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South Sudanese interior minister issues shoot-to-kill orders against curfew violators

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July 7, 2014 (JUBA) – South Sudanese authorities have ordered security forces to shoot dead anyone found to be violating a renewed night curfew imposed by the government as tension continues to rise over federalism debate in the country.

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South Sudan Police officers on patrol (UN photo)

Interior minister Aleu Ayieny Aleu on Monday ordered his security operatives to go on a “shoot-to-kill” mission against night-time curfew violators, which the government has resolved to impose daily from 8pm to 6am.

“Please work with me and I will work with you to implement this resolution of the council [of minister]. The shoot-to-kill order was passed by the council. It is not an individual order,” he told the security forces.

Aleu said the resolution was agreed upon by the council of ministers last month.

President Salva Kiir last year issued an order imposing dusk to dawn curfew time in Juba when fighting broke out in December. It runs from 11pm to 6am, but it appears the authorities have now moved it back to 8pm from 1pm.

Citizens are thus demanded to remain indoors after dusk.

“It is only witches who move at night. They steal and kill our people … shoot them. We have to strike hard to stop this problem, so now, even civilians cannot move about at night,” the minister further ordered.

Observers say the renewed harsh order to kill is a direct response to the growing tensions over the debate about federalism, which the government sees as a threat to dismantle power from the centre.

“They [government] see the rising debate in favour of federalism in the country as a threat to the centred power by the clique. They confiscate newspapers that publish the debate. Now they attempt to silence after-work debates in evening social gatherings in town,” an insider told Sudan Tribune on Monday.

In the Western Equatoria town of Maridi at least three people were killed last week by security forces after they were overheard in a bar discussing federalism.

Last month, president Kiir cautioned lawmakers against falling into the trap of federalism, saying the issue was designed by rebel leader, Riek Machar allegedly to dismantle or split what he described as the “internal front”.

He said the issue of federalism should be handled through a referendum by the people, warning it should not be imposed on the people by the rebels.

In reaction, the rebels said a decision on how to adopt or implement federalism would only be made during peace talks.

“An agreement on how to adopt or implement federalism would be reached in the negotiations by the two warring parties. Whether or not it is going to be confirmed in a referendum will have to be negotiated,” said James Gatdet Dak, spokesman for rebel leader Riek Machar.

Dak, however, said citizens should not be prevented from discussing it individually or in public gatherings.

“This should not become a taboo. Individuals and civil society groups should not be barred from discussing federalism anywhere in the country and abroad,” he said, adding that the leadership of the opposition was encouraging such debates and had been consulting with representatives of civil society organisations and individuals to seek their views on the future system of governance in the country.

The armed opposition group has tabled federalism in IGAD-mediated peace talks as the future system of governance to be adopted in resolving the six-month old political crisis in the country, arguing the system has been demanded by the people since 1947 and will help promote cultural diversity i the country have and devolve powers to the states.

UNIVERSITY OPENS FEDERALISM DEBATE

However, despite growing threats by the government against the debate over the federal system of governance, the University of Juba provided a rare chance for public debate on the matter.

A debate organised on federalism by the university drew several renowned scholars from within the country and abroad in a forum moderated by former presidential affairs minister Luka Biong Deng on Saturday.

Government officials, diplomats, civil society groups, political parties and students attended the occasion.

A leading scholar and historian on South Sudanese affairs, Douglas Johnson said it was incorrect by some to fear federalism by wrongly equating it to Kokora, a particularism move by Equatorians in 1980s.

During his lecture, Douglas said Kokora should not be considered as a system of government.

“Let us be clear, Kokora is not the same as federalism. Federalism is a government system that splits powers between a central authority and state governments,” he explained.

The veteran historian who wrote many books on South Sudan said he observed that the federalism debate has been complicated by the ongoing crisis in the country, saying “one side (the armed opposition) has adopted federalism as a political platform while the other side (the government) views it as a version of disloyalty”.

STUDENTS IN FAVOUR OF FEDERALISM

Meanwhile, a poll taken on 15 December 2013, a day which coincided with the birth of the current crisis, indicated that 67% of the students at the University of Juba were in favour of a federal system of governance.

The poll which was revealed on Saturday was conducted on the basis of the three former regional entities.

Juba university students from the Greater Equatoria region voted 87.8% in favour of federalism, while 40% of Greater Upper Nile students and 18.2% of students from Greater Bahr el Ghazal region supported the system.

