The government must resolve the issue of cattle from other states destroying properties in Terekeka County in Central Equatoria State, says the County Commissioner.
Commissioner Jacob Gore told Eye Radio that the state government should demand that cattle keepers from Jonglei and Lakes states return animals to their respective states to avoid conflict:
“We want the State and the national government to intervene and solve this problem once and for all. If we go-slow on this matter, it is not good. We need a temporary solution, so that cattle keepers in different state are returned to their respective states so that we settle.”
Farmers in the area and state in general have been complaining of threats caused by presence of cattle keepers in their areas. The animals allegedly destroy crops.
Attempt by the host communities, who are predominantly farmers, to intervene is met with armed resistance from the cattlemen.
Last month, Jonglei Governor Kuol Manyang urged Central Equatoria authorities to drive back pastoralists by force.
However in response, the CES Information minister Jacob Aligo said it is difficult to use the state police or the army because he said “many cattle are owned by senior civil servants.”
CES minister of Animal Resources, Gerald Francis, said a bill on controlling movements of animals in different states will be tabled before the national parliament soon:
“We are coming up with a law that will be deliberated upon by the national assembly….if animals from here are moving into a different state, there will specific routes that must be used by the cattle keepers. If cattle are found moving randomly in the bush, the owners of these cattle will be fined.”
Meanwhile, Central Equatoria State Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Cecilia Oba urges cattle keepers from both States to conduct meetings on how to co-exist peacefully.
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