Archive for: February 2019

Brutal sexual violence by Machar’s, Taban’s & Kiir’s armies persists in South Sudan – UN

By Monitor Reporter, (From UN Human Rights Office and UNMISS), FEB/15/2019, SSN;

There are persistently high levels of sexual violence in South Sudan’s northern Unity region, with at least 134 women and girls raped, and 41 having suffered other forms of sexual and physical violence between September and December 2018, a UN report released on Friday reveals.

Among the survivors, some were as young as eight. The actual level of sexual violence is likely to be considerably higher than the number of cases recorded, according to UN.

The report by the UN Human Rights Office and the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) warns that although attacks against civilians have decreased significantly since the peace agreement was signed on September 12, 2018, endemic conflict-related sexual violence continues in northern Unity region. 

“The sexual violence was committed in a context of “pervasive impunity, which contributed to the normalisation of violence against women and girls,” the report notes.

In Summary

  • The Mission also increased peacekeeping patrols and cleared foliage from roads to make it more difficult for attackers to conceal their presence.
  • UNMISS has been operating a mobile court in hotspots, such as Bentiu and Malakal, to help address the issue of impunity, and intends to work with local judicial authorities to support such mobile courts in prosecuting crimes more widely across the country.

Almost 90 percent of the women and girls were raped by more than one perpetrator and often over several hours. Pregnant women and nursing mothers were also victims of sexual violence.

In one incident alone on December 17, in the village of Lang in Koch County, five women were gang-raped, four of whom were pregnant. One of the women was nearly nine months pregnant.

Survivors of sexual violence described being brutally beaten by perpetrators with rifle butts, sticks, small firearms and cable wires, if they attempted to resist their assailants or after they were raped.

The ruthlessness of the attackers appears to be a consistent feature of the sexual violence documented, the report states. The UN also indicates that the perpetrators had a certain level of premeditation.

One survivor narrated how she and her friends were raped on three separate occasions. With each attack, the number of assailants increased significantly.

Most of the attacks are reported to have been carried out by youth militia groups and elements of the pro-Taban Deng Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO (TD)) as well as South Sudan People’s Defence Forces (SSPDF).

In a few cases, attacks were perpetrated by members of pro-Riek Machar Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition (SPLA-IO (RM).

The investigation found that multiple factors had contributed to the upsurge in sexual violence in the area, including large numbers of fighters on “standby” mode, awaiting implementation of security arrangements under the peace deal; the presence of many armed youth militia; and a lack of accountability for past sexual violence at the individual and command level.

Given the destruction of livelihoods, forced displacement and food insecurity after years of civil war, many women and girls have to travel long distances through high-risk areas in search for food, water and firewood.

UN notes a feeling of resignation amongst survivors, and a sense of normalisation surrounding the risk of being subjected to sexual violence.

“We women do not have a choice,” one 30-year-old survivor from Koch County said. “There is no alternative for us. If we go by the main road, we are raped. If we go by the bush, we are raped. I was raped among others in the same area repeatedly on three different occasions. We avoided the road because we heard horrible stories that women and girls are grabbed while passing through and are raped, but the same happened to us. There is no escape – we are all raped.”

“The volatility of the situation in South Sudan combined with the lack of accountability for violations and abuses committed throughout Unity region, likely leads armed actors to believe that they can get away with rape and other horrific forms of sexual violence,” said the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet.
“Sadly, we have continued to receive reports of rape and gang rape in northern Unity region since the beginning of this year.”

“I urge the Government of South Sudan to take adequate measures – including those laid out in the peace agreement – to protect women and girls, to promptly and thoroughly investigate all allegations of sexual violence and to hold the perpetrators accountable through fair trials,” Bachelet added in a statement that was posted on UNHR website.

The High Commissioner also called on the authorities to ensure that humanitarian organizations can conduct their work without fear of reprisals and with unobstructed access to victims.

Upon receiving initial reports of the increase in reported cases of sexual violence, UNMISS immediately engaged with political leaders and security services. The Mission also increased peacekeeping patrols and cleared foliage from roads to make it more difficult for attackers to conceal their presence.

