Archive for: June 2016

President Kiir and JCE’s obstruction of the implementation of the ARCISS

BY: Elhag Paul, JUN/10/2016, SSN;

Obstruction is the order of the day in the current transitional government of national unity in the Republic of South Sudan. Cambridge Dictionaries define it as, “behaviour or actions that prevent something from happening or working correctly.” If our understanding is correct and if we are to believe President Salva Kiir and Dr Riek Machar repeated pledges that they are wholly committed to the implementation of the Agreement on Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (ARCISS), we should be seeing them working together amicably to bring peace.

The transitional government by now should have demonstrated itself as a viable united entity capable of carrying out its duties and obligations as stipulated in the agreement. The realities, however, are different.

President Kiir under heavy influence of his tribal group the Jieng Council of Elders (JCE) has mined the road to peace, obstructing the smooth implementation of the agreement.

President Kiir’s obstructions appear to be a carefully thought out design to first waste time, secondly to provoke a conflict and thirdly to ensure that the Jieng prevail at the end.

Let us look at these points to broaden our understanding of this phenomenon of obstruction. President Kiir and his supporters are not happy with ARCISS right from the beginning because they see this agreement as the tool for ‘rebooting’ the country.

They hate change, after all they are the people benefiting from their own misrule and they would not want to lose the spoils.

In the last ten years, President Kiir’s regime has managed to fill 90 percent of the entire civil service with Jieng people most of whom are either unqualified or under qualified. Just go to any office in the country and the stark reality of Jieng domination will stare you in the face.

This Jienganisation of the civil service is also replicated in the security sector (army, police, prisons, wild life, intelligent services..etc).

With such violently obtained benefits the Jieng regime is uncomfortable with ideas of change. However, for the sake of peace the country must be a country for all and not a single tribe. Thus change is a must.

The regime having been cornered and forced by the international community to form a transitional government of national unity, the Jieng cabal in Juba now wants to wriggle out of the agreement to maintain their domination and the continuation of their grip on power.

It appears that time-wasting is one of the strategies President Kiir and company have adopted to realise that end. Since the agreement was signed in August 2015 they created obstacles after obstacles to obstruct the implementation of the agreement.

Contrary to the agreement, President Kiir started by issuing a decree (Establishment Order 36/2015) slicing the country into 28 ethnic states. Then he heavily militarised Juba by bringing in thousands more of Jieng militia from Bahr El Ghazal and Upper Nile. These two actions effectively put a break on the implementation process.

From then on to now this has consumed nearly ten months of wasted time. This strategy works for President Kiir and group because it is buying time for them in the sense that they continue to rule.

So long as the Jieng are in charge the type of government does not matter to them because essentially they see it as a cow to milk and they will shamelessly milk it. In fact they are partially happy that ARCISS has given them 3 more years of legitimate tenure.

If such obstructions aren’t firmly stopped the envisaged 30 months of implementation will soon run out without any tangible change from the agreement and no doubt President Kiir will declare the agreement null and void. Dinkocracy then continues and everything is back to square one – no change.

The second strategy appears to be around provoking another conflict to kill the agreement. The fact that the demilitarisation of towns as envisioned in the agreement did not happen is very concerning. This has had the effect of emboldening President Kiir in two ways.

First, it has given him the confidence to violate the agreement without fear of consequences. Secondly it has allowed him to bolster his tribal hard power.

President Kiir after signing the agreement in August 2015 consistently allowed his troops to conduct military operations openly against his opponents. For example, the attacks in Wau, Malakal UN Protection camps, Western Equatoria etc are good evidence that the regime does not want peace.

Sadly, civilians paid the price with their lives and luckily all these attacks have not degenerated into a wider conflict. Nevertheless should the provocations continue this peace will be doomed.

Thirdly, President Kiir wants to ensure that Jieng hegemony prevails. The Jieng cabal are aware that their decade long ruinous rule in South Sudan has reached its peak. Nobody in South Sudan apart from the Jieng will vote for another Jieng president. Also nobody in South Sudan will accept to put up with a tribal militia masquerading as national army.

The chances are that President Kiir is their last president. So potentially with him going, the Jieng are likely to lose their stranglehold on the country. Without support from the other 63 tribes, without brilliant intellectuals, without control of finances in the country and without a tribal militia they will be unable to dominate politics in the future the way they have been.

This is making the Jieng cabal go crazy. They just can not contemplate such a scenario or reality emerging in South Sudan. Hence, they are positioning themselves to play hard ball using their hard power.

This point is what the South Sudanese need to think carefully and deeply about. For it is the most likely source of the near future deadly conflict.

Think about it: why is President Kiir ferrying more and more militia from Bahr El Ghazal to the capital? Why is President Kiir ferrying more and more troops to Malakal? Why is it that President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, an ally of President Kiir redeploying in South Sudan?

The militarisation of the country appears to be the card of last resort for President Kiir and his group to fall back to, to maintain Jieng hegemony in South Sudan. However, this gung-ho and irresponsible act could lead to the other tribes seeking arms in order to protect themselves and also assert their right.

Yengkopiong in his book, Golgotha, opines that, “because of the unbearable activities of the tribal regime, it is now possible that some South Sudanese communities will acquire guns to protect with themselves, their land and property. However, as we know it, this form of human instinct for survival will only ferment more violence and vengeance and it will only benefit the ferocious people” of whom South Sudan has plenty.

