July 3, 2014 (WULU) – Wulu county residents are becoming increasingly concerned over their commissioner’s excessive consumption of alcohol and threatening behaviour towards his staff, including his bodyguard and driver.
In one incident, Benjamin Akol Muorwel reportedly ordered his bodyguard Lulu Rec to be beaten to beat his assistant driver Deng Kongoro Doo Gol after he was delayed while on a trip to the market to buy food for the commissioner.
Commissioner Muorwel was allegedly under the influence of alcohol when he issued the orders.
A community elder, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the commissioner’s behaviour was becoming increasingly erratic, saying his employees and drivers were subject to harassment and verbal abuse on a daily basis.
“This young man have become [an] alcoholic commissioner. People working in his office and employees at [the] payam and boma (districts) level are facing harsh harassment – there is no understanding between him and the public his governance,” he said.
“Beating of his bodyguard and harassment is paramount,” he added.
He said Wulu, which used to be under traditional leadership, had been badly affected since Muorwel was appointed commissioner.
He claimed the commissioner’s frequent absences as a result of his drinking habit had paralysed his administration, with office manager Sallah Adris often left to manage the day to day affairs.
“It is a great shame seeing [a] junior person operating the office daily,” the elder said.
“[The] commissioner daily [stays] indoors drinking alcohol and we need to see him in office, but his is not doing what we need,” he added.
Muorwel has denied the allegations, saying he was serving the Wulu community in a fair manner.
The commissioner, however, declined to comment on his alcoholic consumption.
Military caretaker governor Maj-Gen Matur Chut Dhuol officially banned the sale of alcohol in Lakes state in January, except in controlled venues.
Palm-Tree Hotel, Safari Style, Hillview and Afex hotel were exempted from the ban.
Many Lakes state residents objected to the ban, particularly widows, who rely on alcohol sales as a major source of revenue to support themselves and their children.
Lakes state is a hub of for cattle raiding and an ongoing cycle of tribal clashes and revenge killings.
Police say the state administration has become increasingly isolated, with members of the public refusing to cooperate with police or share insecurity-related information.
Calls for Dhuol, who was appointed after elected governor Chol was removed by president Salva Kiir.