Archive for: August 2012

Let’s protect everything that’s ours, like our land

We’ve heard it so many times that we are starting from scratch and everything is new to us. Those statements are even crystal clear to both the mutes and deaf alike, but what we have to be extra careful about is the influx of foreign companies and foreign nationals that are buying up big chunks of lands and taking away our jobs at a colossal rate…

August 22, 2012

South Sudanese WAKE UP and SPEAK OUT!

BY: Amanda Leitwa, SOUTH SUDAN

AUG. 23/2012, SSN; I am Sick of the South Sudanese mentality that currently condones the diabolical state of affairs in South Sudan. Statements such as ‘we are starting from scratch’ channel this dangerous and complicit idea through the South Sudanese psyche. What the South Sudanese spokespeople of this cryptic ‘We are starting from scratch’ message do not understand is the underlying damage this statement alone has caused to my generation, namely the under thirties.

It is breeding an acceptance of corruption, disorganization and materialism. It doesn’t take much to notice this developing trend among the young South Sudanese. Ask any under thirty who has a parent in the South Sudanese governmental system and you will discover their excessive support for the system or at best silence on the matter of governance in South Sudan.

I remember having a conversation with a South Sudanese man in his early-twenties about South Sudan. I expressed to him my extreme disappointment with the pathetic state of the South Sudanese economy, especially because South Sudan‘s economic potential is far from being exhausted. He replied me by saying that he thought the Government of South Sudan/SPLA (GOSS) was doing very well, he urged me to consider the fact that they are ‘starting from scratch’.

I have two main issues with this opinion expressed by too many South Sudanese, young and old. My first problem is, what then is to be said of the 1970s South Sudanese administration under Nimeiri’s May 25th revolution regime (Nimeiri regime), set up in accordance with the Addis Ababa agreement?

The second problem I have with the starting from scratch mentality is that, with the several years that South Sudanese have spent in the Diaspora and as a result the plethora of undergraduate and post-graduate degree holders we now have, why do we pretend to lack the brain power to generate adequate government?

Firstly, let us examine the extent of the administrative autonomy held by the Southern Regional Executive council under the Nimeiri regime. The Addis Ababa agreement stipulated in  Chapter four article eleven (Chp 4, art 11) that the High executive council for the then Southern region of Sudan was to have legislative capacity over a number of issues, for example “Promotion and utilization of Regional financial resources for the development and administration of the Southern Region.” This effectively meant that South Sudan could explore, develop and administer policies and schemes that would generate regional revenue for regional development.

What many of my fellow under thirties need to understand is that if our leaders in the seventies were as feckless as our current leaders, the resource that contributes to 98% of South Sudan’s current GDP namely oil, may never have been discovered.

Oil exploration had been taking place in what was then Northern Sudan since 1959 to no avail. The Nimeiri regime continued oil exploration in Northern Sudan with no intention or obligation to extend the oil exploration to what was then Southern Sudan.

In the late seventies the leader of the High executive council for Southern Sudan at the time approached and facilitated the exploration of oil by Chevron and as a result oil was discovered in Western Upper Nile (see:http://www.sudanupdate.org/REPORTS/Oil/08cn.html).

This is evidence not only of initiative but also an expression of interest in the development of the infrastructure of South Sudan. If this was the sort of activity South Sudanese leaders were taking part of in the seventies, surely South Sudan was not starting from scratch under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005.

In fact what is clear from the example given above is that, the sort of initiative and interest expressed by South Sudanese leaders in the past clearly lack in GOSS today. If that were not so why does South Sudan’s economy lack diversity?

After the six year interim period I cannot understand why South Sudan’s agricultural potential was not actualized.

If GOSS had taken its responsibility to the people of South Sudan seriously by appointing competent officials at the beginning of the interim period to manage the oil, GOSS would have been prepared for the Oil stoppage stunt they pulled at the beginning of this year.

They would have had hard evidence of the alleged unlawful diversion of oil carried out by the Sudanese government which would have strengthened their bargaining power in the recent talks held in Addis Ababa Ethiopia. Therefore GOSS would have averted the severity of inflation currently in South Sudan as a result of the now diminished GDP.