What is very interesting in all this is the stand of the international community. In spite of being the guarantors of ARCISS, they seem to be paralyzed and unable to act to honour their role. They seem to be sitting and watching the country gradually slide into another deadly conflict because they can not hold President Kiir to honour his side of the deal.

The question is: what was the point of imposing an agreement they can not guarantee?

The genesis of President Kiir and JCE’s obstructions are located in one document – The Position of the JCE on the IGAD-Plus proposed compromise agreement (file:///C:/Users/Rosemary/Downloads/JCE%20-%20Position%20on%20Proposed%20Compromise%20Agreement%20(1).pdf).

In order to make full sense of the collective Jieng mindset, this document should be read in conjunction with another of their pieces headed ‘Jieng Council of Elders rejects imposition of peace on South Sudan’ (

It is important for all to take this document seriously because that is where Jieng intent has clearly been made public and also it is their operational plan for undermining the transitional government of national unity, a product of ARCISS.

President Kiir and his group hate the agreement because it whittles away on Jieng power base. But if one looks carefully, the Jieng are neither losers, nor are the Nuer. The real losers are the Equatorians, Fertit, Chollo, Anyuak etc. This ‘other’ is the stabilising force in the country which unfortunately has been excluded from all the deliberations to broker this peace agreement.

ARCISS, constructed on theory of elitism by the international community may fail to deliver peace in South Sudan simply because it is incompatible with locally known modalities of peace making anchored on inclusivity and grounded on the concept of justice.

Elitists’ theories of conflict resolutions in the context of South Sudan are flawed as they are based on the belief that if the warring elites (parties) who have vested interest in the country can be reconciled then the whole country can be returned to peace.

This disregards the people and excludes them from participating in the country’s affairs. In a sense this model is anti-democracy and pro-dictators and oppressors.

De Waal and Ndula in their cartoon piece titled ‘South Sudan: The price of war, the price of peace – a graphic story’ highlight this anomaly by saying, “The mediators remain stuck in a model of peace making that includes only the leaders of the warring parties.” “The mediators never once got to meet the South Sudanese people, civil society views aren’t taken seriously.” ( )

Unbelievably this is what has been imposed on South Sudanese by the international community. In this act, the mediators recognised only two tribes, the Jieng and the Nuer who dominate the SPLM/A excluding the Equatorians who make and inhabit a third of the country from the deal.

It also worth noting that other tribes in Bahre El Ghazal such as the Fertit tribes and in Upper Nile the Chollo, Anyuak, the Maban, Uduk etc were also excluded.

If this deal was ever meant to work, the third force which holds the centre (Equatorians, Chollo, Anyuak, and the Fertit etc) should never have been excluded. Had they been included they would be playing a balancing act between the Jieng and the Nuer offering both groups the sense of security in the transitional government of national unity.

Unfortunately this was not to be. Although the Equatorians are deeply hurt by their exclusion, they have accepted this agreement only because it offers a chance for peace and a democratic exit at the end of three years.

Now the South Sudanese have ended up with a dysfunctional transitional government at war with itself. The president does not interact positively with his First Vice and he continues to rule with defunct powers ignoring the provisions of the agreement he signed up to while the First Vice President acts as an opposition leader constantly reacting to initiatives of the president.

Therefore, the agreement has created a government with split personality. A government with an opposition built in it, the two in one. Will it really work? Time will tell.

However, with this unique transitional government things look bleak and the future does not look promising as President Salva Kiir and the Jieng Council of Elders (JCE) seem determined to derail the agreement and carry on with their tribal agenda.

What is the way forward? The international community was sensitized to the dangers ahead should the guarantors of the agreement fail to take action on the breaches of President Kiir. As usual IGAD, African Union and the Troika ignored the message. Please see, ‘Forming transitional government of national unity without addressing violations is playing into the hands of President Kiir and the JCE’ (

To save the country from returning to conflict the priorities in the agreement need to be rearranged with the leader of Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) robustly backed by Troika rising up to the challenges posed by President Kiir and the JCE.

First and foremost, the continuous militarisation of Juba should be brought to an immediate halt to avoid repeat of December 2013. The disarming and barracking of Jieng militia should be seen to happen to ease anxieties of the residents of Juba.

President Kiir’s SPLA troops should be reduced to the agreed number in the agreement and this should be verified accordingly by the relevant tasked bodies. President Museveni should be ordered to withdraw all his troops from South Sudan immediately. He has no business being in South Sudan.

Secondly, Michael Makuei and the entire JCE should be severely sanctioned. For the sanctions to be effective the members of JCE should be denied travel outside South Sudan, not even to the neighbouring countries.

This is important because this group is destroying every aspect of services in the country, yet they freely travel abroad to receive first class medical treatment and other services using money stolen from the people who die due to lack of services they do not provide in the country. This group does not want peace because nothing hurts them individually. Hence, the need for the sanctions.

Thirdly, should the 30 months period of the agreement expire without full implementation, neither President Kiir nor First Vice President Riek, nor Vice President James Wani Igga should be allowed to continue or form a new government.

