Abang community disputes appointment of new Commissioner
By Manyuon Mayen Manyuon
The Abang community of Kolnyang County of Jonglei State is in disagreement with the state Governor Philip Aguer over the appointment of a new County Commissioner.
Abang community members in Juba declared opposition to the appointment of Ateny Bheer as Kolnyang County Commissioner, saying they would not cooperate with him.
General Machar Akau Machar, the chairperson of Abang community in Juba said that they were not going to work with the new appointed commissioner since the he was appointed without community’s consent.
According to Gen. Machar, the newly appointed commissioner was not the right person proposed by the community.
He stated the appointment to commissionership was supposed to be through consultation of the community.
“There were people who went to the governor without our concern. They did not consult our MP. But they went to the Governor to lobby for him. We were still meeting to present the names of suggested appointees,” Gen Machar claimed.
“In the process of community consultation of who was supposed to be nominated, we heard over the radio that the new commissioner was appointed,” he added.
Gen Machar revealed that they presented their grievances to the governor but nothing has been done up to yesterday.
“We meet the governor and we told him that what he did was not procedural. The county commissioner is always suggested by the county. We assure him as elders to reverse his decision since the person is not wanted,” Gen Machar said.
“Our position is very clear. We are not going to cooperate with that commissioner as whole Kolnayng. He is not our commissioner because he is not our choice. We told our position to governor frankly. If he cannot actually pass through us then, who will contribute to him? Who will meet with him? Who will help him in handling the affairs of the county?” Gen. Machar questioned.
However, Governor Philip Aguer asserted that the newly appointed commissioner of Kolnyang was nominated through consultation with Kolnyang’s SPLM party members in Bor Town.
“The decision was through SPLM and community members in Bor. The community members in Bor presented the names for the new commissioner. The name of this commissioner was among the names presented to the state government two years ago. So we worked according to the need of the community in Bor,” Aguer highlighted.
Governor Aguer stressed the need for the community to give the appointed commissioner a chance since they were the ones who suggested the names.
“We need to give him some time. We cannot appoint and replace in the evening. That will show lack of consistency. The executive powers are always with the government but through consultation as done with some members. This is a transitional period,” Aguer aid.
He affirmed that the community suggestion was crucial but will be prioritized with time.
“The choice of the community will happen with time. It was not an election but SPLM members of Jonglei state approved the nomination. We take the community’s views through SPLM. It’s true that SPLM coordinates with community,” Aguer concluded.
The newly appointed commissioner Ateny Bheer on his part said that he was not aware about who was rejecting the governor’s decision to appoint him.
Mr. Bheer revealed that his appointment was in consultation with the Acting Paramount Chief of the community and all the youth of Kolnyang.
He reiterated that he was looking forward to serving his people “cordially and amicably.”