Juba — Aweil community of South Sudan's Northern Bahr el Ghazal state who reside in Juba on Sunday contributed nearly 200,000 South Sudanese pounds ($70,000) to the national army, the SPLA, in defence of the state's territories.
The fundraising ceremony was organized at Nyekuron Culture center in the presence of the Deputy Minister of Defence and Veterans Affairs, Majak D'Agoot, who expressed the army's readiness to defend the territorial integrity of the country.
A cross section of the Aweil society including business people, government officials and employees of non-governmental organizations contributed the money. They called on the army to defend the Mile 14 and other contested areas which are claimed by the government of Sudan.
It is to be recalled that the state government of Northern Bhar el Ghazal was opposed to the September 27 cooperation agreement signed between President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his Sudanese counterpart, Omer Hassan Al-Bashir which gave Mile 14 borderland to Sudan as part of the temporary security deal to create a buffer zone between the two countries.
The minister of Commerce, Industry and Investment, Garang Diing Akuong, who also hails from Northern Bahr el Ghazal state, during the occasion urged the Aweil community to support the South Sudanese team which negotiates with the Sudanese counterparts, adding that they should not be "stabbed at the back" while negotiating.
Meanwhile the two presidents of Sudan and South Sudan have agreed in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, to implement the cooperation agreement without and preconditions attached.
Earlier President Al-Bashir demanded that South Sudan should disarm the rebels of the SPLM-N, which were South Sudan's former allies during the liberation struggle, before his government could implement the cooperation agreement.