Archive for: June 2014

How the rampant embezzlement can be wrestled: Open letter to Pres. Kiir

BY: Agok Takping, AUSTRALIA, JUN/29/2014, SSN;

Mr President, as you and the rebel leader Dr. Riek Machar recommitted yourselves to unfasten the current unfortunate carnage in our young nation by agreeing to form a transitional government in due course, South Sudanese are tightly holding their fingers crossed. Majority of South Sudanese are living under unimaginable conditions in their own country.

Hunger or famine, as has been widely speculated is looming large. Thousands of lives have been unnecessarily lost and three major towns in ruin. In short, the pain which South Sudanese are undergoing is arguably more severe than what we have experienced in our previous wars.

Notwithstanding the relief that would come with the final peace deal (if you our leaders keep your commitment), I have a feeling that South Sudanese’s dignity will not be restored anytime soon. Our image has been tainted in the global arena, Mr president, we are a laughing species of Africa.

In fact The Fragile States Index 2014 released this June by FFP placed South Sudan on top of the list before Somalia. Who would have thought that we would be worse than Somalia after just two years of independence?

Mr. President, as much as I believe the history of the attempted coup by Riek Machar in December 2013 which brought the current mayhem, we are not the only country at war with ourselves. Syria has been at war for the last three years, Libya too had been at war with itself, and nevertheless, they are not even on the top ten of the Fragile States Index 2014.

In the eyes of outsiders, Mr President, no single institution in your government is or has been functioning accordingly. The world see your government as a joke, Mr President, all the ministries have wasted and embezzled staggering sum of money in the last nine years of your tenure.

Corruption is a weapon that undermines the credibility of public institutions. It attacks the morality of justice and damages society. This is where the unwanted ranking come from Mr President. We need to get our act together to clean our dirty image.

Some of the readers of this letter may argue that poor management of national resources is synonymous to Africa (i.e. not just South Sudanese problem). It is true that corruption throughout Africa and indeed in other parts of the world is widespread, however, the grand scale of corruption in our country is in my opinion second to none.

In fact it is a slow pace robbery of national resources by those entrusted to manage them. There are many forms of corruption, however, the focus here is on embezzlement.

In fairness nevertheless, our politicians are not the only one with meandering of uprightness. It is a known fact that corrupt politicians all over the world are opponent of the truth; their virtues and ethics are scarce.

However, Mr President, what is setting apart the degree of corruption in South Sudan from the rest of the world is the extreme lack of control and monitoring mechanisms. It is this dire deficiency of controlling measures that made every sub-tribe want to have one of their son/daughter to be a minister.

In other countries, a minister is someone who the president see fit to make departmental decisions and implement them on behalf of the president; in other word, a minister does too little to represent his/her constituency in the parliament where legislations are made, instead a minister become a national leader who must represent the whole country.

Mr President, the reason why every sub-tribe outrageously goes ballistic when one of their beloved son/daughter misses out in the appointment for the ministerial position during reshuffling, or when their son/daughter is removed from the ministerial position is because they see ministerial position as a house for money laundering and embezzlement that everyone should have a slice of.

Mr President, you would agree with me that the reason why we only have tarmac roads inside some parts of Juba and not a single modern freeway built in the country is not because South Sudan from 2005 to present doesn’t have enough money;

Mr president, the reason we don’t have clean running water in the whole of Juba let alone all other major towns across the country is not because South Sudan doesn’t have enough money;

Mr President, the reason why no single modern hospital is built in Juba or any other major town across the country is not because South Sudan cannot afford to build a modern hospital;

Mr President, the reason why the outdated Russian made bomber (Antonov) in the hands of SAF is still a threat and continue to fly at will in the skies of South Sudan is not because South Sudan cannot afford to buy basic and old defence system that can easily take Antonov down and assured the citizens that they are safe from the sky;

Mr President, the reason why the deafening portable generators are still polluting the air with noise in Juba is not because South Sudan cannot afford to build temporary power station or buy four or three large generators which can be stationed outside the town and can still provide the city with limited power (electricity in mornings and evenings till midnight);

Mr President, the reason why thousands of children are still learning under trees is not because South Sudan cannot afford to provide ninety percent children with classrooms.

The list is long Mr President but you get the idea, the idea is that your government need to put in place some measures to reduce the rampant embezzlement of public money which has been continuing undeterred for many years.

Mr President, your anti-corruption body is toothless and ineffective. It is true that without effective law enforcement which is essential to corroborate anti-corruption efforts, the anti-corruption body can be a mere veil.

What your government should have done Mr President is to give more powers and autonomy to law enforcement agencies which should be part of anti-corruption teams to detect and punish any public or government official, along with any public servant who violates corruption laws.

Mr President, everyone in South Sudan knows and appreciate your outstanding contribution to the liberation of the South Sudanese people from the rogue Islamic regimes in Khartoum. Many of us who grew up during the war have unquestionable loyalty to you because of your unwavering services to the people of South Sudan.

However, as is often the case with human beings Mr President, people tend to remember a person’s shortcomings more than his/her outstanding achievements. Mr President, the inability of your government to yet hold a single public servant accountable for the despicable and shameful continuous embezzlements of public monies is potentially destroying your revered legacy.

Mr President, any ordinary person on the street today would tell you that in the court of law, one party must be guilty and the other acquitted. However, the missing $30millions: scandal between Arthur Akuin Chol and Pagan Amum defies that logic of ordinary concept Mr President.

If the two gentlemen are innocent, I guess we can conclude that an alien has made a surprise appearance in South Sudan and taken the money with it, there is no any other way Mr President to explain where that huge sum of money has gone. Anyhow, let us not dwell on this extensively.

Mr President, to preclude similar scenarios like the infamous Dura saga where 6 billion South Sudanese Pounds (SSP) was embezzled, it is imperative that your government enact procurement law.

Mr President, your government need to establish an independent PROCUREMENT agency to deal with all purchases. Mr President, I know that building 21th century roads, providing citizens with adequate electricity, building modern hospitals and equip them with well-trained doctors, providing citizens with clean water, and building grain stores across the country to fight hunger, are some of your priorities.

Mr President, your ability to deliver services to help achieve these outcomes depends, to varying degrees, on the effective procurement of goods and services. Effective procurement not only means getting the best value out of the money that the public has entrusted to your government, but also behaving ethically at all times and being accountable for processes and outcomes.

Procurement simply means: establishing what the project needs, locate the suppliers, obtain the quotes and compare them, evaluate the suppliers, enter negotiations with few selected suppliers, award the contract to a supplier that meet the desired price and the desired time frame for the completion of the project or delivery of goods, and finally pay the supplier.

I previously made a comment in the editorial article on southsudannation.com that “South Sudan is the only country on earth where a minister can award the contract to the supplier without first verifying whether or not the supplier actually does have a business which the contract is based upon”.

The alleged mischievous transfer of $7,959,400 to Daffy Investment Group (ST) by Deng Alor Kuol in 2013 perfectly depicted that. As things stand, after probing by the investigative committee that your government set up, it turned out that Daffy Investment Group is fictional, it never existed Mr. President.

Additionally, as stated by Abraham Awolich from The Sudd Institute, in the Dura saga probe “The World Bank found that 290 companies were paid without signing any contracts with the government and 151 companies were overpaid”.

If we critically evaluate all these so called companies Mr President, we would surely find out that the majority of them don’t exist. They are ghost entities. Astonishingly still, no single individual has been held accountable

To impede such behaviours from surfacing in the future, your government need to act speedily to enact procurement law and establish the procurement board. Mr President, nothing come cheap in this age of ours, if you intend to get competent person who can do the job on your behalf, they need to be fully compensated.

Mr President, an independent procurement board need a CEO with expertise in the area of procurement, he/she doesn’t have to be South Sudanese. We need help Mr President, thus it is advisable to recruit the CEO for the procurement agency from anywhere in the world.

We need a knowledgeable individual who will be able to help create certain rules and responsibilities, and make sure that all ministers understand them.

In conclusion, it would be naïve to think that better procurement processes alone will reduce corruption. Mr President, It takes prosecution of corrupt officials for reforming to take root, I know finding judges who are willing to convict these criminals is ridiculously onerous. This is because lawyers are themselves corrupt or fear retributions.

However, without trying and convicting corruptors, the embezzlement of public money will continue.
End.

Disclaimer: views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author. Agok Takpiny is a concerned South Sudanese in Melbourne Australia. He can be reached on agoktakpiny@ymail.com


Lakes State youth in arms against govt: Response to SudTtrib report

By: Daniel Juol Nhomngek,KAMPALA,JUN/29/2014, SSN;

The First Law of Journalism is to confirm existing prejudice, rather than contradict it. All journalists must strive to follow this first law of journalism, which implies that all journalists who report must give information as it is but not what they think should be reported.

It implies that every journalist must strive to avoid their personal interest overriding his or her duty in informing public in fair and balanced manner. Journalism serves two main purposes.

First, when a journalist gives true information on progress of the government, it helps the government to reform in the way it governs, which is beneficial to the citizens and it also helps citizens to know the origin of the problems affecting them and to be able to fight against those problems.

Contrary to the above, bad practice in journalism gives false information which makes people vulnerable and guilty of the crime they have not committed and further depict evil to be angel, which seeks to throw the son of God into hell. This was the implication of the recent report on SudanTribune about Lakes State.

The recent report entitled: lakes: pastoralist youth desert counties, threaten attacks against state that appeared on SudanTribune on June 23, 2014 showed how bad practice in the journalism affects understanding of the people of a given information in general.

In that report, reporter reported that thousands of youth had deserted their cattle camps and headed for the bush where they were threatening to launch an offensive against the state government if military caretaker governor Maj-Gen Matur Chut Dhuol goes ahead with a disarmament initiative.

Further in that report, a senior police officer was quoted to have said, “They (pastoralist youths) have deserted counties headquarters and cattle camps and now youth are camping in [the] jungle with threats that if disarmament is declared they will launch attacks [against the] state administration”.

The report further went on to give many other unrelated reasons to the issue of youth leaving counties, which the journalist who reported the information used in an attempt to back up his belief as to why the youth in Lakes State wanted to launch a war against the government of Lakes State which include:

– unlawful removal of scholarship that was granted to the students by the former Lakes State Governor Chol Tong, which led to thousands of students dropping out of school due to the fact that their sources of funding was stopped,
– the refusal of President Kiir to remove Matur or refusal Matur to resigns and
– inability of Matur to stop insecurity as some of the reasons for youth wanting to launch an offensive against the government of Lakes State because youth according to the report wanted Maj. General Matur to leave the office.

What has to be noted onset about the report is that although what happened was true as the plan to disarm the youth was announced, it is not however true that youth have deserted counties to go to the bush and camp there and also gave the warning to the government that they would attack the government if it went on with plan to disarm them.

The assertion made in the above paragraph was proved by the information that I got when I carried out research and finding on the report. For instance, when I came across the news on SudanTribune on June 23, 2014, it caught my attention and as a result, I immediately carried out the research to find out the veracity of the report by contacting many people on ground in Lakes State in order to confirm the validity of the report.

Many people whom I spoke to through phone and chatted with them on Facebook told me that what was published on SudanTribune was not correct and it was not the true reflection of what had happened in Lakes State.

For instance, Peter Kot, one of the people who made a comment on Facebook page about the news vehemently rubbished the publication by succinctly saying that the publication was wrong and it was intended to achieve political point.

In his own words, he wrote “Brothers and sisters, that information, to me I fail to understand it, because, they youth are not in place of politic as they run to the bush, it’s because they have heard the disarmament that will take place in Lake, that’s why they have to escape to touch, where they soldiers cannot reach for disarmament, that’s my understanding as I am here in the ground, but, what the journalist says is not true on the media.”

The above statement by Peter Kot carries some high level of truth and it is actually valid. It backs what I suspected to be the reason behind the youth running into bushes if some youth had actually done so based on personal experience on issues of guns and the youth of Lakes State.

In truth disarming youth in Lakes State is a tag of war and is always problematic to the government since in some instances even can involve bloodshed. It can involve bloodshed because the youth in Lakes State love guns to a greater extent. Such love can sometime make them appear to have natural affinity for guns.

Hence, when it comes to disarmament, the youth can do anything to retain their guns or can even grab guns from anybody who carries the gun in a lousy manner or even to the point of killing the person to get gun. All these however, should not be taken to mean that the youth in Lakes State have a problem with the government of Lakes or the government of South Sudan or anybody.

The youth in Lakes State do not have any problem with anybody but their problem is related to guns and can do anything even if it means killing or giving up their lives to get or retain guns.

The major example to illustrate the validity of the assertion in the above paragraph is the recent incidence involving some of the SPLA soldiers from Aweil who deserted frontline from Unity. On their way back to Aweil some of those soldiers passed through Lakes State.

As they were passing there and on reaching Cueibet County, one of the cattle keepers there came from nowhere, pounced on one of the soldiers with the lighting speed and grabbed the gun and made away with it. It took the effort of the whole community in that area to recover the gun and returned it to the owner.

The example above illustrated that the youth in Lakes do not have a problem with anybody but what they need only are guns. However, to someone who lacks critical reasoning or wants to achieve certain hidden political agenda, he or she can easily twist the whole truth and portray the whole community like that of Cueibet that it has a problem with the SPLA in general which is not true.

