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GPAA Administrator Joshua Konyi removed amid inter-communal violence between Pibor and Jonglei

June 3, 2021 — South Sudan President, Salva Kiir Mayardit, has relieved the Greater Pibor Administrator Area administrator Joshua Konyi as inter-communal violence continue to intensify between Pibor and Jonglei State.

Pibor residents flee amid renewed tension with Jonglei
Jonglei State Governor Denay Chagor (L) and Greater Pibor Chief Administrator Joshua Konyi at a peace conference in Juba in January 2021 (Twitter photo courtesy) .

The decision, which was announced on the state owned South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation(SSBC), came this evening following accusations of raids and violence between communities of Jonglei state and Pibor Administrative area.

The decrees, which did not cite any reason, replaced the former Chief Administrator, Joshua Konyi, a well known veteran, with a little known  Lokoli Amu Bullen.

Konyi was appointed the Chief Administrator of Greater Pibor Administrative Area on June 29, 2020, at a time inter-communal violence between Pibor and neighboring Jonglei State communities were at the peak.

For the last one year, Konyi and his Jonglei state counterpart promised to end the violence; however, the conflict increased rapidly despite natural calamities such as floods that restricts movements within and between neighboring communities.

Within the last two weeks, Konyi and the commissioner of Ayod county of Jonglei state exchanged accusations, each claiming that his area has been attacked, cattle raided and houses burned down by youth from the other’s side.

On June 1st a delegation composed of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), African Union Mission in South Sudan (AUMISS), Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism (R-JMEC) and Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD)  visited Pibor to witness the situation and concluded that violence could intensify again this year like 2020.

Speaking to the media after the visit, the Head of the AU mission in South Sudan, Professor Joram Biswaro called on the communities and their local leaders to dialogue instead of resorting to guns.

“Dialogue is the most viable instrument to realize peace and security in this area. We will continue to work together to assist this process, but political and community leaders need to be ready to cooperate. The solution lies with them and communities across this region,” said Professor Joram Biswaro, Head of the AU mission in South Sudan.

In a different report published by SOUNDBITE (English), the acting governor of Jonglei State, Hon. Simon Pascal, said although their people are being attacked or kidnapped on the road, the leaders will continue to seek help.

“Even though there are criminals who are still attacking people and abducting people on the roadside, we will not give up. We are still seeking support from our friends, our government, to come and build capacities in bor because we need peace and the parliament.” Acting governor Simon Pascal said.


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