Archive for: April 2014

Pres. Kiir: Please Avoid the Impending Judicial Miscarriage

BY: GABRIEL PAGER AJANG, Nebraska, USA, APR/15/2014, SSN;

Systematic social-economic and political moral philosophy of humanity is deeply rooted in the concepts of justice. The judicial concept of justice is only construed in a logical manner. It is in this context that the people of South Sudan with their president can view the Supreme Court as an important component of delivering peace, justice and reconciliations to corners of South Sudan.

Known generals in the SPLA, and rebels led by Dr. Riek Machar have committed crimes against humanity, some form of ethnic cleansing in Baliet for example, and massacre in Juba, Bor Town, Bentiu, and Malakal.

Crimes at such magnitude can only be remedied with proper deliverance of justice. It is only then, can the government repair and restore harmonious relationship among warring parties and tribes.

The trial of the four political detainees is a small part of sequential political settlement of the conflict and deliverance of justice.

Therefore, it is vitally important for our president to avoid looming judicial miscarriage.

It is inherently unjust to falsely prosecute innocent people, while criminals are continuing with their rampages in the key states of South Sudan.

Since the tragic incident of December 15th, 2013, the Western and some of IGAD leaders have been steadfast and persistent in their calls for the release of the four political prisoners.

Concerned South Sudanese citizens have added their voices in these calls.

Before investigations began into the attempted coup allegations, senior officials in the government of South Sudan have reiterated and affirmed that Dr. Majak D’ Agoot, Oyai Deng Ajak, Pagan Amum Okiech, and Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth are criminals and will be charged for treason.

These officials have put themselves in awkward and odd positions by simply declaring political detainees as criminals before investigation and trial.

We, citizens, have been told that all the political detainees are guilty till proven innocent.

This is either lack of legal knowledge or they are trying to appease presidential advisors (Telar Ring or interior minister, Aleu Ayieny) or serious judicial miscarriage is occurring.

These political detainees have been done a great harm and irreparable injustice.

Their careers have been harmed, their families have been harmed, their reputations have been badly harmed and South Sudan image has been badly damaged, and the worst of all thousands of South Sudanese people have perished in this senseless war.

As the investigation continues into the alleged coup allegations, the government officials continue to violate judicial orders or legal protocol of criminals’ prosecution.

These officials have forgotten that detainees are “suspects” till proven guilty in court of law.

Besides, these political detainees were collected from their houses as suspects, and their guards did not participate in the fighting that took place in Juba.

Evidently, the government took wrong judicial order of proper investigating crimes and embarked on misinforming citizens and world that political detainees masterminded the coup.

It was televised in South Sudan and Eastern African countries that the “flag” that had indigenous European cow was solely evidence that links political detainees with coup d’état in Juba.

This flag that had European cow made it clearer than ever before that the arrest of the 11 political detainees was caused by the political disagreement among members of the SPLM and not a military coup.

Subsequently, the minister for justice completed the investigation of the detainees on January 28th, 2014 and submitted the report to “the president for consideration” (Sudan tribune, 2014).

The fact that the investigation was completed and submitted to president for consideration instead of Special Court breaches judicial impartiality and violated South Sudan’s constitution.

In addition to the Minster for information who informed public that “the people we have in jail were not political detainees or suspects, they are criminals.”

And oddly enough, President Press Secretary, Ateny Wek took a tour in East African primarily to convince leaders of IGAD that the detainees masterminded the coup d’état.

These episodes are bizarre example of South Sudan foreign policy that earns the government empty support.

Yet, the war that broke out on December 15th, 2013 sapped life of out of South Sudanese, and brought the country nearly to its knees.

Today, there are no compelling evidences that indicate a coup was plotted. However, there are many hypotheses that transpired into December 15th tragedy.

Some people have claimed that fighting in Juba might have been triggered by fear or poor judgment.

Some people said that fighting might have been started by disagreements among guards of president Kiir, Paulino Matip, and Dr. Riek Machar.

There are many hypotheses that tend to narrate the beginning of the fighting in Juba. However, professionals will assess and analyze to find the truth in coming years.

We know two crime scenes; Giada and Bilpham. And until today, the military generals that head TIGER DIVISION have not been investigated.

Who fired the first bullet and why? The crust of this investigation was missed at the initial.

Majority citizens and world leaders would like to be informed about investigation conducted at the crime scenes, separate from the political detainees’ investigation.

It is even more odd or not normal for fighters to fight for four days in the capitol city without ranking officers (or an individual with military ranks) giving them directions.

The government’s own investigation fails to identify individuals with ranks leading rebel fighters.

The Deputy Chief of South Sudan’s military intelligence, Mac Paul testified in a Special Court, and said that there is nothing that links political detainees with coup d’état that almost overthrew democratic elected government of South Sudan.

Telling the truth is not easy but he told the truth. He is a military general who had great deal of moral ethic and integrity.

Mac Paul has preserved our endearing values, norms and tradition as South Sudanese community. Besides, he came from a community were lying is impermissible.

Political and legal ramification of mysterious Juba’s tragedy continue to haunt South Sudanese in South Sudan and around the globe.

The South Sudan constitution grants members of Legislative Assembly abilities to investigate ministers into crimes linked to executive branch or at least exercising their legislative oversight over the cabinet.

However, the legislature aborts its legislative powers and allies itself with executive for reasons not known to public.

Furthermore, the prosecutor refuses to scrutinize generals leading security and presidential guards, who else will know what caused fighting or violence in the presidential guards?

It’s vitally important that the government managed to arrest soldiers who killed innocent people in Juba but it remains a mystery not knowing who initiated fighting in the military headquarters in Juba.

The prosecutor that carried interrogations into alleged attempted coup in Juba on December 15th, 2013, came up with the following charges against the detainees;
1. Incitement of the masses
2. Causing disaffection among police or defense forces
3. Defaming the government of South Sudan
4. Undermining the authority of or insulting the president
5. Audio tape of conversations between Oyai Deng Ajak and Taban Deng Gai.

The above points are normal part of democracy. Politicians disagreed over the way forward.

The violence seems to stem from political fear or political disagreement, and exacerbated by the last cabinet reshuffles.

The long brewing political volcano erupted instantaneously, raging in three key states because there were conditions and situations that exacerbated conflict.

These incidences affirmed that our country is fragile. We just emerged from wreckage of wars fought for six decades.

The environment and climate of South Sudan are ethnically tense and political charged. Opportunists like Dr. Riek Machar took advantage of such mild situations and killed thousands innocent people.

The International community and government must pursue leaders that have committed crimes in Juba and Great Upper Nile and bring them to justice.

Like all the victims and survivors of the Bor Massacre of 1991, and recent mayhem of 2013-2014 in the Greater Upper Nile region, the raw and bitter memories war have come back in full swing by the Mayhem in Juba, Bor Town, Malaka, and Bentiu.

I am also mindful that no amount of justice will ever ease our pains of 1991 Bor Massacre when our people were mercilessly murdered; the year they were robbed of their wealth passed on from generations to generations and everything they had clung to since time immemorial was turned upside down.

The magnitude of loss could not be compared to what happened in 1991 when thousands of defenseless women, children, disabled and elderly from Bor were maimed and left to wallow in destitution.

The land that once breathed life and rich heritage became a playground where wild animals and birds like vultures could take turns to feast on dead bodies like never before seen.

Images of dead people at the hospitals in Bor and Malakal indicate the horror and inhumane crimes committed.

The justice must be first ensured for the victims of Bor, Malakal, and Bentiu must get reparations, or be allowed restitution, repayment for pain/suffering/punitive damages and the recognition by the perpetrators or the government of South Sudan, IGAD, and International Community that crimes were committed.

It is the victims at their own personal volition that should be allowed to bring charges against rebels and government leaders.

Therefore, case of political detainees is a small component of addressing the whole conflict and ensuring deliverance of justice in South Sudan.

This special Supreme Court trying political detainees can exclusively use its enumerated judicial powers of justiciability to exclude this case of political prisoners from judicial consideration, because this case lacks concrete and compelling evidences.

There is not a single evidence that indicates political detainees, their guards or soldiers participated in fighting in Juba last December.

Hence, this case of political detainees warrants judicial requirements application. This special court has jurisdiction to trash or throw away such case that is not justifiable, it only embodies political questions.

Judicial impartiality demands that court judges and justices do not hear cases or matters that involve political questions.

Political coup is dismissable in the court but a military coup is permissible for trial.

There are more impending evidences that suggests this case against four political detainees is exacerbated by political disagreement among members of SPLM party than a military coup.

Instead of allowing their big egos, greed, and deep seated hatred to divide them, they should seek to unite their members and hence unite the country.

However, there are members that claimed the ownership of the country’s leadership, and these members want nothing more than justice to obliterating political detainees’ career or see them hang.

Any case that involves political motivation or political disagreement is dismissed by the court it does not matter whether it is against members of your own party or opposition.

Treason charges of this case are difficult to construct and link them to political detainees. The fives charges leveled against them are irrelevant; I wonder whether judge and prosecutor understand prosecutable charges for treason.

If there is nothing that links coup with political detainees, there is no case.

The prosecutor that constructs coup evidences lack sufficient hard evidences of coup d’état or compelling evidences that implicated political detainees in allege coup. Coup is heavy in evidence. Government cannot indict detainees with arguments premised on empty rhetoric.

Such case warrants judicial restraint or dismissal in order to preserve judicial independence. This act could mount to judicial miscarriage and injustice to South Sudan’s justice system if the judge and prosecutor insist to satisfy government’s position on the alleged coup d’état allegations.

This case could even hinders the upcoming sequential political settlement of conflict. It is significance for this court to do the right thing now in order to secure peacemaking in coming few months.

The fundamental problems of South Sudan are leaders. Citizens must be made aware of their problems. South Sudanese citizens know your advisors that work day and night to manufacture problems that claim thousand lives.

It is time Mr. President to get rid of people who have been giving wrong advices that divide your government.