However, a good analyst can easily dismiss such allegation as lies and false. What a Good analyst does before reaching conclusion on any problem is to assess the whole transactions and the intentions before concluding that a certain person or group of persons has a problem because it is in rare cases where on action constitutes a problem.

One problem is always treated to be an isolated problem. In relation to the statement in the foregoing sentence, what happened in Cueibet County to that particular SPLA Soldier can be treated as isolated incident; it cannot be understood that people of Cueibet County in Lakes have any problem with the SPLA.

As clearly explained above as an illustration to make the point I am trying to explain clear, the youth of Lakes State did not warn the government or even threatened the government with the intention of revolting against the government (if they had actually given any warning) but the youth might have intended to send the message to the government that they are not opposing disarming but they could not be disarmed before the government has ensured their security and safety in general.

In my opinion in relation to the above argument, the youth are right to retain their guns. This is because at the moment in Lakes State, there is a high level of lawlessness and any reasonable government cannot think of disarming people without reasonable assurances of their protection from both internal and external threat.

As a matter of right, the youth in Lakes State are granted right to life under the Transitional Constitution of South Sudan. Article 11 of that Constitution provides that every person has the inherent right to life, dignity and the integrity of his or her person which shall be protected by law and no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his or her life.

The interpretation of Article 11 is that the government of South Sudan has the duty to provide security for every South Sudanese, which implies that if the government is not capable of protecting youth then the youth have right to ensure their own safety.

This means that the youth, therefore, have inherent right to protect themselves if the government has failed to protect them, which further means that they have a right to refuse to be disarmed because they have an inherent right to life, which involves right to self-defense.

In relation to the above argument, implies that where neighbouring states are not disarmed, then the youth in Lakes State should not be disarmed because they can easily be attacked by the youth from neighbouring states unless the government takes practical steps to show that it will protect them when disarmed.

In fact, disarming the youth in Lakes State can leave them highly vulnerable to the two communities of Warrap State and Unity State. It is, therefore, important for the welfare of the youth of Lakes State to be left with their guns to protect themselves from external aggression or cattle raids until the time when government of South Sudan comes up with policy of disarming the whole population of South Sudan not only youth in Lakes State.

In addition, without politics behind, civilians in Lakes State cannot be disarmed at this time when there is a threat from White Armies of Riek Machar who are disguised in rebellion clothing but ruthless and merciless militias who can eliminate the whole society if the people do not have any power to defend themselves.

This was witnessed in case of Bentiu sometime back when rebel took control of Bentiu and massacred many civilians there.

Therefore, the youth or people of Lakes State have rights to retain their guns under all circumstances, which involve running into the bush to hide if the government does not reason in according to their safety or provide them with adequate security. This means that running into bush and hiding there with guns should not be interpreted as revolting against Lakes State government because it is a matter of practical and survival.

In fact, the youth in Lakes State as I know did not warn the government with the intention of joining rebellion or staging a war against the government. This is because it is not their major interest to overthrow the government.

The major interest of the cattle keepers in Lakes State does not lie in politics but they need government to respect and protect them or ensuring that they are allowed to protect their interests and themselves.

As analyzed above, it has to be partly concluded that in any case, if some youth had run into the bush from any county in Lakes State, then they did not run into the bush with the intention of joining rebellion but they were trying to escape disarmament which is a common phenomenon with the youth in the cattle camps in Lakes State.

Running into the bush by the youth with guns in Lakes State should not be taken advantage of, by journalists who wants to exploit to their advantage the prevailing problems of Lakes State but it should be understood that youth who ran into the bush and hid there, wanted to remind the government that the problems of Lakes State are not gun but underlying and deep-rooted problems which are they cause of many people to carry guns.

The youth in Lakes State are in other words informing the world that the government in Lakes State has failed to address the underlying issues that cause people to fight among themselves and also with their neighbours. Therefore, the cause of the problems as the government perceives it is not guns but the problems that cause people to carry guns and to endlessly kill each other. It is important to stress that guns are only effects of the cause.
Establishing the cause of the problems and provide proper solutions for them should be the first priority for any government in Lakes State. When Matur was appointed by the president to be a care taker governor, he was welcomed by all people in Lakes State.

The people of Lakes State welcomed him thinking that he would bring a solution to Lakes State problems given his personal background. Many people know Matur to be a real SPLM and a good SPLA fighter since 1980s.

However, when he took charge of Lakes State affairs, he disappointed the people by putting personal interest above the State and that of the people. As result, corruption becomes rampant.
He started taxing people exorbitantly and suspending employees without reasonable examination. All these corrupt practices were being carried in the state just to build Matur’s personal wealth and empire, hence throwing state into further problems.

The corruption and corrupt practices throws the state into the problems of killing and cattle raiding as they become endemic among the people of Lakes State. This is because it is in the interest of Matur and his government for the state to remain without law since restoring law and order would deny Matur prerogative power to dismiss employees without prior notice.

The operation of law was suspended as the interest of the government to building wealth materials benefits was overwhelming, hence, leaving the state in a situation where every person lives for himself or herself and God for them all.

The above the explanation is the background as to why youth in Lakes State are not ready to give up guns. SudanTribune was supposed to have explained these issues well to help government to get proper solutions to the problems of Lakes State.

However, instead helping people of Lakes State through exposing to the public of South Sudan and also to the whole world what is exactly happening in Lakes State, SudanTribune reported the situation in a distorted manner through fabricating and falsifying the events.

Actually, the journalist who published the report on SudanTribune in such a manner appears to have some hidden agenda behind the shadow of journalism, which is the most appropriate and logical conclusion that can be reached by any reasonable person. The same conclusion was reached by James Majuong on Facebook.

In his comment, James Majuong commented and I quote, “the self claimed journalist without professional ethics has since been a critic of Gen. Matur Chut government and is therefore hiding himself under the shadow of journalism instead of coming out clearly as a known critic.”

The comment from James indicates two things. First of all, it indicates that the people of Lakes State are aware of the one who published that particular news from Lakes State on SudanTribune and such knowledge can offer deeper understanding of what the report wanted to achieve. Second to it, the comment shows that some journalists have failed to uphold professional ethics of journalism.

In my opinion SudanTribune has allowed journalists to report news without imposing on them journalistic code to report true and valid information as demanded by the principles of journalism, which explains why some journalists SudanTribune report such distorted information which clear show the interest of the journalist who report the news.

Ethics of journalism as mentioned in the above paragraph according to Joseph Medill are that journalists must preserve their independence of all demagogues and place-hunters and never submit to their dictation; write boldly and tell the truth fearlessly; criticize whatever is wrong, and denounced whatever is rotten in the administration of their local and state affairs, no matter how much it may offend the guilty or wound the would-be leaders of their party.

Based on the above ethical codes, journalists must make an earnest and conscientious journal; establish its reputation for truth and reliability, frankness and independence. Hence, under no circumstances should journalists allow themselves to willfully deceive the people, or trifle with their confidence. This is because journalism like any other profession is a noble calling. Hence, working journalist is to report, write, and explain in accordance with the highest standards of the profession.

As stated above, it implies that whatever the journalists report must be accurate and should create little disagreement over its veracity. Where people who read any works of journalists are not satisfied with such works, then there is a great problem with the journalists who report the news; in other words, such journalists are incompetent and not fit for journalism works. Up to this point the report was not reflecting what was happening in Lakes State.

Another point which shows the report was not true is that the report general. In that report or publication, the reporter wrote that thousands of youth had deserted their counties and had gone to camp in the bush and ready to attack if the government went on with disarmament initiative.

Concerning the issue of generality of the information, it is important to stress that journalists in their work of reporting and publishing news are supposed to give specific information with verifiable facts to support their points, which means that journalists must always have facts to back up the news the report.

As explained above, the report was not specific. It was not specific whether the youth were from all counties of Lakes or from one county. Lakes State as it is known has eight counties, which include: Cueibet County, Rumbek North, Rumbek East, Rumbek Centre, Yirol West and East, Awecriel and Wulu. The message which the publication gives when one reads that report on SudanTribune is that youth from eight counties deserted their counties and went to the forest to hide and if possible stage rebellion against the government.

With due respect to the report, it was too general to be true to the understanding of any normal person. This is because unless it is backed up by the information from where it occurred or from the eyewitness on the ground where it took place but the report did not explain this, what the report gave was the statement from senior police officer who did not reveal his identity, which needs further corroboration from additional witnesses.

In order to confirm the report as it appeared on SudanTribune, I took initiative to contact the people in Cueibet and the report that I received from those people I spoke with stated that there were no youth who had deserted Cueibet County. The reason I contacted Cueibet first was because it is where I come from and they can tell me the truth.

The information that I received from Cueibet County that there were no youth who deserted the county was also confirmed by other four Counties in Lakes State of Awecriel, Yirol West and East, Rumbek North and Wullu.

In addition, some people who made comment on Facebook on the same issue, concerning deserting counties by the youth and went to camp in the bush confirmed that there was nothing of the sort which took place. Peter Mading on‎ Lakes State People All Over The World on June 24 at 10:46pm wrote explaining that the information published on SudanTribune was false and wrong.

Lakes State People All Over The World is a Facebook page opened for the people of Lakes State Worldwide where they post their comments or information or clarification for some information wrongly reported for the consumption of the people of Lakes State. In his comment on that Facebook, Peter Mading wrote and I quote “…The information I got does not in any way show youth of “counties” which i belief does not include youth of greater Yirol, Cueibet, Wullu n Rumbek North, going to the bush to launch an offensive attack against the State government but show something peculiar to some specific youth of Rumbek centre n Rumbek East which i belief will not help them at all”.

Peter Mading goes on to appeal to the Journalist who published the article on SudanTribune to stop generalizing counties. He said, “…., I appeal to my curiosity journalist to refrain from betraying our people…preaching hatred… Sectionalism…..community vices… Refrain from generalizing the counties because what is happening in Rumbek Counties n Cueibet is not happening in Greater Yirol….As a concern citizen I posted this so that any peace loving persons should condemn such a move or a report…. It is not helping us or shows our intellectual ability… Or wisdom…n if there is a need to rebel…, avoid generalizing the whole youth of counties….let the report be specific to avoid ambiguity ……..”

Indeed as Peter Mading pointed out in his comment on that Facebook, SudanTribune always fabricates and falsifies the issues when it comes to the Lakes State problems because the journalists who report has allowed himself to be driven by personal political ambition hence losing the battle in holding the professional ethics of journalism.

To make it clear, what is happening in Rumbek Counties and Cueibet and not happening in Yirol as Peter Mading touched in his comment has anything to do with rebellion against the government but it is concerning the tribal skirmishes that has been going on for decades and should not therefore be taken to mean that youth are against the government.

Instead, the people of Lakes State are looking up to the government to bring solutions to their problems but the government is too weak to address the problems that are facing them. As a result, the problems go on unabated but instead of SudanTribune with its journalists reporting and publishing the real problems as they are, they twist the report to fit a certain interest they want to achieve. Hence, explaining the main reason behind that report which was published about the youth deserting counties.

Someone may ask that if the people of Lakes State know their own problems why they don’t solve them. Right question as it may appear, but the problems of Lakes State are very serious and grave in nature and civilians alone cannot sit face to face to talk them out and if possible finding the solutions to them without resulting into fighting on that spot.

As stated above, the problems in Lakes State involve many killings, which in some countries like the USA, Canada, or any other developed countries would have been considered as war crimes. Therefore, the people of Lakes State need a third party like government to mediate between them and if possible punish those who commit crimes and then set and enforce laws.

The people of Lakes State need the government to restore peace, rule of law and justice, which are traditional duties of the government in order to assure them the governmental protection. The failure by the government to meet these demands make youth mistrust government and trust themselves and the guns for their own protection.

It should further be stressed that the failure of government to protect them has made the youth to deeply trust their guns as the only weapons which can give them maximum protection. This is why they do not want the government to disarm them before they are assured of protection.

Any attempt by the government to forcefully disarm the youth in Lakes State without assuring them of adequate protection is like depriving them of their lives and by implication it means that they can confront the government before they are rendered helpless to be massacred by cattle raiders from within Lakes State and other neighbouring states.

It is the ground as explained above that made Lakes State youth (if there were any) to run away when the government announced the plan to disarm them. It is important to point out that the long war, which was accompanied by many injustices orchestrated by north against Citizens in Lakes State and injustices that the people committed among themselves without redress has caused a lot of misgiving and mistrust that has further caused different tribes in Lakes State to view each other with contempt and enmity.

Therefore, when the government comes up with any programme of disarming the people, which it considers to be the solution of Lakes State problems, people are not always ready and willing to accept to be disarmed because they feel that they are going to be killed defenselessly. This is why the people of Lakes State always view a programme concerning disarmament with suspicion since they do not trust the government to give them maximum protection both within Lakes State and externally.

Hence, when the government comes up with a programme to disarm the youth, they view such a programme as a means of disempowering them, which will leave them vulnerable to internal and external attacks, and above all, they see such move as a means of depriving them of the source of power to protect their property, which in this case involving their cattle.

In relation to the above, it means that the youth can easily run away when they hear the remorse about disarmament and hide in the bush as a means of avoiding being disarmed by the government without assurances for adequate protection. This further means that if the government insists on disarmament, they can give warning to the government not to disarm them and those who report news should not take such a warning as revolting by the youth against the government.

