Defense Minister visits Pantiit cantonment area in Aweil

The South Sudan’s minister of defence and veterans’ affairs, Angelina Teny, has visited the Joint Security Forces due for graduation in the Pantiit training camp located in Aweil West.

It is not clear when protection forces to Revitalize Peace Agreement would graduate.

The center hosts at least 3,000 military trainees who are part of the Unified Forces expected to graduate this year. The team has proceeded to Wau to assess other cantonment areas.

The minister of defense was accompanied by senior government officials of the joint defence board and the Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement Monitoring and Verification Mechanism or CTSAMVM.

Lt General Garang Ayii Akol is in charge of training centers in the Bahr el Ghazal region. The committee visit on Friday is part of assessing the soldiers’ readiness for graduation. “Today, we visited the patient training center to monitor the soldier’s conditions at the training center. We also wanted to find out if they have received enough training to be graduated.

However, graduation might be soon. We are not sure when but we are working to bring their uniforms and other needs that will be kept in the center. Things like food and others, Ayii said.
The Governor of Northern Bahr el Ghazal state, Tong Akeen Ngor, said that the integration of forces is a sign of lasting peace.

Today I visited the Pantiit training center to assess the condition of the soldiers at the center. But I found out that the community members around the center are really happy with soldiers, and they said they had lived peacefully. Now I want to let the citizens know that peace is already implemented since the soldiers are being trained and integrated after graduation, so I want the citizens to leave peacefully and embrace peace.”Governor Tong mentioned.

Church support

The councils of churches and Islamic have started contribution foodstuffs that include sorghum and groundnuts to support the soldiers at the Pan-Tiit cantonment site. The Church’s leader visited the camp last week in solidarity of joint security forces
Bishop Wol Tong Tong is the Chairperson of the Inter-Church Committee in Northern Bahr el Ghazal State.

He said soldiers are in dared needs of food and medicine. The Christian’s believers have donated sacks groundnuts, and the contribution continues.

“Yes, we have started today, and people praying today will put their hand together in the Islamic area. As we the believers also at the other churches, we already have a committee where you can pay your contributions.”
The church leader further urges the local community to support the officers at the training center.
The leader of the Islamic council in Aweil town, Ibrahim Deng Akok, confirmed also.
“It is for everyone not only for believers because this is to support people who are suffering. In Church, we believe that God says, help people who need support, and God is watching, so it is for everyone in Aweil to come together and support our people.”

On Monday this week, a public Fundraising initiative to support the challenges facing Aweil Main hospital has begun.

Last week, Councils of churches and Islamic alleged that the military trainees at Pantiit are facing hunger after visiting the center.

Three Tons of Medical Supplies Arrive Aweil

Northern Bahr el Ghazal state received first consignment of 3 ton medical supplies. The drugs arrived in Aweil this week from neighboring Sudan.  Officials said the supplies will help reduce the shortage of medicines in the state.

The Secretary General of Northern Bahr el Ghazal State, Dominic Kang Deng said the imported drugs will not be free of charge. Adding that the drugs will be sold at low cost in the public pharmacies.  He did not specified how much they will be sold to the public.

Kang said “the plane is carrying different drugs for the diseases that are affecting people in Northern Bahr el Ghazal. And this is the first phase and the second phase will also come after this drugs and we want people of Aweil to work with government and these drugs are meant to reduce the prices of drugs at the markets”.

He urges the community to visit the main hospital and get cheaper medicines.

Akol Yam FM in spoke to some of the residents in Aweil.  Which show a conflicting views between the authority and civilians. Some of the residents in Aweil thoughts the drugs will be free of charge. They applauded the availability of medical supplies.

Mr. Zachariah Garang Lual is a resident in Aweil. He said drug imported will help a patient who are unable to pay for medication. He appealed to the authority to dispense drugs to five Counties for easy accessibility.

“We love it and we want Governor Tong to monitor these drugs and distribute to all five counties of Northern Bhar El Ghazal State and assured people not to sell them away because so many people take things as their things and it is not good,” Garang said.

Another resident, Francis Muonydeng Garang excited with the initiative. Urge the governor to continue doing more good things for the people.

“I have really appreciated the Government of Sudan for supporting us with drugs and I want people of Aweil to work together with new leadership because the governor has started and he is going to do great things to our people in the State please put your hand together for development”

The Director of Aweil’s Civil hospital, Dr. Reech Mathok Ding said that the drugs will help the patients during the malaria season. And people could afford to buy at a cheaper price because they have been subsidized by the government.

