Government of Southern Sudan has agreed to provide full military security and safety to all road users including Ugandan cargo truck drivers plying Juba – Nimule highway starting this week.
This was reached during a meeting between South Sudan government and Ugandan authorities on Friday at Elegu One-stop Border point in Amuru district, Northern Uganda.
High level security officials from both countries met to deliberate on the deteriorating security along major highways in South Sudan in which eight Ugandan truck drivers have been shot dead by armed men in the past weeks.
The Sudanese high-level delegation was led by the country’s Chief of Defense Forces, Gen. Johnson Juma, Inspector General of Police, Gen. Majak Akech, and Director-General of Internal Security, Gen. Akol Khor.
The Deputy Commissioner General of the National Revenue Authority, Hon. Africano Mande was also present and four East African Ambassadors.
On the other side, Uganda’s delegation was led by Police Operations Director AIGP Edward Ochom, Director Crime Intelligence Col. Damulira among others high ranking officers.
“We have successively concluded our two days meetings with Ugandan authorities including the drivers who later agreed to resume the normal operation,” said South Sudan authorities.
“And as government, we assure them of full security on the major highways in the Republic of South Sudan and removal of the illegal road blocks and check-points for easy movement of trucks to Juba and others towns within the country.”
Last week, truck drivers from across the East African region protested the increasing insecurity in South Sudan, illegal taxes and also demanded for compensation of their deceased colleagues.
They parked their trucks at Elegu border and demanded for both governments to intervene before the situation deteriorates further.
In regards to compensation, Sudanese authorities agreed to pay for the victims but said that the process will be discussed through the foreign ministries of the two countries.
Although traders had also requested Ugandan authorities and in this case the UPDF to escort their goods to South Sudan, Lt.Col Deo Akiki said that “this can’t be a decision of UPDF. South Sudan is a sovereign State, therefore anything done on its territory at the moment has to be a bilateral matter beyond the two forces. It’s a government to government affair.”
ChimpReports understands that some trucks on Saturday left Elegu border for Juba under full security escort.