UNMISS has been operating a mobile court in hotspots, such as Bentiu and Malakal, to help address the issue of impunity, and intends to work with local judicial authorities to support such mobile courts in prosecuting crimes more widely across the country. END

Call for Alternative People’s NADAFA Government in South Sudan based on Three Autonomous Regions

FROM: 1-The People’s Democratic Movement (PDM), The Workers Party of Upper Nile (WPU) and The Federal Democratic Party (FDP)/Army;

Concerned Citizens in South Sudan and in Diaspora: We, together take the opportunity to inform the general public and our constituencies in South Sudan; based in Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr al Ghazal, that we are announcing to you and the world community, AU, IGAD, UN and TROIKA countries; the establishment of the National Alliance for Democracy And Freedom Action (NADAFA) as a popular, grassroots peoples alliance for democracy and freedom action in South Sudan.

NADAFA calls for Three Autonomous governments representing peoples of three regions of Bhar El Ghazal, Upper Nile and Equatoria.

The alliance members; People’s Democratic Movement, the Workers Party of Upper Nile, and Federal Democratic Party/Army and others who will join them, are committed to and firmly believe in creating the foundation for genuine lasting peace, democracy and sustainable development through alternative Peoples NADAFA Government in Upper Nile, Equatoria, Bahr al Ghazal, and South Sudan that will be based on federation of three autonomous regions during a transitional period of a NADAFA’s TFGoNU[1] as the way forward.  

For that reason, the Alliance agreed to advocate for and shall promote:

  1. The Call for three Autonomous Regions during transitional government period, giving the people a chance to rebuild themselves in their own regions of Bahr El Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile. The NADAFA Government will ensure that the rehabilitation of refugees and IDPs is carried out by putting the people first, and power-sharing equitably between the peoples, respect for the people and human rights shall come first in our country. The call for a Governance status of Upper Nile, Equatoria and Bahr al Ghazal as three autonomous regions with their borders and districts as they stood on 1st January 1956, in a new federal governance system during NADAFA Transitional Government period. New Peoples Social Contract and Constitution making for a people’s choice of governance system for their country between Federation or Confederation of states, including determination of number of states during the transitional period.
  2. Freedom action by the people using all legitimate means of struggle, including popular uprising for freedom in the event negotiation and peaceful means fail to amicably resolve the governance crisis under SPLM tribal rule in South Sudan.
  3. Positioning the alliance as the Peoples alternative NADAFA Government for our country to bring and realize enjoyment of Human and Peoples Rights, Economic, Social, Cultural and Political Rights by all our peoples in the three regions and 64 ethnic communities, and put an end to impunity and endemic corruption by hegemonic and tribal elites in South Sudan once and for all.
  4. Accountability for and recovery of all stolen monies in billions by the ruling elites from public coffers and resources, wasted in corrupt deals, personal enrichment at public expense, or in money laundry in real estate or property abroad.  
  5. Freedom of expression, and independent public broadcasting and democratic media sector that is not operating under state control, and which enjoy the right of access to information and the Public’s Right to Know.

NADAFA, the alliance shall seek to realize a political solution to the conflict in South Sudan predicated upon:

  1. All the peoples of South Sudan shall be guaranteed the right to live in a civil and democratic society which respects human and peoples rights in conformity with the ACHPR[2]
  2. The peoples of South Sudan shall have the right to determine the system and form of governance in the social contract and constitution making process, which may be a federation of three or more states or confederation of them.
  • Any forum for peace negotiations to reach an agreement shall ensure the socio-political and economic conditions that promote Three Autonomous Regions for a just and lasting peace for all the peoples of South Sudan are met, and guaranteed by the world community, and the protracted presence of UN peace keeping forces as may be adequate and necessary to keep the peace.
  • The world community are urged and welcome to contribute both relief and development resources to support the new and democratic societies and political forces establish a strong foundation for democracy and lasting peace in South Sudan based on Three Autonomous NADAFA Governments in Malakal, Juba and Wau.

The People’s Democratic Movement, the Workers Party of Upper Nile, and Federal Democratic Party (FDP)/Army take the opportunity once more to repeat their call to our people in Upper Nile, Equatoria and Bahr al Ghazal to forge a broad based socio-political struggle under the National Alliance for Democracy And Freedom Action (NADAFA) in our country, to end SPLM impunity, and lead democratic transformation that will usher in a just and sustainable peace.