“When the governor of Northern Bhar El Ghazal State was in Sudan he called me to give him a list of drugs that needed most in Aweil so that he can bring drugs from Sudan and I have listed them and send it to him while in Khartoum so he bought the drugs such as malaria, diabetes, and others and we have received them today,” Mathok stated.

This is the first for the State to get direct supply from neighboring Sudan.

Palakal Residents Going Thirsty as the Main Water Tank Bursts

The Palakal area resident in Kapoeta has raised concerns over the shortage of water after their source of water damaged. The community has been fetched water from the tanker installed in the area that busted last week.

Some residents said they find it challenging to get enough clean water for drinking, washing, and bathing.

Others argued that the remaining tanks could not supplies every resident despite water pumped daily.

 “We are urging the government to help them because of the water tank which is busted or spoil no water they always cry every day of water when there is sun water come, but all pour out, so they run shortage of water they are urging the government to help and make the tank,” she said.

“People do quarreling every day because of the water supply. What happens with water? What take water? The tank busted and did pour water out, so children cry for thirst; nothing we can wash the cloth tells the authority to come and help us,” community member stated.

The Palakal asked the town council to address the matter urgently.

Singaita FM spoke to Juma Buhari, Council’s Chief Executive in Kapoeta town Eastern Equatoria, distance his government responsibility to repair the broken water tanker. He said the facility had been handed to the community, and people should contribute money to replace the tank and other maintenance costs.

The water tank of Palakal was hand over to the community management team, mostly the tank that got spoil or burst. Those people did not give any money to the government. It is almost one year they have not given anything to let them collect money to buy another the other tank NGO who did so they have handed to us want the NGO to give the tank the community has to assist.

The government expressed a lack of budget for purchasing a new tank. Some residents said they resorted to drinking from the river as an alternative way to meet their needs but highlighted the fear of water-borne diseases.

 

 

 

 

Report Road Accidents, Awarial Traffic Police Urges the Citizens

The Traffic Police department in Awerial County called on motorists’ riders to report accidents that happen.  The motorists’ accident has caused an alarm among County residents.

The Deputy Director of Traffic Police Officer Mapour Majok cautioned that some motorists’ riders committing crimes will not hide due to insecurity threats.

Awerial county traffic police department recorded five murder cases of road accidents early this year. Last week, a Boda Boda operator knocked a 6-year-old boy at Tukure village hide for several hours before handing himself to traffic police.

Police explained that it is not lawful to hurt a person and run away. According to the law if you are involved in an accident with a motorbike. The rider should be in the scene until the survey has done like what he did to leave the motorbike in the place of accident and report yourself to the police and not to run away not good.

Law enforcement

Local County in Awerial in Lakes state acknowledged that cases of a motorbike accidents increase. But, some Boda Boda operators in Mingkaman town have risen concerned about being targeted in motorbike accidents involved the passenger.

The motorists’ riders didn’t dismiss police department claims. They said the reason why they escaped the scene during accidents is to avoid being hurt by relative to the victims and dodge public confrontation.

Motorists’ representative talk in the condition of anonymity to Mingakaman FM.

He said ’’it is better to run away before relatives harm you, you can even be killed if fail to run for your life.” The reason for running is that people gather crying and they turn violence against you so the best to escape for safety, traffic police should be the ones to handle accident cases so our people must stop fighting us back. Our people should learn how issues to do with roads are addressed”.

Boda boda Riders urge citizens to refrain from violence and allowed traffic police to investigate road accidents.

Public Warns on Misuse of National Flag at Private Festivals

Turalei former youth leader Daniel Bol Thel on Tuesday has protested against the misuse of the South Sudan national flag on private occasions which he labeled “unconstitutional”. Warning against the misrepresentation of the national flag came because some people randomly use it at kraals, local brewing sites, and wedding ceremonies.

South Sudan’s national flag constitutionally represents the blood that was shed for the independence of the country, Unity, agricultural, natural wealth, and the land.

Mr. Bol said distortion of the flag was so disturbing because the flag should be raised up mostly in public institutions including offices and schools. The flag was rampantly being used in “unofficial events. The flag represents the country as a whole, not individuals he said should be respected and protected” he illustrated.

“You could find that one has risen the flag at the shop, not logical. Even at home, people raise the national flag. This has gone for many years, and we thought it is still a new nation, but they have stuck to it now. That is why I decided to talk about it. We need it to stop.”

Citizens’ anticipation

Some business people who put a flag in their compound said that they did not know that the national flag couldn’t use privately. They admitted the mistake.

Resident in Twice County Kuol Deng Kuol said they felt proud to use the national flag because of their pride toward the nation.