It should rather be understood that the youth in Lakes State give warning to the government as a way of reminding the government of South Sudan that it has failed to protect them so they have inherent right to take up guns and protect themselves if need arises.

Another fact that needs to be understood involving disarmament programme in Lakes State is that the government sends soldiers that were recruited without any training to disarm the youth, which means that they are not able to respect privacy and dignity of gun-holders, and as a result, the youth who are to be disarmed become defensive and ready to fight their oppressors as they view them.

It is important to stress further that the government of South Sudan before disarming cattle keepers must train a group of people how to disarm the civilians without tempering with the human rights and personal dignity of guns holders.

The government also overlooks another crucial issue of what should be done after the gun holder is disarmed. For instance, majority of the youth in Lakes State buy those guns with more than one cows. This implies that the holder of that particular gun needs to be paid because he has proprietary interest in the guns, which constitutes a right to property in the sense of law.

All the above complications explain why youth wants to avoid disarmament by all costs and if possible they are even ready to fight in order to retain their guns, which explain, if any, why they run into bush and hid there.

Therefore, any journalist who is interested in finding out the problems of Lakes State should not only report what happened but he or she should also report why did it happen as it happened. SudanTribune and the Journalist who reported that Youth in Lakes State had deserted the counties should have not only reported why they ran into bush and ready to fight the government but should have further gone ahead to interview the youth as to why they do not want to be disarmed by the government.

However, given the fact that some journalists are not trained on the principles and ethical values of journalism, they turn to exploit the ignorance, illiteracy of the people, preying on their vanity, ignorance, or loneliness, gaining their trust and betraying them without remorse as Janet Malcolm observed in 1990 in The Journalist and the Murderer.

Most of the Journalists like the one who published the news about Lakes State on SudanTribune on June 23, 2014 look impressive to the gullible, but in real sense, is something that cannot be adored simply because they are not right and honest in reporting.
Failure to observe the principles or ethical principles of journalism as explained above is dangerous to the public welfare because the news poisons public perception and changes their attitude hence covering up the real problems which needs the real solution.

For instance, the youth in Lakes State do not want to fight government per se but they warn government not to disarm them without proper protection and it is on this point which the journalist who report should have concentrated on in order to inform the government to protect the citizens.

Instead, the reporter reported the situation in Lakes State as if the youth in Lakes State have a problem with the government of South Sudan, which is not true.

In summary, the report was full of lies, falsification and fabrication of the facts, which indicates ethical irresponsibility of the one who reported and published the news on SudanTribune.

The report in addition is an affront to the noble calling of journalism, full of political vice and blown out of proportion and context. Journalism like law is a noble calling and must be guarded against publishing unfounded information and against being marred with personal interest, which will in turn affect the public interest.

It is in the public interest that journalist should publish real and true information from the true source. It, therefore, implies that whether someone hates a person or not, justice must be done to that person when it comes to report about him or her. As I believe that the reason for reporting is not to destroy the person or government but to see that the government change for better.

In short, as far as I know, what happened in Lakes State was correct because the disarmament plan was announced but it was not true that the youth in Lakes State in all counties had run to the bush and warned the government of any attack if the government went on with plan to disarm them. If such warning was given then it was not given by the youth from all counties.


Peaceful coexistence: How the Equatorians got it right!

BY: Dr Peter Kopling MD, South Sudan, JUN/29/2014, SSN;

The formulas to peaceful coexistence among all tribes in South Sudan already exist. The formulas for bloodshed and destructive coexistence between the tribes in South Sudan do also exist, it comes down to understanding these two paths and deciding what is it that our country needs most and which choice will get us there.

The responses to these two choices are already in plain view and we only need to look no farther than within our communities and we shall discover it has been there all along!

The bitter truth must be told, South Sudan has two regions, one that is stable and stabilizing and the other unstable and destructive. All we need to do is decide what we want, do we want peace, if this be the case then all we need to study are the stable and peaceful regions to see how they do it, how they live with each other, how they treat each other’s lands, neighboring tribes and their belongings to include lands.

If we want a conflicting South Sudan then all we need to do is study the way of life, perception of life and mindset of the unstable region of our nation. How they treat each other, and how they treat all that is important to them and their neighboring tribes.

There can never be peace if we do not take time to understand what is important for others and instead impose our cultural ways on others in their respective ancestral lands.

Colonialism tried this and failed! We are many nations under one, the fact that must not be ignored and the more reason it must be understood and approached delicately not with arrogance.

Without any doubt the Equatorian region emerged as the stable and peaceful part of South Sudan, while the Jiengs land, the destructive part of the Country.

Predating December 2013, the Jiengs land had numerous insurgencies already against the infant government.

So we need to study the prevailing mentalities in the Jiengs land and avoid this if we are to survive as a nation and we must prevent them from exporting these raw materials of death to other parts of South Sudan.

The honest truth is even if the Jiengs region were to announce today their desire to split and form a different country or join the Jalabas, believe you me, the rest of South Sudan will breath a shay and will not beg them to remain as part of the united South Sudan and the Jiengs nation will only end up tearing each other down as long as they maintain their current predatory mentality of glorifying bloodshed and vilifying peacefulness.

It must be pointed out the Equatorian region has numerous tribes of totally different cultures and mentalities although the Jiengs mischievously and derogatorily tend to refer to the Equatorians as if they are a single tribe!

But what they do not realize is they are acknowledging the fact that Equatorians have achieved brotherhood among the different tribes despite of their diversity, which must serve as a role model for South Sudan, if there is still any hope for us to exist as a nation!

What is commonly shared by majority of these Equatorian tribes however is that Godliness and goodness which is praised rather than savagery of bloodshed, disregards to the sacredness of human life misnomer by the Jiengs as bravery.

Equatorian tribes know their ancestral boundaries and they respect these boundaries while the Jiengs have nomadic mindsets! It seems they can go away from their ancestral land and never even miss them, and even bury their national hero away from home with cynical implications!

The Equatorian tribes respect the cultures of one another but more so each tribe loves their ancestral land as they love themselves! One’s very existence for Equatorian tribes are indistinguishable with one’s ancestral lands!

The land is where your father and forefathers are buried, time immemorial! It is what gives meaning to your existence and to life, it is what gives you food, it is also what gives you fishing and hunting’s rights, thus the land is sacred in Equatorian tribes, wars were fought in the past to protect and preserve them not cows, it is on this basis Equatorian initiated the war of independence to preserve this ownership and rights.

Just as the Jiengs protect their cows at all costs, they compose songs to their cows because this is their lifeline, their attachment to their lands does not carry the same significance as to Equatorian just as Equatorian attachments to cows is not the same as among the Jiengs who look at the land as a place for their cows to graze.

Equatorians look at their land as a place that gives them life but also that holds the meaning of their very existence and the ancestral souls and their bones are laid at rest in these lands. Thus it is very customary in most Equatorian tribes; they will go at great costs and heavy expenses to return the remains of their sons and daughters to be buried in their ancestral land among their ancestors for their souls to rest in peace otherwise will keep wandering around until rituals are performed to bring them to their ancestral home and into the family! This return of the dead sons and daughters of the land is from as far as the Americas!

Thus the significance of land for Equatorian has no equivalent in the Jiengs culture. Our Lands are more than the cows to Jiengs! To ignore and belittle the protectiveness of Equatorian with their ancestral land is to belittle their very existence in South Sudan thus to breed disunity!

Unity is indeed the natural result of respect of these things; supreme of them is land, for which we fought the Jalaba for 50 years! This is why we fell off with the Jalabas, how different if not worst are the Jiengs compare to the Jalabas in disregarding ancestral and tribal rights to lands, thus falling off will be a natural consequence unless we are saved by mutual respect AKA Federalism?

Now with these thousands of years of practice of land protections how do the Equatorian relate to each other’s tribe, and land without much of the violence found in the Dinka lands?

You will not find a group of Muru’s or Kuku going to Acholi land and lay claim of an area in Acholi heartland as their own land in disregard to the Acholis, for in the first place why will the Murus do this since they love their ancestral land and are tied spiritually to their lands and people? You will not see any group of Equatorian moving to other territory, forming their own chiefdom and tribal system in other people’s tribal land!

So is there or there is no Kokora between Equatorian tribes although they are many tribes not the same ones? The answer is NO! Migration happens freely and often but on an individual or family basis! Never a whole village uprooting themselves to go occupy the tribal lands of others in the name of whatever is promised to them by whoever! In the first place they will oppose such propositions, which they know outright breeds fights, deaths, and disrupts peace!

When an individual or Muru family decides to move to Acholi land, once they get there, they are always welcomed warmly as guests; they then live by the local norms and customs, as do the owners of the land!

They respect the locals and do not insult them as cowards or call them names such as Nyamnyam or we fought the Jalabas here so now we earned the right to be here. For you cannot visit your brother’s house, while he is hosting you, and start to insult his wife, abuse his children and expect to not be kicked out of your brother’s house simply because he is your brother!

Having fought for independence can not be used to dislodge others from their ancestral land otherwise it was not a war of independence but rather a war of Dinka expansionism and colonization, Otherwise it was not a war against the Jalaba but rather against the Equatorian for their lands.

Being in a relative’s house comes with first recognizing it is not your house but that of your brother, and you also have yours and you are a visitor which comes with responsibility of being beneficial to your host and not being a parasite or affecting your host negatively neither altering his way of life!

Indeed once an Equatorian moves to on other’s tribal territory, he learns the local language, he eats the local food, he practice the local tradition and become essentially one of the local tribe in another words becomes assimilated not disruptive and boastful! If he does not have appreciations of the new tribe he moves to, he simply stays back in his ancestral land and among his people not impose himself on the other tribe, making others miserable just as he is.

This is how peace is maintained among the tribes in Equatoria! No one tribe forcefully settle or grab someone else ancestral land equivalent of cattle rustling in the Jiengs land. This Jiengs government engineers the recent land strife we witnessed between the sisterly tribes of the Acholis and the Ma’dis!

The irony is, those who have no culture of peace try to preach peace to those who are peaceful! Those who have no notion, leave alone, the experience of peaceful intertribal coexistence try to forge what they called building a national identity, which is a red herring for ethnic cleansing given they have neither respect nor appreciation for other tribes thus leading to the Dinkanization project now ongoing to uproot other tribes from their ancestral land! Their war against the Nuer is part and partial of this.

They have no understanding other than that of nomadic life style leading them to preach if we are one nation then all ancestral boundaries are to be erased to allow them to practice their nomadic lifestyle at the expenses of others, from North to South and from east to west that are none Nomadic! This nomadic mindset and the revenge on Equatorian for Kokora are what drives then,even embedded in the Jieng written transitional constitutions.

It is thus only the Jiengs that trespasses all over South Sudan in disregards to other peoples backyard and they have no understanding why this is causing aches for their fellow countrymen, the Equatorian in particular, for this trespassing is in Keeping with Nomadic lifestyle which is never to be nationalized unless to our own perils for all we need to see is what it has done to the Dinkaland from which they are fleeing!!!

In the Jiengs lands, the cow reign supreme, and whoever can, will steal what he does not have in the process, shedding human blood! Thus it is a culture of thieves and bloodshed utterly incompatible with the prevailing Equatorian cultures! Indeed if there is any hope for the Jiengs, they must become like Equatorian, Hold human lives above cows life and the love for ancestral lands supreme above the love for cows. How can you love others if you do not love yourselves more than your love for animals?

In essence the federalism we are debating about is already practiced in Equatoria, each individual loving his family, tribes, their ancestral land, protecting it and building it, but also very much respecting that which belongs to other tribes, for if you caused them to lose theirs, someone else will cause you to lose yours.

Each individual, not an entire clan, tribe or bulk of people, is free to move to any part of eqautorian region and remain what sh/e is or take the identity and culture of the tribe that hosts him/her, no one forces, insights, neither prevents him/her to make this choice and sh/e in turn do not try to change the ways of, annihilate or obliterate other tribes.

The hope and formulae for South Sudanese unity is already being practice in Equatoria! It has been here all this time and no one seems to recognize it.

This is the model for South Sudan and federalism thus makes sense to Equatorian because it is already what they practice and what has given them peaceful coexistence, how they relate to each other on the basis of recognizing each other’s tribes and tribal lands, what is important to them and respecting each other in all aspects!

Federalism gives power to the individuals, people and regions! The government respects the people rather than the other way round; Master- slave relations.

Those who are opposed to this are those who want the people to worship the government and those who want to use the power of the government to impose on others and have no respects for other peoples’ cultures, way of life, aspirations and their lands.

The true brotherhood we all want is based on the model found in Equatoria and the intertribal relationships that exists in Equatoria for centuries. This is the case then no one has to fear Kokora happening due to federalism, there is no Kokora among Equatorian tribes, what makes it so? If loving your ancestral land and letting others do the same is Kokora then, so be it! If dislodging others from their ancestral land is what it takes to form a nation to the benefit of one tribe then is it any wonders that such is now heading straight to hell in our very eyes?

For in mutual respect is peace, not in master slave relation and others relinquishing their natural possessions and rights. Mutual respect has worked in Equatoria and they coexist peacefully!

