14 November 2012

South Sudan: Upper House Finishing Investigating Governor Over Training Armed Group

Juba — An investigation into allegations that the Governor of Eastern Equatoria State, Louis Lobong Lojore, is training an armed militia group separate from South Sudanese army (SPLA), will end soon an official told Sudan Tribune on Wednesday.

John Mosua MP, who chairs investigation committee set up by the Council of States -the upper house of South Sudan Legislative Assembly - to investigate the Governor's alleged links to militia groups, said his team has almost finished its work but did not give a date for the publication of the findings.

He also did not indicate whether they had found evidence supporting the claims, which were initially made by Michael Losike, a member of the Council of States, representing Kapoeta East County.

The six-member inestigation committee is based in Eastern Equatoria State capital, Torit. It has met with Lobong and other people accused of involvement. The team was appointed by the and was expected to complete its work within a month.

"We are also almost completing all the processes. We went to the state two weeks ago and have we are able to hold meeting with different officials including Governor Louis Lobong himself. We also met and talked to those mentioned in the report of the Council of States", Mosua said.

He said the house constituted a committee made up of legislators from other states in South Sudan to investigate, whether there is a militia being trained in in greater Kapoeta.

Losike told the house in September that Governor Louis Lobong Lojore had opened training center for militia group in the area with intention to destabilize the Greater Kapoeta area. Losike's allegations, which also involve Governor Lojore's wife, have been strongly denied. Governor Lobong has said he would resign if found guilty.

The motives behind the accusations remain unclear though some government officials in the state level of government and Juba links to long political difference between the Governor and Losike.

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