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Former Lol state deputy governor denies SPLM-IO links

July 24, 2016 (JUBA) - The former deputy governor of Lol, one of South Sudan’s new states, Adut Sumeiyo Deng has denied links to the armed opposition faction (SPLM-IO).

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Rizik Zachariah Hassan, Governor of Lol state (UN photo)

Last week, Lol state Governor, Rizik Zachariah Hassan sacked Adut and a number of senior government officials, relatives and close allies.

The Raja town mayor, James Benjamin, who later declared his defection to the armed opposition faction, was also sacked.

Governor Hassan, in his order, did not provide any explanation as to why he took these administrative decisions. Some reports claimed the decision coincided with the defection.

In an interview with Sudan Tribune on Friday, the former deputy governor denied any links to the Riek Machar-led rebel faction.

“I have read in the media that my dismissal was over defections to armed opposition. Who said this, was it the governor or someone wrote for him”, Adut explained.

The former deputy governor said she was not in any way linked to the armed opposition, and wondered why she was removed from the powerful she held for less than a year since she was appointed.

“People are asking what I have done. I tell them I don’t know. It is the governor to tell you. For me, I have done four good things successfully to serve our people. When Raja town was attacked and people run away, I remained inside the town because I was with a lot of people I did not want their lives to be lost for they will be targeted if they were to run,” further said Adut.

The ex-deputy governor of Lol state, however, said she would have exposed politicians with links to the armed opposition after armed dissidents easily overrun the town.

“I don’t have link with the SPLM-IO. I did not and until this moment have no links with them. If I have link with them, I would have raised their flag when the town was overran. Also, if I have link with them there would have been a proof,” said Adut, adding that security personnel could tapped her communications, if she had rebel links.

The added, “The other proof could be if I have ever contributed anything and sent to them. I have never done such. I have never collected anything and sent to them when I remained in Raja as the acting governor when the governor was in Juba for more than one month”.