One fact is clear, if there is federalism or not, the respect for land must reign supreme and the schemes for land thieving and dominance must come to an end, as long as this does not happen there shall be no peace in South Sudan, There shall only be oppressors and the oppressed!

If we truly want a land of the free, prosperity and justice for all then the tool to achieve this is federalism and encouraging the life styles of the Equatorian tribes.

Think of this as the relationship between you and your brother who is married and has his own house and cows, just as you! You respect his wife, children and property and he in turn respect yours. When he takes care of his house, it is not in opposition to you! Simply, you need to do the same for yours, for brotherhood does not negate your responsibility to your personal house. Just because you are brothers does not mean you need to merge houses and not having individual homes in pretense of fear of Kokora.

Mutual respect is how you keep brotherhood not by taking his wives forcefully or milking his cows forcefully in the name of brotherhood!

Federalism thus gives all South Sudanese, not just some, that power to protect one’s own house and decide what is for breakfast rather being dictated by the self proclaimed big brother, in the current system, regardless of who, will always be the oppressor!

South Sudan is ready for peace, which equals federalism; to say south Sudan is not ready for federalism is to say those who are having the lion share of the goodies are not ready to let it go and grant South Sudanese; Equality, justice, Liberty, prosperity for all and thus peace!

Without federalism in South Sudan, there shall only be oppressors and the oppressed!

Dr. Peter Kopling.


Kiir is a “Constitutional President,” not a “Democratically Elected President!”

BY: Kuir ë Garang, CANADA, JUN/29/2014, SSN;

Most of us in South Sudan are not independent thinkers even when we pretend we are! Some South Sudanese writers and thinkers in Southern States of the country support Federalism not because they’ve actually looked into the inherent benefits to the constituents of the region but because the majority of the citizens embrace it given their flimsy understanding of the system, or because vocal voices in their areas support it, or that, they believe, it’ll give them an opportunity to get rid of the ‘occupiers’ on their land.

None of the supporters of Federalism has ever advanced any convincing reason that’s not either reminiscent of the infamous 1980s ‘Kokora’ or the regionalized tribalism and regionalist sycophancy.

States have governors, parliaments, state MPs, State laws. We somehow have a system that’s structurally resembling other Federal Systems in the world. What is lacking is to actually give more powers to the states and limiting president’s interference in state affairs.

And those who oppose Federalism do so because they support the government and the government opposes it. And the government has absolutely no credible reason advanced in opposition to the system and why they think Federalism would be bad.

The only reason they have is that Riek has rekindled the flame of Federalism. This is not the first time Riek has done something like this. Riek feeds on popular aspirations of the people and exploits them.

Self-determination wasn’t a darling of the SPLA/SPLM until Dr. Riek and Dr. Lam made it their focal point in Abuja I in 1992. It was only one of the alternatives in Dr. John’s famous multi-layered Vend Diagrams but not the preferred alternative. UNITY of Sudan was!

The two doctors wanted to outsmart Dr. John Garang. However, the way Dr. John changed astonished not only the doctors, but Garang’s friends in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). Garang embraced Self-Determination to the chagrin of the Nasir duo and even made it central to Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA); giving birth to Referendum!

Riek and Lam had met an ideological propagandists, ideological chameleon, and also, an ideological wizard who couldn’t be outsmarted.

So folks who oppose Federalism are doing so because people they support don’t like it. They’ve not presented any convincing reason why they oppose it.

This is our major problem. We ally based on irrational positions we hide in ideological, tribalized regionalism and intellectualized tribalism. We don’t think for ourselves!

That’s why we hear time and again from South Sudanese officials and government supporters that President Salva Kiir Mayardit is a “democratically elected president” of South Sudan!

No! President Kiir was a democratically elected president of the government of ‘Southern Sudan.’ He’s a CONSTITUTIONAL President of the Republic of South Sudan. There was no election held after the independence of South Sudan! None!

We hear from many government officials that President Kiir is the legitimate president of South Sudan because he’s the democratically elected president. Yes, he’s the legitimate president of South Sudan because the Transitional Constitution (2011) says so not because he’s elected.

Chapter II, Article 97 (3) of the Transitional constitution states: “The incumbent elected President of the Government of Southern Sudan shall be the President of the Republic of South Sudan.”

It says elected president of ‘Government of Southern Sudan.’ It doesn’t say elected ‘President of the Republic of South Sudan.’

Article 100 states: “The tenure of the office of the President of the Republic of South Sudan shall be four years, commencing from July 9, 2011.”

What makes the president Legitimate in the Republic of South Sudan is because the constitution says so not because he is elected in an independent South Sudan.

Note that the president tenure is not being counted from the time the president was elected (2010). It’s starting from the independence of the Nation, January 9, 2011.

So it’s utterly wrong to say that President Kiir is a ‘democratically elected president!’ President Kiir’s current legitimacy started on July 9, 2011. Unless I’ve been sleeping between 2011 and 2013 and that a National Election was held then!

Kuir ë Garang is a South Sudanese author and poet living in Canada. For more information, visit www.kuirthiy.info or www.youtube.com/kuirthiytv


No community is the enemy to other community, a wrong choice of words by enemies of peace

BY: John Adoor Deng, Australia, JUN/27/2014, SSN;

The choices of words continue to add insults into the already worsen situation in South Sudan. All we hear daily are people saying that, Dinka is a bad community, Nuer community is bad, Murle community is worse and even generalise that Equatorian (combination of multiple groups) communities are obnoxious just to name a few. However, not only did these culprits stop from there, they mouthed that Dinka community is the enemy to Nuer community, Murle community is the enemy to Dinka, and so are Equatorian and Shilluk communities enemies to both Dinka, Nuer and Murle and vis-versa and the list is endless.

Thus, a foreigner who is fed with this vague information could realistically see no sense of cohesion and hope of a united country. Some of the badly fed foreigners go to their countries to project bad image of our country. Of course, this piece is here to demystify such fallacious.

Day and night I argue that no community is the enemy to other community, and there is no such thing as absolute community collective enmity towards other groups.

Indeed, I do not disbelieve that there are conflicts that in some cases partially involve the above communities, either in the forms of cattle raiding, child abduction or recently politically motivated conflicts.

However, the correct definitions of such conflicts are intrinsic motivation of individuals wanting to achieve certain ambitions or goals. Arguably, these communities to some extent are collided by few elements that waged assaults to achieve not community collective goals but their individual interests.

For example, the cattle raiding initiatives are concocted by young people outside their communities’ conventions, in other words, community opinion leaders do not play a part in such acts. The chief in Murle, for example, deal with cases of his chiefdom, priests in murle deal with his evangelistic ministries and both have nothing to do with cattle raiding if the case of cattle raiding was launched by elements of murle youths.

In politics, some actors used the communities as their shield and cover to achieve their goals. In recent conflicts, there was no need to massacre innocent civilians in Juba who’ve nothing to do with Riek Machar or the detainees.

Also, the massacre in Bortown was baseless as those civilians killed in Bor had nothing to do with Kiir Mayardit and his inner circles in specific terms. These elements who killed civilians on both sides of the conflicts have this fallacy in mind that, “they are Nuer, and we are dinka, we must kill them, they are dinka, and we are Nuer we must kill them.”

All these acts were done outside of communities’ conventions. Apparently, the Dinka community and Nuer community continue to work together socially; they intermarry each month despite these conflicts. In Juba and Australia and elsewhere marriages between Dinka, Nuer, Murle and Equatorian are taking place. No community is the enemy to any community, and the choice of words must change in order to delimit the context of the conflict.

We cannot afford to be referred to as enemies to one another. We are naturally placed on one piece of land religiously, conditioned to work together as brothers and sisters inhabiting this proudest land of Cush, South Sudan. The word choice of words and the demonic generalisation of conflict must be got rid of from those brothers and sisters who only, unfortunately, found comfort in talking, inciting conflicts between our blessed communities.

The Author is John Adoor Deng, BA, BTH, MPRL, MPPP(current) and director of South Sudan Support Foundation. He is reachable by emailing: johnadoordeng@yahoo.com.au


Proposed Federal system for future South Sudan: Let us serialize it, part 3

BY: Dr. Sindani Sebit, NAIROBI, JUN/27/2014, SSN;

Part 3 of these series focuses basically on the Federal structures under the Federal President (Prime Minister). These structures include the cabinet, defense and Federal law enforcement agencies. From the graphic illustration below, you will notice that the Parliament and the Judiciary is not included here because these two constitutional institutions are independent of the President (Prime Minister).

The basic idea is to enable the people of South Sudan critically understand the separation of powers at Federal level and devolution of powers to the state. It is apparent that the organized forces such as the police, wild life, internal security services, fire brigade or any form of organized forces are not part of the Federal government and thus do not constitute a part of the federal law enforcement but are rather under the state governments.

In this article the plan to reorganize the defense will not be discussed suffice to say the number of the army with be reduced to not more that 80,000 (infantry, air force and navy) while the restructuring will take into account qualification of the soldiers, age, sex and equality and equity within the federal Republic of South Sudan.

This restructuring will be done by independent experts including foreigners who have experience in army restructuring. Therefore the areas that will be discussed here are the functions of the executive including the President (Prime Minister), the cabinet in general and the roles of the federal law enforcement services.

The individual ministerial portfolios will also not be discussed because the intention of the article is not to specify which ministries will be established and how many but the number should be between 18 to 24 ministries.

The purpose of this article is to enable everyone understand the functions of the president and the institution under the presidency and feed back with constructive suggestions.

Structures under the Federal President/Prime Minister

Executive

The executive authority of the Federal Government of South Sudan is derived from the people. This must be exercised in accordance to the constitution based on the principle of service to the people and to foster their wellbeing.

The Executive shall consist of the President (Prime minister), deputy President (Prime minister) and the cabinet. The composition of the executive should reflect the regional and ethnic diversity of the people of South Sudan. This means equality and equity must be the principle on which the president should appoint the cabinet. This balance is crucial in order to create unity and avoid marginalization of some ethnic groups.

Certainly not all the 64 tribes of South Sudan will be in the cabinet but attempts must be made to ensure that there is no domination by one or two tribes or regions. On the other hand equity must be observed so that disadvantaged groups such as women, the disable and other marginalized groups cannot be ignored when the government is being formed.

President (Prime Minister)

Authority of the President (Prime Minister)

The President (Prime Minster) shall be the head of State and government and commander in chief for the defense forces. These include the infantry, air force, the navy and the federal law enforcement services that include federal intelligence service (FIS), Immigration and Custom Service (ICS), Drug Enforcement and Illegal Trafficking service (DEIT) and Special Security Service (SSS).

The President (Prime Minister) shall also be the chairman of the federal security council which should comprise of the President (Prime Minister), his/her deputy, the heads of the defense forces, the head of the federal intelligence service, the federal foreign minister, secretary to the cabinet and the governor of the state that hosts the federal capital. The President (Prime Minister) will exercise authority of the federal government with assistance of the deputy President (Prime minister) and the cabinet.

Role of the President (Prime minister)

The role of the President (Prime Minister) is to respect, uphold and guard the federal constitution. He/she must exercise powers vested on him/her by the constitution. He/she shall not rule by decrees but only through the articles of the constitution. The President (Prime Minister) though will enjoy the immunity of office, shall not be above the law. He/she shall promote and enhance the unity of the Federal republic of South Sudan, ensures that diversity of the people and ethnic communities are respected. He/she must protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and rule of law as enshrined in the constitution. It must be emphasized here that respect for South Sudan diversity within united South Sudan will work to enhance mutual understanding and trust among the various tribes of South Sudan and will enrich the various South Sudan cultural beliefs and practices. This will further strengthen unity and harmony among the citizenry of South Sudan.

Functions of the President (Prime minister)

Constitutionally the Federal President (Prime Minster) shall perform the following functions:
• Address the opening of parliament and specific sittings of the parliament
• Report annually to the nation by submitting to parliament the extent of implementation of government program and progress achieved.
• Nominate and with approval of the federal parliament appoint or dismiss:
 Cabinet ministers
 Attorney General
 Permanent secretaries
 High commissioners, ambassadors, diplomatic and consular representatives
• Chair cabinet, direct and coordinate the functions of the federal ministers and government departments
• Declare state of emergency and with approval of parliament declare war. The President (Prime Minster) under no circumstance should declare war without approval of the federal Assembly.
• Promote and enhance the unity of the nation, ensure that diversity of the people and ethnic communities are respected, human rights and fundamental freedoms and rules of law are protected
• President (Prime minister) has no constitutional powers to remove from office any elected members of government at all levels of administration. These include
 MPs
 Governors
 County commissioners
 County counselors
The purpose here is to deny the president (Prime Minister) any powers that he/she can use to remove peoples’ elected representatives and to respect the devolution of powers to the states. This will enable the peoples’ representatives and heads of Federal states to work without undue fear of being unconstitutionally removed from office by the President (Prime Minister).

Qualification of the President

In case where the country opts for federal President, in order for anybody to be elected as Federal President he/she must be:
• Citizen of South Sudan
• At least must have been a governor of a federal state or a senator before standing for the election of president.
• At least 35 years of age
• Graduate from any recognized university

Qualification of the Prime Minister

If the country opts for Prime Minister as the head of government like in UK, Indian and many federal states, the candidate for this post should be:
• Citizen of South Sudan
• Leader of the party with highest number of MPs in Parliament or highest number of MPs of collusion parties in parliament
• Has been elected as a member of parliament by his party or collusion
• At least 35 years of age
• Graduate from any recognized university

Election of the President

The Federal President shall be elected directly by the people by universal suffrage in an election organized by the Federal Electoral Commission as stipulated in the constitution while for Prime Minister; he/she shall be elected by parliament from the party or collusion of parties with the highest number of MPs.

