Western Equatoria to rely on local defence forces
Addressing citizens yesterday in Tambura Freedom Square, Governor Alfred Futuyo Karaba announced that the Organised Forces of Tambura had been charged with responsibility for local security.
The Governor said the soldiers were deployed in town for the protection of civilians, and are to take responsibility if anything happens.
Around South Sudan, delays and absences of military salaries have been a significant obstacle to security. Futuyo acknowledged the issue in Western Equatoria, but argued that the troops had to perform their duty. He pointed out that during the days of the SPLA there was no salary, but soldiers fought valiantly.
Despite this, the Governor pledged to front 2 months' salary for all organised forces in and around Tambura.
The choice to deploy soldiers in the area has come in response to heightened tensions between the Balanda and Azande communities in Tambura. Yesterday, meetings were held between Governor Futuyo, Deputy Governor Dr. Kennedy, Joseph Bakosoro and both Balanda and Zamde chiefs.
The meeting follows a visit by the Governor and a number of other senior State Government Ministers and Advisors to Tambura earlier this week for the sake of spreading peace education to local communities in the area.