In conclusion, the people of South Sudan have endured nerve wrecking hardship in wars, we have wept, mourned and rose up together hoping that better days are head.

I urge the people of South Sudan to compromise, forgive, and seek for clear and HONEST reconciliations and JUSTICE.

We must forgive one another because our tribes never abhor each other; it is political leaders that caused conflict for their political gains, AND they must be brought to justice.

Good people of South Sudan, Kiir-Riek led government had mismanaged our resources and we remained silent, senior officials had built their houses and mansions, and we remained silent.

They have bought their cars, and built hotels, and we remain silence. Now, they have caused conflict, and they are killing people, and we remained silent.

The whole epic and chronicle of Kiir and Riek must stop. We must not kill people and destroy our resources. The future of South Sudan lies on its resources. Rebels had destroyed oil refinery worth billions U.S dollars outside Bentiu.

There are no reasons that justify such destruction, Kiir and Riek will soon die and the country will remain for next generation.

Let all stop violence in all forms and call for peace; it is our utmost responsibility to pave ways for peace and conflict management, and initiate peace-building programs/projects.

Let us all hold leaders that were implicated in this war crime accountable and free the innocent, for the simple fact freeing political detainees is an important part of peace, healing and reconciliations.

The author teaches political Science and History at Career College, former Nebraska legislative assistance and passionate advocates of responsive government that observes rules of laws, and guarantees citizens protection; as an important principle of democratic government. Besides, he is specialized in Public administrations and policy.
He can be reached at ajangassociates@gmail.com.

How the Nuer civilians were killed in Juba: Analysis

By: John Bith Aliap, Australia, APR/15/2014, SSN;

What happened in Juba on the 15th of Dec. 2013 where hundreds of people were killed, wounded, displaced and a countless number of properties damaged or looted shouldn’t be celebrated. It should rather be condemned.

But if we’re to read the situation in context, the coup plotters, “Riek Machar and his loyalists”, should squarely be blamed for having tied bricks on Nuer’s civilians feet and thrown them into the sea for their own short-cut leadership hunt.

For those who blame the army, how dare you fault the army for killing the armed civilians?

The civilians who are claimed to have been killed based on their ethnic identity were indisputably armed and they had a plan to overthrow the government.

The army had no choice. It was clearly in an “us-or-them” situation. But don’t forget. If the soldiers didn’t kill them [the mutineers], they could have continued to do everything in their power to overthrow the government and perhaps kill the president.

I’m supposed to abhor all killings – but what do you do when someone is trying to kill you? The mutineers were trying to kill the soldiers and bring down the government. They did in fact kill a sizable number of soldiers.

Think about that as a nationalist and you’ll find the correct answer.

The events which caused the current crisis paint a grim picture in many people’s minds regarding the fate of the Rep. of South Sudan as a nation, but for some, it’s an opportunity to invent liars and ignite vicious tribal hostility in the country.

However, regardless of what occurred in Juba and in other parts of the country, the search for a clear-cut explanation as to what exactly took place on that catastrophic night of 15th Dec. 2013 seems to be mind-blowing task for everyone wanting to unearth the truth.

It’s in fact an elephant in the room. Interestingly, what makes our quest to find out the truth so difficult and frustrating is that – many writers in South Sudan have readily tapped into tribalism – and the key protagonists of the crisis also make use of a distinctly anti-tribalist rhetoric and warnings of ethnic conflict in order to justify their political agendas as well as the use of force.

If you’re an enthusiast of South Sudanese’ politics, reports of targeted killings and perpetrators selecting victims based on their association with specific ethnic group are currently norms of the day.

Recent writings, especially after things got out of hand in Juba have been widely informed by the framework of ethnic belonging.

For you to understand what I’m trying to say, take a keen look at the following articles:

“The Finger Prints on Genocide in South Sudan,” written by Stephen Par Kuol, published on South Sudan on the 1st of January 1st 2014, “A survivor: Visionless Kiir must be charged for the Crime against Humanity,” written by Peter Gai Manyuon, published on South Sudan Nation on the 26th Dec. 2013, “Indict Mr. Salva Kiir Mayardit,” written by Daniel Abushery Daniel and Luk kuoth Dak, published on South Sudan News Agency on the 24th of January 2014, “Kiir Mayardit: The Persona of the Made Mad Man,” written by Stephen Par Kuol, published on the 19th of January 2014 on South Sudan News Agency…. and the list is long.

However, when you look at the above articles, you cannot miss to see that there’s undue emphasis on tribalism and ethnicity as part of the explanation on the ongoing conflict in the country.

In my view, the writers in question have miserably failed to acknowledge in their writings – the dynamics of violence in Jonglei state, where the “White Army” targeted Dinka Bor civilians based on their ethnic identity; and also incidents in Akobo, Malakal and Bentiu where the same crimes were committed.

However, when it comes to the alleged targeted killing of Nuer civilians in Juba, the true picture of what took place on the 15th Dec. 2013 remains murky and it’s a duty of every South Sudanese to unearth the truth.

Although the said journalists/opinion writers have done extensive writings since the mayhem started, they have not honestly and precisely explained what happened during that night when the Nuer dissidents’ soldiers and their affiliates took charge of the military headquarters in Juba on the 15th of Dec. 2013.

The truth of the matter, “Juba attempted coup”, is now being bombarded with a great deal of propaganda, tribally-oriented narratives and invented liars.

When you read the news about the current crisis in South Sudan, “Juba Nuer massacre” hangs on everybody’s lip, but the circumstances in which these civilians were killed have not well been explained.

Let me walk you through what happened in Juba on the … 15, 16, 17 & 18 Dec. 2013 and don’t be disappointed with my narrative.

As it was the case, while the rebelling soldiers were in charge of the military hardware in Giada – the main military barracks in Juba, the next thing they could do was to rally the innocent Nuer civilians residing in different corners of Juba to take part in a planned offensive against the government.

The news hit the Nuer community that Naath are in full control of everything in Giada – and the time to unseat Kiir and install Machar as the president of the Rep. of South Sudan has arrived.

However, with ethnic division on the rise – especially after the removal of Riek Machar from the post of Vice Presidency – the message was well digested in the Nuer community – resulting in many unarmed civilians pouring into the Giada military barracks where their mates were in charge.

But why did unarmed civilians pour into the seized military barrack at night? You may have a different answer, but to me, they were going to arm themselves and get rid of Kiir’s government.

With mutineers in charge of military hardware, Kiir and his mates had to do everything in their capacity to ensure that mutineers are pushed at bay.

In the next morning of 16th Dec. 2013, the SPLA reinforcement arrived and an intense battle took place – resulting to dislodgement of mutineers out of Giada, but the mutineers had in that night broken into the armoury looting arms, ammunition and uniforms.

Are you not yet convinced that the Nuer civilians alleged to have been intentionally targeted on the basis of their ethnicity were armed?

Let me tell you the reality, my dear, these individuals you alleged to be innocent civilians cannot be considered civilians, given that they were using weapons to destabilize security of the country.

If you’re a sensible person, you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to tell what would happen if the trained army such as the SPLA fights with mob of armed civilians mixed with mutineers as it was the case in Giada.

The death toll could be very high on armed civilians’ side. The military showdown in Giada had caused much causality among the Nuer civilians.

Some were caught in cross fire in the nearby residential areas; while some perished in the battle. But things did not stop there.

After things became out of control in their hands, Machar loyalists fled Giada and took whatever they could carry [military equipment] and melted themselves into the Nuer dominated areas namely: Gudele 1, Gudele 2, Manga, Mangatain, New Site, Mia Saba etc.

In your own understanding, would you expect an army which has not been trained in urban warfare like the SPLA to conduct street – to – street battle in urban populated areas and yet avoid civilians’ casualties?

The answer is definitely no. It became increasingly difficult for the army after the mutineers mixed themselves with civilians in densely populated areas to distinguish between a civilian/mutineer – hence resulting to yet other high civilians’ deaths.

Through this explanation, I stand tall to strongly and courageously argue that there’s no enough evidence to suggest that the government soldiers were engaged in targeted killing of civilians in Juba based on their ethnicity.

If we’re to be honest in unearthing the truth, the Nuer civilians killed in Juba were aiding fugitive Riek Machar to overthrow the government.

They were an essential part of war machine and constitute a threat to the national army.

In conclusion, there can never be peace in South Sudan until we stop this “us-versus-them”. These satanic thoughts are what caused the entitlement, wars, poverty, greed, hate, hunger, selfishness, immorality, attacks, shootings, beheadings, eye-for-an-eye behavior, and completely clouds right and wrong.

No religion has all the answers — but it is plain to see that until we learn to love each other as South Sudanese (people of one nation), we all lose daily, year after year, generation after generation.

John Bith Aliap can be reached at johnaliap2011@hotmail.com

South Sudan: A Tale of Disfigured Diversity

By: DANIEL JUOL NHOMNGEK, KAMPALA, APR/15/2014;

South Sudan is the country full of many beauties and different cultural groupings. It is the country which is full of beautiful people and plenty of resources. South Sudan beauty lies in its peoples, traditions and cultures; flora and fauna; minerals and other subterranean resources, such as goal and River Nile and such beauty would have been a blessing if properly utilized for the welfare of the citizens of South Sudan. Instead of these resources becoming the source of happiness, they become sources of miseries and disappointments.

In this article I want to the explain the causes of the problems affecting the people of South Sudan and how the story of South Sudan for the last three years of her independence is a sad one.

In the process of discussion, I will be pointing out what would be or is done to save the situation.

One of the things that are constantly blamed as one of the major the root-causes of South Sudan’s problems is tribalism. Tribalism to me comes when people use tribes as a means of accessing opportunities.

This is because resources are limited and because of this, opportunists have found it necessary to exploit the weakness in tribal lines and limited resources that cause discontent in the people, for their own advantage.

Those who blame tribes which are summed up in tribalism are wrong. Tribes are made up of the people of South Sudan and people are what’s making South Sudan South Sudan and beautiful.