Vacancy in the President (Prime Minster) office

When the president dies or becomes incapacitated, his/her deputy will take over until new elections are called in accordance with the constitutional provisions pertaining to elections. However, in case of Prime Minister; if he/she dies or becomes incapacitated while in office, his/her party or collusion can nominate another member of parliament from his/her party or collusion to be elected acting Prime Minister until new elections are conducted according to election calendar as stipulated in the constitution. In case the party or the collusion of the Prime Minister looses majority or confidence vote, new national election shall be called as stipulated in the constitution.

Deputy President (Prime Minister)

He must be the principal assistant. He/she will perform the functions assigned by the President (Prime minister) and acts as President (Prime minister) during the absence of the President (Prime Minister).

Federal Cabinet
The federal cabinet shall consist of the President (Prime Minister), his/her deputy, the Attorney General and not less than 18 and not more than 24 ministers. The Federal President (Prime Minister) will nominate all proposed cabinet ministers, present them for vetting and approval by the Federal Parliament before they appointed ministers. Likewise, cabinet ministers shall only be dismissed by the President (Prime Minister) after due approval by the Federal Parliament. This is to avoid nepotism, incompetence and unqualified people being appointed as ministers. It will also weed out people who might have been corrupt or tribalistic in their previous duties. Cabinet ministers should be selected from qualified civil servants and not members of parliament so that parliament has no conflict of interest in approving the cabinet.

Conversely the Federal Parliament may propose a motion requiring the President (Prime minister) to dismiss a cabinet member only on the following grounds:
• Gross violation of the provision of the constitution or any other law
• Serious reasons for believing that the said member has committed a crime under federal or international law.
In such situations, the President (Prime Minister) is required to oblige. However, clear procedures for such request by parliament, shall be stipulated in the constitution.

Although cabinet ministers are accountable to the President (Prime minister), they must attend to any summons by the committee of the parliament so as to enlighten the parliament about their activities and also to be accountable for their actions. Performance contract do usually improve performance and accountability and therefore all cabinet ministers shall be required to sign performance contract at beginning of their term of office. These contracts shall be reviewed at end of every year to determine if the concern minister has fulfilled his/her obligations. Failure to do so will trigger parliamentary process to remove the minister.

Attorney general

The attorney General is a member of cabinet. He is not a part of the Judiciary. Attorney is the principal legal adviser to the Federal government. He/she represents the Federal Government in court or any other legal or criminal proceedings. He/she can be a friend of court in any proceedings where the Federal government is not a party. His/her role is to promote, protect and uphold the rule of law and defend the public interest. He can also be assigned any function by the President (Prime Minister).

The Attorney General shall be nominated by the President (Prime Minister) and with approval of parliament appointed to office. The process of approval by parliament should be done transparently and rigorously to avoid tribalism, nepotism and favouritism. He/she should have qualification equivalent to Federal Chief Justice and should serve for 5 years but can be reappointed if necessary.

Director of persecution

In order to have independent and impartial persecution system, an independent office of persecutor shall be created. This office shall have right to tenure of office for 5 years and renewable for the same period. The occupant of the office shall be nominated by the President who will seek for approval of parliament before his/her appointment. The qualification of the persecutor should be at the level of Judge of the Federal Court of Appeal. The persecutor shall have powers to direct the commissioner of police to investigate any information or allegation of criminal conduct and will exercise powers of persecution. In so doing he/she may institute and undertake criminal proceedings against any person before any court; take over and continue any criminal proceedings started in any court and can discontinue, at any stage before judgment is delivered, any criminal proceedings.

The persecutor shall not require the consent of any person or authority for commencement of criminal proceedings. He/she shall not be under the direction of any person or authority but should have regard for public interest, the interest of administration of justice and avoid abuse of the legal process.

The South Sudan Federal Law Enforcement Agency
The Federally operated agencies are essential to enforce various types of laws in the South Sudan that cannot be devolved to the states. These services usually cut across the states and in most cases cannot be managed at state level. These are services that cannot be assigned to organized forces under the state. The services that will be implemented by the federal Law Enforcement Agencies include:
1. Protecting, preventing, countering, and investigating terrorism;
2. Illicit drug trafficking;
3. Transnational and multi-jurisdictional crime;
4. Organized people smuggling, human trafficking and slavery;
5. Serious fraud against the Nation;
6. High-tech crime involving information technology and communications;
7. Peacekeeping and capacity building; and
8. Money laundering;
The Federal Law Enforcement Agency is divided into four (4) federal law enforcement organs namely:
Federal Intelligence Service (FIS)
The Federal Intelligence Service is a highly secretive federal law enforcement organ whose mission is to collect and evaluate foreign intelligence in an effort to protect the security of Federal Republic of South Sudan. It may also be involved in covert activities in other countries at the discretion of the President (Prime Minister) of the Federal Republic of South Sudan. It will be responsible in combating international terrorism. Therefore it will frequently work with other countries to accomplish this effort.
Immigration and Customs Services (ICS)
ICS shall be charged with enforcing laws involving border control, customs, trade and immigration. It constitutes the Federal police force that enforces illegal immigration activities throughout the Federal Republic of South Sudan and investigates import and export illegal goods and materials.

Drug Enforcement and Illegal Trafficking (DEIT)
DEIT shall be charged with the responsibility of investigating and enforcing laws related to illegal trafficking of firearms and explosives as well as the theft and the unlawful sale and distribution of alcohol and tobacco. It is also responsible for enforcing laws relating to controlled substances like marijuana, cocaine and heroin. It will work with other state and county organized forces as well as with foreign governments to reduce the trafficking of illegal drugs.
Special Security Service (SSS)
The Special Service Service’s primary function is to protect the President (Prime Minister) of the Federal Republic of South Sudan and his/her immediate family as well as the Vice-President and other high ranking government officials who might face security threats. It will also be tasked with protecting Federal Courts and Judges. It will deal squarely with counterfeiting of currency, money laundering, internet (Cyber) security and threat, fraud, and credit card fraud. In addition, it will serve as covert law enforcement on Federal Republic of South Sudan aircrafts and other high value targets in the country.
In conclusion, compared to the current system of governance in South Sudan, the federal system proposed here curtails the dictatorial powers of the President, affirms the independence of the Parliament and Judiciary and boasted the oversight role of Parliament over the executive. The President will have no powers to appoint his cronies or tribal bigots to office without approval from Parliament. This system will indeed counter the rampant corruption, tribalism, nepotism and favouritism in South Sudan. It will also frustrate the efforts of any President (Prime Minister) from becoming a dictator.

Sindani Sebit
Nairobi; Kenya


Dystrocracy or Stratocracy: The Return of the 19th Century to South Sudan!

BY: Deng Mangok Ayuel, UNITY STATE, JUN/27/2014, SSN;

A friend once told me that the wealthy elites in our country didn’t want to “roll back” the new political deal when self-indulgence tempered with patriotism, nationalism but wanted to roll back the entire 19th century political weights and heights when things gone astray politically.

His point was that military or dictatorship worked well in 19th century in Africa. I didn’t fully appreciate his antidote until our country turned into a military camp after a failed coup attempt in December, 2013. Finally I jokingly told him that his political magic should be sold to those who wanted to take power by force in the baby nation, South Sudan.

The political turmoil which caused rebellion in 2013 was instigated by paradoxical reactions, political rivalry within the SPLM and wary feelings among politicians within the same political machine, political grouping, and prophetic hope for leadership by individuals.

And the same chaos which led to a failed coup attempt in Juba inevitably followed too, after Dr Machar, Mr Amum and the likes were fired by President Kiir from his government or the SPLM national convention itself made the day. Thereafter, Dr Machar, Peter Gadet and Marial Chinuong should be blamed for all the killings of innocent lives in the new nation.

Is Coup d’état a political fashion in Africa?
With the dawn of independent in the late 50’s and early 60’s, elation and new hopes swept through Africa after nations attained self-governments. There were new dreams and expectations as the colonial masters packed their luggage and handed over the instruments of power to Africans. It was the end of a longer struggle for freedom, in which so many people had suffered. It was the end of slavery, human dilapidation and exploitation.

However, these dreams were soon shattered as governments had shortly fell victim to the coup d’état across the continent. The new military rulers accused the civilian government of everything from corruption and incompetence to mismanagement of the national economy and resources. Experience has shown that the military are no better than civilians when it comes to governance in Africa, although they claimed to be good angels.

Subsequently, African contemporary political and socio-economic problems, military coup d’état had inclined the continent into even further suffering and commotion. This had been previously the case in Uganda, Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Congo, Mali and several other African states, apart from South Sudan whose coup attempt failed last year.

The future propensity is that coup in Africa will remain a common trend so long political and economic instability exists. Analytically, the political intention for mechanized failed coup attempt in South Sudan by politicians was to:
• Have a leader {Kiir} overthrown for new system of government to reign.
• Have Dr Gerang’s boys political dreams fulfilled.
• Have Dr Machar aspiration for presidency easily materialized.
• Have President Kiir and his groups fished out of politics forever.
• Fight corruption, strengthen diplomacy, transform SPLM and revive shattered economic according to them.
• Strengthen South Sudanism worldwide.

As South Sudan is currently paining or bleeding – innocent lives are still being taken, trust already lost, movement of citizens across the states in the country is avoided – things are not really moving as needed by the citizens, nevertheless, leaders must bring back our country. There is a need for leaders to continue negotiation, table their political differences in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in order to end the blood-shed in the new nation. Peace is really needed.

Why force leaders to stratocracy?

I thought about writing this piece after hearing President Kiir addressing the August House in Juba concerning the upcoming interim government with rebel of Dr Machar. And in his words, President Kiir clearly stated that “any interim government in South Sudan without me as president is a red line …?” The president is willingly anticipated to make the war comes to an end should he be given a chance to form and lead the interim government.

Is it easy to exclude an elected leader from interim government in South Sudan? I wanted to remind you that president Kiir is the Commander-in-Chief of the SPLA. He will not easily accept to be overthrown – he should head the interim government if South Sudanese and IGAD mediators wanted peace to reign.

We all say “my country”, but we don’t mean that we own it, like we own our computers, books and houses. And if others think that South Sudan is their property – that they should destroy it as they sought – it’s obviously worth saying that those who fight fire with fire end up with ashes. Nobody need war in South Sudan expect politicians – but are their kids in frontline fighting their common and political enemies?

However, interim government without president Kiir is impossible. We should be abstemious. Dr Machar rebelled and fought in order to get power after sacked as vice president. Mr Amum and his group are also dreaming of doing anything – they think they are politically clean after a mess; yearning for a chance to knock one of them and the rest shall milk the same government in Juba.

As democracy looked ugly after Dr Machar and Amum were sacked, what type of government {system} is appropriate for those who do easily fire up arms when sacked from the system of government? All of us are men but we should be law abiding people. The world has no owner. Hitler has gone …! Mr Charles Taylor is now imprisoned for 50 years.

Nobody is above the law! Anyone who dreams for presidency should wait for election, lest the current leadership may turn to stratocracy because when constitution is not respected, all of us become vulnerable to our doings, literally thinking to be everybody everywhere.
Saddam Hussein could have said it, and really felt that it was factually his. It does not matter if your title is King or Emperor, President or whatever. What matters is the law. You should respect the law. That is it!

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that democracy works well in some countries in Africa. But are we fashioning to dystrocracy or stratocracy system of government in South Sudan?

Dystrocracy
Dystrocracy is a regime which is so defective governmentally and rebellious to the extent that it might began murdering the whole nation – that it can’t also supply most of its people with food, comfortable shelter, basic needs, and no proper rule of law. Few nations in the world are purely dystrocratic. These facts are not disputed and there is no point in pouring out more statistics about dystrocratic countries.

Every country is composed of ordinary citizens and the swampy classes of politicians, militants, professionals, to run the government and private institutions. Any government institution has a distinctive posture; thus the leadership may be passive, the energetic, professional ones can do anything to make things get going.

In South Sudan, the perspective, perception and political styles are very different. Political, military related issues are done impatiently, rudely and unprofessionally, that make things go beyond our limit as the wrongdoers. If South Sudanese politicians who are opposing the current government claim that they are better than the ones reigning – then is a big “NO,” because South Sudanese political G7 and G4 were in the same government for years. The likes of Alor, Amum, Majak, Yel will not tempered to say Kiir’s government has been doing less than expected because they didn’t resign and waited for the government they deserve.

Prof. Nyamlel Wako, in 2012, said the government is rotten to the core, while working as a deputy minister for the same government but fired after days. Do we need to act against the government we work for?

Our political spirit as patriots, freedom of expression is weak. We should correct ourselves – or South Sudanese refuse correction! We should tell the truth. Coincidently, Prof. Adwok Nyaba, in the aftermath of failed coup attempt, woke up on the 16th of December, 2013, and wrote an article as title reads, ‘Sorry Sir: There was no Coup’, before he was detained as one of coup plotters. However, Dr Nyaba was, again the first person to be released but remained in Juba, even when all the political detainees were released and left for Nairobi.

