NAS urges vigilance as more traditional and religious leaders fall victim to systematic elimination and intimidation
In the last week of August alone, over 5 separate incidences of attacks, torture, looting and murder of members of the clergy and traditional leaders by Kiir’s operatives have been documented across several counties around the country.
In one of the attacks that place on the 24th and 25th of August, Rev. Seme Mawa the pastor in charge of a local parish was arrested and tortured, and his belongings including Church property looted by the SSPDF.
A few days later in Lo’bonok Payam, head Chief Mathew Kenyi narrowly survived an assassination attempt by yet another SSPDF soldier.
Similarly, another Chief in Gangura Payam in Yambio, Western Equatoria State, Chief Justine Agbiamamu, was assassinated on 30th while on his way to his farm.
According to a NAS Press Release issued September 04 and signed by Mr Suba Samuel, NAS Spokesperson, the leadership of the National Salvation Front (NAS) is deeply concerned and “condemns in the strongest terms possible [SSPDF’s] unruly and barbaric behavior”.
The statement went on to send “sympathy and condolences to the leadership of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan (ECSS), the families of later Chief Justine Agbiamamu and the injured Chief Mathew Kenyi”.
“The regime and its security organs are now targeting Church and traditional authority leaders for their stand with the truth and their people,” Nevertheless, NAS “urges the people of South Sudan especially the youth to be vigilant and protective of their religious and traditional leaders in the face of these planned systematic eliminations and intimidations” by Kiir and his operatives.
Mr. Suba Samuel concluded the statement with a reassurance that NAS stands in solidarity with all who stand up for the people against injustice and oppression.