The reconstituted parliament should be allowed to elect a transitional government composed of technocrats to run the country for 18 months after which a national election is held. It is important now to think post 30 months as it is clear that ARCISS is unlikely to sail smoothly.

Fourthly, the international community should use the only leverage available to it effectively to starve the government of any cash. Support should go directly through aid agencies to the suffering people without any penny passing to the government. Baseless and nonsensical arguments such as the one advanced by Dr John Akec in his paper, ‘Economic consequences of peace in South Sudan’ should be ignored completely (

Akec is simply promoting chaos in South Sudan by wanting to reward the people responsible for the mess in the country. This is one of the most irresponsible pieces of writing I have read. Perhaps it should be expected since the author is a Jieng and possibly he could not control his bias. He has a lot to lose should President Kiir and JCE lose power as this could have a bearing on his position as Chancellor of Juba University, a position he earned through his identity rather than hard work.

In conclusion, given the above, the guarantors of ARCISS need to act in response to President Kiir and JCE’s obstruction.

[Truth hurts but it is also liberating]
Elhag Paul

Toposa of Kapoeta East County Declared War on the People of BUDI County?

JUN/09/2016, SSN;

In 2007, the Toposa of Namorunyang boma marched to a farm belonging to BUDI citizens of Talla boma and massacred fifty-four (54) people. Among the dead were children, women and men who could not flee the attack as they were outnumbered and surrounded by heavily armed Toposa men.

We want to inform the world that the history of this massacre along BUDI county’s territories bordering Toposa land has been repeated by the same tribe (Toposa). On May 19, 20, and 23, 2016 respectively, heavily armed Toposa men of Kapoeta East County launched a multifaceted and well-organized attack that took fifty(50) innocent people’s lives including women and children.

The news reached BUDI County citizens world-wide that Ngatuba village of Ngauro Payam was under attack by heavily armed Toposa men of Kapoeta East County.

At first, it was speculated that the heavily armed Toposa men of Kapoeta East County carried a cattle raiding operation that is normally common in the area. However, this was inherently different, tactical, too advanced and well-organized typical attacks.

Toposa armed men stormed the villages with the aim to kill people, burn houses, and looted everything including grains, goats and cows. In the history of cattle rustling between the two tribes, this merciless attack has never occurred before. The shooting bombardment alone was devastating according to eye witnesses. The fire power could not be matched by any retaliatory attempt to repulse the Toposa heavily armed men.

As a result of these attacks, many people died and properties were damaged as outlined below:
Bohorora – May 23, 2016
30 people confirmed killed (among the dead, 14 children, 9 women & 7 men)
5 people confirmed wounded
30 Houses confirmed burnt
17 Granary grain storage burnt
1 kraal of cattle and 8 Kraals of goats taken

Ngatuba – May 19, 2016
14 people confirmed killed (among the dead, 10 children, 3 women & 1 man)
6 people confirmed wounded
22 Houses confirmed burnt
All goats and cattle taken

Ngauro – May 20, 2016
5 people confirmed killed and cattle taken

Chareet – May 20, 2016
1 person confirmed killed and cattle taken

The wounded were lugged by foot to the Chukudum general hospital which is about twenty miles away from the attack location. Houses were torched while people were trapped inside. There was no escape as the Toposa armed men surrounded each home and shooting anyone trying to escape out of the houses set on fire. The majority victims perished inside the burnt houses, while others who attempted to flee the attack were shot on the run.

As the Toposa armed men continued to conduct their shooting and burning of homes to ashes, they were also busy looting grains from the granary storages and then setting them on fire. Any belongings they could lay their hands on, including goats and cows were taken.

On May 20th, 2016, another group of heavily armed Toposa men raided village called Chareet. This is where they also managed to ransack the village, killed one (1) person and stole cows. The same night, another attack was launched in Ngauro town and five (5) people were also confirmed killed along with all the cattle being stolen.

In just two days of attacking and killing the people in Ngatuba, Chareet, and Ngauro villages, the Toposa launched a massive assault against people of Bohorora, and Locioto village killing thirty (30) people. All properties were destroyed and goats and cattle were stolen.

It was at this point when the Budi County Commissioner got the news and was very concerned of the devastation caused by the Toposa armed men. The Budi county Commissioner decided to pay a visit to the governor of the newly created Namorunyang state, Mr. Luis Lobong Lojore.

Together they drove off to a small town called Narus where they were informed the Toposa men were gathered at an undisclosed location to launch these massive attacks. The undisclosed location was where the entire operation had been planned and executed.

The governor questioned the Toposa elders who were present at the undisclosed location as to why they launched the attack against the Didinga people. The Toposa admitted that they did so in retaliation of their abducted eighteen (18) children and raided cattle by the Didinga tribe.

Governor Lobong then inquired if the matter was reported to their local community authorities. The Toposa elders could not confirm if the matter of the missing children was reported to any community authorities or government officials available in their areas.

The present Toposa chiefs were also asked if the Toposa families of the abducted children did reported the matter to them; the chiefs also could not confirm any report on the abducted children by the Didinga people.

At this point of interrogation, the Toposa could not verify the allegation against their counterpart (the Didinga people) for abducting the eighteen children and the raiding of cattle. This is where it appears the Toposa could not come up with clear evidence of their allegation and the reason to attack people of BUDI County and along the affected villages.

