A group of Sudanese nationals await registration in the Jonglei State capital, Bor. [©Gurtong/Gabriel Mayom]
By Gabriel Mayom
RUMBEK, 12 April 2012 [Gurtong] - Following the directive issued yesterday, over 600 Sudanese traders lined up to obtain registration documents.
However, state and foreign media were denied access to information on the process for unexplained reasons.
A number of shops owned by Sudanese nationals remained closed for the better part of the day as they were required to register themselves.
There was tight security as the process kicked off.
A Sudanese national Khadir Abukar, a cyclist who has lived in Bor town for three years, told the press shortly after completing his registration that the exercise was crucial as it will aid in their peaceful stay in South Sudan.
“There is nothing wrong with registration as it will not only help in our peaceful stay here but it will also help us in avoiding any hitches when travelling”, he said.
Meanwhile, the Jonglei Civil Society Group (JCSG) has urged the state residents to surrender illegal firearms before the expiry of the April deadline.
The group’s Secretary General John Penn de Ngong told the press Tuesday that his organisation was advocating for peaceful conduct of the disarmament exercise.
He advised the residents to fully co-operate with the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) in a bid to promote peace and security.
"As a civil society, our aim is to disarm our communities psychologically. You can remove the gun today but if you do not clear the war mentality in someone’s mindset you will have achieved nothing”, he said.
An SPLA official Lieutenant General Kuol Diem Kuol said over 10,000 firearms have so far been collected across the 11 counties of Jonglei State, adding that the army had taken full control of areas suspected to be hosting elements fleeing from the disarmament with their guns.