Home | News    Saturday 29 January 2011

W. Equatoria governor restores Jehovah’s Witnesses activities in the state


January 28, 2011 (YAMBIO) - The governor of Western Equatoria state Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro on Thursday removed the ban against Jehovah’s Witnesses practicing in the state.

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Yambio was empty on December 26, 2010 (ST)

For over a month the religious group’s activities were banned after some did not participate in the registration for southern Sudan’s referendum on independence due to their religious beliefs. Voting in the plebiscite took place from January 9 to 15 with registration for the landmark poll taking place in early December. The religious minority also did not take part in Sudan’s elections in April last year.

Jehovah’s Witnesses in Yambio, the capital of Western Equatoria, had accused the state of harassment and suspension of worship in the state. Members of the religious group say they were wrongly accused of preventing its followers from taking part for religious reasons in the vote on Sunday that will likely see the south secede.

Governor Bakosoro made this remark during in a meeting held in his office at the state secretariat with Jehovah’s Witnesses, none locally as JW’s, from the region.

Last month during the referendum campaign, the communities of Western Equatoria had issues with some been in problems with members of Jehovah’s Witnesses for “not participating in national duties,” Bakosoro said.

The row between the Jehovah’s Witnesses nearly led to place of worship being burnt down on January 1. Taban Jamba Lemi, a Jehovah’s Witness based in Juba, told Reuters that the arson attack was carried out by "local people” but “instigated by the government."

Sources in the state government have told Sudan Tribune that the state government decided to quell the situation over the referendum period by temporarily closing down all the activities of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the state for security purposes until after the referendum.

The Carter Center, who are the largest international observer mission for the south’s recently completed referendum, said, in a statement last month, it was "concerned about intimidating rhetoric prevalent in
Western Equatoria aimed at the Jehovah’s Witness congregation."

"The Carter Center calls upon all stakeholders in Western Equatoria to respect the right of all individuals to participate in or refrain from the referendum process."

On Thursday Governor Bakosoro said “now that the referendum is over, time has come to resolve the outstanding issues incurred during the referendum, and that today 27th Jan the Jehovah witnesses all over the state should be allowed to operate.”

He called upon every citizen of the state not to mix religion with national duties and to respect the constitution. Bakosoro said that the lack of separation between religion and politics was one of the reasons the south has fought against various Khartoum governments.

Under Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the north-south civil war was branded a Jihad (holy war) to galvanise the north, which is predominantly Islamic, against the south were people practice Christianity and traditional African beliefs.

In 2005, after over two decades of civil war, Bashir’s ruling-National Congress Party, which came to power in 1989 signed a peace deal with southern rebels the SPLM. For the last five years the two have shared power and the south’s oil wealth, with the SPLM governing the south with a large degree of autonomy.

The peace agreement set in place a road map of events, including a national census, elections and finally the south’s referendum on independence.

Bakosoro, who became governor of Western Equatoria after winning the 2010 gubernatorial race, said at the meeting on Thursday that “JWs are free to resume their normal worships,” he encouraged them “to call upon all their members to come back and continue with their daily services.”

“Continue with your social lives and nobody will hinder your worship but when the government comes with programs every citizen must obey and participate in spite of your beliefs” added the governor.

He further stated that “participation in national duties does not hinder one’s relationship with God.”

“Even Jesus was counted in the census when he was born, therefore all people serve the same one God”, he said.

Migbe Keliopa Patrick a Jehovah’s Witness from Western Equatoria said, “the Church has no voice to stop or dictate any person from participating in national duties.”

He said that national duties such as “elections, census, and the just completed referendum are of individual consciousness to participate.”

Patrick said, the Jehovah’s Witness Church has emphasized the respect of the rule of law and regulations to all their members.

“We recognize the government of the people and for the people and by the people, despite being vocal in the state, we remain the citizens of the state under a government”, added Patrick.

Stanly Mazida, another Jehovah’s Witness, added that “it is the norms of the church to respect the higher authorities, more specially the government who provide the security of every citizen in the state.” He also pointed out that some of the Jehovah’s Witness participated in the referendum according to their beliefs as law abiding people.

Mazida appreciated the invitation of the governor to speak with them, saying citing that since the churches were closed the ban was not violated by any Jehovah’s Witnesses by praying or conducting services at those churches.

