AUTHOR: Joseph Athian | PUBLISHED: September 26, 2023
Some of the weapons security forces collected from Aweil town residents on Tuesday, September 26, 2023 | Credit | Joseph Athian/Akol Yam FM
An ongoing general gun search has caused panic and fear among the residents of In Aweil town, Northern Bahr el Ghazal State.
On Tuesday morning, residents woke up to heavy deployment of forces, including the military, police, and prisons services.
Some residents say they are confused by the unfolding situation, saying they don’t know what is happening.
They told Akol Yam FM that there is no movement within the town as people are being told to stay in their houses.
“Citizens are informed by the government that there is something which is going to happen tomorrow even if the government doesn’t disclose what it is exactly it is going to do. But like this, it confuses citizens,” said Dominic Deng, resident.
Another resident, Kom Chathkat, said the exercise has affected families, with some unable to buy food.
“As I speak to you, those who don’t have food in their houses have not eaten. So, what is happening really is not known, especially to us the residents,” he claimed.
In response to this, William Anyuon, state state information minister, described it as “a normal security procedure”.
“So, people should take it lightly; there is nothing wrong. It is not anything related to rebellion,” Anyuon explained.
Currently, only medical practitioners, MSF vehicles, ambulances as well as sick people, pregnant mothers, and children are allowed to move freely.
The disarmament exercise comes amid reported increase in gun-related crimes, including robberies and killing in the area.