Cattle keepers terrorize Lobonok residents
By Rose Keji Benjamin
Cattle Keepers suspected to have come from one of the neighbouring States have forced the residents of Lobonok County of Jubek State to flee their homes in fear following rampant killings and looting of property in the area.
In a phone interview with Juba Monitor yesterday, the Commissioner of Lobonok County, Severino Gworit Kose, said half of the population in the area had fled to Uganda and were living in refugee camps.
He said the refugees left because they were under threats from the armed men following cattle, and claimed that the cattle keepers were destabilizing the area, causing havoc.
“We fought for freedom but my people cannot get the freedom they deserve due to the cattle keepers who have made people to panic as most of them cannot go and collect firewood because they fear they would be killed,” Commissioner Kose said.
“We heard the Presidential order last year that every cattle keepers should go to their respective areas and he went ahead to lead by example by moving his cattle first, but people think they are higher than the President,” the commissioner stressed. Kose said cattle keepers had misunderstanding with farmers who are the local people of the area.
“If the cattle keepers have good relations with the farmers, there could be no problem,” he said, adding that “Jubek State especially Lobonok had suffered much and there was no peace and development in this area,” he lamented.
He said four days ago the cattle keepers attacked Kit residents in Lobonok and the residents of the area were being disturbed by the armed men who were on and off disturbing the civilians.
He said farmers had been forced to abandon farming due to insecurity caused by the armed cattle keepers–adding that the scenario had led to hunger in the county. He urged the national government to help form a committee to resolve the issue between the cattle keepers and farmers in Jubek State.