Tensions have mounted in the state going back to 2008 when some Jehovah’s Witnesses refused to take part in Sudan’s population census and household survey. These tensions were reignited during last year’s elections and the recent referendum, which is expected to see the south separate from the north.


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  • 29 January 2011 05:57, by Bol Deng

    You had never vote in April election and the same thing to referendum,then where will you live?
    You are always a curse because you always refuse to participate for everything and latter complain for land grabbing.You can worship but remember where will you stay. Thanks

    • 29 January 2011 08:31, by SolomanRuffo

      JW organization definitely does pose a danger, not only to national states, but also to the psychological well being of their citizens. The reason for this is that the principle teaching of JW’s, is that all modern day states must eventually come to an end.
      According to Jehovah’s Witnesses, this destruction of modern day states, will be necessary in order for a global Watchtower society JW government to eventually rule the world. This, JW’s claim, is Gods will, and it does not take much to realise that, in view of their beliefs, that it is unavoidable that JW’s will support any action or sequence of events that will bring their prophecy to fruition.

      The future sequence of events that JW’s believe will take place according to their Biblical prophecy, is that in the very near future every religious organization, except theirs, will be destroyed, by the military political branches of every state, this will be followed by a war, in which their "God", fighting on the side of their religious organization, will in turn bring an end to every political state. It doesn’t take a lot to conclude that JW’s are not only enemies of every other religion, but also of every political state.

      Although JW’s claim to be conscientious objectors and will not fight a war on the side of any political state, they are not anti-war, and will be well prepared to fight a war on their "Gods" side, against any political state, if called upon, by their "God", to do so, in the future. I feel they they definitely do pose a threat, as a doomsday cult.

      • 29 January 2011 20:40, by Vinny

        As a 15 year Zealous Person for Jehovah (and elder) here is my story.


        • 29 January 2011 21:37, by Muorter Majok


          What a powerful story!!, I was a member of that Organization for a few years, and I almost lost my mind just arguing and thinking of some of their teachings.

          The belief that the year 1914 was to mark the end of the world, and changing it later to make it the beginning of the end was the main reason I had to leave the so called "truth.

          It took me many years to fully recover and get my sanity back, I only feel sorry about those who are still being misled by the "governing body"

          And yes the idea of the chosen ones who would go to heaven was another concept that I did not buy entirely.

          Thank you so much for posting the link.

    • 29 January 2011 10:33, by usfffs

      Jehovah people would not participate in any national event or cultural ceremonies claiming its against their religion. Yet the same people constantly on people door telling them to listen to their message and join their religion and they always beg for money donations for their Watchtower

      • 29 January 2011 12:02, by JWTruth

        Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that their Watchtower (Jehovah’s) organization is the only true Christian faith.

        They believe that the truths of scripture were lost through a great apostasy centuries ago until God used JW founder Charles Russell to restore the Gospel.

        Jehovah Witness share some doctrinal beliefs with Christianity,but many of their beliefs either completely contradict,or at least pervert Biblical truths.

        Some of these are as follows:
        Only 144,000 go to heaven,two classes of Christians,Michael Archangel is Jesus,works based salvation by door to door ’placement’ of Watchtower literature,ban on whole blood transfusions but permitted to use components as fractions..

        Theologically,Jehovah’s Witnesses are a cult of Christianity. The oppressive organization does not represent historical, Biblical Christianity.
        Sociologically, it is a destructive sect whose false teachings frequently result in spiritual and psychological abuse,as well as needless deaths.

  • 29 January 2011 07:20, by Peter Elia Kuzee

    MR governor Bakosoro,
    Are you sure this johova’s witnesses will not repeat the same thing again? If they refused to rigster for census or to register for election, tomorrow we wants the voting card to be the nationality for the new nation.
    Remember,joseph and mary the mother of jesus went for census,

    If not they will not stay like other believers.
    Iam too sick about what those johova’s witnesses did,sory for it.Let them apologiase for that.

    • 29 January 2011 09:18, by SarahSmile

      The Watchtower Jehovah’s Witnesses is not a religion, it is a mind-control cult. They micromanage every possible aspect of member’s lives - from what they say, think, dress, and even what they can and cannot do in the privacy of their bedrooms.

      Such cults should be taxed in every nation as a regular business. The Watchtower is a real estate holding company and a publishing empire hiding behind the ruse of a valid religion.

      The New York city Watchtower cult has distributed anti government pamphlets throughout areas that have limited their recruitment efforts. They try to elicit sympathy and force governments to allow them to solicit people to membership.