As the story continues to unfold, the Toposa armed men appeared to be consumed by the amount of fire power they possessed. We have confirmed reports that the Toposa armed men took advantage of our country’s fragile situation and exploited all avenues of acquiring weapons and unlimited ammunitions from unknown suppliers. Everyone is appalled by the fire power displayed by these heavily armed men from Toposa region.

The weapon used during this operation includes: PKM Machines guns, Grenade Rocket Propelled Launchers, AK 47s and other sophisticated brands of assault rifles.

We also understand that the Toposa people of Namorunyang boma are not contented with Ngauro becoming a county and will be awarded to the Didinga people when the new Namorunyang state is established. The Toposa claimed that Ngauro does not belong to the Didinga people and that it is their cattle grazing territories.

The Toposa have wanted Ngauro to be annexed to Namorunyang boma. It is contentious region they have conducted several killing sprees against the Didinga people so to scare them away.

On many occasions the defiant Toposa heavily armed men have encroach closer to the people’s farms in Ngauro town and deliberately allowed their cattle to graze on it. Other times, they will invade the town and killed innocent and unarmed people for nothing.

With all this destruction caused by the Toposa armed men, the governor, Mr. Luis Lobong Lojore, did not visit or dispatch law enforcement to rescue or investigate the situation at the attacked villages. During these attacks, the governor also did not order any emergency medical response team to check on the conditions of the wounded individuals. All the wounded were lugged to Chukudum general hospital about twenty miles away on foot.

For the people of Budi County, the supposedly people’s government that is obligated to protect its own citizens has done the opposite of abandoning them. The people of Budi County are dismayed by lack government’s presence and at the most difficult times such as this killing rampage by Toposa armed men. All the state and national members of parliaments had gone mute on this matter.

The people of BUDI County would like to tell the World and the government of South Sudan that we lack effective leadership in our state. We felt neglected and left to endure all kinds of human sufferings without anyone to turn to for assistance. We need a strong leadership in our state.

We need County and State officials to overcome their past and present tribal tendencies that are detrimental to peaceful coexistence between the two communities (Toposa and Didinga of Eastern Equatoria).

There are two issues that need immediate resolution in order to maintain safety and security for the people of Budi County:
1. Immediate action must be taken by the Government to ensure the Toposa do not repeat these atrocities to the Didinga people. All people must be treated as equal and with equal rights to the right to life, as ensured by the UN Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
2. As the country moves into a new governance mode, and with the new Counties and States, it is imperative that all Chiefs, MPS, Deputy-and Governors receive in-depth training on their responsibilities and duties. This is critical not only with regard to the academic governance training, but also how to build cohesive communities between and amongst the different tribes.

For instance, in order to properly represent both Didinga and Toposa tribes, the Governor (Toposa) and Deputy-Governor (Didingac) must be trained to work side-by-side to ensure equality of representation and solving of problems. A clearly defined complaint process and steps to resolution must be established for all members of the State. Everyone must be educated about these rules and responsibilities.

As another example, as Didinga, we understand the Toposa concerns regarding the grazing lands, but believe that with good stewardship and the will to coexist, a better solution can be found than killing one tribe of people (annihilation). With independent facilitation, a traditional gathering (ganon) could be used to heal the tragedy and find viable, work solutions.

Statement written by BUDI the communities in the Diaspora, USA and Canada
Copy of this statement is forwarded to the office of:

H.E. Salva Kiir mayardit, the President of South Sudan,
H.E. Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon, 1st VP of South Sudan,
United Nations Mission in South Sudan
Mr. Daniel Naroi, Budi County Commissioner
Mr. Jervasio Amotun Lomwa, BUDI County Judge
Budi County Chiefs

South Sudan Needs Truth, Not Trials: Kiir & Machar, in a letter to NYTimes, don’t want justice!


JUBA, South Sudan — Building a nation is not an easy task. We know this because it is our life’s work.

We once fought together as brothers to win independence for South Sudan from the north. When our new country was born in 2011, we were full of hope. We believed we could move forward as one nation. Yet we then realized that what bonded our people in their quest for freedom was the struggle itself; what held us together in combat could not be so easily sustained in peace.

South Sudan descended into a conflict lasting over two years. By its end, tens of thousands of people had died and over a million and a half were displaced. We are committed to ensuring that our country never again goes through a civil war.

After a peace agreement signed in August 2015, we have come together as brothers once more in government, as president and first vice president. Even with our differences — in fact, because of them — we are determined to reconcile our communities and create unity.

But bringing South Sudan together can be truly guaranteed only through one route: an organized peace and reconciliation process with international backing. In such a process, everyone in South Sudan might engage in the act of remembering through dialogue, and by so doing affirm the truth of what happened during our bloody civil war.

We intend to create a national truth and reconciliation commission modeled on those of South Africa and Northern Ireland. This commission would have wide-ranging powers to investigate and interview the people of South Sudan — from the poorest farmer to the most powerful politician — to compile a true account of events during the war.

Those who tell the truth about what they saw or did would be granted amnesty from prosecution — even if they did not express remorse.

The purpose of such a process is not to seek forgiveness, but to prepare the people of South Sudan for the immense task ahead: building a nation alongside those who committed crimes against them, their families and communities.

