Jonglei peace conference ends in Juba, communities commit to peace

A three-day peace conference among the communities of Jonglei State and the Greater Pibor Administrative Area (GPAA) concluded in Juba Wednesday, with the rival groups agreeing to bury their differences and embrace peace.

The about 250 delegates including youth, women, chiefs, and intellectuals of Bor, Gawar, Lou Nuer, Anyuak, and Murle deliberated on the issues of insecurity and inter-communal violence in Jonglei State and the GPAA.

According to a document signed by the community representatives and read out by the spokesperson for the high-level committee on the Jonglei conflict Daniel Abocha Ali, they condemned children and women abduction and agreed to return all the abducted and punish the perpetrators.

They also agreed to compensate those killed or injured during the vicious cycles of violence, the establishment of local courts to handle cattle-related cases, empowering security forces to execute their duties, and carrying out disarmament exercises, establishing buffer zones to separate the warring communities, construction of roads and deploying forces along the roads.

Joseph Lelimoy, a delegate from Pibor, said they are hopeful that peace will be felt in Greater Jonglei if the peace resolutions were to be implemented.

“We identified all the drivers to the conflicts and came up with peace resolutions over the past three days of talks. So as the communities, we are hopeful that there will be peace in our region this time,” he said.

A youth representative from Uror County, Charles Deng Deng, urged his fellow youth from the neighboring communities to desist from violence, saying the decades of inter-communal violence took a huge toll on the young people.

“As youth, we are the victims of all these wars. And in one of the resolutions, it was resolved there be job opportunities and vocational training schools so this will bring peace if implemented.”

While addressing the conference Wednesday afternoon, President Salva Kiir, decried the recurring inter-communal violence in Greater Jonglei and urged the youth to avoid being dragged into fighting by the politicians.

“Youth, you are the tools being used in these nonsensical things. If any politician wants to fight, let them fight by themselves. Do not accept to be used as firewood,” he stressed.

On his part, Vice President Wani Igga, the head of the high-level committee on resolving the Greater Jonglei conflict reiterated government commitment to restoring peace to the conflict-stricken region, and that a high-level follow-up and monitoring mechanism will be established to ensure the resolutions are implemented.

Igga urged the international community to assist the government and communities during the implementation process.

Source: Radio Tamazuj

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