By Deng Mangok Ayuel, Columnist, JUBA, OCT/27/2015, SSN;
Juba is a city for sale. Apart from being ranked as the world’s most expensive city for expatriates according to the latest findings by consulting firm, ECA International, Juba is a city full of unknown gunmen. A city where you can’t distinguish armed robbers from policemen because they both carry an AK47 …!
It’s a city where its citizens go to bed in fear while thinking they might be robbed by unknown gunmen in their houses at midnight. It’s also a city where foreign briefcase companies became the real beneficiaries of our businesses amid economic crisis in the country.
It’s a misery. The menace of armed robbery in Juba is unpredictable and the police forces shouldn’t be blamed but encouraged to take charge of the situation in order to protect the city dwellers.
Armed robbery is a worldwide phenomenon. It is neither peculiar to South Sudan nor confined to any country. But where do these robbers get the guns? And when will unknown gunmen be known? We must set thieves to catch thieves.
However, crime and robbery appear to be undying features. Although crimes have been with mankind from creation, there are increasing categories of crimes that are really baffling, senseless, shocking and malicious in our country.
Since insecurity remained a prodigy and continued to take vexing dimension, the current security situation is provocative in the city because incompetence of the authority to arrest and bring criminals to justice is fear-provoking.
There are basically two classes of armed robbers, the psychotics and the normal robbers who want to enjoy the booty acquired during the robbery.
They consider their lives as sacrosanct and are prepared to escape alive at all cost. As a matter of fact, they tend to avoid hard targets so that there will be no confrontation with equally armed protective clusters like police forces.
This is how our policemen failed to catch these tactical robbers. The psychotics do not care of life. His/her doctrine is to kill or be killed since he is desperate to flue his venom on the society – that is why some of our police officers who do not want to die that way fear to face the robbers in Juba.
Armed robbers in this category engage in mindless killing, raping and elimination of any opposition to their immoral activities.
They go for the broke and put their victims in a psychological revulsion, taking away the chauvinism in their victims.
These armed robbers are either mavens or the starved ones in the city. They fear police forces and the reaction of people.
They prefer areas of the city where there is little chance of law abiding citizens providing collective defence against their attacks.
Others in this category include pick-pockets, muggers and petty thieves who take advantage of confused situation to perpetrate minor crimes.
In sum, your next-door neighbour may be an armed robber. This is a country where swindlers and people of dubious characters without visible and productive means of livelihood act as pathfinders and celebrities.
You might notice that those robbers who were in Kampala, Nairobi and Khartoum have flown to Juba. Just be very careful.
Let no one have illusions that the war against crime especially armed robbery will be a pushover in South Sudan.
With the collapse of core virtues, corruption, divorces, the harsh economic situation prevailing in our own part of the world and plenty of guns let loose in the hands of starved-gunmen into unknown gunmen prowling around, make a long drawn battle.
Do we just fold our arms? Of course not, we must cooperate with security forces to minimize crimes.
These are crimes in which the armed robbers themselves are not direct beneficiaries of the earnings from the robberies.
One characteristic of these types of robbery is that it is often accompanied by high rate of fatalities. It is in line with the aphorism of hired assassins.
The robbers are hired to carry out the operation on payment of agreed fees. There used to be cases of politically motivated killings. The beneficiaries might even be the owners of the stolen items or robbed targets.
Those robbers involved might even be mobilized to the area of operation and will disperse similarly after the operation, which makes police investigation difficult.
Most of the factors considered are similar to those of pre-planned operation. Other cases of killing are tribal and regional. Take the case of Mundri-Rumbek road where innocent people are sometimes killed on their ways home. This is organized crimes.
Finally, citizens are encouraged not be heroic by risking their lives. There is a need to comply if you can’t help yourself when attacked by robbers. Or just be deliberate in your action if you are ordered to handover the money or anything in your hands.
Your life is precious than the property. The simpler way to reduce gun related crimes and death is to disarm and collect guns from the masses in our city. Where there are few guns, there’re no gun related deaths and robberies.
Deng Mangok Ayuel is a columnist and South Sudanese blogger. He currently lives in Juba and can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org