“It was just pride for our country, South Sudan that is why we use them at weddings. Before the country south Sudan got independence, we have been using a clan flag during the wedding. When we became an independent state, we adopt the use of flags because it is beautiful,” Kuol explained.

Legal concerns

Advocate William Mapiu Ayuel appreciated those concerns risen against the flag. He disclosed that the flag is one of the national identities. No individual constitutionally could use the national identities in his or her events.

Mapiu said “it is used in public institutions like schools, hospitals, County, states, and others. Number two is used in the national events or national celebrations but to take it for yourself like at the wedding, it is unbecoming, and it shows that you don’t respect it.”

The South Sudan transitional constitution of 2011, article 7, emblem, national anthem, coat of arms, public seal, medals, festivals, and commemorations of the State shall be prescribed by law.

Patients to Pay for Tests at Mother Teresa Hospital

A church supported hospital has introduced new testing fees for outpatients to pay before accessing medical service. The move did not welcome by the community, and they asked the government to intervene.

Mother Teresa hospital said patients would now pay 500 Pound for tests of typhoid and brucellosis. The malaria test goes for 100 Pound according to the official.

The hospital is located in Turalei area of Warrap state. It has been offering free services to local people for more than ten years. But the new changes make communities worrying this time.

They say local people could not afford the cost and urge the government to address their concerns.

“This is the surprising thing because five hundred pounds is too much in this tough time in which seeking food is the major thing,” Akur Deng Dut, a resident in Turalei Payam, has said.

Another resident in Turalei Mr. Nyuol Mangok questioned why there was no 

“They should explain why, and this decision should have been made public before implementation. Before, patients have been getting treatment here for free. We have only been paying the registration fee of 50 pounds, but now five hundred is a lot” The only thing we suppose to pay attention to is going outside and buy drugs that are not in the hospital and not paying for the test. So what is the difference between public and private clinics.”Mam Deng Nyuol said.

The hospital argues that its decision came after funds for free medication cut off, and the new fees will help recover the cost.

Ajongo Majok Ajong is a doctor at Mother Teresa hospital. He said patients would only pay testing fees for three diseases includes malaria, brucellosis, and typhoid.

He said the doctor would not attend to the patient without payment being made.

I want to say is that it is good for those visiting the hospital to carry little money even if you don’t know that something is going to be needed. You can have something so that you could be able to pay if charges ask from you”, Majok said.

The County health department distance itself from the move said not aware of the new changes hospital applied. 

Health Coordinator of Twic County, Barac Achuil Rual mentioned that hospitals in Twic County under government deliver free health services.

Public hospitals in Twic are free. We have a health part that provides free healthcare services. If this is happening now, investigate vestigates why the Mother Teresa hospital is doing this.” He stated

Mayardit FM also spoke to hospital administrator Martin Maker Gor. He said the payment is a cost-sharing to meet the gape. And the HPF phase three does not cover all the hospital expenses.

“We did not want to tell our patients to go and do test outside and come back; instead of that, we ask the cost-sharing sharing. Outside test cost 1000 pounds and here cost less, and we give free treatment,” Martin said.

The hospital has been treated over 100 people daily. It’s not clear what the number would be after fees imposed on patients.

Residents of Mayendit County Call for Aid Assistant

Thousands of Mayiandit County residents affected by massive flooding in mid-July, in Unity State, are calling for urgent humanitarian assistance. 

The humanitarian organization, Samaritan’s purse, said over a hundred thousand households registered this month were so starving of hunger.

In the first week of August, over 800 households with a total of 1,900 individuals were reportedly displaced in Northern County. According to the County Relief and Rehabilitation Commission, the areas affected include Pantoot, Maper and Thakker Payams.  

Flood victims described natural catastrophe as an “outrage disaster” that had triggered extreme starvation to people who were living on the streets without shelters. Water engulfed the whole area. Dhorbuoni, Dhorthier, Dhorgapni, and Maal Kuer were the most affected in the Southern part of Mayiandit.

One of the IDPS Pieny Jiek Jany said the flooding was caused heavy rain since June, and it has not yet stopped. All Payams were affected. He explained community had built some deterrence dykes, but the water ran out of control. 

Landslide overflowing was reportedly have affected infertile crops and animals. According to the resident, those affected include elderly persons, and people with disabilities are living on the main road without shelter. Some occupied the church and school facilities. 

Sarah Nyawuok Bol is a resident whose children surviving with fish as their daily meal. She said the majority of people don’t have fishing materials. 

“The worse things which were suffering, especially widowers whose husbands killed, blind people and people with disability when you saw them on the road, you can felt so sad.”

