Makuei ordered arrest of Radio Miraya Journalist

Michael Makuei Lueth speaking to journalists in his office(Photo: supplied)

Michael Makuei Lueth speaking to journalists in his office(Photo: supplied)

May 29th 2018 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s information minister Michael Makuei Lueth today reportedly ordered the arrest of a journalist working for the Radio Miraya which is operated by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), sources told the Nyamilepedia this afternoon.

The information minister, one source said, was holding a press conference in the premise of the ministry of parliamentary affairs when he submitted a short note to a nearby guards minutes before the arrest Sami Martin.

“Makuei was holding a press conference at the ministry of parliamentary affairs. He called a nearby guard dressed in dark blue suit giving him a little paper which might content the order of the arrest. The guard disappeared and minutes later the journalist was arrested,” the source told the Nyamilepedia on the condition of anonymity this afternoon.

Another source said he was not aware on who have ordered the arrest but said the Radio Miraya Journalist was surprisingly arrested but acknowledged that Makuei told him in 2017 that “Yesterday you quoted me out of context.”

“I don’t know who ordered the arrest. I was surprised when the incident happened because we have been waiting for the minister for the press conference and he was not arrested until the minister came. Last year, Makuei told him “yesterday you quoted me out of context,” the source added.

Makuei is sanctioned by the United Nation Security Council for allegedly threatening the media and undermining the media from collecting information regarding the South Sudan conflict.

Radio Miraya was ordered to close  by the government’s Media regulatory authority, something the UNMISS said violates the agreement on the status of forces that was signed by the government of South Sudan. The government sees journalist working for the Radio Miraya as illegally working based on this order.

South Sudan has been one of the journalist unfriendly country. President Kiir threatened to slaughter journalist in 2015 while on leave to the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa for a peace conference between him and South Sudan prominent opposition leader Riek Machar.

South Sudan descended into civil war in December 2013 after forces loyal to the country’s president, Salva Kiir Mayardiit and his then Governor of Northern Bahr Al-Ghazal State Gen. Paul Malong Awan went door-to-door in the capital Juba killing civilians belonging to the Nuer ethnic group sparking a nation-wide protests from top army generals from the Nuer leading to a civil war.

A peace agreement signed in August 2015 by President Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar and negotiated under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union (AU) in presence of Troika and other international observers collapsed in July 2016 following fighting at the presidential palace in Juba “J1” reportedly after President Kiir ordered a failed attempt to arrest the SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar.

A peace revitalization process ended without a formal agreement between warring parties last week in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa after the regional mediated presented a peace proposal that seek to share power between different warring parties.