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Warrap calm after heavy gunfire erupts over police salaries

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July 5,2014 (JUBA) – Authorities in South Sudan’s Warrap state have managed to contain heavy gunfire that erupted on Saturday during a protest by police forces over a delay in the payment of their salaries.

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South Sudan Police officers on patrol (UN photo)

Police staged a violent strike in the capital, Kwajok, in protest over non-payment of their May and Junes salaries. Gunfire later rocked the town after the officers declined to accept an initial one-month payment.

Akec Tong, the state deputy governor, confirmed the incident, which he said was caused by misunderstandings before it was eventually controlled by authorities.

“It was just a misunderstanding between police officers and soldiers over payment but it has been settled. The soldiers were demanding pay and you know it is a holding day; it is a weekend which is not working day,” Tong told Sudan Tribune by phone.

“They were told to wait for Monday but they refused and went on rampant shooting into the air, causing panic among civilian population in town. But we maintained to contain the situation. The situation is now calm,” he added.

Joseph Anei Mador, the head of political affairs and public relations in the governor’s office, separately admitted that the initially tense situation was peacefully contained.

“There is no problem. Everything is under control. The acting governor and other senior officials in the state government intervened. They went to the police headquarters and held meeting with their officers and soldiers about the payment. The issues they (police soldiers) raised were genuine,” Mador told Sudan Tribune on Saturday.

“They wanted to be paid so that their families could go and buy something which they would like to use for the celebration, which was genuine concern and it was resolved. The administration agreed to commence payment,” he added.

OFFICERS DENY CLAIMS

Several police sources, however, dismissed as untrue authorities’ claims that payment issues were amicably resolved, threatening further protests should they fail to act.

“They lied to you. Not a single comrade has been paid as I am talking to you. Also they are talking of one month payment while we are supposed to be paid two months. They claimed it is one month which had been released from Juba but the same Juba is telling us they have released two months payment,” one of the striking officers said by phone from Kwajok.

“So we want to be paid all our salaries. We don’t know why they want to give us only one month and did not explain about the remaining month,” he added.

The officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, admitted that some officers fired in the air out of anger after state authorities failed to give proper explanations over their salary arrears.

“Yes, some of the colleagues fired into the air. It was out anger caused by the lack of proper explanation. It was just a demonstration of anger to the authorities concerned. That it was they were shooting into the air. They were not intending to harm civilians,” he explained.

The shootings, eyewitnesses said, caused panic among town residents, forcing traders to close their shops and limited movement, despite heavy deployment of government troops.

(ST)

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  • 6 July 08:49, by Mi diit

    Ahahahahaa. All the money is given to master Museveni and his UPDF. You guys should either get used to the hunger or get rid of your chief Kiir Kuethpiny. This is when you will see prosperity.

    repondre message

    • 6 July 09:22, by Chol A.

      Midiit your comments it bold and lunatic indeed. How can the whole country give salaries to another country? You just throw your words without even thinking on it and that is only issue affected some your community. You claim the national resources to be yours despite resources are for country no matter what geographic area they located, but you blackmailed innocent Nuer to fight for no reasoning

      repondre message

      • 6 July 12:17, by Rommel

        Chol A.:

        Are you under the impression that the oil is sourced from the lands of the Nuer!? It doesn’t come from their lands. I agree with you — the oil should be treated as a National resource.

        repondre message

  • 6 July 08:59, by Malou Manyiel

    Dear our government, is that how we shall continue paying our armies, police and other units? Their families are starving at their homes, their children are not going to school, they are starving and dying in the battle fields with the rebels but the families of government’s officials are enjoying fresh air in the neighboring countries of Kenyan and Uganda. Ask yourself, What are they dying for?

    repondre message

  • 6 July 09:15, by American Missile.

    Police officers should not be impatience to the extent of shooting Guns into the air causing panics to the women and Old People while Authorities should not practice this type of continuously paying one month than all the months.let us correct our ways of doing things.

    repondre message

  • 6 July 09:39, by Jalaby

    This country is dead and hopeless case, the flame will soon reach out to Equatoria region and the whole south will be on fire by then!
    This country can’t survive because it does not have the basic and essential requirements to be a country, it has invalid identity unfortunately!

    repondre message

    • 6 July 09:59, by Chol A.

      @Abu jalabia, do you North have "basic essential requirement" as you claim it? Please continue with your humiliation against Darfur and Nuba people but putting your nose in South Sudan affairs it shameful on you because you have not solve your own! Otherwise mop your ass, go to mosque and call halla hakabar if that can help!!

      repondre message

    • 7 July 09:07, by BM-21

      Jalaba
      last year I warned you to stop talking on S.Sudan affairs.
      you have your own problem in Sudan which need to solve.
      while you are now in abroad,come to Sudan.

      repondre message

  • 7 July 05:35, by Madina Tonj

    It is true that, we do not want a politician to force people so he can misleading us but there are reality need of law correction in all South Sudan’s governments. Good example is this State Warrap State. There are so many corruption people in that State and the governor is cover them up and president have no time to reviewing how the things are going on in his own State. look the list of corrupt

    repondre message

  • 7 July 05:50, by Madina Tonj

    The following lists of corruption people in Warrap State are as follows: 1 Mr. Daniel Diu Ayii Kon deputy of planning 2 Bol Akoon-Dualdit Ariik accounting. 3 Malek Jiel Ngoth known as Malek Ager the Local government.4 Nydeng Malek. 5 Akec Tong Aleu. 6 Marko Awecc Kuot commissioner of Tonj North county. Joseph Maduot Parek Machar the high special court in Warrap Kuajok and many more others

    repondre message

  • 7 July 05:51, by Madina Tonj

    The following lists of corruption people in Warrap State are as follows: 1 Mr. Daniel Diu Ayii Kon deputy of planning 2 Bol Akoon-Dualdit Ariik accounting. 3 Malek Jiel Ngoth known as Malek Ager the Local government.4 Nydeng Malek. 5 Akec Tong Aleu. 6 Marko Awecc Kuot commissioner of Tonj North county. Joseph Maduot Parek Machar the high special court in Warrap Kuajok and many more others

    repondre message

  • 7 July 05:51, by Madina Tonj

    The following lists of corruption people in Warrap State are as follows: 1 Mr. Daniel Diu Ayii Kon deputy of planning 2 Bol Akoon-Dualdit Ariik accounting. 3 Malek Jiel Ngoth known as Malek Ager the Local government.4 Nydeng Malek. 5 Akec Tong Aleu. 6 Marko Awecc Kuot commissioner of Tonj North county. Joseph Maduot Parek Machar the high special court in Warrap Kuajok and many more others

    repondre message

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