By Col. Samson Masiya
Nov 29, 2015 (Nyamilepedia) — The Arrow Boys Battalion of Western Equatoria State issued a statement clarifying that Maj. Gen. Alfred Futoyi Karaba Unyang is in charge of the organized forces of the Battalion. On Tuesday last week, South Sudan’s State Minister of Information, Communications and Tourism of Western Equatoria State, Eng. Charles Barnaba Kisanga, was reported to have been appointed as the Chairman and Commander in Chief of South Sudan People’s Patriotic Front (SSPPF), a statement that Arrow Boys Battalion wants to correct.
In a statement extended to Nyamilepedia by official spokesperson of Arrow-Boys/SSPPF Col. Samson Masiya, for the matter of putting the records straight, states that Gen. Alfred Futoyi still the commander of armed youth also known as Arrow Boys.
“Maj. Gen Alfred Futiyo Karaba is the overall military commander/ C in C of the forces composed mainly of the armed youth and community defense forces, popularly known as the Arrow Boys Battalion, currently Nerran Division,” said Col. Samson Masiya.
A political leadership council of Arrow Boys Battalion was formed to assist in helping the process of establishing effective structure, democratic decision-making, institutional development, political dialogue and representation. The political body of the Arrow Boys Battalion is South Sudan People’s Patriotic Front (SSPPF) to which Minister of Information, Communications and Tourism of Western Equatoria State, Eng. Charles Barnaba Kisanga was nominated to chair in the meeting convined by Arrow Boys Military and Political Leadership on 26 November 2015. The statement outlines that SSPF is the political wing of the youth Movement and is represented in Greater regions of Upper Nile, Equatoria
“The Political Council of Leadership / Office will be composed of 12 Members who represent all parts of Western Equatoria, women as well as adequate representation for other regions of South Sudan (Equatoria, Bahr Al Ghazel and Upper Nile).”
“After extensive discussion the Arrow Boys Military Leadership and the Political Leadership Council agreed and endorsed Eng. Charles Barnaba to serve in the role of the Interim Chair of the Political Wing/ Office Kisanga is named/ delegated the responsibly. The two bodies officially confirm Col. Samson Masiya as the Official Spokesperson for Arrow-Boys/SSPPF.” Continued Col. Masiya.
In the statement Col. Samson Masiya released also refuted the earlier statement that Arrow Boys is the newly established rebellion, adding that Arrow Boys have existed in Western Equatoria State since 2007; formed by the local youth for defense against the notorious Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) that committed heinous crimes in the region.
Col. Masiya alleges that Arrow Boys Battalion military size has grown to over 17, 000 youths from Nagero to Mvolo and comprised Nerran Division, Bright Star Campaign Phase II of the SPLA/SPLM-IO in Western Equatoria.
“The Arrow Boys Battalion (Nerran Division, Bright Star Campaign Phase II of the SPLA/SPLM-IO) currently exist and operates under one Leadership of the SPLM/A-IO Chairman and Commander in Chief, who is the Vice President designate, Dr. Riak Machar Teny, Chairman and C in C of the SPLM/A-IO,” reads part of the statement.
Political differences within the ruling SPLM Party in 2013 led to the current civil war when President Salva Kiir used his Presidential Guards recruited from his tribe to massacre ethnic Nuer in Juba using door to door killings. African Union Commission of Inquiry in South Sudan (AUCISS) released an independent report saying the killing of ethnic Nuer in December 15, 2013 in Juba was an organized state policy.
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