      The Watchtower does not allow blood transfusions. Thousands of children have died and thousands more each year as a result. Thousands of Jehovah Witness children more have life long difficulties if they survived blood loss or no treatment.

  • 29 January 2011 07:25, by omoni Atari

    Bravo Governor,
    sometimes you have to dictate some policies to people who dont follow the national duties well,

  • 29 January 2011 09:01, by Rev John Khamis Kamunde

    Well it is good to forgive them because that is what Jesus taught to give uncountable forgiveness to our fellows.

    However my advice to the believers of Jehova’witness is that:
    Please do associate with people,eat together with them,and don’t just jurge others as non believers,or sinners.
    Remember Jesus went and have meal in the house of the tax collector,and many tax collectors joined him on the same table.And this point confused the Pharisees who blaimed Jesus as siiting with the siners.

    So brethren,let me tell you that without good government we can’t build the churches,goes for our service,or carry out our spiritual activities.
    In Khartoum,christians students,and workers are finding it hard to go for prayers on sundays because it is just normal working day.
    We need fresh air to the churches,so that we should carryout our spiritual activities without hinderance,but you people dosen’t want to participate.
    Ok then that means you were happy in the regiem which used to stop us from prayers,break down churches buildings ,arrest even the pastors and beat them,forcing children to go for Islamiic teaching in khalwas,declaring Jihad on us WERE YOU PEOPLE HAPPY WITH THIS???

    Referendum was the process to vote so that we seperate from this bad regiem and have our OWN CHRISTIAN NATION INCLUDING YOU PEOPLE.
    Do you knew that we were in the Islamic Arab country of which we want to come out off???
    Brothers we can’t sit down in our churches while politicaly our country is driven somewhere at the same time denying our right as christian without our full paticipation.

    Rev Kamunde.

  • 29 January 2011 11:02, by Jada Lotole

    Though not a Bible specialist, I would humbly love to categorically brand the Jehovah’s Witnesses in Souh Sudan as :"FANATICS" simply because they are not responsible enough in fulfilling the national duties that are obligatory. The two significant and historic events that they boycotted had been more like a comminual manual cleaning of the nation of political rubbish such as : unequal distribution of natioanl cake, oppression, and the list is unexhaustable. Must you then lazy JWs’ leave this task to other people to do for you as you just relax and practicing fanatism ? Shame on you ! Count yourselves NOT Citizens of the New nation the South Sudan ! for you are liabilities to this New nation !

    Please spare Just a few minutes to read these Authentic Bible Verses and by the end of this reading, you will tell the contributors of this Social forum as to who are real fanatics and none-fanatics:

    Mark 12:17 Then Jesus said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s." And they were amazed at him.

    Luke 20:24 "Show me a denarius. Whose portrait and inscription are on it?"

    Romans 13:7 Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor,

    If the JW’s want to stay in peace and harvest the best of this land of South Sudan, then they MUST ask for forgiveness lest we curse you dead just like what happened to Ananias and Safiras ! " Strike while the Iron is still hot "

  • 29 January 2011 20:42, by Vinny

    Life defending Watchtower land is sure one tough deal.

    The Watchtower is not God’s anything. FACT OF LIFE!

    Prove God chose Watchtower JWs.

    Cause I got a MOUNTAIN OF PROOF that God never chose Watchtower for anything: http://home.tiscali.nl/t661020/wtcitaten/part2.htm

    The printed page tells it like it is. MANY PAGES.

    Sorry JWs but you just keep losing all the time.

    Did God get all those EMBARRASSING DATES wrong JWs? (1914, 1925, 1975, 2000, GENERATION OF 1914 ETC)...

    Did God get Vaccinations wrong too?

    And then 21 years later did God change his mind about vaccinations?

    (Or was it possibly because vaccinations were stomping out polio, smallpox, diptheria, measles and more)?

    Did God get organ transplants being, "CANNIBALISM", wrong too?

    And then change his mind again 13 years later saying organ transplants were not cannibalism after all! (how bout that!).

    Did God get, "ALTERNATIVE SERVICE" wrong? (((FOR 50 YEARS))).

    Did God change his mind 50 years later and then say alternative service is now okay to do?

    Who did all those brothers go to jail for JWs? Was it for Jehovah or for the Watchtower Society?

