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Primary eight candidate sits exams from jail

Peter Garang Dut (seated) doing exams. Photo by Ambrose Achuil Garang

By Ambrose Achuil Garang

When the father of Peter Garang Dut bought him a motorcycle to help get money to subsist the family up, he never expected it would end up landing in in jail, charged with murder.

The 18-year-old primary going was riding on the street in Aweil South County in South Sudan’s Bahr el Ghazal on February 4, looking for passengers to commute around when he knocked an old man who subsequently died.

Dut is a candidate under Nyang Miir Primary School examination center and now doing his primary leaving examinations from prison.

His examination room is the office of the prison director.

His family cannot yet afford a compensation of 31 cows or its equivalent in money slapped on his head for the death of the old man.

“I never thought of doing the examinations after the examinations date reached and my family members had not raised the blood compensation,” he told Juba Echo from the main prison in Aweil town on Thursday.

Santino Bol Akot, the Director General of Northern Bhar el Ghazal State Ministry of Education said any candidate registered for examination will have a right to do it so long as the school reports the issue.

As for Dut, a police officer and an invigilator take the exams to the prison and invigilate him until he finishes while still in detention, Akot told Juba Echo.

“It is true we are having one young boy who is doing his national examinations in the prison,” Akot said.

“The young boy knocked to death an old man and he wasn’t able to raise the blood compensation so that he can be freed, we then thought of a solution which won’t affect his examinations.”

While causing the death of a person is a capital offence according to the transitional constitution of South Sudan, lesser sentences are accorded in line with the nature of how they occurred.

For Dut’s case, it was an accident.

He appreciated the Ministry of Education for allowing him sit for the papers despite his predicament.

“I started my examinations on Monday this week, and I am continuing with them,” Dut said.

“I am really happy with the ministry for ensuring I do my examinations successfully.”

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