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SSPDF -captain nabbed in child-abduction saga

By Okan Thomas Onyango

A member of the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) has been arrested and handed over to military high command after caught by the community members in what is suspected to be child abduction incidence which occurred in Ngeli village, Lokiliri, Central Equatoria State.

The man whose name has not been mentioned is said to be a captain in the national army established through his military identity card found in his own pocket after the arrest and search.

In an interview with Juba Monitor, Longino Michael Cook, a community representative said that on Monday at around 6:40 PM in a place called Ngeli, Gila Kagu Boma, Lokiliri Payam under Juba County of Central Equatoria State, which 40 miles away from Juba Town on Nimule – Juba Road, four children were abducted and three others were shot, resulted into two death and one pregnant woman seriously wound and she is currently receiving treatment at Juba Teaching hospital.

“There is evidence to proof that Murle were the one behind this attack and abduction, one person from the Murle has been captured by my community members and when they searched his pocket, he was found to be a SSPDF captain, he was identified through his military ID card, so he was handed over to the army,” Michael said.

Michael stated that he had contacted the Murle community leaders to respond to the news of the captured personnel, but Murle leaders demanded for the full names of the person involved in the attack.

He added that just within a week, seven children have been abducted, two people were shot dead and two other were seriously wounded and they are receiving treatment at Juba Teaching Hospital.

“Early this week, four children were abducted and two men were shot dead leaving one pregnant woman seriously wounded at Ngeli along the Juba-Nimule Highway. Also, last week on the 6th of November at a place called Ngerjebi (Jebelen), 34 miles away from Juba at around 4:00 PM, three children were also abducted and one person was seriously wounded and he is still under treatment in the hospital,” Michael added.

The Oluba community of Ngeli, Gila Kagu Boma of Lokiliri Payam are appealing to the government to seriously intervene into the cases of child abductions and random killings in the area.

However, when contacted by phone, the Acting SSPDF Spokesperson, Brid. Gen. Santo Domic Chol said that he has not yet got that information but promised to find out from the commanding officer from that area if the case have been reported.

According to Michael, since the year 2008 over 300 children have been abducted, over a hundred people have killed and so far only five children have been recovered from the Murle community in the past two years.

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