Category: More Views

South Sudan, a country where opinion kills: Greater Bor Petition on Isaiah Abraham’s heinous death

Greater Bor Petition, DEC/13/2012, SSN;

We, the Greater Bor community in Australia are profoundly outraged by death of Isaiah Abraham. We have condemned the killing in the strongest terms possible. Circumstances surrounding his death clearly showed our people are being systematically targeted. Deep down in us, we are wrecked and demoralized beyond words. This community has been subjected to tenacious harassment, allegations, marginalization and killing by Kiir’s junta. Who would again dispute the country is back into tyranny era?

There is no doubt the Republic of South Sudan will go down in history as a country where opinion kills. Detaining, torturing and murdering of opinion writers and journalists rule in our beloved country. A dreadful act, condemnable internationally.

We learn the government has ordered investigation into Isaiah’s death, but what is mind-boggling, how would the government that is implicated in this heinous act investigate itself? This is a hoax. The ransom of $50,000 US put forward for anyone giving information leading to arrest of perpetrators is nothing, but a sham to distract the trend of homicide. The government is in the know-how no one will show up since execution was carried out by its apparatus.

Before we get in-depth what this is, we would like to present our readers that despite the staunch support of the Greater Bor community during liberation of Republic of South Sudan we are now barred off.

Greater Bor community stood firmly in solidarity with other Southerners in refusal to suppression and other gross human rights violation by the then Jallaba’s regime. We all fought and outlived the successive regimes to ensure we have a nation we call ourselves citizens. The contribution of this community in the liberation is extensively known and well documented.

The chivalrous forces of Koriom battalion hailed from this community. Their performance in the battle fields was magnificent. They fearlessly fought and won many combats. It was a battalion that made an enormous damaged to our then enemy, Koriom battalion destroyed first batch of Jallaba known as ‘Ten Thousand Troops’ at Pan-Wel Abiryai battle. This community decently carried itself affably throughout the movement to ensure we achieved this freedom being nauseatingly abused.

We took up arms in rejection of slavery, marginalisation, suppression, systematic killing, injustice, extortion and corruptive system amongst many others. We fought for a country where we will be seen as equal citizens, free to express what one sees not going right. A country where one can sleep without lingering doubt of being dragged out in the dead of night and imprudently killed in the manner Isaiah Abraham was slain helplessly.

We fought for a nation where citizens can walk from Rumbek to Bor, from anywhere to somewhere in South Sudan without being waylaid and torpedoed aimlessly. We fought a system that was full of flaws and deceit. Instead, it is the very system we fought tireless that is currently taking shape in Juba. The government’s gadget, our own sons and daughters (South Sudanese) whose responsibilities are to protect and maintain law and order have turned deadly like the Jallaba we separated from.

This is something we blame to wrong and mystified fallacies by the reigning government. Citizens are abducted, tortured and killed in cold blood. We have noticed, with deep regret, Juba, is just a subset of old Sudan. Citizens live in terror as if there is no government in place.

We chose to be quiet, thinking things will change down the tract, but it just getting chancy as it gets. The recent cowardice killing of the renowned and insightful writer, Diing Chan Awuol (Isaiah Abraham) is an ominous and a bombshell to this community, and nation at large.

It’s obvious the nation is hijacked by the terrorists who view everybody not from them, an alien. The death of Isaiah is first of its nomenclature, but not the first of its kind. People are nightly and daily slaughtered with impunity in Juba. Here is the list:

First, Colonel Chuol Manyuon Anei, a veteran from Zindia battalion of Koryom was killed on December 24, 2011 in Juba. He was dragged out of his residential house and killed mercilessly.

Second, Angeth Kuech Awan and Atem Awan Maper were deliberately shot and killed in the bank at Juba. As we write, there is no justice served about their cases.

Third, John Akuach Jook a lawyer from Makerere University was killed in a highly suspicious mysterious car accident in Juba in December 2008, and until now the killer is not indicted, and dangerously still on the loose.

Fourth, Mayol Kuch Duoi, a SPLA veteran who was an American citizen was shamelessly bashed to death by the SPLA’s soldiers when he paid visit to his mum at Pan-pandiar. No justice serves as well.

Fifth, Malong-dit de Aleng’s compound in Juba was deliberately fired at with the intention to kill him, fortunately they missed him.

Sixth, Mading Ngor Akech Kuai, co-founder of the New Sudan vision, former radio talk host, Bhakheta station in Juba was pulled apart and terribly beaten up by the lawless officers and now still being threatened.

Seventh, Mabior Garang de Mabior and his brother Chol were stalked, ambushed and beaten up by the group who identified themselves as being purposely sent for them. Mabior is made a disabled as we write. His jaw is broken and many fractures around his body.

Eighth, Kuol Achiek Mac, a University student was dragged out of his house and tortured severely just because he quarreled the previous day with police officer.

Ninth, Michael Thon Mangok, a regular contributor of Southsudannation news outlet is being threatened to stop writing and he had to exile to Kenya.

