Pageri County Authorities: Juba – Nimule Highway Operational Now
September 16, 2016(Nyamilepedia) —— The authorities in Pageri County say they have not received any report of attacks along Juba – Nimuli Road since last week, Hon. Emilo Igga told Nyamile Press.
This comes after the killing of at least eight people in different attacks along the Juba-Nimule road over the past weeks. In one incident, armed men stopped a Friendship bus on the road in Jebellein and opened fire on the passengers; one person was killed and two others injured.
In another incident, more than seven people were killed in attacks on different vehicles around Loa last week in which a truck and a mini-bus were set on fire.
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The road has been experiencing insecurity for the past one month, but authorities have taken measures to secure the road by deploying more troops.
Contrary to what the authorities said in Pageri, the latest reports from the border town of Nimule indicate that at least ten people were killed and many others were wounded this morning along the Juba-Nimule road.
The attack, which was launched by unknown gunmen at 8 am, targeted a bus known as Friendship and another bus known as Crown Coaches. According to eye witnesses, at least ten people were killed in Friendship coaches and many others were wounded.
The buses left Juba in the early hours of Sunday morning heading to Uganda on government account that the road was safe.
Only a year after the government of South Sudan and the rebel group SPLA-in Opposition signed an agreement to end the twenty months of bloodshed, fighting has resumed in the neighboring counties.
A gunfire erupted in July, August and September this year in Imatong areas as rebels battled the government forces which attacked their base there.
The setback for peace agreement between the warring parties started on 15th August 2015 when President Salva Kiir walked away from Addis Ababa signing ceremony only signed it in Juba ten days later. The reasons for his refusal to sign the peace with his counterpart were that he wanted more consultations to study the document and he didn’t want to betray his people.
“I don’t want to betray my conscience. I need to consult widely to confirm that my signing of these documents is the right thing for my country,” President Kiir reportedly told mediators at IGAD-Plus led talks.
Ten hours after the signing, the government forces attacked the rebels in the Imatong state to which the SPLA IO deputy chief of staff for operations Major General James Koang Chuol Ranley said the government troops were overpowered and pursued through Pageri Town. Gen. Koang later reaffirmed that his forces seized a lot of government’s hardware in good condition.
But today, Gen. James Koang Chuol warned the local population not to travel along Juba – Numuli road because the SPLA-IO shut it down completely.
“The Juba – Nimule road is officially shut down effective from today. For your personal safety and others, do not travel on this road,” announced Gen Koang.