Juba, July 28, 2018 - The South Sudan NGO Forum strongly condemns the unacceptable violence against humanitarian actors, including the most recent attack in Maban, as it reduces aid workers’ capacity to implement essential services and activities, leaving the most vulnerable people in South Sudan at greater risk of hunger and disease.
“Such senseless attacks hamper efforts by aid agencies and their staff who are working tirelessly in a challenging environment to help the most vulnerable people in need of life-saving assistance,” said Dr Pius Ojara, Director of South Sudan NGO Forum. “The increase in attacks on aid workers’ is wrong, unwarranted and we are extremely disappointed.”
Reports indicate that the protests in Maban started when a protest over employment opportunities turned violent. There was forceful entry into UNHCR and 14 other compounds by approximately 2,000 youth that resulted into looting, arson, destruction of vehicles, structures and other humanitarian assets and lifesaving supplies including medicines. While there was no loss of life, aid workers have been traumatised by the Maban attacks.
The attacks have forced aid agencies to suspend services except for life-saving and critical activities to communities around Maban. Services will continue in the 4 refugee camps hosting 141,548 Sudanese refugees. At least 390 humanitarian workers have been successfully evacuated from Maban.
“We would like to thank the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service for coordinating with the NGO Forum and affected agencies and ensuring a quick response in the relocation of personnel from Maban. The NGO Forum is also grateful to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan for providing protection during the evacuation process,” said Dr Ojara.
The NGO Forum is calling for local authorities to investigate the incident and ensure that organisers and perpetrators are identified and are held accountable for the unacceptable attacks. The NGO Forum asks for assurance from government for protection of humanitarian workers, assets and supplies in Maban. In a spirit of dialogue and transparency, the NGO Forum members would like to maintain communications link with local authorities so that in future risks of violence are avoided as a first or last resort of aggrieved groups.
About the South Sudan NGO Forum
The South Sudan NGO Forum comprises 115 INGOs and 205 NNGOs providing assistance to the people of South Sudan people regardless of ethnic background, political affiliation or religious belief. The NGO Forum provides a platform through which NGOs, the Government of South Sudan, the United Nations, donors and other external stakeholders can exchange information, share expertise and establish guidelines for a more networked, efficient and effective use of aid resources in South Sudan.
For more information, contact:
Ms Liatile Putsoa, Communications Advisor, +211 917 118195, email@example.com