Clashes in Kadugli over salaries delays

25 Feb. 2007 (Juba Post)

At least 54 persons were injured in Kaduguli, South Kordofan state as a result of clashes between Police and school pupils who were demonstrating to protest delay in remittance of salaries and wages, Lual Deng the Deputy Secretary for States Affairs in the Sudanese Labor Union, Deng told the Juba Post.

The independent daily al-Sudani cited former South Kordofan Governor Ismail Khamis Jallab as saying the incident began when secondary school students protested at a strike by teachers who had not been paid their January salaries. "The protests transformed from demands to destruction," the paper quoted Jallab as saying.

"The students were demanding that the schools be reopened and the teachers paid," according to a security source who spoke on condition of anonymity. Lual deng says "the demonstrators who were mostly Primary and Secondary school pupils burned down a building which belongs to the Taxation Department of the Ministry of Finance. He also mentioned that the Offices of the Council, the Ministry of Social Welfare and the Agricultural Bank Offices in Kadugli were burned torched." 

He adds that the demonstrators set a number of cars on fire but did declined to give any figures of cars destroyed or to whom they belong.

The security source who claims anonymity says more than 20 people were injured in these clashes on Monday. The source said clashes erupted in the State capital Kadugli on Sunday after the school pupils protest turned violent. Eight or nine protesters were injured, as well as between 15 and 20 policemen.

More than 30 government vehicles were wrecked or burned, according to the same source.  Deng says that the main cause of the demonstration is the failure to pay salaries on time "the salaries since December 2006 up to February 2007 have been delayed".  Deng said that the Sudanese Labor Union supports the strike as "it is the right of employees to get their salaries on time." 

Deng appeals for an immediate, amicable solution to the problem especially as the workers in South Kordofan want to pay School and examination fees for children who are sitting for Sudan School Certificate and Basic level in addition to coping with their daily living expenses.

Security has been reinforced throughout the town, and schools remained closed on Monday and Tuesday as a precaution, the security source said.

Meanwhile a decree dissolving the State Government indefinitely was  issued by the former Governor of South Kordofan, Ismail Khamis Jallab before he himself was removed. Jallab had said "the dissolution of the Government has nothing to do with the recent disturbances but is in fulfillment of the provisions of the CPA."


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