    What about good ole and special BETH-SARIM, JWs? Was Jehovah behind Beth Sarim too? An entire house and property waiting for the ancient worthies to be resurrected and have a place to go to.

    Who was Beth Sarim an embarrassment to JW’s? Please tell us.

    Is it reasonable to expect just a little more from God’s channel than all this JWs?

    What do you think JWs

    Who did all those witnesses that died because of not getting vaccinations or organ transplants die for? Did they die for God or for the Watchtower Society? You tell me JWs.

    So please, tell me JWs, are you ready to let your little children DIE if for some reason they need blood? Please answer yes or no. Put yourself in that situation right now before it actually happens.

    Are you ready to teach other people in your territory that they too must say no to blood even if death results?

    JWs, Are you also ready and willing to shun your children if they get baptized at like 14 but then say, "sorry, but the JW’s just ain’t for me", at 18?

    JWs, do you tell your bible studies that the JW’s were FLAT WRONG about those organ transplants, vaccinations, alternative service, Beth Sarim, 1914, 1925, 1975, 2000, Rape Rules, Sex with animals or sex with the same sex not breaking the marital bond along 500 more things just like these?

    Do you tell your bible studies all about these many mistakes JWs?

    You see, it would be disingenuous of you to only show the one side of the JW picture, don’t you think?

    People have a right and you have an obligation to show people the COMPLETE JW PICTURE.

    Most bible studies only know what JW’s tell them in their little bible study books. (I bet you all know this now). And NOWHERE does it mention all these problems that destroy the WT Society as being used by God for anything at all.

    If the Bible is True:

    Jesus walked on water.

    Moses parted the Red Sea.

    A Cloud followed the ark of the covenant.

    And the JW religion owns this bad boy: http://home.tiscali.nl/t661020/wtcitaten/part2.htm

    Do you see the slight difference here JWs?

    This is why many people after knowing the entire JW range of facts end up walking away altogether. Just like I did almost five years ago now.

    And this despite the fact that we will be judged as wicked, as some apostate, be labeled, shunned and lose almost everything we have.

    Is this fair JWs? Is this scriptural JWs? No, it is neither... and I have examined all the scriptures many times and in great detail. No scripture supports this unfair abuse of power and loss of friends, family and reputation.

    I hope you take the time to honestly examine all these things JWs.

    Be ready to cut-off your own children just because they don’t want it. Because you just might have to. It happens more than you know.

    So JWs, the next time you try to push JW’s are God’s channel today nonsense please do not get offended when I fall out of my chair laughing.

    You all have many questions all over this site that you have put on your lap.

    And then you ALL always run like a fast little rabbits...

    And do the JW dance moves out the door...

    Silly JW’s.


    No JW that I have ever encountered or debated with can defend the sorry JW past plethora of embarrassing mistakes..

    This is where you cross the line, lose badly and then get buried and spanked all on the same thread.

    Why not just say this is a pretty good religion for me and leave it at that?

    Why arrogantly teach that you must be a JW, JW’s are the truth, God uses only JW’s, JW’s are God’s people all the while you have pages and pages of PROOF that God never chose the JW’s for anything, never got all those things wrong for 100 plus years and has not picked the Watchtower for anything at all.

    This is your problem. And this is where you JWs are in denial. And what you run away from again and again.

    The JW religion is just that another religious institution and nothing more. The facts prove this again and again over and over.

    JW’s preach (((THE JW))) message. And that is it.

    You know the one that said (in writing) that the end would come in 1914, 1925, 1975, before the generation of 1914 died, the year 2000. The JW message that forbids blood transfusions, that forbidded organ transplants, vaccinations, alternative service etc etc etc.... The one that says no beards, no holidays, no school sports or plays, no cub scouts, no red cross, no salvation army etc etc etc

    THAT is not the biblical message at all.

    And remember this fact: Before JW’s ever showed up on the scene, Christianity was already GLOBAL!!! Now how did that happen do you suppose?

    I am telling you that God’s hand is with my life. Now how does that happen JWs if I left his organization as you al laughably claim??

    I would be delighted to have proven to me that the Watchtower is what I thought it was for 15 years. I have debated with some of the most capable JW’s in many places. But the results just prove what I have already known for some time; that the JW religion is not what they say about themselves.

    It’s not a matter of my winning anything. It’s truly a matter of putting the issues on the table and with an open mind coming to reasonable conclusions based on the whole range of facts and information.