Snakes’ bite

Twelve people were bitten by snakes in the county headquarter alone. And two people died due to insufficient medication. 

It is not the first time people were dying each year due to snakes’ bite in the county. Medicine Saint Frontiers or MSF-Holland operating in Leer County, has admitted 50 patients of snakes’ bits in the first and second week of August. 

NGO says snake bite is a neglected public health issue in many tropical and subtropical countries. About 5.4 million snake bites occur each year, resulting in 1.8 to 2.7 million cases of poisoning. Around 81 000 to 138 000 people die each year because of snake bites.

Humanitarians’ intervention              

NGO Samaritan’s purse conducted an assessment last week. A massive number of unspecified people were affected. And are daring need of aid assistants such as food, shelter, and medical supplies. Samaritan’s purse and Universal Intervention and Development Organization are two organizations that were providing aid assistant in Mayiandit County. Samaritan’s purse staff who talk in a condition of anonymity explained that the situation needs immediate intervention. 

In 2019 The World Food Program said nearly a million of South Sudan’s 11 million people have been affected by devastating floods and are in urgent need of life-saving assistance. This year president Kiir declared a state of emergency in Upper Nile and the Jonglei States.

 

Health officials receive high influx of IDPs in Mingkaman

A health official working at Mingkaman Primary health care center PHCC said there is influx of people visiting the health center daily has increased significantly daily.

Christopher Akuein is a clinical officer managing the PHCC run by doctors with Africa CAUM in Mingkaman. He said they are treating two hundred and thirty patient’s a day. Saying the increase has overwhelmed the four clinical officers of which each sees an average of nearly 60 people in a day.

He said that this happens because of the massive flood displacement so the clinical officers are managing the facility. Akuien said the hospital is running short of lifesaving drugs for treating common diseases, such as malaria, pneumonia, and diarrhea. “The number is increasing every day and we are trying our best to deliver medical treatment to people here in the clinic, said Akuien.

He added that the only fear of drug shortage, which they are expecting to run out very soon.

Achol Kur is one of the patients who brought her child to be treated said she spent several hours in the queue to see medical doctors due to the high number of waiting to be served. “It takes us many hours to reach doctor that means someone needs to be here very early in the morning.

She said women and children are suffering from a common disease like malaria even now my child tested positive of malaria. “Am worry in case the clinic run out of essential drugs, most of us will not afford to buy medicine in private pharmacies.”

This comes after over fifteen thousand people who fled their homes in Jonglei State due to flooding arrived in Mingkaman in the last few weeks.

Over 300 IDPs received emergency food assistance in Mingkaman.

At least over three hundred households ‘flood-affected victims in Mingkaman receive emergency food assistance. The food distribution, which started on Wednesday, is being conducted by a national NGO called Assistance for Relief and Development Agency (ARDA).

Mr. Bup Mading Bup is the field coordinator for ARDA; he said the combined two households to share 50kg bag of maize flour, 25kg per household. “We have identified sixty families from Pakeer alone, Ajuong the same sixty, so sixty people will be given thirty bags of maize flour because it is a little food,” said Bup.

He said the people receiving food are those identified as the most vulnerable groups. Saying they have given community leaders the responsibility to select their vulnerable people in the payams. And he urged people to be patient as they continue lobbying for more fundings to support the flood-displaced victims.

Mr. Yeah Dup is one of the community leaders in Mingkaman. He raised his concerns saying the food would not be enough to feed thousands of people in need. He urges the organization to bring more food that can meet the total registered IDPs.

Abuk Agot, one of the women who received food, said she appreciated the organization for a quick response. ’’We were the people affected by flood in our areas; we lost all our properties,” said Agot.

She said that they use to sleep in the open space without shelter or mosquito nets and no clean drinking water available.

Agot said this little food would help her family to survive for a few days to wait until they get the next distribution round.

Fifteen thousand people who fled Bor as a result of floods are camping in Mingkaman, many living in the schools.

Plane crashed in Juba has killed 7 people and 1 survived

At least 7 people have died and one survived in a plane crashed in Juba on Saturday morning. The plane came down in Kermiru village about 15 kilometers west of Juba international airport.

An official said eight people were on board, five passengers, and three crew members.  Kur Kuol Ajith is the managing director of Juba International Airport. He said the plane was en route from Juba to Wau and Aweil in Northern Bahr el Ghazal to delivered soldiers’ salaries.

He said they will launch an investigation to established the cause of the accident which he said happen few minutes after its takeoff.

The aircraft belongs to Southwest Aviation.

Last week a private chartered aircraft by NNGO crashed at New Fangak in Jonglei state, with seven people on board and all survived.