Commissioner Barakati to Enforce 2021 Local Order Expelling Ambororo

By Baraka John 

The County commissioner for Yambio County Hon. Mbiko Barakati has told Anisa radio that his office is on the verge to revive and enforce the 2021 local order issued by the State’s top authority for the expulsion of Ambororo nomads from the Territory of Western Equatoria. 

In 2021 Governor Futuyo issued a state local order banning locals from trading with the foreign pastoralists, the order stated that any local found trading with the nomads will face drastic measures in a court of law.  

However, the order remained unimplemented as the local communities could still be seen buying cattle from the nomads, something Commissioner Barakati termed defiant of the State move adding that the order will soon be enforced, to ensure the nomads are out of Yambio County.

On the 18th of March 2023, a group of Ambororo nomads was reported to have attacked a house of a 65 years old man in an area called Berezigbo of Bangasu payam in the eastern part of Yambio County and gunned down four people. This incident has sparked fear among the locals in the area. 

The Yambio county commissioner blamed locals for continuously trading with the foreign pastoralists which he says create room for them to stay in Yambio and other parts of the State.

“What brought Ambororo back are the citizens of Western Equatoria, few of us who have been trading with the Ambororo, who pool them to enter again in Western Equatoria, supplying them with salt and money, buying cows from them and again supply them with all the needs they want”, Commissioner Barakati said.

Barakati further said that any one person found in the act defying the state order will be penalized by the county.

“I want to tell the people of Yambio County in particular that we have a local order which was issued by the honorable governor in 2021 and again renewed in the same year for the State in general, that Ambororo should leave Western Equatoria State, nobody should exercise business activities between him or her and Ambororo. Somebody who will be caught conducting business with Ambororo, first and foremost the goods and motorbikes you are using will be confiscated and you will be taken to the court of law for breaking the local order”, Barakati added.   

The presence of Ambororo nomads in some parts of Western Equatoria State continues to create fear among the population as they do not know the motive of the foreign pastoralists in the State.

On 21st March 2023, the King of Azande Kingdom His majesty king Atoroba Peni Rikito Gbudue called on the public to stop trading with the foreign cattle keepers stressing that this activity keeps the nomads in the areas causing havoc in the community. 

He urged the state government to work hard to stabilize security to allow the farmers to cultivate as the rainy season has started.  

CODEP Step Up Effort to Provide Clean Drinking Water to Communities as the World Commemorate “World Water Day”

By Baraka John

As the globe on 22nd March marked world water day, the Catholic organization for peace and development (CODEP) continues to step up efforts to provide clean drinking water to different communities of Western Equatoria State, through the “wash project”.

The Catholic-based organization has planned to dig seven boreholes this year in different locations in the State to avert a shortage of water among the communities.

The project which is funded by the Sudan Relief Fund is expected to benefit communities of Maridi, Mambe, Yambio, Gangura, Bagidi, Banduguyo, and Gangara Emilia South in Yambio.   

A team of experts completed the molding of nine rings in Gangura Payam in a two-day period, only waiting for it to be fixed into the well. The experts are to travel to the eastern deanery of the Diocese to continue molding rings. 

The theme for the 2023 World Water Day is “accelerating the change to solve the water and sanitation crisis”. The theme calls for the public to alter the way they use, consume, and manage water in their lives. This will assist in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 6- water and sanitation for all by 2030.

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

King Atoroba Sends a Message of Sympathy to Families that Lost their Family Members in the hands of the Pastoralist in Western Equatoria State

By Joseph Ernesto

The king of the Azande Kingdom has sent his message of sympathy to the families that had lost their relatives on the hand of the cattle headers commonly known as Ambororo who have occupied some parts of Western Equatoria State specially Ibba and Maridi Counties. His majesty king Atoroba Peni Rikito Gbudue on Tuesday 21st March 2023 in his message of condolences through Anisa Radio said, “my heart goes out to you at this difficult time, you have my deepest sympathy and the Kingdom stands with you to say no, that shouldn’t happen again in the Azande Kingdom”.

The King called on the public to stop trading with the cattle keepers as this keeps them in the areas and their cattle devastate the agricultural land of Western Equatoria.

He urged the state government to work hard to stabilize insecurity to allow the farmers to cultivate as the rainy season has started.

Talking to the youth, King Atoroba advised them to distance themselves from the pastoralist to maintain stability during this rainy season.

A couple of weeks ago, 5 people were killed by cattle keepers in Western Equatoria State, which has created fear among citizens.

The Azande King encouraged people within the Kingdom to prioritize agriculture as it is important in supporting livelihoods through food and building strong economies through trade.

CODEP launches Peace Building Project to Conflict-Affected Areas in Western Equatoria State

By Baraka John

A Peace-building project for conflict-affected areas of Western Equatoria State has been launched this morning by the Catholic organization for peace and development.

