Fire Koch, Mayendit commissioners - gov’t told

Fire Koch, Mayendit commissioners – gov’t told

The United States government has questioned the decision by the transitional government of national unity to retain the commissioners of Koch and Mayendit in their respective positions despite the implication of directly masterminding spates of conflict in Unity State.

This comes after the Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement Monitoring and Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) concluded in its recent technical committee meeting that the Commissioner of Koch County Koang Biel Char and Mayiendit County Commissioner Gatluak Nyang Hoth were involved in the conflict that displaced thousands and killed hundreds.

In a statement on its official Facebook page, the U.S. Embassy in Juba questioned why the two senior county authorities were not relieved of their duties and brought before justice.

“The Ceasefire & Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring & Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM) concluded that the Commissioners of Koch and Mayendit are responsible for instigating violence in Leer County that resulted in the murder of women and children, mass rape, and destruction of villages and health care facilities,” the embassy wrote Tuesday evening.

 “Why hasn’t the government removed them from their positions and held them accountable?” it added with the link to the report from the technical committee meeting attached.

On April 11th, a Member of Parliament representing Leer County in the Upper House, Riaw Gatlier Gai, raised a motion describing the situation in Leer as “an urgent matter of public importance”.

In his presentation to the parliament, Riaw gave an ordeal on how the conflict began between forces loyal to Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO) and the Commissioner of Koch County in Mirmir cantonment site in Koch at the beginning of February 2022.

 “Rt. Hon, Speaker, Hon. Members, let me take you to the genesis of the ongoing raid, wanton killing of children, and gang-raping of women and girls in Leer County. The conflict started in Mirmir Payam of Koch County when the Commissioner of Koch decided to fight SPLM/SPLA – IO forces and dislodged them from their cantonment site on 7th February 2022,” he narrated.

“Due to the magnitude of the war and common interests, the commissioner of neighbouring Mayiandit joints the attack on Mirmir cantonment site and made a successful alliance with his counterpart of Koch to attack Leer county which both of them believe is SPLA-IO stronghold. The Commissioner of Koch and the Commissioner of Mayiandit counties made an alliance to mobilize and assemble all the armed youth on 14/02/2022 to launch a joint attack on residential areas of Leer County,” he narrated.

Riaw claimed that the two commissioners had a meeting on 14th February 2022 on how they can raid the residential areas of Leer County before dividing attackers into three groups.

He alleged that “The first group was to attack Buoth, Lual, Kuerlel, Leah, Gador under the command of Koang Biel. The second group was to cross the Guey River through the junction of Mirmir through Reng, Rupnor, and began the attack in Gueny, Waak, Kur, Tieep, Dhornor, Dar, Jiath and Bow under the command of the Deputy Commissioner of Koch County.”

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