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OUT IDP’s demand removal of forces

By Sheila Ponnie

The Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) living in Malakal Protection of Civilians site are demanding for removal of the military from their residential areas to enable their return home.

The group met the Minister of Defense Angelina Teny in sideline meeting during her visit to Upper Nile State last week. Mrs. Teny had traveled to the area to see whether the unified forces on training were ready for graduation.

The reason for the meeting was to air out there challenges to Angelina Teny Minister of Defense and Veteran Affairs demanding the government’s reduction of state armed forces in Malakal state.

James Ogot, Coordinator in the Malakal PoCs said the camp consists of twenty night blocks and six stations for the UN police peace keepers.

“We are calling for quick intervention on the military forces to be removed from the Malakal Town for at least 6 kilometers away as per the peace Agreement”, Ogot urged.

“So if the forces are being taken away, we will be able to go back to our homes and start clearing our homes and settle,”

Another person from the PoC said that all they wanted as the displaced persons was peace despite all the challenges that they are going through.

“One of the main challenges is that our children are not living in good conditions. The level of education in the PoC is poor, it is not like how it used to be when we were outside the PoCs. Teachers also need proper treatment just like those teachers out there in better places. This are some of the reasons why we want to go back to the city”, he said.

Jack Gai Deng, said that in order for them as the Internally Displaced persons to come out of the PoC, there is need for security for their safety.

What I would say is that for us to come out of the PoC, we need water to be provided for our people because right now we move for miles to go and fetch water, the other issue is that right now there are some people who are staying in our homes here in Malakal, now if all goes well and the peace is implemented, where are we going to settle,” he questioned.

He also added that there were people living in the Protection of Civilians site who do not even have homes and if we are to come out of the PoC, what will be done to these people.

Angelina Teny, Minister of Defense and Veteran Affairs after listening for hours to the IDPs issues in Malakal state, said the problem of other people occupying their lands would be solved.

“I am very sure before the end of July we are going to deploy the army and the police, we will graduate them ,I will not bother myself to tell you vacate the place but I am saying organize yourself and start to be ready,” she said. 

“There is already an order from the President and from the cabinet affairs that everybody staying in someone’s house should vacate the house,” she said.

She added that only what is left now is support from the humanitarian agencies to help the people on how they will vacate the houses and on how to allocate them in a certain place.

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