Seventeen security officials behind bars for illegal roadblocks

By Yiep Joseph

The move by the government to crack down on all the unnecessary roadblocks along Juba-Nimule highway resulted into the arrest of over 17 security officials suspected to be the masterminds.

Speaking to the media, the Director General of Customs Services Akol Ayii Madut revealed that the officials had been arrested for being behind unnecessary creation of checkpoints and roadblocks along Juba- Nimule highway.

“We have arrested more than 17officials and they are in prison in Buluk ready to be investigated.There is a team to investigate and carry-out follow ups on their cases. Very soon the team may take the decision,” Akol said.

“There are some people who created some unnecessary road blocks in order to get money but the 2019 stipulated order and policy of clearing all the check points from Nimule up to Abiei and Nimule to Renk has been there in force as it was not cancelled.”

He also confirmed that all the roadblocks had been cleared making it easy for trucks to move directly to the capital.

“Initially when you werecoming from Nimule to Juba, there were 16 to 17 roadblocks from Nimule to Nesitu up to the bridge but I gave an order that they should remove allof  them from this highway and indeed now there are no roadblocks and the trucks can now just move from Nimule directly to Juba, what is left in Nesitu is smuggling unit and the team patrolling the highway,” Akol said.

He also complained that the Status of Force Agreement (SOFA) between the government and UNMISS was not properly respected by some UN agencies.

“Most of the UN cars after the end of contracts are supposed to be given to the government according to SOFA agreement but insteadsome UN Agencies just auction them,” he complained.

He elaborated that issues in connection with exemption had been arising at Nimule check point.

“Only humanitarian goods deserved exemptions but others that were harmful to the people like Beer and whisky were not supposed to be exempted,” he said.

He also disputed the allegations over social media that he had employed relatives at the custom services particularly at the Nimule border.

“I do not have any close relative employedatNimule border. I only have one of my brothers who was appointed in 2011 and is now working in Renk since 2019.He was in Yambio and later on transferred to Renk,” he attested.

“Maybe people from Warrap State are many in custom because during the 2010, 2011 screening of 10 state each was given a chance to give 100 officers may be that is where they became dominance.”

He added that all the roadblocks had been closed and the one which was left was the Nesitu check point only to check goods and people who travelled without documents.

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