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Juba 19 Oct.2015: South Sudan army division six commanders General Johnson Juma Okot who is the overall commander overseeing Bridger and battalions of SPLA in Western Equatoria state and Lake’s state capital Rumbek, accused the media for using inflammatory languages and inaccurate reporting about the unrest in Rumbek. Mr. Okot singled out Sudantribune and radio tamazuj for inaccurately blaming the cause of the unrest in Rumbek for what he said unpaid salaries of the soldiers. He was referring to the report by the Sudan Tribune and Radio Tamazuj last week that SPLA have arrested two senior officers for pocketing the salaries of the soldiers in Rumbek an amount of 679.000 SSP

On October 12, 2015, Sudantribune published report saying senior SPLA generals were arrested for diverting an amount more than half a million south Sudanese pound

 “The senior command of the South Sudanese army (SPLA) has formed a committee to investigate disappearance of salaries for the army division 6 in Lakes state, believed to have been diverted to private pockets by senior commanders which led to a strike by soldiers in the state” said Sudantribune on 12 October 2015.

The report by Sudantribune directly implicated the division six commanders JJ. Okot for pocketing an amount of 235.000 SSP. This could be the reason why today (Monday) 19 Johnson Juma Okot has to appear before the generals in the army’s headquarter in Juba.

 “The report we have from the military intelligence personnel and finance shows that the money was taken and divided by the command of the division. We have seen one report showing how the money was divided by the senior officers. We have seen a report in which the division commander, Major General Johnson Juma Okot himself took 235,000 South Sudanese pounds (SSP), (roughly equivalent to $100,000 US dollars), from the salaries of these soldiers” the report by Sudantribune.

The report farther implicated three other generals within division six including Major Juma Deng, who is the military intelligence officer in the division took 393,000 SSP, and head of the logistics department in the division, Brigadier General Manyuat Ruei, took 112,000 SSP, and head of administration in the department, Brigadier General John Malith, pocket 100,000 SSP.

Johnson Juma Okot in an attempt to clear his name and that of his colleagues said the report by Sudantribune and Radio Tamazuj were inaccurate and by reporting inaccurately the two media houses have directly fuelled and influenced the unrest in Rumbek. He was speaking from general headquarters after briefing senior generals in Bilpam Headquarters in Juba.

He (JJ Okot) farther blamed the rebels group of Wesley Welebe Samson, whose forces according to General JJ Okot are the one terrorizing and abducting civilians and have carried several road ambushes on government soldiers in Mundri and Maridi, he, general JJ Okot vowed to take the fight to the rebels until calm returns to Western Equatoria state. But what is not clear is why (he)JJ Okot is still talking about taking the fight to the rebel group of General Wesley at the time people are talking about final implementation of the signed peace agreement between Juba government and armed opposition led by the first vice President designate Dr Riek Machar.

J.Robert Swaka.

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