In reaction, a former minister and member of the former detainees, Majak D’Agoot, said the findings were obvious, adding that the situation had changed over the past six months which would have impacted new choices for individual students in favour or against federalism.

“In my view, these are good findings even though they are obvious facts that we all know and actually are incongruent to this particular study,” Agoot said.

He however said the debate should not be confined to authorities, adding this should be open to the wider public.

“Whilst we recognise the efforts exerted by the author to enrich the conversation, debate about federalism should not be stifled by the authorities and all patriotic South Sudanese should work hard to de-ethnicise it and organise it within the confines of a nation-building agenda in order to help in attaining a national consensus and dispel Kokora-phobia and its attendant reminiscences from its gist and substance,” he wrote.

(ST)

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  • 8 July 10:27, by Positive Thinker

    where are we head people. why do you shoot to kill any violators of curfew, when we have competent court of law. Why do we want to be the judgdge and prosecutor at the same time.

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    • 8 July 10:33, by Mi diit

      Typical of barbaric regimes of Saddam Hussein and Muamer Gadaffi.

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      • 8 July 16:00, by Force 1

        If you’re truly a positive thinker, you should know violators don’t respect law and order and if you don’t respect law and order of the country then you have to be an idiot! The only thing I don’t agree with is shoot-to-kill because it’s too extreme. If you’re unarmed you should only be arrested but if you’re with gun and resisting arrest; then shoot-to-kill would apply!

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        • 8 July 16:48, by Michael Anyong

          I hope & confident the orders issued by the government (shoot to kill) is not for everybody is for those people who have guns MOVING with it at night only & other killing weapons machine, Panga, knife , arrows & spear E.T.C.
          Our Government is right to issues the stated orders, because criminals may enter & kill people , they word will be apply to those who are in uniform & holding guns in the ci

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      • 8 July 16:20, by Ahmed Chol

        This reflects the thinking of Gokrial (the worst group in Bhar el Ghazal) government, which will never succeed in governing the country. This is not how curfew or "Azeer-ti-zol" was done when were in the bush. You stop the person first and find out who s\he is and where he is going and why. You don’t just shoot, if you do that then, you will create more problems than you are trying to solve.

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        • 8 July 16:22, by Ahmed Chol

          You take them to police station first; keep them there for some hours or for the whole night. You give them light punishment such as cleaning the public street, cutting wood, working on a government farm, or canning if they were roaming for no reason at night. You give them heavier punishment if you identify them as chronic criminals who roam the night

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          • 8 July 16:23, by Ahmed Chol

            and especially if it is their second or third time caught again.
            We never kill people for this. I used to let them go free if they were out for a good reason like taking a sick person to the hospital. Also curfew use to start at about 11:00 pm at night, because this is the best time a lot of people have settle in their homes or have gone to sleep. Starting azer-ti-zol at 8:00pm will affect a lo

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            • 8 July 16:24, by Ahmed Chol

              that are not criminals or witches either. This government is inflaming the public and this will cause more problems. This is just a ploy to avoid discussion about federalism. This government is worst than Jallaba government.

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      • 8 July 16:28, by Mr Point

        Salva Kiir made it quite clear that internal peace and security need to be in place before any discussion on Federalism take place.

        He knows that the SPLM fought for twenty years for Freedom. Freedom is not to be abused by people visiting their relatives in the evening, or using the F-word, or witches, and they will be shot on sight.

        Witches...? Is there a witch hunt in Juba?

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        • 8 July 18:16, by Hardlinner

          Does these primitive laws also apply to kiir or aleu himself. Don’t be stupid aleu, your position is never equivalent to human life period. Government and rebels are indeed against the nation and it people. This is exactly the reason why equatorian seek federation. We dinka must support peaceful federation to limit powers from kiir government and rebels alike. Filthy animals indeed.

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        • 8 July 18:17, by Hardlinner

          Does these primitive laws also apply to kiir or aleu himself. Don’t be stupid aleu, your position is never equivalent to human life period. Government and rebels are indeed against the nation and it people. This is exactly the reason why equatorian seek federation. We dinka must support peaceful federation to limit powers from kiir government and rebels alike. Filthy animals indeed.

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    • 8 July 20:31, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

      Shoot-to-kill or to capture any violator will not solve problems of Riek Machar.
      Unless, Riek Machar will be shoot to killed,

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  • 8 July 10:42, by Jalaby

    "Shoot-to-kill" and imposing dusk to dawn curfew in Juba will never ever solve your problem put for sure will promote opposite and negative reaction!
    I am wondering, calling for "Federalism" is so dangerous to that point of "shoot-to-kill" curfew?
    What I said to you before seems to be 100% correct,it’s beyond "Federalism",Self-Determination is really what scared Juba!

