A wrestling Match in Bor Jonglei State. [Photo | Jacob Achiek]
By Jacob A. Jok
BOR, July 14, 2015 [Gurtong] – Some people traveled from Jalle villages for about 20 kilometers walking while others used commercial vehicles to attend the wrestling match in Bor town.
Wrestling is one of the competitions believed to bring communities together and bring peace among them.
The champion always earns more respect in his community and according to Dinka Bor cultures, wrestling creates an opportunity for young men and young women to meet and initiate lasting relationships.
Kuot John Akech, 43, from the winning team said wrestling is a match which shows people pride.
“When you are wrestling it is just like you are showing your people how good you are and come tomorrow you will take the same way and you will beat the other party,” John Akech told Gurtong.
Jacob Deng Kuol, a youth leader of Kolnyanng losing team said wrestling is just like any other sport activity just like a football match where one team loses and another wins.
“I am from the losers’ team but I am happy because it is a motivation to the entire community to bring the cultures together as one,” Deng Kuol said.
Traditionally, wrestling is practiced in South Sudan by Dinka Bor from Jonglei State, Ciec, Aliap and Atuot from Lakes State, Mundari from Central Equatoria and Latuko from Eastern Equatoria States. All these groups are cattle keepers.
In 2012, Jonglei State Ministry of Youth and Sports pledged extension of sporting activities to all the eleven Counties such that the youth would abandon cattle raiding and child abduction but an association for the wrestling game which was formed in 2012 was later abandoned following the December 2013 violence.
In December 2010, Jonglei State wrestling team won a cup valued at 10,000 Sudanese Pounds or 4,000 US dollars.
Jonglei was declared as South Sudan’s champion wrestling team after they beat Central Equatoria State 1-0 in the finals.