October 17, 2013 (RUMBEK) - The business community in Rumbek, the capital of South Sudan’s Lakes state, have reported that a businessman from Sudan’s Darfur region was killed on Wednesday by a man suspected to be a member of the South Sudanese army.
- Closed shops in Rumbek market on Thursday after the murder of a businessman on Wednesday (ST)
The man who was killed has been named as Mohamed Adom Taric. His colleagues told Sudan Tribune that he was murdered in a "targeted attack" when armed men arrived at their residence at around 5am on Wednesday.
A relative, who also works as a trader in Rumbek, said one of the men instructed his accomplice to shoot Mohamed Adom Taric, adding that the gunman opened fire shooting the victim in the head.
Darfur businessmen make up a majority of the traders who own shops in Rumbek Central county. On Wednesday and Thursday Rumbek market remained closed out of respect.
Darfuri businessmen, in Rumbek, who all spoke on the condition of anonymity, asked for protection and warned that they would have to return to Sudan if they continue to suffer from insecurity, threats and high taxes.
An official from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Lakes state’s police said that two men have been arrested and have been transferred to Langcok military prison. One other suspect remains in hiding.
Taric, was 30 years old and a member of Darfur’s Zaghawa ethnic group, a CID official said on condition of anonymity. He was killed in the Malakia area of Rumbek in a small lodge owned by Kolnyin Maker Ater Achien, the source said.
The CID official said that one of the suspects is a solider from the South Sudanese army (SPLA) noting that the two men have been accused of involvement in several crimes in Rumbek, including stealing a laptop computer from a foreign man at a hotel.
They have also been accused of robbery, taking three mobile phones from people in Malith market and 90 South Sudanese Pounds from another foreign businessman.
The business community in Rumbek Central county have repeatedly reported that their complaints of harassment and abuse have been ignored by the government. They also complain of high taxes and that the governor’s decision to ban alcoholic drinks earlier this year has damaged their businesses.
Many businessmen from Kenya and Uganda have left Lakes state due to insecurity and alleged harassment by members of the security services.
The number of shops and bars has appeared to decline in recent months. The most notable business to leave Lakes state has been the Afex Group, which announced it was closing its Rumbek office earlier this month.