Tribes represent South Sudanese identity. Instead of blaming tribes the government must be blamed.

The blame still comes back to the government and leadership because if the government was able to provide opportunities to everyone then everyone would have felt to be part of everyone and the issue of tribes would have ended.

However, the lack of flexibility on the side of leadership to make full use of limited resources for the benefit of the people is the cause of the division in South Sudan.

Different cultural groups within the country find themselves at the periphery of power and resources.

As a result, different tribes are led to think and believe that the only way to end their segregation is to get power. This is because the closer each tribe to power the closer they are to wealth.

In my understanding and experiences as having been closer to the leadership, tribes or what is wrongly called tribalism is not the cause of South Sudanese problems.

The source of South Sudanese problems has its origin in the leadership itself.

All leaders in South Sudan whether in the bushes of South Sudan fighting against the government or within the government itself are the problem of South Sudan.

Leadership has blocked the opportunities of the people because since independence, leadership has failed to acknowledge the realities of South Sudan before and after the independence.

The realities of South Sudan are that: there are many tribes, with many people of different categories, with different levels of education of which a largest number of the people has never got formal education and high levels of poverty.

The existence of the above-mentioned features would have informed the government on the approach it should have taken.

The approach of the system of the governance in South Sudan should have been through the approach based on cultural diversity the government being sensitive to the people’s needs.

Currently, the government is blinded, deaf and numbed to the people’s needs. For example, the government allows the people from different states to cry for help against some of material oriented governors but instead of helping them the central government punish the citizens by imposing on them someone worse than a robot; someone who survives on the blood of citizens.

Some of the governors the central government imposes on some states run those states like personal property.

This is due to the failure by the government to realize that South Sudan is not still under rebels but it is an independent country that needs some good administrators if it were to realize progress.

South Sudan is a country with diversity, which demands diverse approaches from the leadership.

The existence of tribes of South Sudan is not accidental as we know it. The independence of South Sudan owed its origin to the concerted efforts made by different tribes in the struggle.

As we loved tribes to fight the war for independence of South Sudan we should love everyone to participate in the government and this is the meaning of approach in diversity. The diversity would have been utilized for the benefit of the people.

The problems facing South Sudanese have never been diversity or tribes whether before independence or after independence but have been or are in leadership itself. This is because diversity has been one of the advantages in fighting Khartoum government since 1983.

Our government should have broken from Old Sudan policy of divide and rule. Before independence, tribes were used by Khartoum as a means of survival mechanism where the divide and rule method was the order of the day.

Although the government has not intended divide and rule policy in running the country, it appears that such policy is reflected in practice as tribes become the ladder of climbing the leadership post.

This as a result, different politicians struggle to divide people along tribal lines and at the same time work to divide the country as one tribe is pushed against another.

For example, when the crisis broke out in Juba in 2013, many people from Nuer or Dinka group wrote to the people of Equatoria questioning them of the tribe that they are supporting; forgetting that the people of Equatoria could act independently to lead all people of South Sudan if Dinka or Nuer has failed to lead South Sudan.

The behaviour of most Dinka or Nuer people who wrote some articles clearly indicated that most of South Sudanese have not broken with the policy of divide and rule.

There was high hopes that with independence of South Sudan, the government would have come up with national agenda that could have utilized tribes for the development of South Sudan.

The hope was that with the independence of South Sudan, the government would take concrete measures to transform different societies so that they felt as part of South Sudan and first class citizens as used to the slogan during the war.

During the SPLM/A’s war, one of the uniting factors for all South Sudanese against the North was the desire to achieve independence so that every South Sudanese would become first class citizen within their country- South Sudan.

Nevertheless during the Interim Period and even after the independence, those entrusted with the mandate to manage tribes and diversity of South Sudan for the welfare of South Sudanese failed to meet this expectation.

The leaders of South Sudan failed to meet the expectation of all South Sudanese to create inclusive state where everyone feels part of everyone in one nation.

The concept of the national unity is one of the most important concepts that every state which needs to realize progress must undertake through robust approach.

The problem of South Sudan has been rooted in the fact that leaders of South Sudan often neglect some vital things for the survival of any nation.

The slogan of One Nation One People which is being preached today would have been the first thing immediately after the signing of the Peace Agreement (the CPA) with the North.

However, our leaders took it to be a simple matter and concentrated on minor things until it is almost too late.

I have said that it is almost too late because it has given some politicians and opportunists an opportunity to exploit such weaknesses to their advantages and almost destroying the whole country in December 2013.

What would have been done first was not to buy expensive cars such as hammers and bullet proof but building human capacity with that huge amount of money that was misappropriated.

If I can ask, why do our leaders buy cars with bullet proof? What scares them if they just use normal cars?

In relation to the above we cannot blame tribes but we can blame our leaders for failing to see the glaring truth that people of South Sudan need the improvement in their lives after struggling for several years against the North.

The whole goes back to my contention that the problems of South Sudan have nothing to do with tribes but with the leadership. The leadership has failed to come up with priorities that would have saved the nation.

For instance, we are today sailing the whole world singing the slogan “One People One Nation.” After what? Where was this vital theme for the national building?

I think “One People One Nation” slogan has come as a realization by our leaders of the fact that a country is a country only when all the people are united.

Article 9 of the Transitional Constitution of South Sudan, 2011 recognizes the existence of tribes and the diversity of South Sudan.

This is why it provides that the Bill of Rights is a covenant among the people of South Sudan and between them and their government at every level and a commitment to respect and promote human rights and fundamental freedoms enshrined in this Constitution; it is the cornerstone of social justice, equality and democracy.

In fact, it appears that our Late Leader, Dr Garang, had Article 9 in mind when he used to stress the importance of improving welfare of South Sudanese and transforming them to into strong nation.

This was revealed in one of his causal speeches in the bush when he pointed out strongly by warning the SPLM officers that they had to treat civilians with respect otherwise because if they failed to respect them, the civilians would drive them out into the sea and if there was no sea, they would find one for them.

Garang, in other words, was meaning that the progress of the nation depends on how her people are developed.

If the people are well transformed, they would love the country and strong nation would develop but if they are made victims for their own liberation, then they would hate the country and work for its downfall; hence building a weak nation on shaky ground.

Indeed, people of South Sudan are victims of their own liberation struggle.

They had struggled to achieve unthinkable because getting independence without opposition from any country even the mother country where they broke away from, is unthinkable.

Moreover, South Sudanese have killed two birds with one stone. They dislodged Sudan’s cruelty and oppression and also got their freedom.

But the freedom they gained is being challenged today by many problems due to bad governance.

Bad governance is shown through oppression, dictatorship, state cruelty and the use of state security apparatus to silence the discontented voices, which are the order of the day in different parts of the country.

As things stand now, citizens have reached the stage where they cannot criticize the government openly.

This trend is a bad sign for all South Sudanese and it is an indication that we are going back to pre-Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

What is happening in South Sudan in relation to leadership today is the reflection of Old Sudan where motivation of self-entrenchment and perpetuation in power by those who possess state power used to be the trend of politics.

There is no any sign of fostering national cohesion and national building.

Moreover, there appears to be an overwhelming desire to build personal empire by the leaders who are struggling to amass as much wealth as possible.

The implication of such desire is that it results into failure to see value in any other human beings around us because we become capitalists who see nothing valuable in human being but profit maximization.

Offices have become business ventures where leaders struggle to channel resources to private or personal accounts with the aim of accumulating personal wealth.

The desire of getting more wealth is that it has resulted into everyone not only politicians desiring political posts, which they perceive as a source of wealth.

This by implication means that the purpose of political representation becomes thing of the past in the political history of South Sudan. Instead, the politics of corruption and anarchies rule.

The politics of corruption and amassing of wealth has been one of the causes of South Sudanese problems, which is one of the causes of the current conflict in the Country.

As it has been noted by Professor Anyittey from Ghana, power in Africa is in the grip of a never-ending cycle of wanton chaos, horrific carnage, senseless civil wars and collapsing economies.

To him, the struggle for power, its monopolization by one individual or group, and the subsequent refusal to relinquish or share it and those who win power, capture the state and proceed to transform it into their own personal property are the root-causes of conflicts in Africa.

The description by the Learned Professor above fits exactly in what is happening in South Sudan.

In South Sudan, state institutions, such as military no longer defend the country but presidents and some of his wealth oriented officials.

Moreover, funding institutions, the media, the civil service, police and the banking system are taken over and debauched.

Key positions in those institutions are handed over to the president’s tribesmen, cronies and loyal supporters, sycophants, to serve their interest and not those of the nation.

The case in point here is the retention of General Matur Chut in the Office despite the fact that people do not want him.

Matur Chut would not have been the governor of Lakes State if the President of the Republic of South Sudan were not having interest to achieve personal gain in that State.

The people of Lakes State are bleeding every hour but the president seems not to be moved simply because Matur is able to control people through the use of force.

To the president, it does not matter how failed and corrupted is Matur, provided people of Lakes State are cowed into silence and no longer disturb him.

This is perfectly the kind of an ostrich politics, which puts its head into sand, imagining that the danger is gone yet it will eventually kill it.

Therefore, I wanted to stress that if the President does not take seriously the issue of Lakes State, it will eventually kill him.

As I have stated somewhere in this Article that tribes are not the problem of South Sudan but the use of tribe by individuals selfishly is the problem and one of the major causes of South Sudan’s problems.

Tribal affiliations are used by individuals to get what they want.
As a result, meritocracy, rule of law, property rights, transparency, accountability and administrative capacity vanish.

As they vanish, the exclusion of one group by the other eventuates. Those excluded from the spoils of political power become discontented and lose respect for the leadership.

This is because leadership is seen as foreign power working for its own exclusive interest and not that of the people.

Hence, some within the excluded rise up in rebel insurgency. This was seen with Yau Yau, Late George Athor and the current rebellions under Riek Machar.

