Lakes State Residents Appeal To Government To Conduct A Disarmament Exercise

The civil population in Lakes State on Monday took to the streets to demonstrate against the presence of small weapons in the hands of civilians in the State.

 Lakes State Residents Appeal To Government To Conduct A Disarmament Exercise
Secondary school students duringthe demonstration in Rumbek against civilians carrying guns [Gurtong/Photo]

By Mabor Riak Magok

RUMBEK, 14 November 2017 [Gurtong]-They are appealing to the national government to conduct a disarmament exercise in the State in order to restore some sanity in the State from night robberies and senseless killings.

They expressed frustrations over road ambushes and rampant attacks on farmers forcing them to abandon cultivation.
Local traditional leaders including Chiefs say that that many schools in the villages have been shut down due to insecurity caused by the armed youth carrying illegal firearms.
In June this year, Safer World in partnership with CEPO launched a project on the awareness of the dangers of small arms and light weapons in Rumbek.
Isaac Majier Majok, CEPO Lakes State Coordinator said the organizations have established drama groups in schools and Community Action Groups to educate people on the risks of weapons in their hands.
State Minister of Education, Dut Makoi Kuok urged the national and the State government to disarm the civil population.
Moses Marial Chol, a member of the community elders’ in Western Lakes State said guns should not be in the hands of civilians.

“We have to take this opportunity today in Western Lakes State to break the silence and to strongly express our voices over this issue of arms present in the hands of the civil population and the misuse of these arms by the civil population among themselves. I am appealing to the authorities responsible in Juba to come and collect their guns.”  Marial said.

“These guns circulating in the hands of civilians have made us poor and our homes and properties are being looted at gun point, women and girls raped and other valuable items for livelihood such as food items, cattle and goats are taken during daylight and also at night,” said Marial Chol.

The Director of Disable Association for Rehabilitation and Development (DARD) who spoke on behalf of the civil society organization in Rumbek called upon the President Salva Kiir Mayardit to extend the state of emergency to the three States of former Lakes State.

“We the members of the civil society organization in Lakes Sate are calling upon President Salva kiir to extend the declaration of the state of emergency for the purpose of disarming the civil population and to restore law and order in the States of Western, Eastern and Gok respectively.”


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