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Unity State Governor appoints two new ministers, a commissioner

By Bonifacio Taban Kuich

November 21, 2012 (KAMPALA) - The Governor of South Sudan’s Unity State, Taban Deng Gai on Tuesday appointed two new ministers and a Commissioner for Parieng County, replacing officials he sacked from his government last week.

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Map of South Sudan’s Unity State.

Those dismissed included, ex-commissioner Stephen Mabek Lang, former Education Minister, Them Machar Kuol and his Youth and Sports counterpart, William Mac Juac.

Their dismissal, officials told Sudan Tribune, followed allegations that the tree were fueling disunity among members of the ruling party (SPLM) at the county level.

Meanwhile, Angelo Chol, previously the SPLM Secretary for Parieng, becomes the new Education Minister while Paul Mabek Deng takes over the Culture, Youth and Sports portfolio. The Governor also appointed Majok Gatdet as the new Parieng County Commissioner.

In an interview with Sudan Tribune on Tuesday, Deng Majak, a member of Panru community described Chol as an “approachable, down-to-earth and a very sociable, tolerant and humble public servant”.

Despite mixed reactions over the sacking of these officials, said to have close ties with Governor Gai, the majority of citizens seem to support the move.

Rebecca Ayar, a student hauling from Parieng told Sudan Tribune she strongly backs the Governor’s decision, saying, “Dividing people at the grassroots instead to uniting them in one line is unacceptable.”

“We as the people of Parieng are behind Governor move to remove such power struggling self-interest politicians”, she added.

In a related development, Gai also dismissed William Thengjiek Toang, the former Director General for Local Government, replacing him with Koang Badeng Choap, while Makuey William Gatlok became the state Deputy General Secretary, filling a position that had for the last seven months been vacant.