Land grabbers nabbed

James Atem Kuir

A group of about 20 suspected land-grabbers have been arrested by joint security forces in two days of operations, in Mangalla payamabout 75 km northeast of Juba.

The suspects were arrested between Wednesday and Thursday for illegally marking out land, possessing unauthorized land documents dockets and stamps.

The national police spokesperson confirmed the arrest of the suspects but said he could not ascertain the number of individualsunder arrest.

”Yes, we have heard of it but we have not received a full report, they are talking of 17 suspects, some were 9, we have not got a full report yet,” Maj. Gen. Daniel Justin said.

Derrick Derickson, the spokesperson of the governor of Central Equatoria State said about 20 individuals have been taken to custody by security operatives in connection with expropriation of land in parts of Mangalla Payam.

“I can confirm to you about 20 of them, as we speak now, are under the custody of security operatives,” Derrick Derickson said in an interview with Juba Monitor yesterday.

Some media reports suggest that about 45 suspects including top military officers have been taken into custody in Gumbo and Malakia police stations.

The reports added that the suspects were apprehended with the directives of the Central Equatoria State Governor, Emmanuel Adil Anthony Wani.

Governor Adil outlawed indefinitely, the issuing and demarcation of land in Central Equatoria State in an order last year.

Land grabbing is a growing concern in Central Equatoria State particularly in areas around Juba, with some top military officers often accused of masterminding the vice.

In June last year, six people including a military officer were killed in a land related conflict in Juba’s outskirt of Sherikat.

Also in July last year Brigadier Gen. Gum Agok, a national security officer stormed the office of land registrar and held officials at gun point demanding a tittle deed of a land without providing documents in Juba.

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