Calm returns to Renk County after protest

By Wek Atak Kacjang

Authorities in Renk County said calm has returned to the county after four consecutive days’ demonstrations by the residents against the return to ten states.

After President Salva Kiir dissolved the 32 states and returned the country to 10 states and three administrative areas, Renk residents took to the street to protest against the move.

Renk is a county of Malakal State formerly.

Renk that was the headquarters of the defunct Northern Upper Nile State now returned to Malakal State as a County.

Speaking to Juba Monitor over phone from Renk yesterday, Secretary General for former Northern Upper Nile State, Paul Chol Deng said security situation was back to normal as those few elements who were blocking the road and burning the tires have been stopped.

“I don’t know why people were protesting because it is not our state alone that was affected. The police forces were able to maintain the situation because two days ago the market was closed but the day from yesterday all shops in the market were opened,” Chol said.

He added that there were other people who were supporting the protesters by burning tires and blocking roads as they chanted slogans against the ten states.

Stephen Kur Thon, a resident of Renk County said they don’t want to be part of Upper State, “it is better for us to be slaves of Sudanese rather than returning back to Malakal.”

“Our demand is the state. If South Sudan does not like us, we are going to leave South Sudan for Sudan,” he stated.

While majority of people have welcomed the decision of President Kiir to return the country to ten states, citizens in Renk reacted to the decision with demonstration as they chanted against the ten states.

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