Shortage of food looms in Yei due to insecurity

By James Atem Kuir

Authorities in Yei County, Central Equatoria State says  roads leading to the town have remained inaccessible following series of deadly road ambushes that left at least 10 people dead late last month.

Yei River County which lies about 170 km southwest of Juba is a business hub, attracting traders and customers from neighbouring DRC and Uganda as well as Juba.

The town has not received anymerchandises from the neighbouring countries and Juba for the last eight days due to insecurity along the roads connecting to the town, prompting hikes in consumer prices according to Maj-general YoasaLukangKamba, the police commissioner.

“The security situation is relatively calm only that road is not yet accessible. Kaya-Yei and Juba-Yei roads are not accessible, movement has not started as we speak.

“The town is only now depending on produces from surrounding villages. This has made prices of goods in the market to rise up,” Gen. Kamba said on Tuesday.

He said security authoritiesin Yei are arranging to provide security escort to safeguard movement of goods along highways connecting to the town.

“We are organizing to provide security escorts to safeguard the movement from and out of Yei,” he said.

Last week, the Kenyan Transporters Association (KTA) cautioned its drivers against using Kaya-Yei-Juba roads over security concerns and advised those en route to the country to arrange clients to collect goods at Ugandan side of the border.

There has been increase in ambushes and attacks along highways connecting to Juba, with authorities blamingunidentified gunmen for atrocities.

Central Equatoria State government had earlier blamed opposition group, National Salvation Front, led by renegade Gen. Thomas Cirillo for the assaults on roads users but the latter dismissed the claims as untrue.

Juba-Nimule, Juba-Yei, and Juba-Mundri and Torit-Kapoeta roads have seen deadly attacks in recent days.

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