Joint peace conference between Ngok Dinka and Misseriya kicks off in Entebbe Uganda

Delegates and facilitators pose for a group photo at Imperial Golf Hotel | Credit: Karbino Dut

A joint traditional conference between Ngok Dinka of South Sudan and Misseriya tribe of Sudan is underway in Entebbe Uganda.

The meeting led by the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei commenced at Imperial Golf Hotel in Entebbe on Tuesday.

It is attended by traditional chiefs from both Misseriya and Ngok Dinka.

The Ngok Dinka is represented by a 15-member delegation headed by Paramount Chief Bulabek Deng Kuol of Ngok Dinka.

The team include representatives of youth and women.

The delegation of Misseriya Al Ajaira consists of the same number and is led by Al Sadiq Al Herika Ezdin and chiefs of sections, as well as youth and women representatives.

The meeting is an attempt by UNISFA to stop violence and bring about stability to the oil-rich Abyei region, which is disputed between South Sudan and Sudan.

In their inauguration remarks, the representatives of the Ngok Dinka and the Misseriya Al Ajaira expressed an honest desire to achieve peaceful coexistence between the two neighboring tribes.

The Ugandan ambassador, Julius Joshua Kivuna, also called for upholding the Trinity of Peace through the partnership of the local community, national governments, on one hand, region and the international community on the other hand, in achieving prosperity.

UNISFA’s Force Commander and acting head of mission and the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for the Horn of Africa stressed that the Entebbe peace conference focuses on issues of security and peaceful coexistence only, which in turn will lead to the discussion of political issues that are the core responsibility of the governments in Juba and Khartoum.

In a strong remark, Hanna Tetteh said that if the wisdom of African societies lies in its community elders, then the Ngok Dinka and Misseriya traditional leaders must do something for the future of the current generation.

On the first day, the two delegates discussed the situation in the Abyei Box and the statement of problem.

On the third and final day, they are expected to talk about the final document of the Joint Traditional Leaders’ Peace Conference.

Abyei has witnessed recurring violence since the independence of South Sudan in 2011.

Some of those attacks according to sources were conducted by armed men from Misseriya.

The most recent one left more than forty people dead in Leu, Noong and Amiet villages in Abyei Administrative Area.