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South Sudan rebel appointed governor abducted in Kenya

December 31, 2017 (JUBA) - An armed opposition governor has been abducted in neighbouring Kenya, sparking concerns about security and the safety of the key opposition figures in the eastern African country. The abduction occurred at the refugee camp in northern Kenya on Friday evening.

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Marko Lokidor Lochapio (ST file)

Rebel deputy spokesman Paul Lam Gabriel said in a statement released on Sunday that the opposition appointed the Governor of Kapoeta State Marko Lokidor Lochapio was abducted from Kakuma Refugee Camp.

Gabriel, according to the statement, said the abducted rebel official was driven to Lokichogio the same night and was taken to Nadapal where he was allegedly handed over to South Sudan National Security Service on Saturday.

Multiple sources confirmed to Sudan Tribune that the rebel official was picked up from his home with the knowledge of the Kenyan police authorities who later informed the relatives.

The opposition governor was abducted from home by people who came with two vehicles around 05:00 pm and one of the abductors was seen having a gun by an eyewitness, the sources said.

It is not clear how the gunmen managed to enter another country with weapons without being detected.

Opposition officials find it difficult to live in Kenya. James Dak the spokesperson of the leader of the main rebel group (SPLM-IO) Riek Machar in the country was deported to Juba in November 2016 from Nairobi.

Two other leading opposition figures were abducted and disappeared without a trace in Nairobi. A prominent and an opposition official, Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Idri, disappeared in Kenya and nobody knows what happened to them.