NADAFA Alliance’s – Urgent recommendations to IGAD, AU, TROIKA and UNSC for a negotiated peace agreement in South Sudan:

  • Revisit R-ARCSS to open it up for a critical review to incorporate provisions for Pre-Transitional People’s conventions in Upper Nile, Equatoria and Bahr al Ghazal before start of Transitional Period and its possible extension thereof;
  •  Revisit and review R-ARCSS to incorporate provisions for a Federal governance system during the transitional period based on three autonomous regions of Upper Nile, Equatoria, and Bahr al Ghazal with their colonial districts and borders as they stood on 1st January 1956, which are well known and thus avoid the need for unnecessary imposition of the illegal 32 or 21 states in South Sudan;
  • Review R-ARCSS to incorporate provisions to address the root causes of conflict, justice and accountability for war crimes, and crimes against humanity and gross human rights violations in South Sudan;
  • Review R-ARCSS to limit undue influences, direct or indirect infringement upon the sovereignty and economic resources of South Sudan by foreign or IGAD sponsored regional powers, such as Sudan and Uganda in particular, and who are not to be authorized as peace Guarantors in South Sudan by the UNSC;
  • Review R-ARCSS to lift the state of emergency, release of all abducted political detainees and prisoners of war, accountability for missing abductees, Aggrey Ezbon Idri and Samuel Duong Luak who were kidnapped from Nairobi and both of whose fate still remain unknown;
  • Review of R–ARCSS to incorporate provisions for repatriation of Refugees and Internally Displaced People (IDPs) to their homes and places of origin in Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr al Ghazal;
  • Review of R-ARCSS to incorporate provisions for strategic security sector reforms, establishment of a national army and organized forces that will constituted from all the 64 ethnic groups in the country from Upper Nile, Equatoria and Bahr al Ghazal;
  • Review of R-ARCSS to incorporate provisions for all natural resources, gold mining and oil sector revenues transparency and accountability;
  • Review of R-ARCSS to incorporate provisions for funding implementation of a sustainable peace agreement in South Sudan from local and international partners,; UN, AU, IGAD, and TROIKA countries.

The alliance calls upon you the people of Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr al Ghazal to join NADAFA of your country and end this endemic impunity, misrule and corruption of SPLM.

SPLM impunity shall never again ruin the new born that is our country and nation the people voted for in 2011 self-determination through referendum, united by the Nile, and by the promise of a bright future.

We, the NADAFA Alliance call upon you to support the alternative People’s NADAFA Government vision for your country in the three Autonomous Governments based on regional representation in order to set the new direction for a genuine democratic transformation in South Sudan.

Why Alternative People’s NADAFA Government for South Sudan

It is clear to the people of South Sudan that SPLM destroyed our country and ruled with impunity. It is now clear that without going to Three Autonomous Regions, South Sudan will never see and experience peace under SPLM tribal rule.

Thabo Mbeki, the former South Africa’s President described the ruling SPLM in Juba as a bunch of kleptocratic  tribalists. The Trump administration further indicted President Salva Kiir’s leadership as being “morally bankrupt.”

The scathing Sentry reports of endemic corruption by SPLM leaders in power are no different. Since the summer of 2013, the SPLM has long ceased to be the leading democratic and progressive political organization in the country, not capable to lead democratic transformation after independence in 2011.

President Salva Kiir has literally installed himself as a full time dictator and earned condemnation of world leaders and friends of South Sudan liberation struggle alike; for the abject conditions of human rights abuses, corruption and impunity he created and permitted in the country. This is over and above gross human rights violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

SPLM is without legitimacy, fractured and failed on all counts, and is now without institutional foundations to retain the trust of the people to govern after its list of 75 leaders massive corruption in Government, which ultimately triggered and imposed a civil war in SPLM and equally in the country.

All this is occurring whilst the family of the President and relatives, with their children enjoyed owning expensive villas in Nairobi, shares in companies and a string of businesses of all trades, and looted public resources with impunity, such as Bol Mel’s infamous ABMC business model, together with other elites-owned firms in South Sudan that are sanctioned by the USA for money laundering.

President Kiir has turned the country’s resources into a personal bank account for corrupt ruling elites in SPLM and other political parties in his regime.

There is therefore absence and lack of any political will or capacity left in the ruling SPLM, and in this dictatorship and kleptocracy to be the ones entrusted with developing genuine democracy and sustainable peace in the country when credible democratic institutions are non-existent in all SPLM variants of the IG, FDs or IO kind.

The country is now faced with a huge deficit of democracy and foundation for sustainable peace and development that puts the people and respect for their dignity and basic human rights first.

