Kenyan Government Building 11-Kilometer Road and Establishing Sub-County in South Sudan’s Nakodok District, Legislators Report
In a press release seen by NCMP, Eastern Equatoria State legislators in the national parliament have alleged that the Kenyan government is building an 11-kilometer road and establishing a sub-county in South Sudan’s Nakodok district. According to the lawmakers, the plot to annex a portion of South Sudan to Kenya began on January 27, 2023, at a meeting between Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary and the governor of Turkana County.
The MPs condemned alleged incitement and encroachment intentions made by Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary Prof. Kithuri Kindiki at the meeting.
“We, the members of the National Assembly, denounce…. “utterances and intentions geared at invading and annexing a portion of our land via military recruiting and large deployment of (foreign) police reservists,” the statement reads.
The MPs claim that an 11-kilometer A1 road is being built up to Nakodok, as well as the establishment of a new sub-county on South Sudanese land. They say that the Kenyan government’s claim to ownership of Nakodok is denying Kapoeta East County locals access to customary water spots and grazing grounds. The assertion that Nakodok belongs to Kenya prevents Toposa inhabitants from unfettered travel to customary water sites and grazing areas.
According to MPs, the Kenyan government is now recruiting and deploying troops with the purpose of conquering and annexing a portion of South Sudan. Julius Moilinga, a Magwi politician, has demanded that the Kenyan government remove its military from South Sudan’s land immediately.
“Our administration has not been particularly concerned about border security, which is why today Kenyans and Ugandans may simply stroll and pass our borders knowing that we have not been minding our borders,” said Samuel Loti, a Torit Member of Parliament.
South Sudan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are “red lines” that should not be crossed by any nation, friend or foe, according to the MPs, who hope that “our neighbors, Kenya and Uganda, with whom we share much in common, could reassess their attitude for peaceful coexistence in the spirit of the EAC, IGAD, and AU.”
Previously, government spokesman Michael Makuei urged South Sudanese to be calm over the Nadapal violence along the border with Kenya “until the government resolves” the situation. Eventually, the governments of South Sudan and Kenya agreed to organize a Joint Technical Team to address the Ilemi Triangle boundary issue.
In addition to Kenya’s alleged encroachment, the Ugandan army was also accused of advancing on another territory in Magwi, Ikwoto, and Budi counties, according to the statement. The MPs claimed that the Uganda People’s Defense Forces are illegally extracting minerals, extending roads, marking trees and physical features, and digging boreholes in Owingkibul and other border regions.
South Sudan is facing mounting pressure from its neighbors, Kenya and Uganda, as well as internal conflict. As analysts, we believe that this situation highlights the need for robust and effective border management and security measures in the region. It also underscores the importance of diplomatic channels for resolving disputes, rather than resorting to military action. As journalists with over a decade of experience, we will continue to monitor this story and provide updates as more information becomes available.