The 12 – months project funded by the US embassy in South Sudan, is to increase social cohesion within Western Equatoria State and to reduce the risk of inter-communal violence at the local level through dialogue processes.

Addressing the invited guests on the launching of the project, the director of the Catholic Organization for Peace and Development (CODEP) Fr. Charles, added that the project of peace-building activities also aims to mitigate the risk of figure conflicts by creating a local conflict management mechanism.   

“Western Equatoria we shall be focusing on Tambura, Ezo, Maridi, and other places, because this peace-building project is not only for two tribes of Western Equatoria but it is for the tribes living here in the State. Our country needs peace in order to move ahead, everyone who has experienced this conflict in greater Tambura and other parts of the State is traumatized”. Fr. Charles said

The project will also cover components of capacity building for local authorities and local leaders to enable them peacefully address conflicts in their areas. Also, involve community members in conflict scans and dialogue meetings.

Other components include validating and prioritizing conflict issues and available solutions proved, improving the capacity of local women in the communities, among others.

Mr. Tahir Ibrahim UNDP representative stated that peace is key for South Sudanese at this critical moment of the transitional period as the Country is gearing toward electing its leaders.

Mr. Ibrahim commended CODEP for the peace-building program and called on the international partners to help fund peace-building programs in Western Equatoria State.

“As UNMISS we appreciate the effort by CODEP to implement this peace-building project in the conflict-affected areas of Western Equatoria State, project such as this, is very critical in terms of resolving conflicts in those affected areas and fostering that peaceful inter-communal co-existence and social cohesion”, Mr. Ibrahim added.

On the other hand, the Vicar General of the Catholic Diocese of Tombura – Yambio, Rev. Fr. Thomas Bagbiowia said, phase one of the project will cover Tambura and Ezo, phase two will cover Nagioro, Namutina, and other places in the Diocese.

The implementation of the peace-building project will now start in Tambura County which has seen worse inter-communal conflict in the last two years.

In attendance was a representative of the UN, CSOs organized forces, and State Minister of Peacebuilding who warmly welcome the initiative and expressed government support for the success of this project.

President Salva Kiir Promises to Open Kuajok-Yambio Road to Honor 100 Years of Faith

By Sr. Henriette Anne FSSA

During the Centenary celebration of 100 years of Faith in Kuajok Wau Diocese on 18th March 2023, President Salva Kiir the president of the Republic of South Sudan promised to open Kuajok – Yambio road in order to leave a historical mark for the 100 years of faith upon the request of Bishop Eduardo Hiiboro Kussala the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Tombura – Yambio (CDTY) who spoke on behalf of Sudan and South Sudan Catholic Bishops Conference.

President Kiir also in his remarks recognized the crucial role played by the Catholic church in areas of Evangelism, education, and health. He added that he will work on the construction and refurbishing of old Churches and schools.

The Centenary celebration held at the Kuajok parish was presided over by Cardinal Gabriel Zuber Wako, Bishop of Wau Diocese, Bishop Mathew Remijo, Bishop of Tombura Yambio, Bishop Eduardo Hiiboro.

In his speech, the prelate stated that the Kuajok – Yambio road will be a road of Peace, a road of development, food security, and economic exchange between the communities in the areas.

Bishop Eduardo also acknowledges the contribution of the Catholic Church in Nation building since the first president, the first female speaker of the National Legislative assembly, and many more leading personalities in the country are from the input of the Catholic calling upon the church and the government to work together.

Reflecting on the Pope’s Ecumenical visit to South Sudan, the bishop called upon all the South Sudanese to let Pope’s message be a dictionary of National Peace Building.

Those who attended the celebration included President Kiir, Vice President for Service Cluster, Hussein Abdelbagi Akol, Speaker of the National Parliament, Jemma Nunu Kumba, and other senior officials from the state and national government.

Lectures at Sustainable Agriculture for Rural Development Institute (SARD) have Emphasized on Agri – Parental Training as their Students Start the End-term Examination

By Baraka John

Sustainable Agriculture for Rural Development Institute (SARD) emphasizes Agri- parenteral training so as to improve agricultural production and marketing in South Sudan.

SARD institute is an initiative of the Catholic Diocese of Tambura Yambio (CDTY) initiated in 2021 in Mopoi, the aim is to have a peaceful, food-security, and economically enabled society through improved modern sustainable agriculture for rural development

At least twenty-four students studying agricultural courses at the Sustainable Agriculture for Rural Development Institute (SARD) in Yambio have begun a two weeks examination on the morning of Monday 20th March 2023.

According to the training coordinator for SARD institute, Mr. Marcelo Constantino Bokuyo, the students sitting for the end-term examination are those who enrolled in June and August 2022 intake.

