Oct 28, 2018(Nyamilepedia) —– After Salva Kiir government officials lost control of Kediba, the capital of Greater Mundri earlier this month, the Commissioner came out two days a go to say that SPLM/A-IO kidnapped over 500 school children in Kediba alone, a report that has been denied by the armed opposition in the area.
Speaking to Captain Girma Apaya, the spokesman of SPLA in Opposition in Greater Mundri, who described the claims as “desperate white lies”, he said the schools have not been operational in Greater Mundri for many months and therefore any claim that school children were rounded up was a complete lie.
“Schools are not opened in Greater Mundri for almost a year now. To claim that school children have been abducted there has to be schools that are operational and children attending those schools”
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“This is a big lie motivated by the stories of Boko Haram in Nigeria but even in Nigeria there were evidences that girls were abducted from an operational boarding school in Nigeria. This is not the case at all here in Mundri” He continued.
Apaya also called on South Sudanese to use their common sense judgements saying if someone claims that “500 children” have been abducted in a small town that has been in war for more than two years than people should demand to know how many children in total were in that town or school and what is the population of the town.
Apaya said even during peaceful years you cannot find such a big number of children on the streets in Kediba.
“Take example of the fighting in Juba, the two armies have to fight first for many hours before one side get defeated. While fighting continues, children and their mothers try to run to find safety. They do not just sit down and wait to be collected. It does not make any sense” he said.
“Even in December 2013 tthe Nuer were killed in large number because Juba was peaceful and no one expected that the government will kill civilians. So all civilians hide under their beds innocently. It took Kiir militias five days to search Nuer from door to door to find them. This did not happen in Kediba for someone to make up lies” he continued.
The spokesman further reiterated that if 500 children were abducted then how come it took the commissioner and the imaginary parents of the children more than two weeks to speak out, saying that even the killing of civilians in Juba, Wau, Bor or Malakal did not take a day before it reached social media and got broadcasted all over the world.
What Actually Happened
According to Apaya, the commissioner was covering up the truth because he feels ashamed by what happened to him and his soldiers after he was almost killed by his own people in his administrative Center.
“what the commissioner of Kediba County, Mr. John Henry, said is nothing but a fear to justify why he took refuge in Mundri West ” Apaya reveals.
“What happened in Kediba was that, the governor’s plan demanding all commissioners to recruit youths to join the government armed force was rejected in totality by the local population in Greater Mundri at large.” Apaya explains
“So when he, John Henry, insisted to force youths for it, the very people he pretended to be their leader in the county, turned against him and plotted to burn his residence and forced him out of the county.” Apaya continued.
Apaya said that the fight for the liberation of Kediba was mainly carried out by the locals themselves adding;
“only that because SPLA IO couldn’t allow the rouge regime forces to brutally massacre the population, the commander send few of his men in support of the local youths and help them to liberate the county which they very well succeeded and free themselves from the agony of the government brutality in the area which includes rape of women, looting, arresting and killings of people in the area in a claims that they are supporters of SPLA IO.” Apaya claims.
“John Henry himself was forced out of the county Headquarter and he ran and took refugee in Mundri West for his life.” He continued.
Apaya believes that prior to battle for Kediba, 80% of the civil population lives in SPLM/SPLA-IO controlled areas and just a few relatives to politicians lived in government controlled areas.
“What was actually happening in Greater Mundri was that, 80% of the civilian population remained in the SPLA IO controlled areas for their better protection from the government militias and they don’t have any intentions to return to the town centers where they can be arrested and killed.” Apaya explains.
Apaya further explained that schools were closed down earlier this year due to increased number of rapes and forced recruitments of boys into government troops.
“In many parts of the county, rapping of the school aged girls increased and instead of going to schools they chose to remain with their relatives in their hideouts, boys were arrested from the classes by the government forces and killed on allegations that they are SPLA IO fighters, that was why, John Henry want to cover up the deeds of the government soldiers again the population by claiming the school children meanly of P7 were conscripted to join SPLA IO.” Apaya said.
“It’s pointless of John Henry to claim that the school children were conscripted to Join SPLA IO when in reality, the was no schools operational in Greater Mundri. Such statements are irresponsible made and will never cover the bad deeds of the government militias in the area.” Apaya continued
Apaya blames Equatorian politicians in Salva Kiir government for doing nothing when their people are being targeted and killed by members of government they serve in.
“At least, it was clearly known in many parts of the country that the regime was declared war against Equatorians and the likes of John Henry will soon test the bitterness of the very government they die heartlessly serving. Now it’s now becoming clear that our equatorian politician will never learn a lesson of their lives. What a shame?” he concludes.