UNISFA hosts a joint Misseriya-Dinka post-migration conference
A joint Dinka-Misseriya post-migration conference jointly organized by FAO, IOM, and UNISFA just ended at Todach, 20 kilometers north of Abyei town. The conference brought together the Joint Peace Committee and leaders of the respective migration corridors to discuss and tackle issues of mutual concern encountered during the pre-migration cycle. The conference was attended by 40 representatives of the Joint Peace Committee and leaders from eastern, southern and northern transhumance corridors within Abyei (20 from each of the two communities).
Abyei is characterized by nomadic movements mainly by the Misseriya and transhumance migration processes, which by themselves exert extreme pressure and demand on resources such as land and water remains an integral part of Abyei; a way of life that not only defines Ngok Dinka and Misseirya communities’ social cohesion, but their culture as well as well-being of their livestock.
Highlights of the conference included the resolve by the two communities to jointly undertake peace building and confidence building activities that provide space for further strengthening of trust, peaceful co-existence and economic interdependency as well as initiatives to tackle issues of scarce resources (i.e. water), environment and security. The participants requested expansion of UNISFA’s military presence particularly in the Eastern migration corridor, commended the ongoing FAO cattle vaccination program and resolved to involve the Nuer in future peace processes notably migration conferences and agreements. The conference further agreed that the pre-migration joint conference would be held before the onset of the next dry season and the start of the Southward migration in January 2019.
Abyei has two movement cycles: a pre-migration cycle that happens (southward) at the end the dry season and the post migration cycle that starts at the beginning of the rainy season where the reverse (northward) migration of the Misseriya cattle herders is normally takes place. The conference is located within the context of the efforts for the search for common grounds for amicable co-existence between the Misseriya and Ngok Dinka. Ms Mwila Kamwela, speaking on behalf of UNISFA and organizers assured the participants of UNISFA’s support throughout the process. Stressing that the conference was an important occasion that will allow both communities of Ngok Dinka and Misseriya to address issues of mutual concern.