However, instead of planning and thinking ahead, our leaders were busy stealing the oil revenue to feed their newly cultivated expensive tastes, wining and dining their international friends.

In all of this governmental debauchery what hurts any sane human being is the deprivation our brothers and sisters living in South Sudan are facing, with the cost of living in Juba ridiculously high and the quality of life shockingly poor.

Are our leaders thinking of anyone else but themselves? And what of we in the Diaspora watered, fed and educated?  In fact, is any South Sudanese person thinking of anyone else but themselves?

This leads me to my second issue with the statement ‘We are starting from scratch’. A recent graduate myself, with many South Sudanese graduates before me and the several educated who belong to my parent’s generation, is it plausible for anyone to believe that South Sudan lacks the capacity to govern itself effectively?

In fact it seems to be a strategic ploy by our incompetent leaders that the cream of South Sudan does not rise to the top, because if they did our government would look lean and nothing like it does today. The restriction of brain power in South Sudan is perhaps the one thing GOSS has strategically carried out effectively.

I find it sad that GOSS is successful at tasks that are counterproductive to the development of South Sudan.

I am honestly sickened to my core at the apathy my peers and in fact many of my parents’ peers have toward changing the state of affairs in South Sudan, we have developed a culture rife with immorality that is killing our people in their droves.

If we, all South Sudanese do not begin to speak out and effect change in South Sudan we may very soon find that we have no country at all.

Amanda Letiwa; Augustboudica@gmail.com

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author(s) and do not represent those of the website.

David (Boswell) versus Dr. Goliath (Benjamin): A valuable Lesson

By Fanwell L. Edward, GHANA

AUG. 23/2012, SSN; I have believed all along that it was only a matter of time before the Read more →

Letter – People of integrity at Election Commission

People of integrity at Election Commission Our MPs did the right thing, rejecting Salva Kiir’s decreed individuals to constitute the Electoral Commission was correct. We do not need representation here not even civil society, let lone political parties. Our aspiration for democratic South Sudan will never be realised unless we have men and women of integrity at the EC, especially those who will respect the choice of the people. The post election violence of 2008 in Kenya was the making of the EC led by Samuel Kivuitu. The then head of EC in WES should have been the head, I forgot his name, he was the hero of 2010 elections, despite all odds he declared Col. Bakasoro the winner. He was the only independent gubernatorial candidate who won. Anyaar Matiop, RSS

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A Bleak Future for Pres. Kiir’s ‘Banana Republic’ of South Sudan

A Bleak Future for Kiir’s ‘Banana Republic’ of South Sudan

QUOTE: “If the money is eaten by a few, all the rest will go hungry, and a hungry citizen is an angry citizen. This is as true in the Counties and States as it is in Juba. ..in order to fight this endemic disease in the courts we must have the laws to do so. Until these laws exist, our hands are tied in fighting corruptees, while they betray our commitment to serve and provide services to our long-suffering people.” Pres. Kiir at Governors Forum, Juba, OCT.,02/2008

JULY 3/2012, SSN; Our nation’s First Independence Anniversary arrives sadly with President Kiir’s perilously steering the country down the path which many typically failed states in Africa have gone before.

And like many of these African countries that are still wallowing in the abyss of bad governance and abject poverty, South Sudan has outstandingly set the worst record as a top corrupt country in the shortest time ever.

However, unlike many of these countries which embarked on independence with little or nothing, South Sudan, regardless of what Kiir’s apologists might erroneously assert, didn’t start from “scratch,” its treasury was awash with blissful abundance of billions of real American dollars.

Furthermore, unlike Congo which achieved Independence in 1960 with only on engineer, South Sudan had already qualified pool of technocrats, professors, civil servants, UN experts, etc.. which Kiir injudiciously sidelined in favor of illiterate soldiers and unqualified fellow tribesmen and women.

Acceptably, the Kiir SPLM/A regime started on a wrong footing, which thus accelerated its descent into the situation of a ‘banana republic’ that became totally dependent on a single resource (oil) and governed by corrupt thugs.

Looking back to the one year of total independence, the majority of the citizens of the newest nation see no exhilaration to celebrate a hollow ceremony.

Painfully, they’ve become less assured of the prosperity that they had rightly hoped would come with independence for which they made tremendous sacrifice.

