Twic East County, Jonglei
2016 population projection: 114,177
Major population centers: Kongor and Mabior
Major ethnic group: Twic Dinka
Some IDP presence within the county. In the early months of 2014, many Dinka fled south into Twic East in attempts to reach Bor or cross the Nile River to Lakes State. In March 2014, OCHA reported 31,600 IDPs were living in Mabior. While the numbers of displaced persons in Twic East County specifically are unclear, more than 513,000 persons are displaced statewide in Jonglei.
*National Bureau of Statistics, Population projections for South Sudan by County
Economy & livelihoods
Part of the “Nile and Sobat Rivers” livelihood zone (ACTED Sep 2013), 75 percent of households in Twic East County are farmers (FA 2016). The main crops grown are sorghum, maize, groundnut and cowpeas. Livelihoods are supplemented by fishing, gathering, and livestock rearing. The River Nile flows along the county’s western border and is a major transport and natural asset. Livestock normally move towards the River Nile from February to April and return to homesteads from May to June. Under normal conditions floods are a main hazard as they can limit fishing activities and reduce crop, livestock, and wild foods production (particularly water lilies) (FEWS NET 2013). Additionally, cattle raids, livestock diseases, crop pests and drought are the major factors affecting livelihoods.
Livelihoods in Twic East were severely imperiled in 2013. Flash floods in November 2013 and the violence in December 2013 both led to massive population displacements in the county (Action Against Hunger 2014). The FAO reported livestock disease outbreaks in Twic East in 2014 and abnormal livestock migrations continued to and through the county in 2015.
IPC projection for Jan-Mar 2016
The IPC projects “crisis” levels of food insecurity for Twic East for January through March 2016, specifying that the county would likely be one phase more insecure without humanitarian assistance. The IPC projected the same level of food insecurity for the county for most of 2015. In 2014, it explained the projection with reference to the small humanitarian assistance in the country, limited livelihoods, and proximity to conflict areas.
Dominant Control during conflict: SPLA/M
Twic East is the home of late SPLA/M leader John Garang. One of the three Bor Dinka counties in Jonglei State, Twic East was under the control of the government by mid 2014. However, relations between Twic East County and Lou Nuers in neighboring Duk County have been relatively non conflictual. The white army largely bypassed Twic East in its drive towards Bor in December 2013 and Greater Bor Dinka mobilization behind the SPLA is limited, especially in comparison to Dinka communities in Upper Nile State. This is in part due to a historic political alliance and non aggression policy between the Lou Nou and Twic East communities, which survived a number of provocations in 2014 (Crisis 2014). Additionally, many in Twic East saw the conflict as “brought by those of Bahr el Ghazal” and did not want to fight a war to preserve Kiir’s presidency (Crisis 2014). Overall, Twic East has not suffered the scale of attacks and destruction of neighboring counties.
Relations with Murle communities to the east are more strained. Following the outbreak of war, Murle reportedly raided into Twic East in February and March 2014. More recently, Twic East County has suffered multiple raids since January 2016. A reported 23 people have been killed and 10 children abducted. Plans to hold a peace conference between communities in Jonglei and the new Boma State were reportedly under way as of June 2016 although no further update is available.
Geography & logistics
Ajuong, Kongor, Lith, Nyuak, Pakeer
The White Nile and several tributary rivers flow along Twic East’s western border. The area immediately around the Nile is characterized by swampy vegetation of papyrus, reeds, Napier grass and bush scrub. Area further east is characterized by low, flood plains and bush.
A major road runs through Twic East, connect Bor and Malakal. A secondary road runs parallel to this road, from Bor to Kongor and Mabior before connecting with the main road. The River Nile flows along Twic East’s western border and is an important source of riverine transport.
All season fixed-wing airstrips
Information last updated: 26/08/16
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