happen to your children, and will someday cause a greater pain. We do not need to laugh for abuse, it help grow larger, and those who laugh for the pain of others always fall in pain, too.

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  • 27 November 2011 10:04, by Aristotle

    @ngor,what good thing has kiir done to you that u should accept dinning with him? he tortured and detained you for days. what is more than that? Giving you what to eat is not the solution but pursuing the right cause of your detention and torture is the way forward. you have indeed accept the bribe from president,your reputation is tarnished better apologize to the public.

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    • 27 November 2011 13:21, by harry


      I agree with you! This journalist played with people’s emotions by accepting the invitation to dinned with the family who detained & tortured him. How disgusting! He would’ve been held as a hero if he had to turn down the invitation; but alas, he gladly accepted it and disappointed the public. Indeed, he must apologize to the people for his immature behavior.


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  • 27 November 2011 13:38, by Sundayw

    This is all campaign to distort the truth and ruin the image of South Sudan. These little boys don’t know what they are doing and don’t abide by the journalistic code of conduct. They can come up with any lies as long as Sudan Tribune can publish it. When they get in trouble with law, they claim to be victims of suppression. Nonsense.

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    • 27 November 2011 18:50, by Lula


      Becuase of misunderstanding the core principle of juarnalism then a person would have not been put under custody and released with no charges presented, it is good for those who could hear shall see and feel with thier sick shallow minded.. stop publicizing such nonsense news who is he(Ngor) not to arrested...

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    • 28 November 2011 09:51, by Daniel Buolmawei

      What kind of image you this stoned head compaign about here?. You already damaged our reputation through your greedy nature of corruption and dirty politics with critical thinking. Everyone knew that this nation would be ruined by you since you are just naturally selfish people who never think of others but your own interests. South Sudan made a mistake they be regreted for.

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