Kiir’s legacy as leader of the new nation will be remembered for the calamity he has effectuated that includes massive corruption blatantly perpetuated by top SPLM/A leaders.

Tragically, after eight years in power, “with his hands still tied,” Kiir has abysmally failed to persecute not a single suspect despite personally being cognizant of more than 75 ‘thieves.’

This blame is equally shared by a utterly compromised parliament which can’t pass the needed legislation that would expedite the arrest and prosecution of the 4-billion-dollar thieves.

Typical of failed banana republics, our attenuated parliamentarians pay more allegiance to president Kiir personally than to the nation

More inimical, however, is Kiir’s absolute failure to achieve pacification and resolution of the ceaseless inter- and intra-tribal slaughter, often of genocidal proportions like the ever recurrent Nuer and Dinka against Murle or vice versa.

Thus, since SPLM/A assumed power in 2005, our nation has been bleeding unforgivably despite the nation having a massively overblown army (SPLA) and other security organs, all consuming nearly half the national budget.

By persistently avoiding constituting the often-called-for Truth and Reconciliation Commission which in essence would have led to the resolution of these tribal aggressions, president Kiir and his SPLM/A party will be held responsible for the ongoing tribal killings.

This disharmonious aggressiveness has unfortunately even trickled down to students who’re as easily agitated to fight mini-wars against other tribes, as disgracefully exhibited at the national Juba University, a foreboding development for so-called future leaders.

More puzzling for the young nation is that nearly seven years after signing the peace accord (CPA), multiple anti-SPLM/A rebels still operate in those states of Jonglei and Unity, and instead of resolving holistically the problems causing these rebellions, we see the Kiir regime naively reintegrating piecemeal these rebel ranks into the SPLA.

The future is even more bleak and uncertain in regards to the projected rehabilitation of the oil industry as there are inexplicable complications: will South Sudan build 1, 2 or 3 pipelines and will the oil be wholly or partially exported through Kenya, Ethiopia or Djibouti?

Another related issue aggravating the economic woes facing the peoples is the total domination of the economy by foreigners emanating mainly from lawless and failed states of Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia along with unscrupulous traders from Lebanon and East Africa, all colluding with corrupt officials to under develop South Sudan.

Finally, if our nation is to progress in peace, all outstanding land grabbing or territorial expansionist polices by other belligerent tribes against other so-called non-dominant tribes must cease immediately otherwise we shall never achieve national cohesion.

In light of the inevitable economic mess brought about by a messy ‘kirronomics,’ one wonders how much the common man and woman will bear in the second year of independence.

Yes, we’re now a free country, but in our long struggle that cost more than 4 million lives in totality, South Sudanese had hopefully anticipated that the freedom gained would translate not into more suffering in perpetuity but into tangible dividends.

August 13, 2012

Why Downsizing Of The Government Is Imperative Now

Beny Gideon Mabor, SOUTH SUDAN

AUG. 02/2012, SSN; There are two main reasons why it is imperative to support the statement of the President Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit to reduce the national government now to a lean and effective government. First, it starts with our Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan Article 1 (4) that describes our system of governance as a decentralized democratic system, meaning that it is purely local government tier system and not otherwise. Read more →

South Sudanese: Things are looking up

BY: Isaiah Abraham, JUBA

AUG. 10/2012, SSN; I have slowly developed fears that our beloved country will ‘die’ if we don’t stop the inferiority, clannish and parochial politics among our society. We have talents, highly educated personalities and strong people, but we lack achievers, and self-motivated leaders. His Excellency the Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny shoes is what am driving you at. You may agree or not, but the man is the right man in our situation. Garang then was one, may his soul rest in eternal peace! Read more →

Democratize South Sudan: Tear Down the SPLM, please!

 

 

BY: Ayuen Panchol, JUBA

AUG. 11/2012, SSN; For democracy, the real democracy—d-e-m-o-c-r-a-c-y—not just the written, sung or spoken democracy that frequently flies out of our politicians’ mouths, to be realized, enjoyed, seen, smelled, tasted, felt, drunk or even eaten by all the people of the Republic of South Sudan, including the mute, deaf, amputees, blind and the one-eyed, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement’s top leaders must be incited against each other. Read more →