Finally, he was frustrated and resigned from the SPLM. Maybe his writing made his day out of the SPLM – a party he engineered founding – until he lost his leg in the civil war in Sudan. Was Dr Nyaba’s resignation officially received by the Acting SG for the SPLM?

In his letter of resignation, Dr Adwok has this to say, “I am writing this letter to you as Chairman of the SPLM and as somebody, I have known since 1986”. First, I want to discuss my concerns in respect of the current political situation surrounding the SPLM as the ruling party, and our republic of South Sudan.

As a revolutionary, up to this point in time, I consider myself part of the SPLM and therefore equally responsible by commission or omission for some of the SPLM shortcomings, which have landed into this awkward situation. In this connection, therefore, and without any reservation, chauvinism or shame I offer to self-criticize myself, I resigned.”

Is deserting SPLM a solution to political chaos in South Sudan? Dr Nyaba had been frustrated or tired of doing anything which made no impact politically and socially.

Stratocracy
A stratocracy is a form of government headed by military chiefs. It’s not the same as military dictatorship or military junta where the military’s political power is not enforced or even supported by other laws. Rather, stratocracy is a form of military government in which the state and the military are traditionally or constitutionally the same entity and government positions are always occupied by commissioned officers and military leaders.

Citizens with mandatory and/or voluntary military service, or who have been honorably discharged, have the right to elect and/or govern. The military’s political power is supported by law, the constitution, and the society.

A stratocracy therefore is more often a meritocracy and does not have to be autocratic by nature in order to preserve its right to rule.

Besides, the destiny of South Sudan up to now is in the hands of SPLM/A, its leadership and the members which started as a guerrilla movement. In 2004, at Rumbek freedom square, when CPA was almost fruiting, our late hero Dr Garang addressed the crowd of people and his message goes as quoted, “I and those who joined me in the bush and fought for more than twenty years, have brought to you CPA in a golden plate. Our mission is accomplished.

It is now your turn, especially those who did not have a chance to experience bush-life. When time comes to vote at referendum, it is your golden choice to determine your fate. Would you like to vote to be second class citizens in your own country? It is absolutely your choice.”

And after independent, the SPLM as a ruling party should take care of our country as Dr Garang told us to choose for who we wanted to become in the world. Hence the party dispute has been at the heart of the current crisis and its resolution is crucial to address national governance issues that will ultimately change the country and the people of South Sudan for affluence.

What will also force others to rule the country at their own will is federalism which is not wanted at this crucial time, and all the demand from rebels that can’t easily be fulfilled by the leadership …! The choice is yours.

It’s unpatriotic for politicians to put their political jobs a priority than security, basic needs for citizens who are sufferings in the country. Let’s move our country wisely, lest we shall make others as Mugabes, Musevenis and the late Amin of our new nation.

Deng Mangok Ayuel is a columnist, blogger and humanitarian worker. He currently lives in Unity State and can be reached via mangokson@gmail.com

Time for actual solutions for South Sudan: Replace IGAD with eminent persons at once!

BY: MARGARET AKULIA, CANADA, JUN/27/2014, SSN;

Failing to achieve peace in South Sudan after more than six months when the issues are so clear-cut is incompetence. Allowing a foolish, self-absorbed and murderous so-called democratically elected President who is also the accused, to “direct” the adjudication of his own case is preposterous.

Enabling a tyrant to protract his murderous rule through foolishness is culpable negligence.

The war in South Sudan is now entering a seven month period and IGAD has achieved nothing even after being “bailed out” by United States Secretary of State John Kerry.

The organization either lacks lucidity or it is in cahoot with the current lawless government of South Sudan!

Simply put, IGAD’S questionable activities have placed the people of South Sudan at risk of injury and death that is why the organization must be disqualified from its so-called mediatory role.

Complete cessation of hostilities, setting up strong security, a competent and trustworthy caretaker government should have been accomplished by now because the correct solutions for these three key areas would have provided the safe environment necessary for National Dialogue respecting Federalism and Healing!

Instead of achieving the three unambiguous deliverables, IGAD squandered money and time while South Sudan bled to death!

That is why the organization needs to pass the baton to a body of more competent, honourable and impartial eminent persons immediately.

TO READ JUNE 19, 2014 LETTER TO THE TROIKA COUNTRIES REGARDING IGAD PLEASE GO TO:
www.savesouthsudan.com/diaspora-ambassadors.html
Margaret Akulia is co-author of the sequel Idi Amin: Hero or Villain? His son Jaffar Amin and other people speak.

She brings to the South Sudan dialogue a multidisciplinary professional background including but not limited to “grassroots activism”.

Additional information at:

https://travellinglearningcircles.com/Save_South_Sudan.html

AND

http://www.savesouthsudan.com/home.html


Foundation of South Sudan is premised on Social Contract not Master-servant relation

By: Daniel Juol Nhomngek, KAMPALA, UGANDA, JUN/24/2014, SSN;

This article intends to explain the foundation of South Sudanese nation and the relation of the people of South Sudan and their government. It will also explain why the government of South Sudan has misunderstood this relationship because instead of treating it as a social contract, it treats it as a master-servant relation, hence changing the Transitional Constitution provisions which clearly state that the relationship on covenant is not that of master-servant relationship but contractual in nature.

It will in addition explain the concept of African family and its advantages to her members and how this concept is the basis of the foundation South Sudanese Transitional Constitution and this can help solve the present poverty crisis in the country if adopted, which can further help to reduce social tension that has been the cause of the numerous wars fought in Sudan and current conflict in South Sudan.

Without wasting time, it is imperative to begin with the famous statement of Dr. John Garang when he was addressing Sudanese community in the United States on what constituted the fundamental problem of Sudan. In that speech, he pointed out that an attempt by various Khartoum based regimes to build a monolithic Arab state constitutes the fundamental problem of Sudan.

In the same way, an attempt by SPLM leadership since 2005 to change the foundation of South Sudan from contractual relation to master-servant relation constitutes the fundamental problem of South Sudan.

The foundation of South Sudan is provided for under the Transitional Constitution of 2011. In Article 9 (1) on the Bill of Rights of all South Sudanese, it is provided that the relationship that exists between the people of South Sudan and their government exists as a matter of covenant.

In plain English and according to the Bible, a covenant means a formal agreement or a contract between the parties. . In Genesis 12 in the Holy Bible for instance, Abraham, the father of the modern Jewish people or Israel, is said to have made a covenant with God.

In that covenant, God took undertook initiative to promise Abraham a lasting, peace, protection and numerous children. God indeed made a promise to Abraham of as many children as stars in the sky at night and as many as sand at the sea. As soon as God made that promise to Abraham, He went into pact with Abraham when Abraham made a sacrifice of five animals. From that time Abraham became a true friend of God and God remained loyal to that agreement indefinitely despite the fact that God had power to violate it at will.

If I can ask this general question: why did God decide to remain loyal to the contract he made with Abraham although He had power to violate it at will? It is important to note that because God is a God of truth, justice, law and order he has to do what He initiated to human being according to the principle of general contract.

God knew that as a matter of justice and protection of the rule of law, He had to be committed to following and performing His part of the agreement in good faith and Abraham had no option but to do the same.

It should be observed that the contract or covenant between God and Abraham was being performed in accordance with the general principle of the rule of law of contract, which provides that as soon as parties have entered the valid contract, such a contract is binding and must be carried out and performed in good faith.

This is because if God or Abraham violated the terms of that contract the rule of law governing business would have been destroyed. Therefore, God and Abraham have to be committed to performing the contract in order to save the rule of law implied in the covenant.

The rationale behind strict adherence to the contractual terms of any contract or covenant is that once a person has promised to do a certain work and the other party has incurred detriment due to that promise, that person who misled the one who has suffered detriment must be forced to perform his or her part. This is because the rule of law does not allow a person to back down from his or her promises since it will destroy the rule of law itself.

Preservation of the rule of rule makes covenant binding on the parties who made that particular power although they are unequal in strength. This is why even the most powerful nation like the USA goes into contract with a weaker country like South Sudan; the USA must follow what the international law dictates it to do.

In the same way, the contract is performed based on the same principle of the rule of law no matter how powerful one party is, which underscores why God has to perform His part of the contract in Biblical or Abrahamic time.

As put above, the foundation of South Sudan as a country and the relationship that exists between South Sudanese themselves and their God is premised on covenant. The rule of law that follows from that contractual relationship by the virtue of Article 9 of the Transitional Constitution imposes a binding duty on South Sudanese authorities and citizens of South Sudan to perform part of their social contract established therein in good faith.

The problems prevalent in South Sudan today are due to the violation of the terms of the covenant provided for under Article 9 of the Transitional Constitution. Article 9 of the Transitional Constitution establishes the agreement that gave birth to South Sudan as a nation. The agreement was in form of covenant. The terms of that covenant were that the covenant was made between people of South Sudan on one hand and their government on the other hand and at every level.

In addition, the agreement stipulated that the people of South Sudan were to co-exist together based on equality before and under the law. Existing in equality in this context means respecting each other‘s culture, religion, customs or values, resources, which further means sharing the national resources equally. Equal sharing of resources means that people should love each other or tolerate each other if love is too heavy to carry.

In order to ensure that the terms of that covenant are obeyed and strictly adhered to by every South Sudanese, the citizens went ahead to elect a certain group of people with contract who they consider to be neutral in order to be in charge of the country. This was to ensure that contract between them is followed by every member to it or forced by that group selected to force them to abide by the terms of contract.

The group selected as stated in the foregoing paragraph constitutes the government of South Sudan, which was supposed to act as a trustee and hold all the resources of the people of South Sudan in trust for them. Trustee in plain English language means someone who is entrusted with people’s property on certain terms and condition.

In the definition given in Chambers-EAEP English Student Learners ‘Dictionary new edition, a trustee is someone who looks after and controls someone else’s money or property in a legal agreement. As seen from the definition of trustee in that Dictionary, South Sudanese authorities were entrusted to hold all natural resources in trust for the people of South Sudan, which means that the leaders are prohibited from using national resources to build personal empire and wealth.

However, South Sudanese leaders dishonestly breached the terms of the agreement as provided for in the Constitution and instead ran a country like person assets which further threw the country into massive corruption and ordinary citizens became extremely poor coupled with disappointment that has become part of their lives.

The government in addition as provided for in the covenant was to hold in trust for the people and protect natural resources such as lakes, rivers, wetlands, forests, games, national parks, minerals and all land on behalf of the people. The term of that trust involve the authorization of the government to use of force where necessary.

In fact South Sudanese know very well the concept of the government. The authorization of South Sudanese authorities to use force is based on the concept of the government. The government is ordinarily understood to mean the legitimate use of force. Therefore, South Sudanese trusted the government to use force legitimately where some members to this social contract disobeyed it terms.

However, to ensure that their interest is not jeopardized by the extensive use of force in case the government forgot to follow the terms provided in the social contract, South Sudanese limited the government in other way. They forced the government to promise them that it would respect their rights and freedoms.

Rights and freedoms of people as a matter of general human rights law limit excessive use of force but only allow the reasonable use of force. As a result of that agreement, the government once again promised them to respect and promote their human rights and fundamental freedoms enshrined in the Transitional Constitution.

The Transitional Constitution in Article 9 provides that the government must protect, respect and fulfil human rights and freedoms, which is the cornerstone of social justice, equality and democracy. The Transitional Constitution is alive to the important of social justice because social justice deals with the economic well-being of South Sudanese. In addition, it deals with the distribution of benefits and burdens throughout society.

Moreover, on the individual level, social justice demands a proportionate share of the benefits of economic endeavor of social partners, that is, social justice demands proportionate distribution of the fruits of people’s labour so that no one is cheated in any manner. Furthermore, on the national level, every group demands a proportionate and equitable share of the nation’s wealth among various groups, which implies that the demands by minority groups should not be neglected.

In relation to the above, the concept of social justice in South Sudan provides that the rights and freedoms of individuals and groups enshrined in the Bill of rights has to be respected, upheld and promoted by all organs and agencies of Government and by all persons.

When it comes to the international level, social justice demands that the relationship between nations be guided by mutual respect of every nation. It imposes an obligation on developed nations of the world so that every nation will enjoy fruits of earth, and so, fully live as human beings.

As it can be understood from the discussion in the foregoing paragraphs, social justice in other words, means treating people equally and ensures that they are able to access resources on equal footing. It is upon such ground the concept of social justice can be well understood when explained in the concept of and the role of family in South Sudan as a country.

The concept of social contract as provided for in South Sudanese Transitional Constitution is founded in the concept of social justice and family. The Transitional Constitution in other words is founded on African concept of family. The African concept of family is in turn founded on “ubuntu” notion. “Ubuntu” notion provides that all people are equal and belongs to the same family. This means that African concept of the family is founded on the notion that all members of the family are equal in rights and in dignity.

As African Scholar and Philosopher, John Mbiti, correctly observed “I am because you are and since you are therefore I am.” This saying underscores what constitutes healthy family in Africa. A typical or healthy family in Africa is that unit of people which accommodates all people related by descent and common ancestor. Hence, a typical African family takes care of its members; besides, providing a room for foreigners who have sought refuge within its premises and under its shade.