We realize this path is not straightforward, but it will do more than any other to guarantee lasting peace. It would also lessen the risk that one side perceives itself compromised, or held more responsible than the other for the events that occurred.

In contrast to reconciliation, disciplinary justice — even if delivered under international law — would destabilize efforts to unite our nation by keeping alive anger and hatred among the people of South Sudan.

That is why we call on the international community, and the United States and Britain in particular, to reconsider one element of the peace agreement to which they are cosignatories: support for a planned international tribunal, the Hybrid Court for South Sudan. We call on them instead to commit to global backing for a mediated peace, truth and reconciliation process.

The international community must consider the current state of our country. Years of war have left South Sudan with one of the highest levels of military spending by gross domestic product in the world. The army and its former opponents now need to be integrated. Over time, tens of thousands of soldiers must be decommissioned and introduced into civilian life.

We fear that this task could be put in jeopardy if members of once opposing forces — from officers to privates — find themselves targeted with legal action. It is easy to see how some people, having known nothing but war, may prefer to return to the battlefield than stand trial in a foreign country.

By taking this path we understand the consequences. We know that it could mean that some South Sudanese guilty of crimes may be included in government, and that they may never face justice in a courtroom.

However, there are recent precedents that demonstrate that this route is the most certain guarantee of stability. In Northern Ireland, a peace process brought bitter enemies to the negotiating table under a pledge of legal amnesty, and then into high office. Now, the country has guaranteed peace. The same is possible in South Sudan.

We do not wish to forget what happened during our civil conflict. Indeed, the recollection of the catastrophe unleashed during those terrible months must remain in our memories as a warning.

Neither side won our war. But both sides, together, must now win the peace. That is all that matters. In that quest, it is why anything that might divide our nation is against our people’s best interests.

Salva Kiir and Riek Machar are the president and first vice president of the Republic of South Sudan, respectively.

Establishment of Hybrid Court is an opportunity South Sudan shouldn’t miss!!!

BY: Daniel Juol Nhomngek, Lawyer, Kampala, JUN/07/2016, SSN;

The hybrid model in addressing crimes is characterized by a mix of national and international components. It is said to ‘hold a good deal of promise and actually offer an approach that may address some of the concerns about purely international justice, on the one hand, and purely local justice, on the other.

Thus, in this Article, I would like to explain why establishment of hybrid court is the most important opportunity South Sudan should not miss at this crucial time in which South Sudanese are emerging from horrors of war.

In that regard, the need for writing this article comes as a result for the need to clear some doubts that have recently been expressed by many people, and in particular, the South Sudanese government officials about the viability of the hybrid court in relation to the implementation of peace in South Sudan.

The doubts as pointed out in the above paragraph are that if the hybrid court is established, then, instead of bringing peace in the country, it may exacerbate the tension in the already existing tension in the country.

In response to the above concerns or doubts, I would like to say that such fears or uncertainties are unfounded. Instead, establishment of hybrid court will help establish the rule of law in the long run which will usher in the country permanent peace.

As pointed out in the above paragraph, the importance of establishing hybrid court in South Sudan should not be underestimated. It should not just be seen as a means of bringing peace per se in South Sudan, but in instead, it should be seen as a necessity for South Sudan to end the current and future conflicts through achieving permanent peace.

The reason I support the establishment of hybrid court in South Sudan is that it is an ideal court that is needed to comprehensively address the current problems in South Sudan.

Thus apart from the point I have stated in the above paragraph and before, I give other reasons for supporting the hybrid court or the HCSS, it is important to briefly look at the part of the Agreement which provides for its establishment.

The document that brings peace in South Sudan or the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan signed in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia on 17 August 2015 in Clause 3 of Chapter V provides for establishment of Hybrid Court for South Sudan (HCSS).

It provides in clause 3.1.1 of the Agreement in Chapter V that there shall be established an independent hybrid judicial court. That the Hybrid Court be established by the African Union Commission to investigate and prosecute individuals bearing the responsibility for violations of international law and/or applicable South Sudanese law, committed from 15 December 2013 through the end of the Transitional Period.

In addition, Clause 3.1.2 of the same Chapter above provides that the terms establishing the HCSS shall conform to the terms of this Agreement and the AUC shall provide broad guidelines relating to including the location of the HCSS, its infrastructure, funding mechanisms, enforcement mechanism, the applicable jurisprudence, number and composition of judges, privileges and immunities of Court personnel or any other related matters.

Furthermore, in clause 3.2, the jurisdiction, Mandate and Supremacy of the Court are established. Thus, the crime the HCSS shall have jurisdiction include: Genocide; Crimes Against Humanity; War Crimes.

In Clause, the agreement adds that the Court shall have power to try other serious crimes under international law and relevant laws of the Republic of South Sudan including gender based crimes and sexual violence.

Most importantly, the Agreement in Clause 3.2.2 provides that the HCSS shall be independent and distinct from the national judiciary in its operations, and shall carry out its own investigations and it shall have primacy over any national courts of RSS.

In clause 3.4, the rights of Victims and Witnesses are provided. It provides that the HCSS shall implement measures to protect victims and witnesses in line with applicable international laws, standards and practices. This clause is intended to encourage witnesses to give evidence that will help court to do justice and to found guilt against the culprits.

