KHARTOUM – At least nine (9) Sudanese farmers have been arrested by the Sudanese police in the country’s Sennar state following the killing of 12 South Sudanese nationals last week, South Sudanese community leaders in Sennar have just told Sudans Post.
Last week, a group of Sudanese youth mobilized by a popular farmer in Sinja Abdallah of Sennar state went on rampage to attack South Sudanese who are staying in the state resulting in the killing of ten (10) people. Community sources said later that two others succumbed to their wounds and died raising the number to 12.
Speaking to Sudans Post this evening, a community leader who requested not to be named said the Sudanese authorities have managed to arrest nine people among those suspected to be behind the killing and that the security forces were still looking for other criminals who also participated in the attack against South Sudanese there.
“I am telling you that nine criminals among those who killed our people here have been arrested by the Sudanese security forces but the criminals who killed out people are not only nine, they are beyond that number and the police have told us that they are still looking for the rest of the criminals,” the community leader said from Sinja.
“The number of the people has now climbed from 10 to 12 because some people who were badly wounded by these criminals succumbed into their wounds. They died in front of the Sudanese officials in the hospital and this is a very bad message to our people because we never expect that such things happen in the Sudanese society,” he added.
On October 8, refugees who spoke to Sudans Post’s Nancy Abdurrahman in Khartoum on phone from Sennar state said the incident occurred when a local popular and wealthy farmer took seven South Sudanese to harvest his farm, but disagreed on the how much they should be paid at the end of their work.
“They went to the farm, and negotiated the price; some boys accepted the price while others did not. Those who accepted the price remained working while those who refused were to be transported back according to their agreement, the man carried the boys from the farm but somewhere in a place called Marda, the trader told the boys to get down from there and walked on footing as punishment for refusing his work,” the refugee who refused to be named said last week.
Based on the agreement, according to the refugee, the trader unidentified as Mohamed promised to transport the South Sudanese citizens back to Sennar’s capital in case they disagree on how much they should be paid, but the trader opted to shoot them as a punishment for them for refusing to work with him.
“They exchanged words over that issue in which the boys were arguing that they should be taken to Senja where he brought them as their initial agreement. Mohamed Jada ordered the boys to get down by force and opened fire on them shooting 3 boys and the other boys responded in self-defense wounded the trader Mohamed seriously and was driven directly to hospital and died from there,” he said.
He said the relatives of the man gathered along with other locals to attack the workers in the farms, this time, against any South Sudanese. He added that while the death toll remains around 10, there are chances that the number could be higher as attacks continue.
“Then immediately the relatives of the deceased plus civilian youth of that area took arms and launched brutal attack of South Sudanese (Nuer youth) who were innocently working in the farms and killed 10 people on spot and many others wounded on that Monday including those boys who remained working in Mohamed ‘s farm,” he said.
“The operation resumed the next Tuesday, attacking every South Sudanese found in the farms but the death toll is not known up to now. The government intervened at the late afternoon of Tuesday,” he added.