Home | News    Thursday 24 July 2014

Upper Nile governor reshuffles state administration amid fighting in Nasir


July 23, 2014 (JUBA) – The governor of South Sudan’s Upper Nile state, Simon Kun Puoc, has swapped the positions of two officials in the state administration as fighting continues over control of the strategic town of Nasir.

JPEG - 25.2 kb
Soldiers from the South Sudanese army (SPLA) sit on a pick up truck during a patrol in Upper Nile state capital Malakal on 21 January 2014 (Photo: AFP/Harrison Ngethi)

In an announcement on state-owned radio on 18 July, Puoc named Nasir county commissioner Dak Tap as new state minister for physical infrastructure, replacing him with the former minister, Liech Bany.

No reason was given for the changes, although observers claimed the reshuffle was necessitated by views that Nasir would benefit from a county commissioner with extensive military background given the current situation on the ground.

It is thought the newly appointed commissioner will join the army during military engagements with rebel forces in order to raise morale levels, as well as reach out to the local population in a bid to stop the mobilisation of youth to join the rebellion.

Simon Gatwec Gatkek, an official from Upper Nile state, told Sudan Tribune on Wednesday, said that no prior information had been provided about the changes, although he said he had no objections to the reshuffle.

“We just hear so and so had been removed and so and so had been appointed. This is what we hear these days. There are no consultations,” he said.

“Maybe decisions are necessitated by the situation, which compelled the governor to exercise his constitutional prerogative on the basis of [the] doctrine of necessity,” he added, stressing he had no issue with the changes.

“When I say I did not have prior information, it that does not mean [that] I as an individual person should have been consulted,” Gatkek said.

The official said while he had never worked with the former commissioner in the same institution, he had come to know the two officials from a distance as they had always worked under the same government, describing the pair as good people.

“I have never worked with them in the same institutions, but my observation from the interactions when we meet is that they are good people. They love to serve our people and the country,” he said.

Renewed fighting between the South Sudanese army (SPLA) and rebel forces erupted in Nasir over the weekend, with both sides since claiming to be in control of the town, located south-east of the state capital, Malakal.

Rebels said on Sunday its forces had taken control of the town after repulsing government troops, claiming to have captured three government tanks and destroyed a number of trucks during the offensive.

In interview with Sudan Tribune prior to taking up his new position, Tap said that rebels had been driven out of the town after penetrating some areas on Sunday after crossing into the town from the south of the river.

Government troops and rebel forces aligned with former vice-president Riek Machar have been engaged in armed conflict since mid-December when violence flared amid rising political tensions in the ruling SPLM.

The latest outbreak of violence in Nasir has been condemned by world leaders, including UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon, who called on pro-Machar rebels to immediately cease all offensive operations in Nasir and other areas, while also urging the South Sudanese government to resist launching any counter-offensive.


Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article


The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.

Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis

Why the order establishing 28 states should be nullified 2015-10-04 10:29:29 By James Okuk On Friday 2nd October 2015 in Juba and quoting as usual Article 101 of Transitional Constitution of South Sudan (2011), President Salva Kiir Mayardit issued “Establishment Order (...)

Who to benefit from the Somaliazation of South Sudan? 2015-10-01 19:01:51 By Steve Paterno The question above is becoming more prevalent now more than ever, with the "imposition of peace agreement", (to borrow Riek Machar's phrase), along with President Salva Kiir's (...)

Lessons of Maridi fuel tanker “tragic incident” 2015-09-26 15:10:10 By Isaac Yak R. Tutdel The Republic of South Sudan, on 17th September 2015, learned with great dismay the massive loss of lives caused by fuel tanker which overturned and unexpectedly caught (...)


Latest Press Releases

Sudan Democracy First Group Statement on The International Day for Democracy 2015-10-01 22:18:58 22 September 2015 Sudan Democracy First Group (SDFG) commemorated on 15 September 2015 the International Day for Democracy, which the United Nations (UN) marks as a day to encourage governments (...)

Ambassador Buay congratulates South Sudanese diplomats for blocking sanctions 2015-09-19 00:20:30 SOUTH SUDAN DIPLOMATS IN MOSCOW SHOULD BE CONGRATULATED FOR PERSUADING THE FEDERATION OF RUSSIA TO BLOCK SANCTIONS For Immediate Release 9/18/2015 The people of South Sudan are extremely (...)

HRW urges African Union and United Nations to protect civilians in Darfur 2015-09-10 07:10:11 Sudan: Special Force Rampages in Darfur UN, AU Should Urgently Increase Civilian Protection (New York, September 9, 2015) – A Sudanese government special force has gone on two sprees of killings (...)


Copyright © 2003-2015 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.