In Clause 3.4.2, the rights of the accused are respected and protected in accordance with applicable laws, standards and practices, which are important. It is important because criminal case against the accused should not be seen as revenge.

In other words, it should not be seen as persecution but it should be seen as prosecution in order to do justice. The reason is that justice and legal profession are founded on the concept of the people who will only believe that justice has been done, if it is not only done but seen to be done.

Finally, in Clause 3.5, the Agreement provides for Criminal Responsibility, Convictions and Penalties. It provides that a person who planned, instigated, ordered, committed, aided and abetted, conspired or participated in a joint criminal enterprise in the planning, preparation or execution of a crime referred to in Chapter V, Article 3.2.1 of this Agreement shall be individually responsible for the crime.

Clause 3.5 above is the most important aspect of criminal law. This is because it is one thing to claim that crime has been committed but who committed it is another thing. In this case, the witnesses and other evidences must be adduced to prove the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt.

Hence, the responsibility in criminal law is established only when the person who commits the crime is proved to be the one who commits it. This is the reason why we talk of the accused before a person is committed other criminal.
Clause 3.5 therefore, introduces the aspect of criminal liability as it exists under the international criminal law.

In regard to the penalty it is provided in Clause 3.5.2, which states that the HCSS may order the forfeiture of the property, proceeds and any assets acquired unlawfully or by criminal conduct, and their return to their rightful owner or to the state of South Sudan.

In addition to the above, the agreement clearly provides in Clause 3.5.3 that while all judgments of the court shall be consistent with the accepted International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law and International Criminal Law, the HCSS shall also award appropriate remedies to victims, including but not limited to reparations and compensation.

In this respect, it is important to note that the agreement is alive to the fact that there is a need for going beyond criminal justice, which only concentrates on punishment rather than compensation and reparation contrary to the concept of justice by South Sudanese.

Hence, it is the most important realization that whereas international law, which is made up of corpus of International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law and International Criminal Law that focuses on punishment of the culprits only, in South Sudan, the local laws embody the aspect restorative justice.

In that regard, restorative justice according to John Braithwaite (see; Braithwaite, John (2004-01-01). Professionalization “The Good Society 13 (1): 28–31) is a process where all stakeholders affected by an injustice have an opportunity to discuss how they have been affected by the injustice and to decide what should be done to repair the harm.

As John Braithwaite, further noted, with crime, restorative justice is about the idea that because crime hurts, justice should heal. It follows that restorative justice involves the conversations with those who have been hurt and with those who have inflicted the harm on them which means that the two parties must be central to the process.

Coming back to this discussion as based on the foregoing discussion, it has to be correctly stated that the establishment of HCSS is necessity for South Sudanese that they must put in place if they want to achieve the permanent peace and to erode the present negative memories of the horrors of war in South Sudan.

It is the fact that terrible atrocities were committed in the current war we are trying to end through the peace agreement. For that reason, it can be concluded that the establishment of the HCSS is necessity for not only ending the war but also creating and ensuring the permanent peace in the country.

The war has inflicted a lot of injustice on South Sudanese citizens in general and there is a need for the State to commit itself to establishing the HCSS without backtracking to address all injustices that were committed during the war.

The forms of injustices committed in the South Sudanese civil war of 2013 to 2016 including the killings of ten thousand people, raping of helpless women and girls, wanton destruction of and pillages of property of the innocent people on the pretext that they belonged to a certain tribes.

As a result of killings, looting, maiming of citizens some South Sudanese citizens are have been left in abject poverty, which is extreme injustice.

It is injustice because the ones who has killed the victims or looted their property are roaming free. Instead they are the ones threatening instability of asked to account for their misdeeds.

This kind of impunity should not be allowed. South Sudan as a country whose motto is Justice, Liberty and Prosperity should not take the issues of injustices as explained above lightly because they go to the root of the nationhood.

South Sudan is founded on Justice, Liberty and Prosperity and if we allow the antithesis (injustice) of the three fundamental concepts of Justice, Liberty and Prosperity, then we are destroying the nation unknowingly.

Hence, it was wrong for South Sudanese Government to assert that the need for Hybrid Court is not a priority currently in South Sudan. The establishment of hybrid court is equal to the establishment of justice in South Sudan.

Thus, South Sudan should live up to its motto as stated above by being fair to its citizens who are wronged by individual members of the State apparatuses. As John Rawls defines it in his acclaimed Book, The Theory of Justice, justice means fairness. Hence, anything which is unfair is injustice.

In relation to the above what South Sudanese Government must know is that peace and justice are inseparable; they go hand in hand. Permanent peace will never be achieved without providing justice to the victims of injustice.

In this regard, the South Sudanese Government should see the establishment of Hybrid Court as an opportunity that will bring permanent peace in the country now and in the future and they should not miss it.

In fact, the implications of ignoring the aspect of justice in the implementation of peace in South Sudan will be grave if the aspect of peace is not considered.

Pessimistically, whether we like it or not, the genocide or other serious crimes will take place in South Sudan, particularly, between Nuer and Dinka unless the injustices are addressed.