    I have proven to myself (and my family as well as God Himself) that I am willing to be WRONG.That I am willing to be adjusted. That I can accept new information regardless of the consequences.

    After all I became a JW.

    And then I was willing to leave the JW’s despite heavy consequences.

    What else do you need to see to realize I am willing to be proven wrong... or right... whatever the case may be.

    Truth is worth the effort and or consequences for me.

    That’s what this journey called life is all about.

    And my Heavenly Maker knows this because I talk about it every day that I am alive. But you guys think I am some kind of godless apostate. Whatever works I guess.

    I did it too for 15 years.

    Living with blinders is no way to live at all!

    If the bible is true Jesus did many amazing things to prove God was with him.

    If the bible is true Moses did many amazing things that prove God was with him.

    And this sorry list is what JW’s have to prove God is with them today??


    All from their own literature.

    The printed page tells it like it is JWs!

    Like I’ve said many times now; the Watchtower’s greatest enemy today is its own literature.


    • 23 March 2012 05:38, by grandpa len

      re: this vinny fellow.

      1- so, you have something better?
      2- most of the info you posted is NOT true. Why?
      3- if you are so great/ smart/ brilliant, where is YOUR
      4- Would you like a bible study? We will teach you from
      ANY bible in ANY language at no cost to you.

      5- We do not have embarrassing dates. Some guys
      were to anxious. It WILL come, believe me.

  • 11 February 2011 23:36, by dean

    ask your self this

    have I actually attended a kingdom hall and found out for myself how the people act?

    do the formeer now apostate witnesses have anything to offer me besides hatefulness?

    how amazingly simple satan has made things, for us all to become enraged with one another

    jehovahs witnesses have not hurt one bone in my body

    the sense of it all is this - your message is without love for your neighbor and you are preaching to yourselves

    jehovahs witnesses are not blind sheep - they have a choice regarding service to their country - it was said in the article - quoted by a jw!

    as for the apostates the bible says there is a judgement waiting for them
    and they know this - otherwise why would they be so desperately hateful?

    jehovahs witnesses have benefited even this corrupt world
    by pushing bloodless surgery into the gold standard of surgical procedures
    they have stood up for the right to speak about religion which benefits all religions

    but all some can do is get offeneded because a door was knocked on or paticular individual had a bad experience with an elder or brother/sister at the hall

    it is their intolerance that caused the disfellowship
    any witness will tell you disfellowshipment is a long process and also leaves the door open for re-entering into the ministerial agreement by applying bible principles and cleaning up whatever sin it is they are strugling with?

    in the end we all deal with intolerance whether we are jw or not

    and if one is intolerant and is a baptized brother or sister then they are worshipping the wrong god

    what no apostate will ever admit is they have accurate knowledge of hellfire, the trinity, taking part in pagan/nationalistic celebrations and still have some agreement towards the topics but have allowed their disgust and hatefulness to steer them back into the ways of the world

    I just can never understand how a former witness can know about the demons and their influences and allow their blind rage to coherse them into re-netering into worldly ways

    they also dont want you to know about the many many disfellowshipped members who returned to ministering with zeal

    the number of baptized has drastically changed since the early 1900s

    7 million and over 12 million at gatherings

    jesus said my kingdom is no part of this world

    we must respect the authorities and even render service when demanded - as long as it does not offend jehovahs laws - and individuals are allowed to say no - that is not brainwashing to allow people to say no to something is it?

    so jesus said his kingdom is no part of this world so Jehovahs servants are envoys to the representatives of Jesus’s heavenly kingdom

    as if all religions can be in gods good standing
    is the path broad and spacious or narrow and cramped?

    jesus said to love god and your neighbor
    how can that be with a sword in my hand?

    jesus said betolerant to death and not vengeful
    how can I be with hatefulness in my mind and curses from my mouth?

    jehovahs witnesses abide the laws and pay their taxes

    if they do not - and I am sure out of 7 million some fall short like the disfellowshipped ones online with only hate and resentment - they will have to render their shortcomings and discouraging ways to the almighty himself

    is that not enough judgement for you?

    my point is take every piece of information with regard to its purpose

    whether you believe it or not that knock on your door is love
    people would just not do it for brainwashed sake - not in todays world

    having accurate knowledge is something that bears fruit in your life and interactions with others

    may jehovahs piece be with you and a turning away from the hate that permeates this world because it does "originate" with satan


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