By Bonifacio Taban Kuich
March 18, 2013 (BENTIU) -Authorities in South Sudan Unity state on Tuesday said they recovered 140 cattle herds stolen from the region last year, after a raid by the Misseriya, a Sudanese nomadic tribe.
The Mayom county attack, according to state officials, also led to the death of three civilians, with five wounded.
In June last year, the Bul Nuer of Mayom County and Misseriya chiefs signed an agreement on cross border grazing and trading, but demanded compensation for losses, should either side violate the accord.
Michael Chiengjiek Geay, the state deputy governor confirmed several herds of cattle were returned by Misseriya as part of the deal signed by both communities last year.
“The coming back of those people and the return of these cattle is part of the deal that was made between Mayom county people, supervised by the state authorities and the Misseriya people,” Geay told Sudan Tribune Monday.
He however stressed that the same law would apply in case the population from Mayom County raid cattle from the Misseriya community.
The implementation of the agreement, the deputy governor said, will boost efforts to enhance peace between the two cattle grazing communities, who often clashed in the past over land and water for their animals.
He urged other communities in Abiemhnom, Rubkotna and Parieng counties to emulate and embrace the peace initiative their counterparts in Mayom have entered into with the Misseriya.
The return of the stolen animals, sources told Sudan Tribune, reportedly followed intense pressure mounted on the youth by Misseriya chiefs and traders, in compliance with last year’s cross-border deal.