The discontent of the people is seen with the way conflict erupts in South Sudan because as it has been noted ‘it takes only a small band of determined rag-tag malcontents to plunge the country into mayhem’.

The failure to meet the needs of the people owes its genesis in the way South Sudan Constitutionalism was established in 2011.

The establishment of South Sudan Constitution in 2011 indirectly contributed to the current crisis, which was an indication that South Sudan was bound to collapse under its own weight.

South Sudanese State has been established on unclear system of government. South Sudan was founded on no clear political ideology which would have guided the central government on the process of transformation and the national building.

South Sudan has been operating between ambivalent systems of governance. For instance, the ways different states operate show that they are typical federal system.

This is because states operate like independent countries with the governors having unchecked powers who violate the constitutional principles of the rule of law, human rights and democracy.

Under this system, corruption is the order of the day where governors steal national funds with impunity.

In addition, the President operates between a democrat and dictator.

The Parliament of South Sudan gave him absolute powers thinking that he would utilize them for the benefit and the improvement of the welfare of South Sudanese but those powers are now being used as a means of silencing the political opponents.

For instance, the President, instead of using them to unite the country through political dialogue uses his powers to destroy political opponents.

If I can ask, what was the reason of dismissing the whole cabinet in 2013?

The reason, which appears not to be the main reason to me that was given was a need for establishing a lean government; however, recently the same large government was re-established with the appointment of the additional cabinet ministers.

Does this not give support to the point that I made above that there is no political ideology in South Sudan but the state survives on confused ideology coupled with some form of democracy mixed with dictatorship?

In real sense, there is democracy in theory but in practice there is absolute dictatorship.

However, before I go on with this article, there is a need for clearing certain misconceptions associated with dictatorship.

Dictatorship in actual sense does not mean that the president or the heads of institutions must be dictator or morally corrupt in order to conclude that there is dictatorship.

For someone to be termed a dictator stems from the way he or she responds to the need of the people from intervention when there is leadership crisis at lower level.

For instance, if the head does not control his or her subordinates where citizens are robbed, suppressed, repressed and oppressed with cruelty and impunity then the head is an absolute dictator.

In the case of South Sudan, President Kiir may not be a dictator himself but if he allows governors to steal national resources without accountability and oppress people with impunity, then he himself is an absolute dictator because he is in command where he could easily intervene to remove or discipline the uncouth public officer.

He is liable for every action of his subordinates based on the principle command responsibility.

The point I have just made above is proved by the fact that there is a prevailing militarism and militarization of state institutions and machinery where the president is given absolute power to decide anything without seeking public opinion even what affects the public themselves.

The origin of the problems that subsequently befalls South Sudan since independence is in dictatorial behaviour that some of our leaders copied from North Sudan government officials and the failure of our government to study the past in order to know the root-causes of Sudanese problems in history.

In fact, our government has not taken time to study the past of South Sudanese and to relate it to the present realities in South Sudan.

South Sudanese history has been characterized by divide and rule doctrine exacerbating tribal rivalries.

Divide and rule Doctrine was used purposely by the north as a means of surviving amidst South Sudanese nationalism, which eventually destroyed the unity and territorial integrity of South Sudan.

It was hoped that after the independence, the first thing the indigenous government of South Sudan would have done was to work for social transformation, national unity and national building.

However, as noted by one of the Protestant Bishops, David Zac in one of his criticisms against the Ugandan Government that the coming of independence did not help either.

Bishop Zac, as he observed correctly about Uganda likewise for South Sudan is that not only did the independence introduce a new concept of control state managed resources where the resources are stolen with impunity but also new lines of rivalry and conflict have been created.

This is the fact of South Sudan, for instance, billions of dollars were stolen with impunity in South Sudan.

The failure by the head of South Sudan to demand this money and invest it in the improvement of the people’s welfare is the form of dictatorship we are talking about.

In a country where dictatorship exists there is no accountability.
Dictatorship, violent transition, that existed in Sudan before independence of South Sudan are the processes which South Sudan are likely to face in case of any change.

There is a clear disconnection between the hierarchies in the government; states are doing their own things in disregard of the policies of the national government.

The independence that was received with joy is dwindling as it is being replaced by disappointment.

In summary, the history of South Sudan is a bad tale as many people are suffering under some of the leaders who are not morally sensitive to the needs of the people.

This is due to the failure by the leadership to realize that South Sudan is inhabited by different tribes and they have to change their approach in management of the country.

Sadly, some leaders are out there to build personal wealth and empire at the expense of the people; talk of leaders of Lakes State who build swimming pools and some are building skyscrapers while citizens are dying every day of preventable diseases.

Meanwhile the President who is supposed to ensure that leaders under him are directed on what to do and to follow the government policy, he is not doing enough to support citizens and which will help to fuse tribal tension in the country.

In addition there is a need for the government to provide solutions to the people’s problems because the solutions of pain killer is not a good solution for South Sudan at all.

In short, there is a need for establishing a strong system based on the respect of the rule of law and human rights.

The government must respect individuals’ property. People are always proud of the system that protects their interests.

It is only in doing this that is when the democracy and unity of the people can be promoted in South Sudan.

NB// The Author is a Fourth Year Law Student in Makerere University and he can be reached through the following Contacts:

What could be the Final Upshot of the Untouchable Oligarchic Mafias in the SPLM?

By: Tong Kot Kuocnin, JUBA, APR/15/2014, SSN;

As has succinctly been fueled by the current conflict of interests in the country, the long time oligarchs operating in the shadow of the heavyweight ruling and/or governing party, the SPLM came to a foreseeable frenzy within the foxholes of the SPLM.

The fractious distinguished longtime members of this braved party who assumed having inherited from the founding father of the movement some ingenious charismatic insignia and gained favor for themselves began to behave so inimically under the pretexts that they are everything and nobody can neither tell them to correct their wrongs nor to respect other leaders, not even the chairperson of the SPLM and president of the Republic can tell them to cease from doing such illusive unaccustomed action undauntedly.

This unethical and unproceedural reckless quirky mismanagement of almost all the resources of the state misguided by the assumption of being the leaders of SPLM led to the malfunction of all the state institutions headed by these cadres which are vital in the sustainability of the socio-economic stability of the state.

This malfeasance conducted by these untouchable oligarchic mafias in the party led to the standstill and dysfunctionality of all organs of the party hence relegating those organs scrupulously assigned to a particular class or sphere intended to lessen the scrutinization of the performances of the weak, incapable and corrupt officials who acted in proxies typically in the shoes of their political masters in the Party.

These Mafiosi are untouchable because they are in the ears of the big animals in the party. Bizarrely, these Mafioso or mafias became so much bigoted when they see any other south Sudanese competent, capable, energetic and quite patriotic enough to deliver most direly needed services to the paupers as a threat to them.

They fear that they would be out weighted because SPLM is something entitled to them by birth and therefore whatever they do and say is paramount even if it’s wrong, misleading and not in the interests of the people.

These are treacherous and quite ominous who are disloyal and dangerous to the people of south Sudan.

This has been evidently manifested by the current enraging crisis in the country which ensued simply because they are no longer stakeholders in misdirecting and embezzling of the public funds meant for nothing but development and service delivery to our poor’s who are dying of Malaria and hunger everyday and who sleep with only one meal per a day, or some even don’t secure one meal in a day.

These long-time obnoxious self-centered mafias are the ones now undauntedly and with no remorse and shame, seditiously setting on the little we have gained in our own struggle just to survive on the chaotic shambles.

What could be the final upshot of the then untouchable oligarchic mafias in the SPLM?

Obviously, their final upshot is at stake now in the sight of all south Sudanese people except their families who might be upset for the very reason that their mouths have been pulled out of the cow-teat where milk was flowing.

Otherwise no any prudent man and woman who loves and wants to see south Sudanese lives in peace and harmony, prosper and progress decently wish to put our own lives in danger.

They have thrushed themselves out. Their final end would be determined by the people of south Sudan who have, for bloody eight years, entrusted these selfish politicians to run all the affairs of the country in which that trust that only became a disaster to them.

The people of south Sudan became victims of their trust and confidence they bestowed on these useless, greedy and selfish leaders.

They have debilitated and defaced their good decorum in the sights and hearts of the people of south Sudan.

Their debility and deceitful debauchery as leaders from the ruling and governing party, have severely become a disaster deplored and detested by all the people of good will in south Sudan and around the world.

Acting without ordinary courtesy, these oligarchs, with their rude and vulgar, unconstitutionally and extremely agitated such unbearable conditions at a time when our people should have been allowed a chance to taste the dividends and fruits of peace and development.

The group runs amok of all the mechanisms of solving the interior misunderstandings within the party and they decided to launch uncivilized means of addressing issues at party level.

Gone are the days, not only in South Sudan but even in Africa and other parts of the world at large when power is sought to be taken by use of force contrarily to the established legal and constitutional rules in the country.

These so-called SPLM inner-circles became now outer-circles by their own greedy and indelicate making inconceivable to comprehend of how the hell did this happen and because of the trust bestowed on them by the very people they have led down in the shadow for bloody eight years as ministers and governors both in the regional and national governments.

All the credits and veneration they have earned first as fighters in the bush and in the government as lead ministers have been qualm by sudden feelings of doubts, distrusts and uneasiness both in the sights and hearts of the people of south Sudan.

It would thoroughly be a high time for the party to restructure itself and posit those competent, capable, energetic, committed and patriotic youth not picked in the shadow of any leader in the party as it used to be, to such departments in the party to reshape and win the lost confidence of our masses back to the party.

Should we continue the same mechanisms which were employed and used by those failed and corrupt leaders, I think our party would lose all its little left credit.

It is high time to serve this little credit left scrambling. It is utmost time to restore the lost trust back to its usual place.

Never allow those inimical oligarchs to infest our dearest party and reign higher. Never allow those mafias to head high at the expense of our people.

Never let these Mafiosi consume ravenously for they will deviously crown themselves and detract us back time and again.

