January 26, 2017 (JUBA) - South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy (SSHURSA) has condemned in the “strongest” term the arrest and possible deportation of two senior opposition figures.
- SPLM (IO) deputy chairman for justice and human rights affairs, Samuel Dong Luak, pictured after his return from hospital, Nairobi, October 13, 2015 (ST Photo)
Samuel Dong Luak, a South Sudanese lawyer disappeared on 23 January, 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. He is believed being held by the Kenyan security personnel with Aggrey Idris, a senior South Sudanese armed opposition member also abducted and believed to be held.
Sources in Nairobi indicated that South Sudan’s security personnel are behind the abduction having connived with the Kenyan security agents to deport the two vocal opposition figures back to Juba.
Luak, despite being in exile since 2013, continued to champion the defence of human rights and the rule of law and has always been exposing any abuses carried out by South Sudanese authorities.
“Abducting him [Luak] and Aggrey Idris, is a violation of their right to free speech and expression. SSHURSA condemns the behaviour of Kenyan security in conniving with South Sudanese security to abuse the rights of Samuel Dong and Aggrey Idris”, said the rights body.
SSHURSA urged the Kenyan government to adhere to its international human rights obligations and not partake in the abuses of human rights and rule of law, which Luak has been exposing at the forefront.
“SSHURSA calls on Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and his government to intervene to prevent deportation and the two men should be released immediately. President Kenyatta should take drastic measures against his security agents who are involved in conniving with the South Sudanese security machinery to use Kenya as a ground to extend human rights abuses,” stressed the statement.
The rights entity further urged the international community especially, the United Nations and the Troika nations (United States, Norway and United Kingdom) to boldly face the Kenyan government to stop possible deportation of activists Luak and Idris back to South Sudan.
It further called upon Kenya’s human rights institutions and personnel to urge their government not to condone Kenyan soil being used as a city for South Sudan security agents to abuse human rights and rule of law at will as they do in South Sudan.
Kenya has, in recent years, unlawfully deported several prominent opposition members from neighboring countries to their countries of origin, despite being recognized as refugees under Kenyan law and protests by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
In November last year, Kenya arrested and deported James Gatdet Dak, the spokesperson for rebel leader, Riek Machar. Dak is currently being held, without charge, at South Sudan National Security Services headquarters.