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Lakes state caretaker governor criticised over military calls

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May 2, 2014 (RUMBEK) - Lakes state military caretaker Maj-Gen Matur Chut Dhuol has come under heavy criticism from activists and various youth leaders over his call for the state’s youth to join the military.

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A woman carrying a radio in Rumbek, Lakes state, South Sudan (ST)

On April 26, Dhuol, the caretaker governor Lakes state, urged local youths to join the military in order to protect the country from the instability caused by the four and a half month old conflict, in Mingkaman, the county headquarters of Awerial of Lakes state.

The rally was attended by some of the internally displaced people who are residing in Mingkaman, having fled across the White Nile to escape fighting in Jonglei state to the east.

Over a million people have been forced from their homes and thousands killed since the fighting began following a split in the South Sudanese army (SPLA) and the splintering of the ruling party (SPLM).

In a meeting held by youth members from Rumbek Central county on Friday, activists called upon Dhuol to apologise to South Sudan’s president Salva Kiir Mayardit.

The youth leaders said that president Kiir is working for peace and not for war in the country and accused Dhuol of participating in pro-war propaganda.

Mathew Majak, a pastoralists youth representative told Sudan Tribune: "Governor Dhuol should disengage himself in calling for war against the Nuer community." The youth he represents "are not going to attack anybody or any Nuer areas. We have proper self-defence if the Nuer attacks us. We are not afraid."

He added that "the cause of December clashes in Juba is belong to Juba – we are not members of that row", referring to the internal politics of the SPLM and the power struggle between Salva Kiir and his former deputy, Riek Machar, who is leading the rebellion.

Another activist, Moses Majok, stated that youth in Lakes state stood alongside the elected government but he explained that youth are not ready to attacks any part of the country, adding that the Dinka and Nuer ethnic groups are brothers.

"Nuer community are our brothers" said despite the fact that the engage in cattle raiding among between Dinka groups in Lakes state and Nuer youth in neighbouring states.

He asked why they should fight each other now that South Sudan had achieved independence.

Majok noted that under the harsh leadership of caretaker Governor Dhuol, Lakes state youth have complained of receiving rough treatment at the hands of the security sevices, with some being held at Langcok military prison without any charges brought against them.

The activist claimed that “Dhuol had crushed justice and education in Lakes state.”

Since Dhuol’s appointment in 15 months ago, he has banned the selling of alcohol in Lakes state without providing an economic alternative for widows who sell homemade in order to pay school fees and for other essentials.

There are growing calls for South Sudanese president Salva Kiir Mayardit to remove Dhuol, whose policies have been accused of inflaming the same cyclical inter-clan tensions, which he was brought in stop.

Dhuol was appointed after Kiir issued a decree removing his elected predecessor Chol Tong Mayay from office, reportedly over his failure to quell ongoing tribal violence in the region.

Under South Sudan’s constitution, an election should be held within 90 days should the president remove a governor. However, this has yet to occur in the country’s three states where governors were removed last year.

Some residents in Rumbek town carrying radios with them hoping to hear the news that Dhuol has been removed.

(ST)

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  • 4 May 06:42, by Akol Liai Mager

    meaningful criticism. This is the voice that the youth from rebel’s controlled areas must adopt immediately. Youth s have to shape their future with pens and not guns.

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    • 4 May 07:06, by Mi diit

      Matur Chut is right because Kiir and Malong Awan have already mobilized 20,000 youth who killed Nuer in Juba and they are training more. So don’t pretend that you are not calling for mobilization. Let us go for it. Soon the Nuer will call for unity among the Nuer and mass mobilization to kill the Dinka too.

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      • 4 May 07:11, by Mi diit

        The problem is not all poor youth of Dinka will accept to die in the forests for no reason at all when they have incompetent, illiterate and alcoholic president and governors to defend while their own mothers are walking naked, dying of hunger. Why should they die poor and families remain poor and lose war?

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        • 4 May 08:42, by Joseph Canada

          Midiit, the truth is NO Dinka youth are fighting the Nuer!! THEY ALL RAN INTO THE IDP CAMPS IN EQUATORIA AND UGANDA. THOSE FIGHTING ARE THE EQUATORIANS WHO HAVE TO GFIGHT BECAUSE OF THE ORDERS FROM JUBA. ALL DINKA YOUTH ARE HIDING IN NIMULE AND THE REST OF EQUATORIA REGION.

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          • 4 May 09:58, by Majongdit

            Joseph Canada,
            Hahahahahahha you can say anything for the sake of propaganda but you know the truth in your heart. How did the brave Nuer leave? They left running. And Juba is a neutral ground for Dinka and Nuer. You are free to say what you want...but there is something we call ’Bai Acieng’ in Dinka. The Dinka-dit are at home. They have been ignoring this war, but with Malong and Marial Nuor ----

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        • 4 May 09:26, by Majongdit

          Mi Diit,
          Sometimes you are too vague. If the Nuer youths accept to die in the forests then how do you expect the Dinka youths to stay in their homes? The Dinka can wipe out Nuer if you don’t leave this war.

          repondre message

    • 4 May 09:35, by Shadrack Chol Buoi

      I appreciate all your comments guys however we should be liberal in dealing with state issues and I belief the spirit of tolerance to different point of view will make our government improves the delivery of the service. The fact that most of us are from the ruling party should not stop us from exposing the weakness of the leaders we elected and indeed we are the engines of change either within.

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  • 4 May 06:48, by BM Bol

    Voices of wisdom from Lake state youth. I hope the youth from the rest of the states follow suit and heed this call.

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  • 4 May 10:52, by Mapuor

    Youth from greater Rumbek’Agar’have already joined the army in hundreds and are now fighting in Upper Nile.Gen Matur was talking to Aliab youth to also join the army.Rumbek centre youth need peace since the county is in chaos.Rub and Kuei should unite and face the external threats.Asking greater Yirol youth to join the army in the same way youth from Aweil,Gogrial,Rumbek did is ok guys.

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