South Sudan, Uganda Border Communities’ Sign Peace Accord

Deputy Governor Jerome Gama Surur (R) with his Ugandan Kaabong District Chairperson Komol Joseph Miidi holds the signed resolutions during cross border meeting in Budi County. [Peter Lokale Nakimangole]

The historic convention which began on 28 July concluded with signing a number of resolutions that aimed at bolstering peace and harmony among the border communities mainly of the three Budi, Kapoeta East and Ikwoto versus those in the Republic of Uganda in Kaabong District.

Officials said the concluded meeting was a reconciliation one that sought to bring together warring communities around the region and its ultimate purpose was to put an end to the ongoing cattle conflicts among the Toposa of Kapoeta East, Didinga of Buid County, and Lango clusters in Ikwoto County of Eastern Equatoria State as well as Communities of Uganda’s Kaabong region.

Heading the respective South Sudanese and Ugandan delegations during the just concluded meeting were Eastern Equatoria State Deputy Governor Jerome Gama and District Chairperson Komol Joseph Miidi respectively.

Witnessing the concluded talks from the side of South Sudan’s Eastern Equatoria State were Police Commissioner Major General Henry Danima Odu and three County Commissioners of Budi, Ikwoto and Kapoeta East, Morris Merisiya Kaunda, Peter Lokeng Lotone and Tirtus Lokwacuma Lotyam respectively.

Others included representatives from Catholic Diocese of Torit while witnesses from Ugandan side included Kaabong District Police Commander, Kaabong Resident District Police Commissioner, Brigade 503 Commander of the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF) together with representatives from the Catholic Diocese of Kotido and Kaabong Chief of Uganda. 

In March this year, similar related two-day cross-border meeting held between Sudanese and Ugandan communities leading to signing of Peace accord in Ikwoto County.

The meeting which was organized by Catholic Diocese of Torit and Kotido at St. Mathew Catholic Parish, Ikwoto County of Eastern Equatoria State, witnessed signing of a number of resolutions aimed at bringing peace among the border communities.

The leaders called for an immediate meeting to be arranged between Kapoeta East, Budi and Ikwoto counties of Eastern Equatoria state with Kabong district of Uganda.

The delegates recommended that South Sudan should continue sensitizing citizens on the dangers of illegal firearms in order to reduce the ongoing conflicts among communities.

Peter Lokeng Lotone the Ikwoto Commissioner urged the Ugandan communities to stop the sale of illicit alcohol to their neighbours in Eastern Equatoria State.

The meeting resolved to promote alternative sources of income generation for the youth and women groups in Chukundum, Narus, Isohe and Bira, Lotome, Kikilai, Lorema, Lotukei, Ikwoto so as to curb cattle raiding, road attacks and poaching.

They agreed on the deployment of security agents and rangers, recovery and hand over of stolen animals and involvement of women in peace building initiatives.

In the earlier March, Bishop Fillipi Giuseppe of Kotido Diocese and a Members of Parliament Akelo Rose Lily signed peace accord on behalf of Kabong district delegation with Paul Napwon, State Assembly Deputy Speaker and Fr. Joseph Ukelo of the Catholic Diocese of Torit representing the Eastern Equatoria state delegation.

The signatories appeal to all stakeholders; the respective governments of Uganda and Eastern Equatoria State, the church, civil society organizations and partners to do all that is within their power and means to implement the resolutions and recommendations for the realization of peace among border communities.

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