Losing South Sudan Territories Amid Civil War, The Case of Nadapal!!
March 29, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — A South Sudanese territory, Nadapal, which has been occupied by Kenyan army, KDF, this month is now a contested region between South Sudan and Kenya.
After a South Sudanese delegation visited the area and confirmed the present of KDF in Nadapal, the Minister of Information and Government Spokesman, Michael Makuei Lueth, advises that his government will seek other avenues to address the issues to avoid “escalation”.
“…from the team which was sent to Nadapal to go and look into issues of the borders, according to the report, yes, the Kenyan Authority, the Kenyan army is there but so far the situation has a little bit subsided” the government spokesman, Michael Makuei Lueth, said.
“Now it is decided that we should avoid escalating anything, instead we should go into contact with Kenyan authority so that these issues are resolved amicably”. Makuei continues.
Nadapal is a village in South Sudan’s Eastern Equatoria state bordering Turkana District of Kenya to the South. The Nadapadal belt, which is approximately 25 kilometers (16 miles), lies on the road between Narus in South Sudan and Lokichongo of Kenya.
Nadapal, which has been rocked by violence and cattle raids between the Toposa pastoralists of South Sudan and the Turkana of Kenya, is inhabited mostly by the Toposa community.
According to the June 2009 assessment by the UNHCR, over 90% of the people living in Nadapal were Toposa. The other 10% was dominated mostly by the IDPs from Jonglei state and other nationalities.
In the assessment, Nadapal was identified as a village in Narus payam of Kapoeta East County of South Sudan.
The village chief at the time, 2009, estimated the population of Nadapal at approximately 3,500 people, including the returnees from the neighboring Kakuma Refugees camp, Kenya.
Although it is yet to be verified, the current invasion of Nadapal by the Kenyan army is believed to have connection with the newly discovered oil in the nearby Turkana District.
Other Border Towns
South Sudan is contesting most of its oil-rich northern border towns with Sudan. Within the last few weeks, Sudanese president, Omar Hassan el Bashir, has declared Abyei has a Sudanese territory and promised to campaign in the area for his re-election in April this year.
While Juba has officially extended the stay of Ugandan army for another four months in February this year, Uganda has reportedly deployed extra troops at Uganda-South Sudan border as tension built up between the warring factions earlier this year.
In the East, Ethiopia, which has forces in Abyei under the mandates of the United Nations, is believed to have deployed extra forces in Upper Nile region claiming to pursue its rebels in the country.
The war-torn South Sudan also accommodates four different factions of Sudanese rebels in Unity and Upper Nile State, fighting alongside president Kiir’s SPLA faction.