“Second-year students are now going on with their final examination in order to move third year, and then third-year students will be promoted to fourth year. The fourth year will go for attachment for two months then they will come back around August and train for one month then have their final exams”. Mr. Constantino said explained.

Mr. Constantino said after completing their exams, the institute will attach the fourth-year students to agricultural institutes to enable them to acquire more knowledge.

“They will go and work practically in the field, it’s just like on-the-job training so as to acquire more experience in agriculture, so they will work tirelessly using their hands and then using the knowledge we have given them here and amalgamated with the knowledge they will get in the field, tutors will be going from time to time to assess them in the field of their deployment”, the SARD training coordinator stated.

Mr. Marcelo added that for the two-month internship, the Diocese will invite a Catholic University to give an external examination to the fourth-year students and after that, they will be awarded the certificate.

The SARD institute has three agriculture courses, which include,16 months, 6 months, and 1-6 weeks courses.

Currently, the institute operates at St Augustine Parish in Yambio.

The institute has established a demonstration farm at St. Augustine Parish of about one hectare which has been divided into small plots of 150m square per student for practical taring.

Over 130 People Have Undergone Eye Surgery in Ngboko and Nzara

By Baraka John

At least 137 people have undergone successful eye surgery in Ave Maria Ngboko Parish St Paul missionary of Source Yubu and at St Theresa mission hospital Nzara County.   

A team of ophthalmologists from Spain arrived in Yambio two weeks ago to conduct this mass surgery among members of the community who have suffered for so long with eye-related diseases including cataracts.   

Speaking in the morning of Thursday 16th, March 2023, during a farewell gathering to honor the service discharged by the team of ophthalmologists, Dr. Blanca Cracia an ophthalmologist with the team said that they were able to conduct eye surgery for 137 people who lost their sights but they are now able to see after successful operations.  

Dr. Gracia said, the eye specialists spent ten days conducting the operation in the two locations but that wasn’t enough as there is still high demand for the service in these two areas, as people with the eyesight could still be seen turning up to access the service after the 10 days elapsed.

“We have worked on people with eye problems who were brought from Tambura, Ezo, and from Source Yubu to access the service at St Paul missionary Ngboko Parish, this was an outreach program from Spain and an invitation from the missionary brothers of St Paul missionary Ngboko Parish. We look forward to coming back again to help this community”. DR. Gracia said

On the other hand, the vicar general of the Catholic Diocese of Tambura Yambio (CDTY), Fr. Thomas Bagbiowia, applauded the team of eye specialists for the great work they have done for the community.  

Fr. Bagbiowia noted the concern and commitment of the Diocese to take care of both the body and the soul as part of the Catholic Church’s mission.

“We believe that the ministry of Jesus in Luke chapter four is being lifted and implemented by you, to open the eyes of the blinds physically and spiritually, now you are living the gospel value. You have just started in the diocese, which means the continuity has to be there with the support of the Diocesan administration as well as the missionary of St Paul and all of us”. The vicar stated

On his part, the director of the Catholic organization for development (CODEP), Fr. Mbikoyo Charles, described the work done by the eye specialists as a great service to the integral human person in the social wing of the diocese.

“Health sector is one of the sectors that the social wing of the Diocese focuses on, because without good health then we will have a poor quality of people in our country and in our diocese”, Fr. Charles said.

“Consider Intervening and Ordering those who are Behind the Destruction of our Environment to Stop”, Says Bishop Eduardo to the Governor and State Government of Western Equatoria

By Sr. Henriette Anne FSSA

Bishop Eduardo Hiiboro Kussala, the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Tombura – Yambio (CDTY), has appealed to the Governor and State Government of Western Equatoria to consider stopping the ongoing destruction of indigenous trees in Yambio.

“Honorable, I feel that it is my duty to bring to your attention the destruction of our trees that is currently ongoing in Yambio town and elsewhere. I have noticed with a heavy heart that some people are cutting down the big indigenous trees illegally in and around Yambio town. With much humility, I am respectfully requesting that you consider intervening and ordering those who are behind this destruction of our environment to stop doing so immediately”, he explained.

In his 15th March 2023 statement, he reminded the state officials to lead the community in the preservation and conservation of the environment since the Lenten campaign of this year in the Catholic Church calls for caring for Mother Earth that gives us clean air, brings rain, and beautiful shades to people.

“These huge indigenous trees keep the air that we breathe clean and fresh, they bring rain that helps our crops to grow, they make our town beautiful and act as shades to people during hot seasons. Kindly, let us stop their destruction. It is a coincidence that during this Lenten period, our campaign theme as the Catholic Church is the preservation and conservation of our Environment, Mother Earth. Lead us in this noble duty of preserving our environment”.

He added that the trees have been there for the last 200 years, therefore they are irreplaceable stressing that instead of cutting them down they should plant more.

Catholic Education Schools’ Day – 10 October 2022