This is a practical explanation of future of South Sudan as drawn from past experiences in Africa. Rwanda was one of the countries in which injustices were ignored until it was too late and because of failure to address past injustices Rwanda could not escape genocide.

In the same way, if South Sudan does not take the aspect of justice seriously now by looking at it as a matter of necessity, something bad will happen in the future. As a result, what will follow is the intervention by the international community in South Sudan whether we like it or not. 1994.

The international Community through the UN Security Council is authorized under Chapter VII of the UN Charter of 1945 in Article 39 to intervene in the country whether the State likes it or not where there is an existence of a threat against the international peace.

The only way of avoiding such negative consequences is to create rule of law that ensures respect and protection of human rights by establishing hybrid court that will provide justice through addressing injustices committed in the current war which are likely to provide cultural medium for future war between the two tribes.

It is injustice to allow criminals on both sides to walk freely in the fair that if they are asked to account for their mischief the peace may be put jeopardy. Such fear is unfounded.

If South Sudan is not willing to establish hybrid court as provided in the Agreement then I will not support on this point and I will campaign for the intervention by the international community to ensure that miscreant individuals are brought to the book.

In short, the establishment of hybrid court should not be taken slightly. It is one of the priorities in South Sudan in order to achieve permanent peace. Temporary peace is worse than permanent peace.

Therefore, we should campaign against any person who objects to the establishment of hybrid court because such a person is against the interest of South Sudan.

NB// The Author is Concerned South Sudanese Lawyer training in Bar Course in Uganda and he can be reached via:; +256783579256

Citizen’s Power, National Security and the Intimidation of Civilians

BY: Kuir Garang, BA (Phil), MA (Phil. & CS), South Sudanese poet and author, JUN/05/2016, SSN;

Citizens in any nation should, in principle, be the true owners of power. Undoubtedly, they are the ones to reward or punish subversive behaviors or deeds contrary to the health and well-being of state’s socio-political, socio-economic, socio-cultural and socio-intellectual development.

In Africa, however, power is concentrated in the hands of the callous few, who wield it in a subversive manner and call it patriotism. Turning against citizens is treason not patriotism. And this treasonous expropriation of power by the elite political class uses national resources and institutions to effect this seed of national decay.

Shouldn’t citizens speak up and regain their power from these callous traitors of national conscience? Shouldn’t citizens stop the madness that’s plundering national funds on expensive cars on impassable roads and mansions in foreign countries?

Isn’t it shameful and unconscionable that some hardly have anything to eat as others drive in hundred thousand-dollars sport utility vehicles?

Isn’t it shameful that some folks are sleeping in expensive hotels as mothers and children beg for food in the street or die of preventable diseases?

Aren’t you ashamed of yourself when workers go for months without salaries as you sleep in a hotel paid for by the government?

I guess any reasonable answers can’t be obtained because national security agents are the protectors of these people; the people whose consciences are devilish but protected as patriots by national security apparatuses! So in a way, I’m wasting my time! But am I really wasting time in writing this polemical article?

Not, really! If you read it and your conscience doesn’t get affected, then you belong in the zoo! If you read this piece and you get affected but feel powerless then you can be excused but still held complicit in the rape of functional structures of national prosperity!

And if you read this and get affected but feel afraid for your life then, I hear you…but pass it along to sensitize the people! People should have the power not the callous tribal elites!

Save your nation from these treasonous elites or you’re part of this negative political orgy: the unconscionable destruction of the nation.

In South Sudan, the ruling political elites use national security to safeguard their treasonable, behind-the-doors tribal schemes.

Instead of using resources and national institutions to protect the soul of the nation—citizens—these gluttonous traitors use national security, the police force and the national army to legitimize intimidation of civilians and disenfranchisement of the citizenry.

The government has ceased to serve the people. It’s become their enemy with all the state security structures aimed at eliminating the voice of the people.

South Sudan has become a police state, a giant prison. National security departments have been tasked with the role of determining when and whether or not someone should leave the country. Is that freedom we fought for?

What’s the business of national security in the private business of citizens? How’s an assault on citizens’ rights and freedoms not a treasonable offence? This has to change!

South Sudan is not a prison for politicians to seek permission to leave? National passports are a permission for citizens’ exit and entry…as many times as they want!

To my fellow South Sudanese who are part of national security, we are not your enemy! We are not the enemy of South Sudan. All of us want our children to grow up in a prosperous country where everyone is treated equal with no tribal preference. But remember that you are protecting the interest of a few elites who don’t even care about you. Please protect the country from those who are actually destroying it.

Wake up and realize that you are being used for the destruction of the country. You’ve been used to turn South Sudan into a PRISON, a gigantic PRISON! Is that what you want? No! You’re better citizens than that!

A nation in which citizens are free easily prospers. Be protectors of citizens not their intimidators! Let citizens write freely within the law! Stop censoring newspapers. Let citizens express their opinions freely on air, online or in print!

Tackle those who abuse freedom of speech through the courts not through arbitrary arrests and censorship! Censorship of newspapers was the tradition of Khartoum, the enemy we fought for more than 50 years?

You’ve been turned into the very oppressor we wanted to get rid of! Please wake up! Nothing is as beautiful as a nation that protects national freedoms: religion, speech, political associations.

