Parliamentary Forum on Labour, Decent Employment and Productivity (UPFLEP) is seeking an engagement with the Speaker of Parliament Hon. Anita Among over the status of Ugandans traveling to South Sudan.
In the statement that was read to journalists by Laban Joshua Musinguzi, the forum coordinator, Hon. Roland Ndyomugyenyi, the Forum Chairperson accused South Sudan of double standards on visa requirements.
“Following a press statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in the Republic of S. Sudan dated 1st October 2021, it welcomed the decision of both Governments to waive entry visa requirements for both citizens with effect from October 2021. This move was hailed as a significant booster to the already existing stronger bilateral relations with the two countries,” he said.
“However, current information shared by Ugandans living in S. Sudan is not portraying the earlier communications made by both Governments. The forum has come to learn that we have massive arrests of Ugandans on entry to Sudan as they are still requested to have Visas,” he added.
According Ndyomugenyi, over 5000 Ugandans are in prisons because of Visa issues.
He said that various attempts to visit and hold discussions with the concerned Embassies formally and informally have not yielded positive results.
“It is with great concern that we seek your intervention not only as the Patron of the forum but also the Speaker of Parliament to bring this matter up for discussion,” he told the Speaker.
Speaking on his behalf as the Coordinator, Musinguzi said that such harsh acts exhibited by the member states of East African Countries undermine the cordial relationship supposed to be shared.
“That’s why we seek a special engagement with the Speaker of the Parliament of Uganda regarding the status of Ugandans in S. Sudan including immigration challenges and discussing possible solutions to streamline migration,” he said
Last year, several Ugandans were arrested in South Sudan due to Visa related issues and visa fees were increased from $50 to $100.