There are a few places in the centre of Juba Town where returned, destitute Southerners have put up tents and shacks, often strung from the eaves of other houses and businesses, on the sides of the road. Most of the inhabitants of these street villages are old women and very young children in the daytime, with younger women returning and cooking in the evening, as well as some older disabled men.
So today, passing the crossing with the rubbish dump that houses several well-established families – including one tent that has been there for at least a year – I was surprised to see a bulldozer, no tents, and groups of people sitting, visibly angrily, by the side of the road, holding folded burlap and rolled bed matting.
I’ve written about Central Equatoria State/Juba Town Council’s happy go lucky policies of ‘kasha’ – land clearance – and their blind eye to land clearance done by ministries and other powerful people. I had been wondering when Juba Town would pull a Khartoum on their poor residents; apparently it’s started today.