Tong Kot is a Member of SPLM and a Practicing Legal Counsel at Deng & Co. Advocates and could be reached at: tong_kkk@ymail.com

Response to Bor community in Diaspora appeal to Equatoria for welfare of IDPs

BY: JACOB K. LUPAI, JUBA, APR/13/2013, SSN;

“Bor Community Association in Alberta, Canada has written to the three governors of the Greater Equatoria, South Sudan, urging them to take care of the welfare of their displaced people currently seeking refuge in the region.”

The above quoted piece by Bor Community Association in the Diaspora was posted on the 9th April 2014 to Gurtong website. The Bor community urged the governors of Equatoria to promote a peaceful co-existence between the local communities and the displaced population from Bor.

It asked the offices of the governors to appeal to the people of Equatoria to be more understanding and to continue to temporarily share resources with the displaced people while the country is finding a lasting solution to the problem.

The appeal from Bor Community Association in the Diaspora to the governors of Equatoria for the welfare of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Bor was interesting.

One would have expected that the appeal should have been instead directed to the Bor IDPs, earnestly urging them to embrace peaceful co-existence with the communities in Equatoria. The Bor IDPs have been violent on the local communities.

Who are IDPs?

This is not meant to be a sarcastic or a cynical question but rather for an understanding. IDPs can be defined as people who are forced out of their homes or ancestral lands within a region or a country either by natural disasters or man-made problems.

Natural disasters include floods that destroy homes and man-made problems include conflicts that may become bitterly fought wars, displacing thousands of people within the state, region or the country.

In the case of South Sudan currently IDPs are a reflection of the on-going conflict in the country. The division of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) into SPLM in Government and the SPLM in Opposition and the subsequent conflict, has created massive displacement of people from their homes and ancestral lands.

This in turn has produced enormous populations of IDPs where some are housed by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) camps. Other IDPs find their way to the adjacent states for security or to the neighboring countries to become refugees.

Bor IDPs in Equatoria

For the people of Bor the safest place to enjoy security is Equatoria. This is not only during the current conflict between the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) into SPLM in Government and the SPLM in Opposition but even during the 21-year old war of liberation.

Equatoria has always been a safe haven for people of Bor. It is not clear whether the Bor IDPs in Equatoria have been complaining of any mistreatment by the host communities.

It is important to note that the people of Equatoria and those of Bor are of two distinct cultures. The people of Equatoria are predominantly sedentary farmers in contrast to those of Bor who are pastoralists.

As farmers the people of Equatoria are mindful of boundaries and won’t encroach into a neighbor’s field.

In contrast the main livelihood of people of Bor is cattle keeping and the movements of cattle are conditioned by the availability of pastures.

As always cattle do not distinguish between pastures and food crops. This is where problems occur between sedentary farmers (Equatorians) and pastoralists (people of Bor).

Quite often pastoralists deliberately let loose their cattle to feed on food crops in the fields.

When the farmers protest the pastoralists have no sympathy but instead threaten violence in protecting their cattle in feeding on food crops.

In Equatoria, Bor IDPs have been the problem. They are always armed, arrogant and insensitive of the feelings and situation of the host communities.

Instead of behaving like guests, the Bor IDPs behave like the masters of the land or landlords. What would one expect? Of course resentment from the host communities who are powerless because the IDPs seem to have the support of some powerful quarters.

IDPs in host communities

Generally IDPs are like uninvited guests of the host communities. However, because of the conditions that have made people IDPs in the first place, the host communities are sometimes sympathetic.

Land is availed to the IDPs and the host communities may be willing to share resources with the IDPs.

People of Equatoria are well known for being peaceful. This may explain why Equatoria is the safe haven for most warring pastoralists in South Sudan especially IDPs from Bor.

The peaceful nature of the people of Equatoria has attracted people from any corner of South Sudan to make a home in Equatoria.

Somebody may say Equatoria is a part of South Sudan and so any South Sudanese has the right to settle in Equatoria. This is true.

However, how can people abandon their ancestral areas undeveloped just to settle in Equatoria? Who will develop those areas for a high standard of living for the people there?

Those who have travelled length and breadth of South Sudan confirm that Equatoria is moving fast in development while other areas hardly see any meaningful development. Those areas are lagging behind.

People of Bor seem to take their status of IDP as an advantage to occupy the lands of Equatoria and then use the barrel of the gun to oppress the people.

The current conflict in the country is not the only one that has pushed the people of Bor to Equatoria as IDPs. During the 21-year war of liberation, Equatoria was the safe haven for all, flooded with IDPs from the other regions.

After the 21-year old war ended did the IDPs from Bor move back to Bor? Never! Instead they consolidated their hold on lands in Equatoria.

The Bor IDPs in Nimule are an example of brutal occupation of Equatoria lands with constant threats of violence on the host communities.

So the appeal from the Bor Community Association in the Diaspora to the governors of Equatoria is adding insult to injury.

The Bor IDPs in Equatoria are well armed, arrogant and intimidating the local communities on daily basis.

The Bor IDPs in Equatoria are the problem but not the peaceful people of Equatoria. This should be noted by anybody who has common sense.

Appeal to Bor IDPs

The Bor Community Association in the Diaspora is well advised to instead appeal to their community leaders in Equatoria to urge their violent IDPs to embrace peaceful co-existence as the people of Equatoria are already peaceful.

The people of Equatoria have neither threatened violence on Bor IDPs nor harm their cattle. It is instead the Bor IDPs that are wanton in behavior and deliberately letting loose their cattle in a sadistic manner to destroy food crops, thereby causing unnecessary food insecurity to the people of Equatoria.

The Bor Community Association is informed that the Bor IDPs will always threaten violence whenever their cattle are stopped from feeding on food crops in Equatoria.

Now to where should the appeal for a peaceful co-existence be directed?

The Bor Community Association in the Diaspora should stop being tribalistic if it is truly nationalistic. Tribalism is already tearing the country apart. How far should we allow this to happen?

Conclusion

The Bor Community Association in the Diaspora appeal to the governors of Equatoria would have been in place if the people of Equatoria were behaving like pastoralists who were always inclined to threats of violence on the peaceful people of Equatoria.

The Bor IDPs in Equatoria were welcomed and respected but have now abused that respect.

As the story of the Arab and the camel goes, the Bor IDPs cast their eyes on Equatoria lands with unrestrained appetite to occupy them permanently with no due consideration for the local communities and their legitimate right of ownership of the land.

The IDPs virtually refused to return to Bor because probably some powerful elements were on their side until the current conflict is adding more IDPs to the existing ones.

Equatoria is a peaceful region and any IDP is expected to reciprocate to integrate.

However, pastoralists IDPs in Equatoria have introduced a culture of brute violence where land grabbing is done by force. IDPs deliberately let loose their cattle to graze on food crops by force. Everything is a macho culture.

In conclusion, the members of Bor Community in the Diaspora who have experienced peaceful co-existence in their respective adopted countries should pioneer the concept of peaceful co-existence among their pastoralist communities.

The sedentary people of Equatoria are ever peaceful and they do not need a lecture on peaceful co-existence from culturally violent people who have no sense of peaceful co-existence.

The problem is of pastoralists own making and they need to solve it. People of Equatoria are peaceful and respectful, and they do not expect less. END

IGAD’s Inadequate Strategy in South Sudan

BY: ELHAG PAUL, RSS, APR/13/2014, SSN;

In a recent article published in various websites titled, “Solutions to South Sudan political problems lies in new blood”, I hinted that IGAD seems to be ignorant of South Sudan’s political problems. More and more this appears to be the case.

IGAD’s approach to solve the problems of South Sudan in the last few days reveals a shocking lack of a clear thought out strategy to address the problems of South Sudan. In fact IGAD does not have any credible strategy and what it is doing is a copy and paste job using the template of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the SPLM and the Sudan government of 2005.

It should be noted here that the context of the CPA was different from the present situation in South Sudan and therefore it is inappropriate to extrapolate. Please see, “Former SPLM detainees excluded from South Sudan peace talks.” http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50573

This surely does not bode well for peace given the fact that the outcome of the comprehensive peace agreement has left a sour taste in the mouths of the various parties in both the Sudan and South Sudan.

In the Sudan, the issues of Blue Nile state, South Kordufan state and Abyei remain largely unresolved with continuing immeasurable loss of lives.

In South Sudan, the people of Panthou, Kafia Kingi and other disputed border areas are left confused with undefined status.

In both countries, the agreement entrenched vested interest at the expense of the people. The National Congress Party in the Sudan became stronger giving president Omar Bashir an extended lease of rule and the Sudan People Liberation Movement in South Sudan monopolised power.

Applying the CPA strategy in the current case of South Sudan suggests the people of South Sudan are yet again being sacrificed to appease the warring factions of the SPLM only.

This means the men of violence are being rewarded and they will obviously once more be the only beneficiaries and not the people of South Sudan.

This can not be right morally and in principle.

What the IGAD leaders do not see is that they are directly encouraging South Sudanese law abiding citizens to take the route of violence to solve the problems of the country as this is the only method that is recognised, incentivised and can yield visible results.

The over 20,000 innocent lives lost in the ethnic cleansing, over 80,000 potential government targets in protection camps of UN within the country, over 250,000 South Sudanese who crossed the borders as refugees and the nearly a million internally displaced citizens created by president Kiir and the SPLM’s direct mismanagement of the country seem to mean nothing at all to IGAD.

To them, it is the SPLM, the very culprit that matters and not its victims. How sad and heart breaking to see an African body that is supposedly to improve the region stoop so low as to lend credence to racist views that Africans are savages because they do not value life and justice.

Take for example, in Bosnia only the Serbs initially killed less than five hundred people and the Western powers rightly intervened to stop more loss of lives.

In the case of South Sudan, President Kiir’s tribal militia killed over twenty thousand innocent lives (children, women, elderly, disabled and the sick in hospitals), yet IGAD as an African body which should value African lives is ignoring these mass killings in favour of reviving the monstrous SPLM.

