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Pibor set to return over 40 abducted children

Author: Lasuba Memo | Published: Friday, March 26, 2021

Some of abductees identified by Pibor Administrative area expected to be handed over to the neighboring counties in Jonglei state. - credit | Nyaboth Paska | 15th March 2021

Authorities in the Pibor Administrative area have identified over forty abducted children who will be handed over to their families in neighboring states.

The area’s Chief Administrator says they have so far recovered 41 children who were abducted from Akobo, Walgak, Pierri, Lankien, and Maiwut.

Joshua Konyi told Eye Radio that the move is to improve ties between the Pibor and the surrounding communities.

“This is to improve our relationship so that Murle can go and visit their brothers in Akobo, Bor, Gadiang and Pieri, and vice-versa,” said John Konyi.

“On our side, we have 43 children and they are from other tribes near Murle such as the Nuer and Dinka. We will soon hand them over to their families. They will be handed over after the Peirri peace conference.”

The latest effort is in a bid to implement resolutions of the Jonglei State and the Greater Pibor Administrative Area peace conference held in Juba early this year.

The People-to-People Peace Conference convened by Vice President Dr. James Wani Igga aimed at addressing the root causes of violence, and reconciling the communities.

The event drew resolutions that include the ceasing of hostilities, the return of abducted children and cattle, as well as the disarmament of the civil population.

Currently, there is an ongoing peace conference between Lou Nuer and the Murle communities in Pibor.

Khor Ruei, one of the representative from the Lou Nuer community at the peace talks expressed his contentment with the ongoing process.

He said that the peace process could lead to actual stability in the restive region of greater Jonglei.

“The security situation here is stable. We found more than 40 children together with some women. One woman has a child from Yuai, and the other one with 4 children. One of her children is almost 18 years,” Ruei said.

“They are implementing peace because some of these children are from Akobo, Walgak, Peirri, Lankien, Yuai and even a child from Maiwut.”

For her part, Nyaboth Paska, an Advocate Coordinator with South Sudan Council of Church who met the abductees in Pibor last week said the youngest child is months old.

She added that the eldest abductee is a mother of 4 children who doesn’t know where her children are.

“The youngest child is months old, the eldest is a mother of 4 sons who was abducted 3 years ago, the sad part is that she has no idea where her 3 sons are, at least she has the youngest child,” Paska said.

Paska said among the abducted are children from Nuer, Anyuak, Dinka, a child from Ethiopia, and others from the Equatoria region.

One of the teen Nuer boys abducted years ago who speaks only Murle language barely remember his names and his father’s.

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