Pibor Intellectuals Embrace Presidential Order Forming GPAA

This article was last updated on May 27, 2022

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In a decree read out on Thursday evening on the state television channel, the President of the republic of South Sudan established the Greater Pibor Administrative Area (GPAA) as a “structure annexed under the Presidency.”

The decree was in implementation of the peace agreement signed earlier this year, which ended four years of conflict in Jonglei state (JS) between the Government of South Sudan and South Sudan Democratic Movement (SSDM) Cobra faction.

On Friday, JS Minister of Information and communication, Judi Jonglei Boyoris, who is from the Ngalam ethnic group in Pibor, said natives of greater Pibor are very happy with the initiative of the President of the Republic of South Sudan in announcing greater Pibor administrative area as a separate body, outside of Jonglei government.

Boyoris says Greater Pibor Administration Area leadership will be formed through consultation with Cobra faction, the former rebellion led by David Yau Yau; he said that the community will be part of the consultation too.

Greater Pibor administration will be sub-divided into six counties including two former counties of Pibor and Pochalla. The new counties will be Boma, Likuongole and Gumuruk, with one further new county to be named later.

“This decision will create access to development and easy services to people of greater Pibor,” Hon. Boyoris told Gurtong. He said the benefit to the community in this agreement is to have their own administration and development. He explained that the new provisions will create more opportunities and more positions- for example there will be six Commissioners, a fact which Boyoris felt would help improve security, not just in Pibor, but even in Jonglei state as a whole.

He said there will be no insecurity after the implementation of GPAA, as payams will be running their administration effectively. “After the signature of the peace agreement between Yau Yau and government we say that no insecurity in these areas since that time,” he said.

Ogato Cham, a former JS minister of Cooperatives and Rural Development, said that there will be no discrimination anymore between the people who will remain in the state and the people of greater Pibor.

“These three areas are really backward and they are marginalized … when we fought with the government of North [Sudan] we were fighting about development but today, if we achieved our independence from the North, we should not neglect other areas. Even today the [cellphone] network you will never get it in Pochalla and Boma,” Cham said.

A native of Murle who identified himself as David, said it is a good time for the people of Pibor to focus on developmental actives because they have been marginalized for a long time. It is widely hoped that the new administrative arrangement will directly deliver improved services and create access to development to all ethnic communities of greater Pibor.

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