One can not help but think that IGAD representing its member countries is more interested in short term stability of South Sudan to enable its member states to fortify their economies from the only engine that fuels growth in the region.

It is not a secret that since 2005, the IGAD countries that border South Sudan have grown their economies astronomically because of South Sudan’s oil and open market.

In South Sudan, Kenya controls the entire banking sector and also a large share of the market in essential processed commodities.

Ethiopia controls the catering, hotels and hospitality industry.

Uganda controls the transport industry, essential food industry including processed goods.

The Sudan, the former colonial power is extorting billions of dollars as payment for transportation of the oil to Port Sudan for export. The amount of charges the Sudan levies on South Sudan is about 8 folds of the normal internationals charges per barrel.

Somalis control the fuel and forex bureaux industries.

In the social field, all these countries almost equally share the sex (prostitution) industry which is worth millions of dollars annually.

In this massive booming trade, South Sudan gains nothing as most of the foreign companies barely pay any taxes to the authorities and yet its indigenous labour force remain unemployed with sexual transmitted diseases spreading like wild fire throughout the country.

Technically, South Sudan is haemorrhaging money daily with no benefit to its people.

It is understandable that these countries would like to protect their economies and political stability but this should not be at the expense of the people of the very country that makes them prosper.

South Sudan needs these countries as much as they need South Sudan. So, it does not matter who is in power in Juba. There will always be business due to interdependency in this region.

The prudent thing for IGAD to do is to work for a lasting solution so that the entire region develops and grows peacefully.

For a lasting peace to happen IGAD needs to bin its current twin track plan which involves the CPA strategy and the rebuilding of the SPLM.

The CPA strategy as shown above will only rejuvenate the monstrous SPLM to tighten its grip on power while painfully oppressing, pauperising and marginalising the people without ensuring a durable peace in South Sudan and the region.

The second track according to H.E. Desalegn, the Ethiopian prime minister, is to resurrect the imploded SPLM. Desalgn says in Sudan Tribune of 8th April 2014, “I am convinced that once the SPLM party dispute is resolved, the national problems by and large will be resolved.” http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article50573

This is lamentable. Rebuilding the SPLM as a solution shows how the IGAD is totally out of touch and ignorant of the realities of South Sudan.

The SPLM is the real cancer eating up South Sudan. Reviving it is tantamount to reconstituting the menacing machine that greatly posed danger to South Sudan and the region pre-15th December 2013.

Why does anybody want to revive a tribally based organisation that has plunged South Sudan and the entire region into turmoil?

Does this make sense? Has IGAD not learnt a lesson yet from the current crisis? The present mess going on in the region right now is because of an SPLM that was united. An SPLM that we warned the world about.

Please see, ‘To achieve peace in South Sudan SPLM/A must be scrapped’ http://allafrica.com/stories/201312300037.html and ‘South Sudan needs intensive care.’ http://allafrica.com/stories/201311200876.html

Paradoxically though, the best thing that has happened to South Sudan is the implosion of the SPLM because it presents a unique opportunity for the political problems of South Sudan to be resolved once and for all.

SPLM’s current fragmented form should be accepted and let its various factions on their own without IGAD’s tinkering find their own political niche in the country.

Let those factions which can survive make it and let those which cannot survive perish. The law of nature should be allowed to take its own course on this issue of SPLM. After all it is already an organisation on the wane.

Which brings us to the question: what should the solution be?

As argued elsewhere and unanimously welcomed by citizens, South Sudan needs an interim government and such a government should be realised by bringing all the stakeholders to Addis Ababa to democratically work out who should lead the country to prepare it for peaceful elections.

South Sudanese know their problems far better than those bureaucrats of IGAD and its leaders. This is an important point that IGAD must value and register.

The prescription made by Ethiopian prime minister Desalegn to revive the SPLM as a solution to the problems of the country is not born out of sound knowledge and reality of South Sudan.

It is a belief formulated out of hearsay and certainly it will not work nor bring peace as he claims. It is the worst thing any well meaning person can do and all South Sudanese know it.

This would not be the first time that the SPLM would have been revived. It revived itself numerous times with support of the church during the liberation war in the Sudan and also prior to the signing of the CPA to no avail.

It faltered and imploded yet again on 15th December 2013. The reason for SPLM’s constant troubles is simple. The foundation is wrong. The culture of the organisation is laced with tribalism, intolerance, violence, corruption and sexism.

So, no matter how much IGAD tries to patch it with plasters, the wounds are gangrenous and will not heal. The only solution, as doctors do in such cases is to amputate.

So why does IGAD want to patch a hopeless wound?

While we say we know our problems, this does not mean we do not have blind spots for outsiders like IGAD to see and point out.

Yes, we do and where our weakness is seen by others we appreciate it. The mediation by IGAD is supposed to point out our blind spots and not to prescribe previously tried ineffective approaches.

With this said, we the people of South Sudan unanimously are saying again that we want an interim government and we do not want the current feuding groups because they are members of the same SPLM gangrenous organisation that brought us to where the country is now. It could not be said louder than this.

President Kiir‘s SPLM must not dictate the terms. Its back is already broken.

The reality is that if President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda did not come to his aid, his government by now would be history.

Uganda now holds the balance of power in South Sudan and therefore it has the ability to decide the course of history in South Sudan.

Since Uganda is a member of IGAD, the African Union and the Troika countries should pressurise it to lean on president Kiir to step down to allow an interim government to take over.

If Uganda refuses then the pressure must be brought on her to withdraw her forces immediately from South Sudan to be replaced by an international impartial force and not the PDF (protection and deterrence force) recommended by IGAD for obvious reasons.

If President Kiir continues to refuse to step down from power, then the targeted sanctions issued by President Barack Obama of United States should be beefed up together with indictments of President Kiir’s entire cabinet for the crimes against humanity they are committing daily as we speak on the people of South Sudan.

In light of the above, IGAD has a powerful bargain chip to force president Kiir’s hand to step down peacefully else he faces the wrath of the world.

Given this scenario, there is no need for IGAD to pursue its twin track strategy, but rather it should concentrate on bringing all the stakeholders including the various factions of the SPLM on the table in Addis Ababa to discuss the issue of interim government in good faith.

For this to be fruitful, all the stakeholders (publicly known parties and all known civil society groups) in the country and the Diaspora should be allowed to:
1) freely travel between Addis Ababa and Juba without hindrance
2) speak freely without fear in order to contribute effectively to the process of peace making.
3) be appropriately funded and facilitated with accommodation by the IGAD.

As recommended by the African Union in its latest communiqués on South Sudan, IGAD has a duty to facilitate the talks by funding the stakeholders adequately and using democratic principles to ensure the outcome is acceptable to the people of South Sudan.

To recap, the present twin track strategy of IGAD in operation is not suitable for South Sudan. That is why the talks in Addis Ababa is dragging on unnecessarily prolonging the suffering of the people of South Sudan, especially those in the United Nations protection camps internally and those in refugee camps abroad.

Reviving the SPLM for business as usual is not a solution but regression.

South Sudan cannot afford to be taken back to the oppressive rule of SPLM which has created the ethnic cleansing of the Nuer.

Apparently, President Kiir and his SPLM have indicated their intent to target the Equatorians next starting with their leaders. This is an open secret in the country now.

Therefore, reviving the SPLM is tantamount to giving it the permission to carry out this threat.

By this article I am making this point clear to the world and there should be no excuses when this does happen.

What is needed now is for IGAD to ditch its preferred plan in favour of a realistic approach which is to move the talks straight to the theme of interim government.

Here, it should use whatever experience it has in dealing with negotiations to facilitate the dialogue among all the South Sudanese stakeholders out of which the new leadership shall emerge.

[Truth hurts but it is also liberating]
Elhag Paul
elhagpaul@aol.com

Over 1,000 refugees enter Uganda daily – Red Cross

By: Francis Emorut, NEW VISION, KAMPALA, (published APR, 12, 2014);

BREAKING NEWS: More than 3,000 Sudanese refugees have over the last three days entered into Uganda according to an official of the Uganda Red Cross Society.

This brings the total of Sudanese refugees to over 70,000 since tensions flared on December 15, 2013, in South Sudan following an uprising among military officers in support and against president Salva Kir.

“The situation is still precarious and we continue to receive refugees on a daily basis,” Stephen Alatawa the operations manager of Uganda Red Cross Society, based in Adjumani district, said.

The refugees crossed into Uganda through Nimule and Elegu border points.

The deputy commandant of Ayilo refugee camp, Johnson Okot, said the camp was congested and yet they continued to receive more refugees.

The new refugees have, however, been relocated to Mungula new refugee site camp in Adjumani district.

Humanitarian agencies like the United National High Commission for Refugees, Uganda Red Cross Society, the World Food Programme and Oxfam among others are providing interventions to mitigate the effects of overcrowding in refugee camps in Adjumani.

According to the Uganda Red Cross Society 90% of the refugees are Dinkas and 60% of them are children.

Other refugees have been resettled at Ayilo resettlement camp.

The Uganda Red Cross Society has installed piped water using new technology with the help of the Germany Red Cross and the Red Cross of Norway.

The agencies are also providing psychosocial support to traumatised refugees.

Shameless ridicule of Naath Society: Response to Tearz Ayuen & company

BY: J. NGUEN, RSS, APR/04/2014, SSN;

Tearz Ayuen’s plea for “Naath (Nuer) in UN Juba’s Bases” to “go home” not meant well but condescension and ridiculous insult to Naath Society. Tearz Ayuen himself is a Dinka and fled Juba shortly after Kiir’s government slaining of Isaiah Abraham, who was also a Dinka from Twi East, Jonglei State.

Mr. Ayuen himself does not reside in the defiled city, Juba, and for some reasons he wanted Naath to return to non-existing houses as if what forced them to run for their dear lives have been dealt with amicably.

Tearz Ayuen himself is Kiir’s ruthless regime prime target. He was alleged to be on the list of Isaiah Abraham’s assassins to be assassinated, if found.

