Aweil South road construction leaves 70 households homeless

More than 70 households are reported to have been demolished without any compensation in Aweil South by a road construction company, a claim this media outlet cannot independently verify.

Some of the residents whom their houses were affected by the roadworks say they need an assessment to be carried out by the government to help determine the damages caused.

The construction of roads, which commenced in late 2022, has displaced about 70 households, according to the local official.

The Africa Resource Corporation (ARC) was contracted in late 2022 by the government to build the roads.

It then reportedly expanded the roads by demolishing houses in seven villages and farmlands in Aweil South County, where the road is passing through.

The villages include: Tiar-aliet, Mangar-Gier, Pan-thou, Riang-Aker, Wahn-muok, Majak-Goi, Malek Alel and Pan-Jaap.

Mawien Kuch, one of the community representatives there, said he is among the people whose houses were bulldozed and farms destroyed.

He says they are also not happy with the excavation, which he said posed risk to children, elderly people, and domestic animals in the near future at Majak Goi residential area, where ARC is digging up murram.

“That site is in the middle of residential areas and the excavation will cost lives of young children and the elderly someday,” Kuch stressed.

When asked about the amount they demand as compensation, the families said all they need is for the government to form fact-finding committee to ascertain the extent of the damage and register the affected families for compensation.

However, the Ministry of Road and Bridges in Northern Bahr el Ghazal State says it was not aware of the claim of destruction caused by the ongoing road construction.

Barnaba Nyok, director general at the ministry, stated that his office did not yet received an official complaint.

He appealed to those affected by the road construction to report the matter to the ministry.

“We only present complaints brought to us by anyone who is complaining, if not, then there is nothing we can do,” Nyok told this media outlet.

Nyok went on to appeal to everyone with complaint to present the issue before the ministry, saying the office will investigate the matter case by case before it takes any action.