In general, African family system is founded by its members due to the advantages that accrue to them, in terms of social assistance and social justice. These advantages are clearly summarized by Journal of Social Development in Africa Vol. 17 no 2 July 2002. African Community according to that Journal is where the group or family serves only their members; it is a kinship-based solidarity.

For instance as that Journal further provides, groups serve the extended family and village residents’ by extending mutual assistance to its members, which are compulsory for all adults in the villages as a matter of moral responsibility. Moral responsibility created solidarity and an obligation to care for family members and relatives in times of need.

In relation to the above concept of African family as explained by Journal and African Philosopher, John Mbiti, the country call South Sudan constitutes African family and South Sudanese government as a head of this big family has a duty both under the national and the international law to ensure that all human rights and freedoms enshrined in the Transitional Constitution are respected, promoted and fulfil.

Under the international law, the principal obligation of South Sudan is to take steps to achieve progressively the full realization of the rights of all South Sudanese in all areas. This imposes an obligation to move as expeditiously as possible towards that goal.

South Sudan as a State is obliged to ensure for everyone under its jurisdiction access to the minimum essential needs which are sufficient to ensure that all South Sudanese are free from poverty. As seen in the foregoing discussions, South Sudan is just a trustee who is supposed to hold all national resources in trust for the people and to ensure that their distribution is determined by principles of social justice.

Principles of social justice that determine the distribution of national resources are: equal access to opportunities and rights; fair system of law and due process; ability to take up opportunities and exercise rights; protection of vulnerable and disadvantaged people. These principles of social justice ensure that all people in the country are treated as equal members of family as an African concept of family previously explain entails.

It further implies that the possibility of throwing the country into the crisis of social classes is minimized through equal distribution of resources, which in turn results into improvement in the welfare of all citizens of South Sudan.

Unfortunately, as things now are, it is in apparent that social classes have already been developed under the disguise of tribalism. It is tricky. It is very tricky because tribalism covers underlying social structures of the South Sudanese communities. There is an existing social class system beneath and within South Sudanese communities but tribalism effectively covers its appearance.

South Sudan has developed social classes already and there is a caste system that exists in persons of women although many people who lack clear analysis keep on blaming tribalism whenever there is a problem triggered by marginalization at any level within the government and the society at large.

To explain the point made above, many citizens lack clear analysis of the social relationship which currently exists in South Sudan and often make premature conclusion by saying that problems of South Sudan affecting them in all areas are as a result of tribalism. To them, tribalism creates nepotism in the system of government, which excludes non-relatives of the one in the government from accessing employment and other opportunities.

Of course, such an argument is held by many and almost all believe to the source of the problems of South Sudan. Such an argument however in my view does not hold water in relation to the problems occurring presently in South Sudan. It does not hold water for some reasons.

One of such reasons is that the system also affects the members of the same people who are accused of tribalism, and for instance, if the problems of South Sudan were due to tribalism, all Dinka people would have been contented with the government simply because their man is the president of South Sudan which is not the case.

For instance, some Dinkas are not happy with the government of Kiir as seen in the recent defection of some prominent Dinka politicians who have recently rebelled against the SPLM government. The same is true with Nuers who are divided for and against rebellion, which they were supposed to have joined since it is a Nuer spearheaded rebellion.

From the above analysis, it is therefore logical to argue that if the problems of South Sudan were all about tribes, all Dinkas would have joined army to defend Kiir’s government or all Nuers would have joined Riek to fight for Nuers’ victory, but Equotarians would have not joined either side. This argument knocks out the notion of tribalism in South Sudanese problems.

As the explanation above illustrated, problems of South Sudan have nothing to do with tribes but they are as a result of an attempt by SPLM leaders to build personal wealth and empire and in the process end up creating social classes through patronage system. Therefore, what is being experienced in South Sudan today in form of conflict is the knock on effect of social classes struggle.

Nevertheless, this argument should not be taken out of context, no one disputes the contribution tribes and tribalism have in the problems of South Sudan but their contribution should rather be treated as one of the facilitating factors along poverty and illiteracy.

Back to the point, as leaders build personal empire and wealth, there is a creation of social classes since the building of wealth involves marginalizing of vulnerable. The same marginalization occurs within the SPLM leadership since leadership is understood as a major source of wealth by all South Sudanese.

The rationale is that the more one is at the top of leadership, the richer one becomes and this explains the fact that within nine years of the establishing of the government of South Sudan there are already billionaire. The question is where did those rebel leaders get such huge amount of dollars? Hence, making leadership a disputed area of interest to all and this brings in tribes and tribalism since they can facilitate one’s easy access top leadership and power.

This is why after quarreling in the struggle to go to the top of leadership but failed, some of the SPLM leaders appeal to the tribe-mates to help them fight their way to power. Hence, exploiting tribes and effect of tribes; tribalism to their advantages. At this point the tribalism becomes apparent to every person and they conclude that the problems of South Sudan are tribalism; such a statement is superfluous and erroneous.

The argument of this article as explained above is that problems of South Sudan are not due to tribes and tribalism. Instead they are due to cause and effect of social classes created in the process of building person wealth of leaders.

Social classes in South Sudan have their basis in the way war scattered people. It has to be noted that during the war many South Sudanese were scattered to different parts of the world while others remained in South Sudan throughout the liberation struggle. Those who remained in South Sudan are the SPLM/A and some people who had never gone to town.

One interesting thing that emerged about the liberation struggle of South Sudan is that although all South Sudanese were united against north in whatever capacity and wherever the war caught them or scattered them to, including those who were in Khartoum; in fact, those who were in Khartoum suffered the most because they braved Khartoum government through supporting its enemies.

Nevertheless, when the peace agreement was signed in 2005, the SPLM government started discriminating the other group of the people who were not in the liberated areas. SPLM members began categorizing some South Sudanese who were not in the war zone as not true liberators.

To effectively discriminate and marginalize the groups who were not within war zones, the SPLM/A employed a phrase which I do not know any equivalent phrase in English. The phrase in Dinka is “ee Piny ci Ok Kooth Guor thin.” In general, it means “a war of liberation in which we have suffered.”

The irony is that all South Sudanese including unborn whether within South Sudan or outside had suffered during the war and were also committed members of the SPLM/A. This is illustrated by the fact that South Sudanese owned liberation in their souls and minds.

In fact, this assertion is proved by the fact that sometimes during the war when things became difficult like in 1990s, the SPLM leaders could leave forests or bushes to either go to Australia, Canada, the USA, the UK or to many other countries where South Sudanese were.

They went there in disguise of educating people on the progress of liberation war but in actual sense, they were going to get assistance from those innocent South Sudanese who later became victims of social classes created by the greed of SPLM leaders.

In other words, there were times during the war SPLM leaders and their children could heavily rely on the people from Diaspora for their survival. But after peace agreement, the same SPLM leaders marginalized the people in Diaspora by developing a phrase like the one that has just been explained above.

Another observation which has to be made about the application of phrase explained above and which explains the fact that SPLM leaders are building social classes is that the phrase is applied selectively. It is not applied to the children of the leaders although they were also outside South Sudan as well, which means that it is only intended to exclude other members of South Sudanese not related to leadership either by tribe or in any other way, which beneficial to them.

As I discovered later, the phrase was employed by SPLM/A members to marginalize citizens from sharing in the fruits of their liberation struggle hence it was used as a tool of oppression and a form of social injustice that exists in South Sudan; the phrase is one of the tools for creating social classes.

The SPLM leadership has been consciously creating social classes as a way of entrenching itself in power which made it a group, which with time became a dominant group and also a group which controls resources of the country. Hence, the struggle for and against social classes began at this point and tribalism although it is not a cause for struggle becomes a facilitating factor in causing tension in the struggle for domination.

One funny thing to note about the role of tribalism is that the members of the SPLM hate tribalism when it is disfavoring them politically but use it for their advantage when they deem it necessary hence manipulating South Sudanese to their advantages.

For example, if I can remember very well what Dr. Riek told youth sometime back? In some years back he abused students from East Africa to the point of calling them political novice who should be taught how to play politics. To Riek, like any politicians in South Sudan, he expected students to be submissive, snobbish, miscreant and sheepish to him.

The youth of the above characters are the one South Sudanese politicians want. All politicians of South Sudan expected youth who wash their feet and praise them continuously even in the face of abuses of their rights, which has become a custom in South Sudan that youth should not attack politicians. This is a failure to distinguish the law from morality.

Human rights is a matter of law and every holder of that rights is supposed to protect his or her rights by coming out openly to protest and to attack the violator of his or her rights while morality is not binding but exists in villages where youth are expected to respect elders.

However, it should be observed that traditionally elders were respected because of the good work they do and also because they cared for the youth, which explains the rationale behind giving youth the fattest parts of animals in cattle camp.

The youth were given fatty parts of meat because they were considered to be assets for the society and in case when there was a danger, they would defend the community. However, most of the elders in South Sudanese government have marginalized youth and at the same time expect youth to respect them, which is wrong and unfounded respect.

It is another way of weakening youth. The respect for elders is being used in South Sudan as a means of silencing the youth yet there is fragrant violation of their human rights which is unacceptable. The youth must teach politicians how to govern the country.

Coming to the point, the reason why Dr. Riek behaved as explained above at that time was because he saw youth to be a threat to his political dominance. He therefore attacked them as a tool of destroying such unity and weakens them. This is proved by the fact that when he saw that his dominance and struggle to achieve it was threatened within the SPLM membership, he has now turned shamelessly to the same East African students he first attacked of not knowing politics.

Riek, who knows the weaknesses created by tribes and tribalism in unity of South Sudanese managed to manipulate tribe and tribalistic feelings to recruit students to go and fight on his behalf as it has been reported sometime back after the conflict had broken out. The war of Riek has nothing to do with the liberation of South Sudan from dictatorship but it is a trial to achieve what he has not achieve through peaceful means within the party; the SPLM leadership.

Therefore, tribalism becomes handy in fighting against marginalization within dominant group by its members against their marginalization within SPLM. The effect of tribalism becomes apparent since most of the people do not deeply to dig out what beneath things. Most of the people take effect for cause. This is why tribalism is the problem of South Sudan to them.

Nevertheless, tribalism is the effect of underlying factors that are not apparent to most of the ordinary people and to less critical mind. To them, what they see is tribalism without asking of motivational factors underlying tribalism itself. Such underlying factors are sometime termed as “Order of Thing” by some philosophers and any person interested in finding solution to the problems must always study the underlying factors or the root causes of the problems.

Michel Foucault in his Book entitled The Order of Things explains the underlying factors as: “Order is, at one and the same time, that which is given in things as their inner law, the hidden network that determines the way they confront one another, and also that which no existence except in the grid has created by a glance, an examination, a language; and it is only in the blank spaces of this grid that order manifests itself as depth as though already there, waiting in silence for the moment of its expression.”

As explained by Foucault in the above extract, the existence of things on earth including human beings is determined by underlying and inner law that cannot be easily noticed by anybody but only critical thinkers. Failure to understand underlying factors causing a given social problem will make that problem continues without ending and people will become helpless since they are not able to get a suitable solution to that particular social problem.

Therefore, the best way to solve any problem is to approach the issue in two ways. The first way is to stop the problem and the second way is to study the cause of the problems. The first way is to stop the problem from escalating and then the next step to find out the root causes of the problems in order to get correct solution to the problems. Failure to follow these two ways will make problems stay permanently or even expand.

Coming to the problems of South Sudan, its problems has nothing to do with tribes and tribalism although it cannot be disputed fact that tribes and tribalism play a role in fueling the crisis.

Tribes are only a facilitating factor as witnessed in South Sudanese war on 15 December 2013. That war did not start as a tribal war, but, started as a political struggle for power within the SPLM party.

However, due to the illiteracy and ignorance, some citizens supported such useless war that had no basis all to make it just but only intended for political domination among SPLM party members.

The political struggle though became a devastating conflict, started way back in 1990s, whose root-causes and human rights abuses committed as a result of that conflict remained unaddressed, which remains as a source of tension within South Sudan. The underlying problems of South Sudan were supposed to address after peace agreement.

However, after the establishment of South Sudan government in 2005, the SPLM leaders did nothing to address the underlying causes of the previous conflicts but instead opted to conspire against all South Sudanese citizens by marginalizing them from equitable sharing of the national resources.

The SPLM/A leaders started using national resources that were supposed to be in the improvement of people’s welfare by living extravagant and lavish lives. This is indicated by fact that although they are poor they live like billionaires buying most expensive cars in the world. South Sudan becomes a hotpot markets for Hammers and other celebrities’ cars which leaders are not supposed to buy. For instance, every house of SPLM leader has big cars even Obama cannot afford. This was mixing pride with poverty.

As a result, they misappropriated national resources through buying houses abroad, expansive cars, sending their children to expensive universities and building their own big houses in the states where they come from. While citizens are dying of hunger and some preventable diseases that can easily be dealt with the patriotic government.

Many leaders in SPLM government do not care for the welfare of the citizens of South Sudan. In summary, they are not patriotic. For instance while all other citizens of South Sudan are left in poverty and underdeveloped, they are developing themselves and their children with the false hope that their children will continue with their dynasty.