See the contradiction and why Mr. Ayuen is up for something more malevolent than a simple plea from an honest man. As matter of fact, Mr. Ayuen has sea of grudges to mend with failed Kiir led Dinka regime.

At times, he had called a spade a spade more than once. And I have much respect for him in that regard.

However, Tearz Ayuen’s un-counselled appeal for Naath to return home is ill-informed. In his words, a home “one mile away” is a mockery and meant to pave way for Tearz to mend relations with Kiir.

Tearz Ayuen is also from Kolnyang, Bor County in Jonglei State. Kolnyang is a heartland of Dinka-Bor civilians who recently flooded Eastern Equatoria State because they perceived danger from then advancing rebels.

I got it. Does Mr. Tearz Ayuen see the same fate in Naath? Certainly, and Tearz is too smart a figure to know this gruesome truth but chose to play trickery.

The IDPs who left Kolnyang, Tearz’s home village, are now settled and being fed by the same UN Tearz castigated and blaming Naath for jobs creation.

Thereof, Dinka IDPs feed on one meal a day, not twice. Not better than Naath but not being hunted down and encircled by a host community which is the difference.

If feeding Dinka IDPs in Madi’s lands is no different than that of Naath in UN bases in Juba, what the heck is Tearz talking about then?

Well, Tearz cited poor sanitation come rainy season and possible disease outbreak on the top of food security. Good point and I got it.

But, wait; is it not true that the Dinka IDPs who fled their homes in Jonglei live under trees or in the tents in Madi’s land, Kakuma, Kenya and Uganda and under the same UN’s protection and the same way as Naath?

Yes. Then what logic does Tearz’s argument is based? I have no clue and besides, it would be interesting to know if these Dinka IDPs are not “paupers in their own country” or/and if they have pre-made houses in Madi’s land or forced Madi people out of their homes by force instead or not be battered by looming rainy season.

It appeared Tearz Ayuen did not bother asking these questions or call on Dinka IDPs to return home even though their homes are still standing and being protected by Kiir-led Dinka regime; a regime solely for Dinka and by Dinka.

I saw where Mr. Tearz Ayuen is coming from and his ill-intentions to say the least. Tearz has three aims at heart to achieve with his mockery letter to Naath.

One, he has deep seated hate and unwinnable card to play with UN personnel presence in the nascent nation, South Sudan. This deep seated hatred is based on a recent Dinka negative campaign against UN presence in South Sudan and arrogantly asking its head to leave.

Mr. Tearz Ayuen’s second aim is in line with Kiir-led Dinka failed government. In fact, UN recent report on the Washington Post cited that Kiir’s regime has blocked food and water supplies destined for Naath in Bor UN’s base and possibly in Juba as well.

Therefore, Tearz is no exception but party to the regime in the name Dinkanization of South Sudan. Tearz Ayuen knows quite well what would happen to Naath should they leave UN bases in Juba and elsewhere on the country. More bloodbaths shall occur.

Bloodletting is Tearz Ayuen’s ulterior motive. This is a hidden intention everyone in Kiir’s regime ascribes to, which Tearz Ayuen just joined.

Had it not been the case, why should Tearz Ayuen call for Naath in UN bases in Juba to go home where they have no homes?

Had it not been the case, why he didn’t call on his Dinka Bor IDPs occupying Madi’s lands by force to return home when in fact their homes are still standing and protected by their Dinka led Kiir’s government?

Tearz Ayuen’s last aim is that he wanted to mend fences with Kiir’s ruthless regime whom Tearz himself brutally criticised on numerous occasions.

Calling for Naath to return to their homes where there is none is what Kiir led Dinka government wanted to hear especially from old adversaries like Tearz.

Perhaps, calling for Naath to return onto Juba’s dirty streets for undignified demise is a short way to win President Kiir’s loyalty.

Tearz cautioned Naath that they are not bankrupt and “have not killed anyone or rebelled against the government.” However, he failed to answer the question why were they targeted and killed in the first place?

Lastly, I must remind Tearz Ayuen that you have offended Naath Society. Your call for Naath in UN Juba’s bases in Juba to return homes where there are no homes anymore for them in Juba was a clear insult but ill-received and condemned in the strongest terms possible.

It’s sad that you have shed crocodile tears in disguise of ill-intended sympathy.

I hate to mention this, Tearz, but I have to. Naath were summarily executed by Dinka’s militias, ordered by some Dinka top elites and who still run the defiled Juba town.

It is depressing that you are desperately telling Naath to return to their killers to be killed.

You personally shied way to mention this point for reasons only known to you, Tearz Ayuen. But I should note Naath’s saying, which goes as: a monkey would yearly collect firewood to give birth to a baby human-monkey but every time, she gives birth to a baby monkey-monkey instead. This underscored the fact that you are a Dinka and will always be.
J. Nguen

Federalism in South Sudan: Why Dinkocrats aren’t in approval!

By: Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, APR/12/2014, SSN;

Federalism is without doubt the best system of government for a multi-ethnic country like South Sudan. This isn’t just an academic debate after all. In fact the academic debate on the best system for our country has long passed this stage.

As I intend to keep this article simple and discernible, I see no point in not stating the obvious and just conclude a long story by saying that our future as south Sudanese lies in a federal system of governance.

In fact it is the only option left on the table if our country is ever to experience any true stability.

But then if that is indeed the case, why then is federalism being extremely an issue of contention between the different ethno-political groups in the country?

It maybe be a good idea at this stage of the national dialogue to point out those who are indeed in favour of federalism as a system of governance. And why? Of course we may also want to know something about those who continue to oppose it. And why?

Without having to waste your time unnecessarily on a long introduction, just hear this from me. It’s an open secret that a handful of South Sudanese communities have since long wanted to rise above the others. Not in a good way.

A clear example is how the Dinka communities of Warrap, Northern Bahr Ghazal and parts of the greater Upper Nile region have forged a union to take up the same abusive roles played by the “Mudukurat” i.e. the Northern Sudanese Arabs during the bitter history that once connected the South and the North Sudan together.

What is currently unraveling in South Sudan, stands to prove that, it is not uncommon for victims of long standing abuse to turn around and become abusers once the optimum condition avails itself.

If you ever doubted this, be reminded that it’s now happening in the nascent state of south Sudan.

Characteristically of this emerging trend, non-Dinka citizens in south Sudan are continuously being bombarded by all kinds of weird statements.

Any drunken Dinka can jump from nowhere and tell a non Dinka that, “we liberated you” or “we died for this country more than anyone else”. Of course this is not true. But does any oppressor really need a true story to justify his/her actions?

The Dinka have indiscriminately used all kinds of abusive statements to generally refer to themselves as the rightful owners of South Sudan to the exclusion of the sixty or so other ethnic groups.

They, the Dinka are unarguably the single largest ethnic group in South Sudan, quantitatively. Qualitatively they are nowhere. And this they know or should know!

So existing in a country with an ethnic perspective where members of one particular ethnic group would want to laud it on the others for the sheer reasons of quantity and not quality, South Sudan without the least doubt has rightly become a laughing stock of Africa!!!

Dinkocrats want to be looked at as the sole liberators of South Sudan, when they have not yet even liberated themselves from very backward cultures of cattle rustling and child abductions!!

The 1947 Round Table Conference took place in Juba, Equatoria, and it was the first ever conference to recognize South Sudan as a unique entity compared to North Sudan.

Again the first uprising against the Northern Sudanese Arab rule begun in Torit, and was fought under the Anya Nya liberation movement in Equatoria from 1955 to 1972.

And yet again the two decades of the SPLM/A led liberation war though begun in Bor Town, Jonglei state, it was at the end largely fought in Equatoria.

But with all this long history of liberation wars and decisive battles being fought in Equatoria and often so by the Equatorians, combatants and civilians, yet in the post-independence South Sudan, Equatoria is not yet Uhuru.

Where our country is now, it will not be an overstatement to say that that an oppressive group is rapidly emerging from the rubbles of the five decades liberation war, to deny the other South Sudanese their rights to a better life.

A new monster has indeed evolved from what was naively expected to lead to an egalitarian society.

Because it was left unchecked from the very beginning, the current SPLM/A leadership has fast undone all that was collectively achieved as South Sudanese independence. Unfortunately for everyone, independence is no more to be.

Maybe many never thought that any South Sudanese who suffered decades of marginalization under the successive abusive Northern Arab regimes would ever turn around, and become a tyrant, butcher and target killer, massacring his people left and right!

To prove this point, many people were already told that if they want to remain alive, they have tolerate the new masters (Dinkocrats) the same way the tolerated the Arabs! This is independent south Sudan for you.

Dinkocrats are now imitating Jallaba as the new rulers in the Republic of South Sudan. They have exchanged the SPLM core ideologies and replaced it with the expansionists, exclusionist, chauvinistic, self-enrichment philosophy, typical of the NIF/NCP.

The Dinkocrats are in every way copying the Jallaba in their quest to have the absolute power and wealth in South Sudan. These things are well demonstrated in the daily and the very basics of how the country is governed. All you need is an eye and you will see it.

Is it not true that, it has been the Dinkocrats’ dream to dominate the top political and executive positions in South Sudan to the exclusion of other better qualified “Others”?

Is it not their dream come true when they got a free hand to the nation’s wealth in exclusion of the “others” ?

Maybe someone wants to lecture us on how the Dinkocrats develop the brute tendency to bully others. Or why they have no shame in taking over other few citizens’ ancestral lands, infamously known as “land grabbing”?

In Juba, Wau, Bor , Rumbek , Yambio, Aweil,… etc., right from the day South Sudan gained self-rule, Dinkocrats have often resorted to criminality and militarism, committing countless crimes with a presidentially approved impunity!!

But when we are told that South Sudan is a failed state, the Dinkocrats seem happy to share that with everyone else.

Why do they want Dinkocracy’s failure to be synonymous with South Sudanese failure, when many brilliant non-conformists and non-Dinkocrats could have saved the country?

