1 February 2013

South Sudan: Warrap-Unity Launch Joint Police Station to Curb Cattle Raids

Juba — South Sudan's Warrap and Unity states have opened a joint police station on their tense border to curb cattle raiding between neighbouring communities, which regularly results in the death of civilians.

Warrap state Governor Nyandeng Malek and Twic County Commissioner Malek Riing, at the launch of a joint Unity-Warrap Police Patrol Station, February 2, 2013 (ST)

Speaking at the launch of the new border police station in Ajak Kuac, the governor Warrap state, Nyandeng Malek, said her administration was committed to protecting and safeguarding the lives and properties of citizens.

Malek, the only female governor in South Sudan was voted into office during the 2010 election, where she promised to implement more robust development plans, promote quality education and improve security in the state to usher in development.

However, South Sudan's economic troubles - caused by the shutdown of oil production a year ago as a result of its post-independence disputes with Sudan - has meant that Malek and other counterparts have not been able to live up to the local peoples' expectations.

On Wednesday, Governor Malek said she will revisit the promises she made during her campaign period, but fell short of giving any timeline.

"I would like to let our people know that your government remains committed to protecting you and your properties. We have built this station to reduce fear of being raided and attacked," said Malek.

"The police force will be stationed here to provide security and monitor and take corrective measure to maintain law and order in the area", she added.

Malek Riing, the Commissioner of Twic County commended the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) for funding the construction of the station, describing it as a key step in beginning to fulfill pledges made during the 2010 election.

Cattle rustling and clashes over grazing and farm land are relatively common practices between communities in the border areas between Warrap and Unity state and often escalate with revenge attacks and cattle raiding.

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