By Chondok Stephen Magei
The Catholic Church in Unity State, collaborating with the Justice and Peace Commission which is also faith based is engaging communities around Unity State capital Bentiu in a bid to end intercommunal violence.
Unity State is one of several regions in South Sudan witnessing rampant protracted intercommunal violence and revenge killings.
Tension is high in the region with rumors of return to war very high.
The church held a conference which convened community leaders from the seven counties of Unity State, elders, state government representatives Inter-Church Committee representatives, farmers, and representatives of cattle keepers from different cattle camps.
The main objectives of the coming together is to iron out community retaliations, revenge killings, cattle rustling and rumors spreading about the collapse of South Sudan’s peace agreement signed in 2018 , James Tut Koang, from the Justice and Peace Commission, told Juba Echo in an interview in Bentiu.
“We need protracted communal violence, cattle rustling, accompanied by hatred and South Sudan returning war rumor mongering to get an end,” Koang said.
The South Sudan conflict has left a lot of rumors among people, hatred and ethnic lining, he said.
South Sudanese must embrace love and peace and root for peaceful coexistence, Koang said.
According to father Joseph Makuei, the church is willing to spread peace and unity among all citizens in Unity state and the region.
“The church will continue to hold community peace conference regardless of economic crisis in the country,” Makuei said.
“I believe this peace conference will enable the state citizens to embrace peace and throw away revenge killing and tribal minded hatred.”