Cover Story

DR. MACHAR’S 500 Rebels abandon bush for home

By Komakech Thomas Omakoyat

At least 580 rebels allied to Dr. Riek Machar have returned home in Magwi County since the launch of the National Dialogue, the area youth leader Mr. Otto David Remson has said.

In an interview with Juba Monitor in Magwi, Remson said the County was now experiencing relative peace, “There is a good number of rebels allied to Dr. Riek Machar who have returned home and we are very happy because this shows the return of peace in the Acholi area”.

“The first group to return were 280 rebels, the second were more than 300 rebels under Brig. General Odera Joseph Akado and last Friday there were others  who returned home under General Okoth David Awai, demonstrating a sign of peace,” he added.

Remson said cases of killing along the roads in Mawgi had reduced from the time armed youth in the area started returning home.

The youth leader said this had also restored  cooperation between the organized forces and civilians of Magwi County.

According to Remson, majority of the youth are now back to agricultural activities though there are still few of them who were drinking too much alcohol due to the prevailing peace and freedom in the area.

He urged the community to be united and protect the crops of those who had fled the area due to insecurity so that when they return home, they would find the crops not destroyed.

Meanwhile, Acting chairperson of Magwi County Community Peace Committee Ochola Bosco urged the Acholi community to speak the language of peace in order  to realize total peace in the area.

“People should speak peace,” Bosco said. “Sometimes our own brothers and sisters who are returning home from the bush, might have wronged us, but we should forgive them,” he added.

He disclosed that they are planning to hold peace conference in Abara whose date is yet to be fixed.

Magwi County Community Peace Committee was formed on July 19th, 2016 following the widespread of conflict that broke out in Juba.

The committee is  comprised of church leaders, community leaders, women and the youth leaders. They were able to meet the rebel commanders in the bush last year where they presented their grievances among them insecurity to the former governor of Imatong state.

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