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President Kiir to visit Rumbek amid ongoing political tensions


July 3, 2014 (RUMBEK) – Lakes state authorities are on high alert ahead of a visit by South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir Mayardit, who is expected to arrive in the capital, Rumbek, over the weekend.

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South Sudanese president Salva Kiir is due to visit Lakes state capital Rumbek over the weekend to officially open a new hospital (Photo: Reuters)

The visit comes amid growing calls for the state’s military caretaker governor, Maj- Gen Matur Chut Dhuol, to be removed over his imposition of harsh security measures and failure to quell ongoing tribal violence in the state.

Dhuol, who was appointed in January 2012 after Kiir removed elected governor Chol Tong Mayay, is also accused of inciting violence within local communities through hate speeches and attempting to undermine intellectuals and traditional authorities.

Lakes state communities have also been angered by Dhuol’s decision to suspend student scholarships provided under a government fund established by the former governor.

On Wednesday, Dhuol instructed the ministers of physical infrastructure and education to take charge of cleaning the town and airport in preparation for Kiir’s visit – his second to the capital since winning elections in 2010.

However, school students and trade unions leaders reacted angrily to being ordered to carry out general cleaning duties in the town.

“I am forced to do the work I have never chosen to do,” said student Moses Deng after being instructed to clean freedom square.

“My classmates and I were order[ed] to respect the order or otherwise we would be dismissed from school. This is very immoral and I am total[ly] disappointed in president Salva Kiir,” he added.

According to Deng, students and teachers who opposed Dhuol’s authority were routinely dismissed from their schools without justification.

“Really we are suffering, and this suffering is caused by [our] current governor,” said Deng.

“We ask [community] elders and leaders to remove [the] governor and [the] president is not responding,” he added.

Lakes state’s minister for physical infrastructure, Abraham Mayen Kuc, who instructed ministry employees to clean up city streets leading from the airport to freedom square, also appeared to be unhappy with his assigned task, after he was reportedly overheard saying he was tired of receiving “negative orders”.

As part of preparations for the presidential visit roads were levelled with stones and trees in freedom square were painted white.

President Kiir is visiting Rumbek to officially open a Chinese-constructed hospital.
The planning and the construction of the hospital, located on the Rumbek- Yirol road, took more than three years to complete.

The naming of the hospital has recently been the subject of a disagreement between the state government and local communities.

While the government said it had opted to name the new healthcare facility Mayardit Women’s Hospital, local community leaders are advocating to name the hospital after Samuel Aru Bol, a prominent politician in the then Southern Sudan.

Coincidentally, Bol’s mausoleum lies within the vicinity of the new hospital.


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  • 4 July 2014 08:39, by Lotodo Awino Odug

    Nothing will change even if Matur is relieve, you Lakers should avoid talking about political issues in public gatherings . politics kills, just like you have seen it with Nuer community. be wise,do some else to sustain yourselves and stop striving for government’s jobs. use that hospital fairly and live humbly with your close neighbors.

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    • 4 July 2014 08:45, by Ahmed Chol

      Why do they want to name the hospital after Aru Bol? Aru was in big politician but never supported Southerners during the liberation war. He was in Khartoum doing what Bona Malual Madut was doing. He worked with those who hated Southerners. The hospital should be named Lake State Medical Center rather sticking useless politicians names to it.

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      • 5 July 2014 08:49, by Martin

        Ahamed Chol,

        I Like the name you suggested for that hospital. we do not like to use politicians names for public hospitals while they were not the people who donated the fund for construction. For example, Aru Bol and Kiir Mayardit did not donated the fund. So it is good to name it the Lakes State Medical Center or Lakes State General Hospital.

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    • 4 July 2014 12:55, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

      The forecasting visit by president to Rumbek dose not meaning of society calling the removable of governor Matur. The group who are requesting the removable of governor, are group of gangs.
      Lakes state-Rumbek is a strong hold of the president Kiir he can visit normally not meaning of society or gangs calling governor to be removable from power as cause of visit that’s big wrong.

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    • 5 July 2014 07:49, by Diversity

      open schools

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  • 4 July 2014 08:45, by Ahmed Chol

    Why do they want to name the hospital after Aru Bol? Aru was in big politician but never supported Southerners during the liberation war. He was in Khartoum doing what Bona Malual Madut was doing. He worked with those who hated Southerners. The hospital should be named Lake State Medical Center rather sticking useless politicians names to it.

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  • 4 July 2014 09:18, by Mapuor

    We should be God fearing people; there were no students who were fairly selected for government sponsorship. When the government was formed in 2006,most civil servants were selected along sectional lines. Ministry of Finance for example was dominated by one or two sections of Dinka tribe,all other ministries in Lakes were dominated by clans of the then ministers and those who were released f

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    • 4 July 2014 09:35, by Mapuor

      for studies were from only few sub clans and were not even studying but instead were also employed in Juba by their kinsmen.Frankly speaking most counties do not know of those sponsored and were surprised to hear of those who are studying using state money.President Kiir is a blessing to Lakes State people for appointing Gen Matur a true freedom fighter and development minded SPLA cadre.

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  • 4 July 2014 14:34, by Emporio

    Mr president don’t waste you time, those mad dogs will never listen to you,you need to handle the nation problem We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.

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