7th December 2023
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Lobong frees 71 captive raiders on “humanitarian” ground

Author: James Atem Kuir | Published: Saturday, August 13, 2022

Governor Louis Lobong Lojore serves porridge to captive cattle raiders at Torit Referal Hospital. | Courtesy.

The Governor of Eastern Equatoria State, Louis Lobong Lojore has pardoned more than 70 raiders captured during the deadly attack on Kapoeta North County.

The 71 raiders, said to be from Greater Pibor Administrative Area, were wounded in a cattle raid that led to the killing of 235 people in July.

According to his Press Secretary Aliandro Lotok, Governor Lobong ordered for their release, in an effort to end conflict and promote peaceful coexistence between the communities in the two neighboring areas.

“On this issue again, you cannot use the eye for eye for an eye as the solution, so what the governor did was on humanitarian ground that is acceptable under humanitarian law,” said Lotok.

Last month, Governor Lobong was seen serving porridge to the score of captive cattle raiders.

Lobong reportedly visited the wounded raiders, undergoing medical treatment at Torit Referral Hospital.

“Go home and be ambassadors of peace in your community,” Lobong is quoted by a social media source. He went on to say, “conflict destroys humanity.”

The decision to pardon the raiders received mixed reactions from the public, with some commending the governor, and others condemning the gesture as allowing criminals to commit atrocities with impunity.

However, the governor’s aide defended the decision, saying Lobong acted in accordance with international law and rule of engagement on conflict related issues.

“We know that they have committed a serious crime but what do we do? Should we say that because killed people, we should get hold of them and kill them?”

“We also need to look ahead and ensure that such issues do not happen again and the governor has talked to the community and asked them to remain calm.”


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