SWEDISH-Firm held for internal war crimes
By Lodu William Odiya and Atimaku Joan
The South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC) yesterdaym commended action taken by the Swedish government to hold to account an oil company that was found to have committed atrocities against the people ofUnity State from 1999 to 2003.
The Swedish government came out on Thursday and brought charges against the Chairman and the former CEO of Lundin Energy for complicity in war crime atrocities committed by the Sudanese army and allied militia during their period of operation in the area.
The authorities affirmed that the oil company had asked the Sudanese government to secure a potential oilfield, knowing this would mean seizing the area by force.
This made the complicit in war crimes that then was carried out by the Sudanese army and allied militia against civilians in Unity State the current part of South Sudan.
The Churches body affirmed theirrespect of the decision by the Swedish authorities to bring charges against the Oil Company for aiding and abetting war crimes committed in South Sudan.
“It is encouraging to know that the Swedish authorities have decided to hold the oil company Lundin Energy toaccount for its role during the civil war,” stated the document.
The council of churchesprayed that the trial would help to heal the wounds of the people in Unity State and pave the road for forgiveness and reconciliation
The statementalso stressed that there could be no peace without justice, no reconciliation outside the truth, and no forgiveness without repentance.
“Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, and please the widow’s cause,” (Isaiah 1: 17). Because “He has told you, 0 man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8).
Thecouncil assured people that churches stood and would always stand with the victims of oil exploitation twenty years ago and today.
They further added that,victims of abuses in villages and homes around the oil fields had the right to access to remedy and reparation.