Five Primary and Two Secondary Schools Shutdown In Panrieng County, Unity State

Children learning together with their cow under a shade in part of South Sudan(Photo: via Christian Mission Aid)

Children learning together with their cow under a shade in part of South Sudan(Photo: via Christian Mission Aid)

Oct 15, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — According to residents of Panrieng county of Unity state, five primary and two secondary schools are shutdown in Panreing due to salary arrears.

According to Child Protection Officer, Choldit Kiir Ngor, who was reached by Nyamilepedia, the schools were shutdown in September after the teachers, who have not been paid for months, discovered that their salaries had been diverted to army by the state government to buy fuel for military operation.

“On 25th of September all teachers has stop teaching up to date, thereafter , the communities whose children are extremely affected urges national government to intervene immediately” Mr. Kiir said.

 Choldit emphasizes that the acting governor of Unity State and this senseless conflict have severely affected the local communities in the state.

“The country ruled through guns and intimidation is extremely victimizing local communities, Unity state ruled by Unknown person for the last months , has embezzle panrieng county school teacher’s salary and claim to have bought fuel for military operation with two salary of one county teachers.” Choldit stressed.

In other reports, Choldit has confirmed to Nyamilepedia that 123 of over 200 children, who were forcefully recruited from the schools in August, were released.

“As part and parcel of the SPLA subjugation attempt in panrieng county to recruit school teenage forcefully into national army more than 200 school children were taken but due to the pressure and condemnation of the action by the community about 123 were release to go back to school” Choldit said.

Panrieng community calls on the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) programme and the international community to put more pressure on Salva Kiir government to release the remaining 77 children who are withheld to fight the wars.

“but still 77 school teenage are still under the custody of SPLA barrack, so with due respect we would call the so called DDR and the international community to put more pressure on government to avoid recruiting school children to fight their senseless war” the Child Protection Officer further reiterates.

The residents of Panrieng county calls on the Human Rights Watch, Child Protection Organizations and other well-wishers to continue pressurizing the warring parties to refrain from the use of child soldiers and forceful recruitment of youth into their military wings.

Schools in Greater Upper Nile region are vandalized in the conflict. Majority of the population in Greater Upper Nile live in fear in overcrowded and flooded UNMISS camps within the country or in refugees camps in the neighboring countries.

Conflict broke out in December 2013 in Juba among the presidential guards, following political disputes within the ruling party, SPLM. With over 1.8 million people displaced, tens of thousands have been killed and more than half of the population live in poverty.

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