According to multiple sources, Peter was twice shot in the back by unidentified gunmen after leaving his editorial office on Wednesday evening.
The 27-year-old political reporter was working for the New Nation newspaper and the Corporate Newspaper weekly. Various news agencies have reported that his cell phone and money were not taken from his dead body which indicates a targeted attack.
“Sudan Votes” – now “The Niles” – got to know and appreciate Peter as a young and enthusiastic talent with a special drive for peace, truth and social justice, who went on to pursue a very promising career in journalism.
This tragedy comes only three days after President Salva Kiir told journalists during a media encounter: “the freedom of press does not mean that you work against your country. And if anybody among them does not know this country has killed people, we will demonstrate it one day on them.”
Though a presidential spokesman said the words were taken out of context, they were widely received as an unmasked threat.
Already in December 2012, columnist Isaiah Abraham was shot dead by unknown killers in Juba after having received death threats for his political commentaries. In January 2015, five journalists working for state-run media were murdered by unidentified gunmen in Western Bahr el-Ghazal State. Another journalist was killed in May in Jonglei State, reportedly in cross-fire during a gun battle between rival groups.
Late Peter had joined our journalism training programme in what were then northern and southern Sudan right at its beginning in 2009. At the time, he was working for the daily “The Citizen” in Juba, which has been shut down in August by the government.
The team of “Sudan Votes” – now “The Niles” – got to know and appreciate Peter as a young and enthusiastic talent with a special drive for peace, truth and social justice, who went on to pursue a very promising career in journalism. Strikingly, the headline of one of his last articles read: “Army, Police to take up 60 percent of this year’s budget”.
MiCT extends sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. We shall always honour his memory.