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  • 8 July 12:16, by Raanchol

    Jalaby and Midiit, we said that, from 8:00 PM to 6: 00 AM, we don’t need anyone to come out to the gate of their fences or else, he/she is shot dead. Midiit, u r a rebel, what concerns u and u r in Addis barking like a hungry dog, we will fuck u properly soon with ur wrong dog......

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  • 8 July 12:26, by wisemen.

    I ORDER ALL THE CITIZEN OF SOUTH SUDAN THAT IF YOU SEE ANY ONE IN UNIFORM FROM 8:00 PM SHOT AND KILL BEFORE HE KILLS YOU

    WHOM CAN WE BLAME HERE,AS CITIZENS, WE NEED TO BLAME OUR SELVES OF AGREEING SUCH A PERSON WHO DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT IS LIFE TO BE OUR minister of interior

    long live federalism long live south sudan

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    • 8 July 13:40, by Gangura

      I do not undertsand Kirr regime, why should citizens should be restricty to celebrate the independent of their own Country South Sudan?

      What about if an emergency of sickness how will it be? because here the minister has said cleary that, shoot and kill means if the person is just been shoot and not dead the police mast make sure that, the person is dead not just injured. may God bles S.S

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    • 8 July 16:08, by Force 1

      Wiseman
      You need to go yourself and kill anyone in uniform at night; don’t sent law abiding citizens to go do that. It seem that you’re not a Wiseman after all.

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      • 8 July 16:20, by wisemen.

        DEAR FORCE

        SO HOW DO YOU ALLOW YOUR SELF TO BE KILL WHILE YOUR JUST INNOCENT

        SO YOU SHOT THE PERSON WHO WANTS TO SHOT YOU BEFORE YOUR GONE FROM THESE WORLD.

        AND YOUR TALKING ABOUT LAW IN SOUTH SUDAN..........
        I THINK YOUR NOT HERE IN SOUTH SUDAN AY BE YOUR IN AMERICA OR SOME WERE ELSE MY DEAR

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  • 8 July 15:53, by Alfredo christiani

    This is to deter the fifth column elements within our ranks, who ever found moving around town by that time must be shoot and kill, because three quarters of equatorians are rebel’s supporters, fucks them all , federalism must come through referendum but not by force or otherwise we will go back to the bush again and form VOICE of war veterans front (VWVF) I’m sure 100% there will be no stability

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    • 8 July 16:17, by Force 1

      Alfred; what are you waiting for? The way to the bush is wide-open; do you think it’s a piece of cake to fight a guerrilla warfare? Please asked Dinka for advise so that when you start it; you’ll never regret it.

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      • 8 July 16:30, by wisemen.

        FORCE ONE

        IN 1991 WERE THERE ANY DINKA FIGHTING THESE WAR THAT THE ARE MAKING THEM SELF PROUD OF

        IF NOT EQUATORIAN WHO ARE NOW IN MABAN RENK SAY UPPER NILE IN GENERAL THERE WILL BE NOTHING CALL spla/splm MY DEAR

        ASK SILVA KIR ABOUT Samuel Abu John or how John Garang start the movement in WES my dear your still behind

        south Sudan as one people but once you start mention we dinka then

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      • 8 July 17:16, by Alfredo christiani

        Force 1

        That is great you knew that DINKS are your masters and liberators ,force 1 ,you will not force me to go to the bush,before i deal away with you ,

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        • 8 July 20:13, by Force 1

          Alfredo and Wisemen
          It’s now clear to me that base on your rhetoric “Shoot-to-killed is justified! Alfredo; the only you’ll deal with Dinka is the way to bush; otherwise; no way, no how within; and I don’t think you need more details because the details are already in front of you in black and white.

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  • 8 July 18:03, by Bolong

    Are watching hon. Obuto Mamur, hon. Michael Makuei, hon. Alieu Ayeiny on SSTV. right now?

    repondre message

  • 8 July 18:13, by Bolong

    - con. correction, the question was Are you watching SSTV. just to cut the debate of this message. thank you!

    repondre message

  • 9 July 05:08, by Emporio

    Equatorion are driving dinka madness to the max what actually happened in juba at night those equatorion thieves are steeling from dinka and shooting them that why the interior minster order "shoot-kill" resolution watch out equatorion

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