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Magwi community express fears over Monyomiji violence


Following an open letter written by the Monyomiji Forum in response to perceived NGO recruitment bias in Eastern Equatoria, the Magwi community has expressed concerns over its safety in the state.

Addressed to Governor Louis Lobong Lojore, the Magwi community have released a statement acknowledging the work of local authorities in defusing tensions between the Monyomiji and other groups, but nonetheless notes the rise in violence across Eastern Equatoria.

In particular, the Magwi community's letter refers to incidents of intimidation and violence against its members living and working in Torit town. Reference is also made to a meeting between Government representatives and 15 Monyomiji in Torit last week. The discussions reportedly descended into violence before the venue was stormed by local youth.

The Monyomiji Forum's demands, in full.

Given the recent rise in violence associated with the demands of the Monyomiji, the Magwi community have presented a list of resolutions to state authorities. Amongst them is the pledge to cease all work until an amicable solution to the the Monyomiji issue is found.

The Magwi community have also expressed a hope that the number of NGOs, humanitarian organisations and state organs in Torit can be effectively angled towards peacemaking and reconciliation which has been historically enjoyed in Eastern Equatoria.

Clashes have intensified in the weeks after the letter published by the Monyomiji, in which they demanded NGOs and private companies immediately terminate of non-Monyomiji employees, the withdrawal and overhaul of operations in Monyomiji governed communities, and ensuring that 80% of future employees at all levels are Monyomiji members.

The letter describes itself as a statement 'of NO compromise', and is underscored by a latent threat of violence to organisations that opt not to comply with their demands.

'If you think that we can be whipped on line or maybe our spirit will be weakened by the usual government threats, then you remember that the recent cases of NGOs, UN agencies and UNMISS in Maban, Kapoeta and elsewhere in South Sudan was just the tip of the iceberg', the letter reads.

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