Almost on every occasion when Salva Kiir or his dinkocratic system fails, which unsurprisingly is often the case, Dinkocrats are wickedly happy to see it as south Sudan’s failure.

On the other hand it is indeed mind boggling how Dinkocrats see Salva Kiir as the only alternative in spite of all his shortcomings?

This complete state of mental darkness which can easily be referred to as the total eclipse of the Dinkocrats mental faculties, have gone to set them against federalism in the country.

If I say that, he who is against federalism, is indeed against the very spirit of an independent south Sudan, it won’t be an exaggeration in any way.

But there you will see a Dinkocrat in a full attire putting all obstacles in the way of a system which only a no brainer or an exploiter can choose to oppose.

But then why are the Dinkocrats now against federalism, when they in fact supported it during South Sudan’s long struggle? The answer lies in the missing $20 billion dollars!

In a centralised system, like what we now have, all you need is to scare off free press, bar free speech, and send your lynch men after every big mouth in town, and you and your followers can proceed to loot and grab at peace.

Hence in spite of all the benefits federalism is set to offer in the form of a future peaceful coexistence between the different ethnicities, Dinkocrats blinded by free money will die fighting against it.

Are these guys not mirroring the typical position of the Jallaba and their blood sucking National Islamic Front/ National Congress Party (NIF/NCP)?

The bottom line is that South Sudan is now at a very advanced stage in its journey to a destiny that is yet to be declared. However you will be a naïve person if you expect a quick fix to the myriad of governance issues that must be set right before normalcy can be attained.

I say federalism lies in the very centre of any negotiated solution that South Sudanese may finally converge at. This is so if the country is to ever remain united and at peace with itself.

Nonetheless no one should expect the Dinkocrats to easily give in to a new dawn, federalism included. Should that become the case then the only short cut to peace and stability is more war and more instability.

At the end it is all about how the sixty or so other ethnicities can come together and make or force the Dinkocrats into seeing the relevancy of federalism and cooperate with others to adopt what is rightly the best form of governance for our country.

In a nutshell, federalism must replace the current Dinkocracy for South Sudan to regain its position among nations.

Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Voice of the voiceless South Sudanese.

South Sudan: A Nation in Disastrous Situation, Failed by Bad Politics

By: Bol Garang Bol, Canberra, AUSTRALIA, APR/12/2014, SSN;

Despite the death of Dr. John Garang de Mabior, the founding President of South Sudan
government and historically First Vice-President of Sudan who passed away in July 2005 after 23 days, the people of South Sudan were with hopes and expectations that a nation will be
born and the birth of this nation will end the long suffering of South Sudanese in the hands of their oppressors.

The birth of this nation was assigned to General Salva, the current President as a senior midwife in the ward and also due to his loyalty to the Movement where he also served as John Garang’s Vice Chairman during the struggle.

Kiir took over as President of South Sudan and Vice President of the Republic of Sudan as stipulated by the agreement signed between the NCP and the SPLM after the chair of SPLM fell vacant.

The nation was born as expected. But what matters is how the political realm of President Kiir leadership immediately after he took over as the result of demise of Dr. John Garang was and still being dominated by a section of Dinka, particularly from Salva Kiir’s home backyard, Greater Bar el Ghazal States.

Many South Sudanese see Kiir as man who misused his mandate and circled himself with individual groups who neglected others.

This group with President ears comprised, Aleu Ayeny Aleu, the Interior Minister, Telar Ring Deng, the Presidential Legal Advisor, Paul Malong Awan, Governor for N. Bar el Ghazal and Akol Kor Kuc, the Director for Internal Security and the former Deputy Speaker for SSLA, Daniel Awet Akot.

They undermined other leaders from other ethnic communities and terming them as “non-conforming Dinkas”, the term referred to non-speaking Dinka.

The others contributors in tearing the country apart are his notorious Presidential Guards. Their non-condemned actions around Salva Kiir turned the nation born with hopes and expectations into a graveyard for our people.

Not to forget in the list is the Minister for Information, Michael Makuei Lueth who is considered as risk taker who always takes hardest options of leadership through gossiping and hatred speeches to secure his position in the government.

The people of South Sudan believed that Kiir and his government had failed to steer the Country to prosperity and was now bent on silencing alternatives voices including the media, non-governmental organisations opposed to his style of leadership.

The degree to which President Salva Kiir and those around him dominate political life in South Sudan was all too apparent back in 2012 with the push to overturn that part of the constitution which limited presidents to two terms in office.

It was clear throughout Kiir’s first term (2011-2015) that he wanted to stay in power beyond 2015.

In my analysis, the South Sudan I saw, grew up and lived in it for 22 years is far from perfect. The problems the country are facing have been well-documented and there is little need if any at all to dwell on these issues.

What has become apparent however in South Sudan is that we are increasingly becoming a society that would rather focus on the problems without necessarily discussing or offering solutions to the myriad of challenges we face.

What’s needed is definitive leadership that would outline in broad strokes the path the country should take in navigating its way out of the dilemma it presently finds itself in.

South Sudan is a nation of many ethnic and religious groups; and for this, governing the society is an enormous job.

Given the presence of politically assertive ethnic groups, the stability and survival of the present democratic politics depend on how the leader controls the potential ethnic disputes that would result.

Leaders have duties to unite people regardless of their political affiliation.

John Gardner, a British writer has pointed out that the “task of leaders is to help societies understand the problems that all must face, to aid in the setting of goals and
priorities, to work with others in finding paths to those goals chosen, maintaining public
morale, and motivation and nurturing a workable level of public unity”.

Leaders must activate existing institutions in pursuit of the society’s goals or, when necessary, help redesign institutions to achieve that result. Leaders must also help people know how they can be at their best.

Many have lost faith in our politicians and, more generally, the political system in its entirety.

Just a quick glance at any of the local dailies paints a rather sad story; political leaders living in plentiful, enriching themselves with impunity at the expense of the masses they claim to serve.

This just shows how these political elites have lost connection with the generality of the people, and how bereft of genuine leaders our country is.

Faced with these realities, one cannot really blame the people for their general apathy when it comes to our politics but blames must be directed to the President for his lack of clear direction.

However, no matter how rich a nation is but without the right leaders it is unlikely to progress.

South Sudan has not made much progress because the country has been conferring undue respect to official titles without policies in their Ministries.

The members of the National Assembly have been chasing the shadow of money, and some of them lack the integrity and knowledge to perform their basic duties.

For our country to progress, we need leaders with good ears and open minds, consistently truthful and approachable.

This however is unfortunate as South Sudan is a republic which, by definition, is a State in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives.

As such the obligation of charting the course the country should take is incumbent upon the political leaders who represent the people of their constituencies.

When our politics fail therefore, the nation fails. Hard as it may be to take in, this is the fact. A dearth in leadership at the top will inevitably give way to a dysfunctional socio-economic system.

When a sitting Member of Parliament makes unwarranted claims that the Country has suffered from corruption, bad governance with such potentially volatile pronouncements, one questions if the leader truly has the interests of the people at heart.

When people jostle for power in messy internal politics instead of focusing on core issues affecting the well-being of most South Sudanese, it beggars belief as to how those very same people can claim to represent the people.

Name-calling and hurling of insults at each other hardly serves any meaningful purpose other
than to divert the people’s attention from the real issues that are affecting them.

Yet it seems this is what our politicians mostly excel at; shouting the loudest away from the corridors of power.

Yet in the House of Assembly, where their voices matter the most, they are found dozing off instead of participating in constructive debate to shape the country’s future.

Interesting too is how easily politicians can major in the minors by focusing on issues such as renaming institutions and monuments. While these may be noble undertakings, they are really not bread and butter issues that warrant the time and resources spent on them.

The people need jobs, food on the table, access to better healthcare; matters that have a direct bearing on the quality of their lives.

Bringing the argument back home, there is a dire need for those who hold the reins of power to reconnect with the general populace and direct their efforts to protecting and to serving.

The political elitism syndrome needs to be dealt away with as a matter of urgency. We are all created equal!

Yes there are many who did not “fight” the liberation war, but that does not make them lesser human beings than those who “fought” the war.

What all South Sudanese want is a functioning government based upon inclusive politics that truly have the people at heart.

Frankly, there is no place here for self-serving politicians who are only visible in their
constituencies when elections are drawing near.

The cabinet has to be visible more than just on paper and be relevant by offering alternative policies and strategies and thereby ensuring a vibrant democracy.

As long as our leaders fail to uphold the true duties of their public offices, the republic’s perfection will be stalled.

Our Country cannot be held to ransom by a select few people who further their own gains while the rest of the people struggle under economic hardship.

The current crop of politicians, regardless of party affiliation, needs to touch base with the true duty of service and realise that they are involved in processes and institutions that are bigger than themselves.

They need to appreciate that the decisions they make have far-reaching implications and that they, therefore, hold the fate of many in their hands.

South Sudan is a beautiful land with untold potential. However, as long as our politicians
continue on their current path this potential will never be realised.

Of course, this does not hold true for all our politicians as, without the need to mention names, there are some who have served the people with distinction.

It is commendable that this breed of leaders exists and they are to be emulated. Nations have risen and fallen as a direct result of the quality of the leadership and it is imperative for good governance and leadership to reign in this land if South Sudan is to develop.

Furthermore, the present brand of “winner takes all” politics which in my opinion is at the root of the unnecessary political headwinds we have had to witness needs to be revised going forwards.

South Sudan as a country which suffered from marginalisation before because of Arab domination has rights to reject any leader whose agenda is to create bad blood between tribes and whose career is based on ethnic dichotomy.

Where is the genesis of the conflict between these two hardworking tribes who should otherwise compliment each other in nation-building?

The Dinka community has nothing against the Nuer and/or any other tribe for that matter; and if Kiir Mayardit and Riek Machar have their own problems with themselves they should keep the Tribes out of it!

Bol Garang Bol is a South Sudanese living in Canberra, Australia

He can be reached at nicetobeme05@yahoo.com