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By Emmanuel Malual Makuach - 9 Jan 2024

Opinion: Emergency action needed on Poktap attacks

Dear Minister of Interior Angelina Teny,

I write this open letter with profound concern and sorrow, grappling with the harrowing events of the recent Poktap Massacre. The attacks perpetrated by the suspected Murle ethnic group have starkly revealed a distressing gap in the security and protection afforded to our fellow citizens throughout South Sudan.

In your capacity as the Minister of Interior, the responsibility for the safety and well-being of the populace lies heavily on your shoulders. Unfortunately, the assaults in Poktap on Friday have ignited serious apprehensions about the efficacy and efficiency of our nation’s security mechanisms. The brutal violence witnessed during this tragic incident underscores the pressing need for more comprehensive measures to safeguard the lives of innocent civilians.

The Poktap Massacre has left an indelible mark on our nation, tearing families apart, shattering dreams, and plunging communities into mourning. We can no longer ignore the relentless suffering endured by our people. This moment demands introspection, accountability, and, above all, swift and decisive action.

As concerned citizens of South Sudan, we look to you, Honourable Angelina Teny, to assume a leadership role in addressing the security challenges that afflict our nation. We fervently urge you to leverage your position and influence to bring about substantial change and ensure the safety of our people. Nothing less than their safety and well-being is acceptable.

We write to emphasize the critical necessity of fortifying our security forces by equipping them with essential resources and providing comprehensive training to effectively combat and prevent the abhorrent acts of violence witnessed during the recent Poktap Massacre. Concurrently, we implore you to prioritize intelligence gathering, strategic planning, and coordinated efforts to pre-empt future attacks.

However, addressing the root causes of escalating ethnic tensions must be an integral part of our strategy. A holistic approach is paramount. We call upon you to facilitate dialogue and reconciliation among diverse communities, fostering an environment that promotes unity and security throughout South Sudan.

Furthermore, we urge you to champion initiatives supporting education, economic development, and opportunities for marginalized communities. By tackling the underlying issues of marginalization and poverty, we can establish a foundation where violence is less likely to take root.

Honourable Angelina Teny, the Poktap Massacre serves as a stark reminder of the pressing need for change. We implore you to transcend personal interests, become a voice of reason, and take decisive action to ensure a safer and more secure South Sudan for all.

We, the people, stand united in our demand for justice and accountability. We believe in your potential to make a difference and restore faith in our government's ability to protect its citizens.

May the victims of the Poktap Massacre rest in peace, and may their memory serve as a catalyst for transformative change.


Emmanuel Malual Makuach, Journalist

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