The Press Secretary in the Office of the President, Ateny Awek Ateny, has dismissed an online petition filed by Gen. Paul Malong’s wife over circumstances surrounding his “stay” in Juba.
Lucy Ayak, who is based in Nairobi, Kenya, wrote an open letter to President Salva Kiir, pleading for Gen. Malong to be allowed to travel outside the country on medical grounds.
In the petition posted on Change.org, Ms Ayak describes her husband’s health as “worrying for the family” and urges the President to permit him to leave Juba.
Mrs. Malong said her husband has not been allowed to travel since his return to Juba in May, after friends persuaded him in Yirol to postponed his planned trip to Aweil.
“As I write this piece, Gen. Paul Malong remains under “un-pronounced” house arrest, under unclear and unexplained circumstances…almost three months later, he remains in custody, without any statement from your office or any other government apparatus/agency. All communication channels with you have been gradually curtailed,” partly reads the petition.
Ms. Ayak further wrote that Gen. Malong’s condition needs regular check ups, and that he currently requires one.
“I should bring to your attention the fact that my husband is not currently in good health, as I am also sure that you well know,” it continues.
“He has been having routine checkups and treatment both in Juba and Nairobi over the time he has been working under your command.”
In response, Ateny Wek said Gen. Malong has not been forbidden from traveling or from seeking medical assistance.
According to Ateny, Gen. Paul Malong has not been placed under house arrest or denied access to any doctor.
“Gen. Paul Malong is not under arrest, he is not. And he is not under any ban whatsoever. Gen. Malong is a free man,” Mr. Ateny said.
“In fact, Gen. Malong is not even complaining about going outside the country. That lady maybe wanted to have international attention.”
Mr. Ateny said he only saw the petition online, but has not received it at the State House, J1.
But he said he has not seen Gen. Malong since he [Malong] met Kiir after returning from Yirol.
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