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Unity state food prices up by over 70% after border shooting

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November 26, 2013 (BENTIU) - Food commodities have skyrocketed in Unity state after a border crossing between South Sudan and Sudan was closed following the killing of eight Sudanese traders on the border over a week ago.

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Unity State women sell green vegetables in Kalibalek market in Bentiu town, 3 Oct 2012 (ST)

Since the shooting of traders in Abiemhnom county which borders with Sudan’s troubled South Kordofan state, prices have risen dramatically as the border crossing has been closed.

The price of 50kg of sugar in the Unity state capital, Bentiu, increased from 280 South Sudanese pounds to 360 SSP and maize flours increased from before 180SSP and gone up to 250 SSP.

Sudanese traders say it now takes them four to five days to reach Unity state from South Kordofan since the official border crossing point from Abiemhnom county was closed.

The Unity state government says it has deploying more security personnel along the borders for to provide protection for traders.

Juoy Geng Gatluak, the head of traders in Bentiu town, says it has been difficult for merchants or traders find alternative supply routes such as from the South Sudanese capital Juba. Most traders take the security and financial risk of transporting the goods from Juba along the White Nile river, which can take two weeks, he said.

Traders have been forced to transport their goods by barge since "all roads connecting us from Bhar el Gazal through Mayom and the road from Lake state through Mayiandit were blocked", he said, admitting that his leads to delays and price rises.

Heavy floods have left many roads in and out of Unity state impassable.

Gatluak says traders are cooperating order to standardise and reduce prices but needs the government to reopen the roads connecting Unity state to Juba.

Last week the price of 20 litres of diesel cost around 200 South Sudanese pounds but Gatluak said this could reduce to 150 SSP if the connections are reopened.

Abdelgazi Hamed, a Sudanese trader doing business in Bentiu town, used to import goods such as sugar, maize flour and oil from Uganda through Juba but says this is being hindered by the state of the roads.

After the rains the roads are "impassable" he said, adding that "if these are cleared I am sure the price will drop".

Hamed expressed concern about the safety of Sudanese traders working in South Sudan but said that the two nations needed to continue to cooperate for the benefit of their people.

Traders must move freely and should not be the victims along the two countries borders.

"What I would like to urge on the two government to do is to put their interest on the benefits of both citizens, the traders should move freely and interacts doing business between each others because the traders represent the identity of citizens and if the two agree to open their common border everything would improve for trading", said Hamed.

South Sudan, which seceded from Sudan in 2011, is a landlocked country and depend on its northern neighbour to transport its crude oil through its pipelines and refineries to reach international markets.

The border has been closed for most of South Sudan’s independence but relations improved this year leading to many border points being opened, making it easier for traders to import goods from north of the border.

(ST)

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  • 28 November 2013 07:31, by Tata

    Honestly, why do them kill innocent traders who supply food? Where is the 2% oil revenue investments? Unity leased 130000 ha to Egyptians for agricultural investment. Yet, Egyptians are just excavating Bahr el Ghazal River water runway, 2nd Jonglei Canal. It is shameful that we claimed independence from Sudan but dependent on Sudan for food! South Sudan leadership. Shameful.

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    • 28 November 2013 16:05, by Ito

      You are right Tata, but as a south sudanese we must accept the fact that arabs are more superior and intelligent than us as Bible says, Darker skin are less intelligent than lighter skin people. The evidence is now before you, that is why when i see lighter skin people, i bow down to them at my work place and when greetings them on the streets. This is God instructions. Thank you.

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      • 29 November 2013 08:36, by Tata

        My friend Ito,
        Why are you so inferior to that extent?
        Which verse in the Bible do you quote?
        Who talks about light or dark skin today in the 21st Century?
        I think you are suffering from both chronic diseases, namely cerebral trypanosomisis and cerebral malaria.

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  • 28 November 2013 07:43, by Jalaby

    To SudanTribune,
    I would like to give you a free of charge lesson on press and media and how to write a complete topic or report that looks useful and gives the reader a good understanding about the news itself!
    First This topic is incomplete because you didn’t make a flashback and provide the reader with a brief information about

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    • 28 November 2013 07:47, by Jalaby

      the border shooting that led to the current situation and you dealt with the reader as if he/she knows the shooting details story which is wrong!
      You need to mention the following information so the reader can have a better understanding about the whole story of your respected report:

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      • 28 November 2013 07:53, by Jalaby

        At least eight people were killed in three separate attacks carried out last week in Unity state’s Abiemhnom county, A resident from the disputed region of Abyei, identified as Ayuel Kiir, allegedly carried out these attacks in the border county with Sudan
        this will give the reader a complete picture about the incident

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        • 28 November 2013 08:01, by Jalaby

          Second The information below that you mentioned in your topic about the oil and pipeline is irrelevant with the topic itself (oil or pipeline is not the issue here) and you need to remove it:

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          • 28 November 2013 08:01, by Jalaby


            South Sudan, which seceded from Sudan in 2011, is a landlocked country and depend on its northern neighbour to transport its crude oil through its pipelines and refineries to reach international markets

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            • 28 November 2013 08:10, by Jalaby

              Please correct your topic by adding and removing what I mentioned to you above otherwise your topic will remain in terms of informative; incomplete, insufficient and imperfect!

              Please let me know when it done.
              Regards

              Jalaby (Abo Jalabia)

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  • 28 November 2013 08:18, by Jalaby

    Yes, Dinka Ngok are to be blamed for food prices issue in Unity state, this Dinka Ngok criminal guy who called Ayuel Kiir were behind the shooting and the killing of eight innocent Arab/Jalaba traders in the border!
    I believe this criminal guy is still at large because Dinka Ngok are hiding him now!

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    • 28 November 2013 09:32, by Tom D

      This so called Jalaba has become Jinubi in other way round for mentioning the fact. i partially agreed with him on this matter

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  • 28 November 2013 16:50, by Whortti Bor Manza

    These two areas, Former Greater Gogrial district, now called Warrap and Former Western Upper Nile, now Unity state are prone to hunger since times immemorial. Laziness, extreme violence and power feuds are common phenomenon. The lucrative oil business is only a curse. Strange sickness killing infants in pariang and population migration out of Warap in search of food. Where are you Mr. President?

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