The burden of democracy development lay not in the SPLM variants of corrupt-elites power sharing governments of the R-ARCSS anticipated type or the one before it that collapsed. That burden of democracy and sustainable peace development laid in a radical approach with a future ‘all peoples national alliance for democracy and freedom action’ alternative government, one that shares power equally between the peoples of Equatoria-Upper Nile-Bahr al Ghazal inclusively in all their diverse 64 ethnicities.

The way forward

The alternative is the Peoples NADAFA[3] Government[4] for the country, to disrupt dictatorship and most needed to clean the country from endemic corruption, end impunity and kleptocratic rule of SPLM and Salva Kiir, which destroyed the social fabric in South Sudan. The alternative People’s NADAFA government will mend and repair the social fabric, establish the new social contract and political order which South Sudan needs and that puts the people, their dignity and human rights first.

The alliance members; PDM, the Workers Party of Upper Nile, and FDP/A are committed to and firmly believe in creating the foundation of genuine democracy and sustainable peace development through alternative Peoples NADAFA Government in Upper Nile, Equatoria, Bahr al Ghazal, and South Sudan in a federation of three autonomous regions during a transitional period of a truly NADAFA TFGoNU[5] as the way forward.

Our Vision

Establish NADAFA’s Transitional Federal Government of National Unity in conjunction with Three Autonomous Regional Governments, which will be the primary basis for giving our people the right to choose Confederation or Federal system of government in the constitution making process.

Our Mission

The mission of NADAFA is to advocate for Democracy, Human and Peoples Rights, and rebuilding our regions to ensure and guarantee the rights of our peoples to live in a civil and democratic society which respects human and peoples rights and the full enjoyment of their economic, social, cultural and political rights, and providing accessible, affordable, and comprehensive education to our people across Three Autonomous Regions.

In order to fulfill our duty as responsible stewards of the people’s aspirations, we profess and commit to the values of Human and People Rights, integrity, responsibility and respect for human dignity as our guiding principles in all that we hope to achieve in service of the alliance and future NADAFA Government at large. 

The Peoples’ Alliance, NADAFA are calling on our sons and daughters in the ARMY, to join the call for freedom action to rescue our people and the country from the tribal tyranny of SPLM/A.

NADAFA appeals to and expects the highest standards of moral character and ethical behavior in the peoples struggle for freedom and justice. In particular, you in the institution of the (ARMY) have been used by politicians and corrupt generals for the past 5 years to protect their POSITIONS, Businesses and Financial networks.

Now, our people need your Honesty and Integrity to act in defense to rescue our people from tyranny of tribal elites. NADAFA, the people’s alliance looks with high expectations to fulfillment of your obligations as the people in Uniform, towards your oppressed people of South Sudan under SPLM tribal dictatorship and tyranny.

Copies:

CC: H.E.Ambassador. Ismail Wais, IGAD Special Envoy to South Sudan

CC: President Salva Kiir Mayardit, Head of TGONU, SPLM-IG

CC: Hon. Angelo Beda, Co-Chair of The National Dialogue Committee

CC: Dr. Riek Machar Teny, Chairman and C-in-C, SPLM-IO

CC: Mr. Peter Gatdet Yak, Chairman, South Sudan Opposition Alliance SSOA

CC: Dr. Kwaje Lasu, South Sudan National Democratic Alliance SSNDA

CC: Mr. Deng Alor Kuol, Representative SPLM-FDs

CC: Mr. Peter Mayen, Other Political Parties, OPP

CC: H.E. Ambassador Lt. Gen. Augostino Njoroge, Interim Chairperson RJMEC,

CC: H.Es. Ambassador Chris Trott, Ambassador Erling Skjønsberg,,TROIKA

CC: H.E. Mr. Mousa Faki Mohamat, Chairperson of AU

CC: H.E. David Shearer, Head of UNMISS

Signatories:

Name Organization Signature
Dr. Hakim Dario Chairman People’s Democratic Movement             press@pdm-rss.org  
Mr. Gatluke Reat Chairman Workers Party of Upper Nile     Greateruppernile1@gmail.com   www.uppernile.org  
Mr. Thomas Peter Chairman   Federal Democratic Party /Army          

[1] Transitional Federal Government of National Unity – TFGoNU

[2] African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights

[3] NADAFA abbreviation for National Alliance for Democracy And Freedom Action

[4] Transitional Federal Government of National Unity – TFGoNU

[5] Transitional Federal Government of National Unity – TFGoNU