By Peter Lokale Nakimangole
TORIT, 12 June 2012 (Gurtong) – The shutdown was necessitated by a standoff between Ugandan traders, mostly drivers and local authorities.
Operations resumed at the town Monday after a meeting between officials from the two sides.
The officials agreed on temporary measures as more negotiations on the matter continue.
The Eastern Equatoria State Government in collaboration with the National Government has been working on ensuring resumption of normal business operations at Nimule border, one of South Sudan’s biggest income earners, after the country’s oil wells shut down.
The State Government spokesperson Felix Otuduha Siro told Gurtong Monday that the state government, the Ugandan government and the national government’s relevant ministries of Interior, Foreign Affairs and Finance and Economic planning are working to solve the impasse.
He confirmed that the closure was triggered by allegations of heavy taxation and harassment of Ugandan drivers and traders by custom officials.
Siro, also the state Minister of Information and Telecommunication said mutual understanding between the two sides will see an end to the hostilities.
“We are meeting now at the state level to come out in one voice to address the grievances raised by the Ugandan traders. We are confident that permanent solutions will be found and fixed accordingly”, he said.
The State government, on behalf of the national government, has expressed regret to the Ugandan traders for the ill-treatment at the borders.
Ugandan traders enumerated the suffering at the hands of some South Sudanese while entering the country through the border.
In February this year, Ugandan drivers protested at what they called heavy taxation and harassment by the police along the Juba-Nimule road.