Wouldn’t it be beautiful for South Sudan to be called the nation with the freest press in Africa because of the professional of National Security of South Sudan! Think about it!

I would like both the citizens and national security to take their power back from the elites. They should remember that they have been turned against one another to protect the continuation of treasonous deeds of the ruling elites.

Let freedom reign! Let citizens speak! Let South Sudan be the freest county in Africa! Let us dream however costly!

Kuir Garang is a South Sudanese poet & author. For contacts, visit the website:

Emmanuel Jieng Parish might need to review its Christian mission, we all saw ECS go “that road.”

BY: Philips Al-Ghai, JUN/01/2016, SSN;

The events at Emmanuel Jieng Parish, Juba (an exclusive Bor Dinka congregation), in the past two weeks accentuate how the former Episcopal Church of Sudan (ECS) has morphed into a mediocre political playground.

Once a holy sanctum of hope to the hopeless, the ECS has steadily fragmented into sacrilegious ethno-political assemblies –both physically and psychologically.

The perpetual erosion of moral values in the former ECS has its roots in early 2000s. During this time, an appreciable amount of donor pennies was dropping into the church coffers as evident in the gradual surge in the number of semi-literate clerics attending basic training across the borders.

Superficially, it looked like a blessing. However, later on, as history has it, it was the commencement of unprecedented woes in our renowned church.

As the Bible asserts: “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. By craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” (1 Timothy 6:10)

Speculations ran rife that the top leadership was misappropriating funds at the time. The top positions in the church hierarchy suddenly became of interests, and calls for devolution became louder than ever. Communities were up in arms over the creation of new dioceses with bishops of their own.

Confrontational rebellions ensued in churches –priests were forcefully dragged from sacred pulpits. Ordination of clerics abruptly shifted from the customary individual commitment and discipline, to ethnic representation.

At that point, the writings were clear on the wall. The church was sliding into money and politics. Its divine role was taken over by politico-economic interests of individuals within. It was losing its integrity.

Since then, the business in the church has always been blurry between money and tribal politics. Evidently, I have heard grumbles in churches about clerics who are “theirs” or “not ours.” I have witnessed people in high political positions and/or positions of influence being given time to “address” the congregants even against the church norms.

These symptoms appear to be eminent at Emmanuel Parish, and that has given politicians a leeway to call in with one expectation: spit their political garbage to meek congregants.

I am not against anyone talking about his altercation with Satan or a date with an angel in his dream a night before… all those kinds of hypothetical stuffs, and drop a few pennies after in appreciation of honor they are afforded with.

The trouble arises when it comes to politics or issues that touch on the emotions of listeners in that matter. That is why I always feel that those worthy of addressing the church should only –I mean ONLY –be the ones with testimonies to tell the living about the spiritual world.

Here is why. It is no brainer that a church, like Emmanuel Parish, hosts a congregation with strongly opposing political views. Moreover, S. Sudanese have barely had time to come to terms with losses incurred in the past two years of political instability.

The peace is signed, yes. But its implementation is a gradual process.

At this point, it is only sufficient for apologies [if any] but not claims of innocence. You don’t expect Dr. Riek to lecture the Dinka on how innocent he is at the moment.

Similarly, you don’t expect Mr. Kiir to lecture the Nuer on how innocent he is. It is not practical. It just cannot appeal to anyone’s emotions. Even a juvenile five-year-old, who had seen their parents slaughtered, will not buy that message.

The “raw-group” at the church last Sunday might be raw, but so are emotions among the pained Nuers and Jieeng. That is how sensitive it is.

You would expect Emmanuel Parish to know this. However, the press release [courtesy of] regarding the incident on Sunday paints a picture of an institution that is either oblivious of current political situation in the country or does not know its role in the society.

It is a pity for a church that seems to know no disparity between politics and its mission to bullishly claim that the “church is a body of Christ where everybody has right to exercise his Christian rites.”

Is political lecture a Christian rite? Rubbish! It is a shame. I will never condone anyone to deter Dr. Riek from entering the church of God even if he was still in the bush. Everyone is equal to bow before God for a prayer, I believe.

But allowing someone to lecture a congregation on political opinions that conjure up emotions beats logic.

The church has a moral obligation to deter anyone, including Mr. Kiir, from addressing the congregants if his message is likely to cause disharmony in the church. Dr. Riek’s message was very likely. This is not hindsight. There were signs.

It is in the same church that Madam Rebecca de Mabior, who was perceived as having ties with the rebels, was attacked. That was sufficient to give the church a reason to shut out issues that touch on politics from their programs, at least for now.

Moreover, these politicians have everything at their disposal to call rallies and media. That is where they can get a willing listener. Why the church? It is unfair to impose them on unsuspecting congregants. It is common sense.

As the church’s administration goes on bragging about how they dealt with men in “black” T-shirts, they should know that they cannot serve politics, money, and God as scriptures say: “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” (Matthew 6:24).

They had moral obligation to prevent Riek Machar from lecturing his victims. If giving free pass to lectures from politicians is what constitutes the body of Christ, then they should rest assured that they have “…wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” The last two incidences could be a tip of an iceberg for the things to come.

Philips Al-Ghai is a proud S. Sudanese and can be reached at or on Twitter @ Al_Ghai211.