The above statement support the fact that the SPLM government disenfranchised citizens of South Sudan by not allowing them to have enough access to resources, the leaders begin to personalize education although education is a human right, and since it is a human right, the government has a duty to make sure that it is realized by all South Sudanese.

The purpose the authorities marginalize all citizens from national resources is aimed at leaving citizens ignorance with an attempt to constructing personal empire with unbridled wealth. Hence, social classes became apparent. The discrimination that exists in South Sudan in general indicates the existence of social classes.

Social classes are already constructed by the leaders as witnessed in the direct development of some concepts such as social capital, which means allocation of resources according to membership of their associates; social network, which means allocating resources according to interdependence and benefits, patrimonialism, which means centering government on family; this is where the government officials employed their relatives from the top to the bottom of the office hence leaving non-relatives out.

In addition, there is also an existent of patronage. The evidence of patronage in South Sudan is shown since resources are allocated according to the mutual benefits, which means that someone who cannot produce any benefit to the leaders cannot be supported.

All the above concepts exist in South Sudan and are seen in operation as they determine the allocation of resources to the public and the wrong allocation of resources created by above concepts stir up opposition against the government.

As explained above, the problem of South Sudan is not tribe but the failure of the authorities to run the government according to the principles of its foundation. The foundation of South Sudan as discussed in the opening paragraphs of this article is premised on social contract not on masters and servants relations as authorities are trying to establish in South Sudan.
This is because the authorities are struggling to build the society on master-servant relations hence neglecting the principles of social justice that are entrenched in the Transitional Constitution of 2011. The social contract in South Sudan is premised upon the foundation for a united, peaceful and prosperous society based on justice, equality, respect for human rights and the rule of law.

However, the authorities, as a matter of practice, have effectively neglected the rule of law. This is because they do not want the equality of citizens as their intention is to build their personal resources hence by implication building social classes in the country. They know that where the rule of law does not exist the citizens are vulnerable since they are not able to speak out against mismanagement of resources.

The authorities have created a lot of poverty even those who were not poor initially because they did have agent to educate citizens on how to earn a living. They have done this by creating a dependent nation, yet the reason why some of them got involved in the struggle was due to wide, yawning gap between rich and poor, and the refusal of government of Sudan to acknowledge and try to fix the existence inequalities between north and the South.

However, when they managed unthinkable, they now again reversed their original principles on whose war was fought and became worse than Arabs themselves. However, this statement should not be taken as if I am regretting for getting independence the point I am making her is that authorities must learn how to govern the country. They must understand that there is a need for the rule of law in South Sudan because failure to enforce the rule of law is dangerous and has many implications.

What the authorities have not understood is that as long as the rule of law does not exist or where it is neglected, the implication is that the problems of South Sudan will never end. Any country which seeks for prosperity must take the issue of social justice because the violation of social justice has the cause of revolution in history and the disintegration of many countries.

The only way to end the problems prevailing in South Sudan is for the authorities to get committed to promoting rule of law, which means that the authorities must respect human rights of every South Sudanese citizens, irrespective of their tribes.

Otherwise, if South Sudanese leaders continue to build personal wealth and empire at the expenses of the citizens and continue creating social classes, there is likelihood a risk for the country sliding into deeper crises and eventual collapse than what it is now.

The author is a lawyer from Makerere University and he can be reached through the following contacts: juoldaniel@yahoo.com; +256783579256

South Sudan’s Govt. inability to care for its SPLA servicemen

BY: Justin Kwaje, SOUTH SUDAN, JUN/23/2014, SSN;

The untold story of this uncalled for war among brothers in South Sudan is that of the soldiers themselves, our young and others the fully-grown men who are fighting in the frontline, killing and being killed, injuring and being maimed, for the survival of Kiir’s presidency. What about the stories of the widows and children they leave behind? These are the forgotten of this war. Who will tell their stories?

I had emotional breakdown at the same time as I counted myself very privileged to have visited the wounded Kiir’s soldiers fighting in frontline since December 2013, after the breakout of fighting between the SPLA army loyal to Kiir against those who have deserted and led the resistance against Kiir.

I was paralyzed by the thought that these men I am standing in front of are perhaps the best of our nation, unselfish and marching willingly to the front line to give the ultimate sacrifices to kill and be killed by none other than their fellow countrymen!

Not long ago these very gallant men who now hunt each other to death were comrades, rode in the same military vehicles and together watched over the nation against the “Great Satan” the Jalaba!

Alas, on the basis of lies, as we now all well know, these same men now bring death on each other with effectiveness and fury the Great Satan could only dream about but worse is the devastation they brought on the civilians they’re sworn to protect!

What a horror. They have achieved what the Great Satan could not in 50 years!!

Some of these men have five or more children, two or more wives! Once injured and maimed, who cares for their widows left behind in the very harsh living situations in Juba and around South Sudan? What will be of their fatherless children left behind? All this on the basis of lies and for what purpose?

What do these soldiers get out of this? Is it not true, while a soldier signs his absolute loyalties to the commander in Chief, Should the commander in Chief not also sign his loyalties to his soldiers and protect his men and their families at all costs?

In case of South Sudan, does Kiir really have loyalties to his soldiers? Are the soldiers to Kiir not like the cheap bullets…. disposable?

Does he watch after the widows left behind? Didn’t we know the soldiers alive and who are living have to wait in agony for their salaries and those killed, the salary immediately cut off?

How about those killed in the frontline, their bodies never arrive for burials, leave alone the government accounting for them and informing the mothers and widows accordingly?

How about those who cheated death in the frontline, I am referring to the lucky wounded soldiers. In what condition are they, how is Kiir caring for them? Are they better off alive than dead?

With these tormenting unanswered questions in mind, I visited the Soldiers at Juba teaching hospital and was moved by what I saw, most of the soldiers staying in Juba teaching hospital in the name of getting treatment are young and they all look exhausted and traumatized.

Based on my assessment of their physical and psychological injuries, majority of them need major medical care, physical therapy, psychiatrists services, or rehabilitation physicians, commonly known as Physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R), most if not all are unavailable in the poorly equipped government owned Juba teaching and military hospitals.

These hospitals in Juba generally lack drugs, more importantly, painkillers and antibiotics! The able and financial sound patients end up buying their own drugs and other medicines from private clinics and bringing them to the hospital to be administered by the doctors, something the majority of these wounded soldiers cannot afford!

One soldier complained that those from the president’s ethnic group gets the best of care and it is they who have the money to get the needed supplies from the private clinics and Pharmacies, after all everyone know they are the people with the nation’s stolen oil and foreign donation money in South Sudan as is can be witnessed even before this war broke out.

The needed full medical services for these wounded soldiers are available in the neighboring countries like Kenya and Uganda, where some of the president’s people end up being flown to but the poor, ordinary and unpaid or under paid soldiers from other tribes cannot afford these lifelines.

A soldier disclosed on condition of anonymity due to fear of reprisal by senior officers, that the wounded soldiers blamed the huge defection and abandonment of SPLA posts in Jonglei state recently by their comrades on the government’s inability to provide those in front lines with adequate feeding, supply of ammunition and many other needed items to keep and give the solders in frontlines to not only carry offensive but for defense and to survive the fight otherwise they are all sitting ducks and dead men all for nothing.

If still alive they are not paid or supplied, why give monetary support for the widows and children of dead soldiers?

That is how disposable and how much worthless our young men in the uniform who are fighting for Kiir feel about their commander in chief.

It will be an understatement to say the morale is zero except for those who have tribal sentiment for the war, they are not defending the nation but their tribe and tribal fortune; otherwise there is no national reason for dying and fighting this war for the president given how the soldiers are treated, their widows and children left to survive on their own without a penny from Kiir.

In Juba, the wounded after surviving the ordeal of the frontline and enduring without any support from the government, but rather, they surviving at the mercy of good Samaritans and families, have this to say: “Our medical bills are entirely being left on our already poor family members who could not afford to have two meals per day, so how can they afford to meet the demands of our medical bills?”

An an angry looking young man pointing at his medical bill next to his mat close to the entrance of the ward said: “This government has abandoned us yet the other day I heard them talking about the role of the soldiers to defend the constitution of this country and the elected leaders, yet the so called elected leaders have not given importance to the the needs of the wounded soldiers nor defended those who elected them.”

“Is the constitution not also to protect the soldiers?” asked another soldier.

“In order to survive, we were left in front line to loot the people we are supposed to protect as demanded by our constitution, to put the lives of civilians first, because it could be your father, mother and sister, but we have no choice because we can’t defend the constitution of this country when we have empty stomachs,” lamented another.

“While we protect the so called constitution who then protects us and our children if the president looks at us like flies? Does he loose any sleep because of the number of people killed and injured by the commands he gives to go to the front line? He has never even taken the time to come to visit us or give us courage in our sick beds or comfort the wives or mothers of our buddies killed in the frontline, all which tells you how much we mean to him,” despairingly stated another soldier.

“I am not going to blame the defected soldiers because we all have children to look after and how can you keep fighting for the government that doesn’t value your life, recognize your needs and that of your families? This government doesn’t care about the well beings of its men/women in uniforms who have been dying in the name of defending the constitution of this country,” he added.

“What is the use of the constitution for me if I am dead and my children are not cared for and left to die as I am, is it worth defending and dying for this so called constitution?” he continued.

Pitia, who looked exhausted and perhaps the youngest of them all has bullet wounds on his right chest and he told me he is always in constant pain because the doctors told him that the bullet has passed through his lungs, and he vomits blood daily.

Since his arrival in Juba teaching hospital, he wasn’t given antiseptic wound care nor Tetanus shots to reduce the risk of bacterial infections.

Like others, he too cited his anger with the government for failing to address the needs of those wounded and the widows of those killed in active duties, while protecting the elected government officials, to keep these big bellies officials from loosing their jobs and fortunes while living in air conditioned homes and driving luxurious V8’s, which these soldiers can only admire from outside.

The general situation the soldiers are in is a state of despair and agony forcing some into criminal activities as disclosed by yet a wounded soldier, who doesn’t want his statement to appear in any media outlet, stating they looted civilians because they needed food and Juba is not able to supply them.

Emphasizing that they are professional army that did not intend to commit crime against their own people but the situation exposed them to do it in order to survive.

“I am very unhappy because my colleagues after being killed by the rebels, their bodies are left to discompose and eaten by wild animals and birds, and some of my comrades who got shot and can’t move were left to die or ended up being killed by the rebels, and that could be tomorrow anyone of us here who are being asked to return to the frontline because of soldier shortages.”

“Before anyone decides to join the army to fight for this government, they must first understand what those of us who are already in are going through,” he added.

A soldier who gave his name as Oliver Dochun complained, “there is no dignity and honor for those of us who have risked everything, leaving our wives and children behind going to unknown places to keep one man in power, one who caused this chaos through his lies and tribalism,”

“I want to be respected as a soldier, I need my rights as a citizen to be protected by the constitution of our country, there are certain things a national army is not supposed to do. I lose my dignity because after I was wounded I was abandoned like garbage in trash bin like scrub dirty unwanted duster.”

Another soldier who gave his name as Mgbakasa, added, “It is heart breaking and shocking to see the Ugandan armies who are hired by Kiir, well fed on dry food in sealed packages, whereas the patriotic and gallant national armies have to survive on their own by going into the unknown bushes looking for anything to be cooked in hostile environments.”

A second group of those who survived the front line defeated by the rebels, upon arriving Juba are treated harshly, I spoke to a lady who confirmed to me that her younger brother serving with Kiir’s army, he and his comrades were defeated by the rebels in one of the battle front in Unity State.

After their arrival in Juba they were rounded up by the security forces, thrown and tortured in jail, accused of abandoning their posts and of conspiracy, deserting and being sympathizers of the rebels.

Based on the soldier sister’s narrative who asked for her identity not to be revealed, most of these targeted arrests are selectively against non-Dinka soldiers.

She told me that most of the soldiers accused by the government for conspiracy and rebel’s collaborators are mainly Equatorian and people from Wau, while their Dinka colleagues were let go without jailing or questionings.

She also confirmed to me that her brother is being held in jail in appalling and inhuman conditions, which he may not survive. While the Bahr El Gazal soldiers who deserted their posts in frontlines and have since then returned to their home state without been arrested for abandoning their posts.

In conclusion, my fellow countrymen and countrywomen, I felt angry and was left abhorred and dejected visiting and talking to these brave men of our nation, many who are wounded mortally. I felt compelled to bring their voices out for the nation to know, these other forgotten victims of this war, the brave men who are dying and are being wounded daily in the frontline at the command of this president.

These are our brothers; these are our fathers, some whose graves shall never be seen as they were left to rot in the bushes. While those lucky to make it to Juba but wounded may not survive long and their children left to survive in the soon coming famine! What a government!

This government lacks and has lost the ability and competency to care even for her own soldiers, nor the widows and children of these soldiers. This government cannot even return home the fallen to be buried with dignity!

Nor do they make the efforts to inform the mothers of those killed daily in the frontline.

The question is what makes this a government? If indeed it is, what do we need such a government for? Are there no better sons and daughters of our land who can lead this country better than these bunch of crooks and good-for-nothing inept big bellies? Enough I say!

A government that is incapable of serving her widows, orphans and the wounded does not deserve the invaluable sacrificial blood of our nation’s young men and women in Uniform!

JS Kwaje.