Back to Isaiah’s case, late Isaiah Abraham took part in liberation of South Sudan. He joined the SPLA/SPLM in 1983 and trained in Bonga, Ethiopia. He served as military and political commissar in the Tiger battalion of the SPLA under the command of current Republic of South Sudan President Kiir Mayar. His service of being a loyal soldier made him achieved the rank of a shield seven captain. He was later on promoted to the rank of Major but decided to leave the army, after the 2005 peace deal that granted the region a decree of autonomy and the 2011 self-determination plebiscite that led to secession.

Isaiah fought two wars, he went back for studies the time he saw his people got the right he took up arms for. He held a BA in business administration from Day Star University and a masters degree from Nairobi University, Kenya. At the time of his death, he was serving in South Sudan’s government as a director for administration and finance in the employees’ justice Chamber.

Isaiah’s father was a local chief from Pawel Payam in Kongor, Twi County. Chan Awuol was killed by Jallaba for standing up for his people just the way his four sons died.

Late Isaiah Abraham was a concerned citizen like any other citizen in South Sudan. He was known for speaking up his mind for anything he believes is right for his country-mate, and in his second last opinion he had this to say:

“Our president is a man with no confidence in himself and the public. My people have suffered under President Kiir and his heartless clique; I have no kind words again against these people. The demonstration we made as people of South Sudan on Monday, not as Northern Bahr El Ghazal people, will go down in history as the beginning of things to come.”

Apparently, this is what we believed took Isaiah’s life, because it is evident by this: “On November 21st, 2012 the President security went to Isaiah’s house to investigate him. They showed him a printed article a few days before his assassination.”

After his death, the president was quoted saying, “I know it is not the police and security.”

Whereas, the Republic of South Sudan Minister for information Dr. Marial Benjamin said: “The ongoing investigation into Isaiah’s death indicated that 70% is assassinations.”

In addition, Wandit, the gentleman who claimed to be erstwhile Republic of South Sudan security agent, had this to say:
“Isaiah Abraham was killed by members of a special protection of president guard unit, called Tiger. What is responsible for his death is his article in which he wrote saying the president must step down. On that fatal night, Isaiah Diing was called out from his home and was made to sit down and then shot in the head. He was shot with only one bullet. He was killed by another Dinka, his tribe people. The murdering people made sure that national security was not patrolling at night in that particular area of Gudele.”

According to Sudan Tribune, December 11, 2012, “South Sudan’s minister of interior, Alison Manana Magaya, has admitted that ‘elements’ in the nation’s security agency are involved in crimes in the capital, Juba. There are some elements within the police and other organised forces who commit crimes.”

Reading at our President, Minister for information and Minister for interior mixed messages, you would be left scratching your head and probably say what is what now? You be the judge.

Explicitly, opinion is always an opinion. It does not kill! Isaiah was writing as an individual and calling president to resign was not a threat to Kiir or president’s clique he mentioned. President holds public position and deserves talk about, whether good or bad. It was an opinion that has to be disputed in the similar manner and worth not taking veteran’s innocent life.

We all see our country overwhelmed by social insecurity, that is characterized by rampant corruption, poor policing, muggings, extortion, insecurity, cattle rustling, land grabbing, poor health and education, poor infrastructure, strikes in Juba, Bortown and Western Bahr el Ghazal. Given all these vices, we all have citizenry rights to write and talk about the government leading us and Isaiah was doing exactly that. Why killed him?

The Western countries we see developing day and night do not just happen from the blue. It is through collection of different perspectives, opinions included. In South Sudan instead of envisaging on people like late Isaiah, government is preying on them. How do we expect the country to move forward, mister President?

As citizens of Republic of South Sudan, we deserve to be treated with decency and equality. The mandate given to you as President was to carter for all citizens of this country despite where each comes from. Greater Bor and all the people of South Sudan didn’t believe that you were wrongly entrusted for leadership of South Sudan but because of your weakling leadership, our nascent state is on the verge of schism which led to the birth of SPLM-DC and many other factions within SPLM simply because of hatred caused by your government irresponsible sycophants.

Finally, the preceding tactics and strategies to ‘deBorization’ we in the Republic of South Sudan government have now shifted from unnecessary reshuffling to killing. Greater Bor community is afflicted by this fatuous tagging. However, we are not ready to accept this fratricidal war we’re being dragged into. And we want to see the end to it as soon as possible.

We are appealing to the government, if there is any, to resolve and reverse this disguise of targeting our sons and daughters once and for all, for peace to prevail in this nascent State. We call for an immediate cessation of this hostility towards our people.

In conclusion, we hope to hearing in a couple of days that the culprits are brought to justice and charged accordingly, though it won’t make Isaiah come back. We urge the government to collectively nip this dangerous and unwelcome aggressive governance before it festers.

As if it wasn’t enough, we understand “investigators are being threatened with text messages, that whoever will reveal the assassins will face the same consequences.”

We want to assure you that we know who killed Isaiah, and we are giving this government a chance, or else we will be forced to take the law into our own hands and go after the murderers if that investigation yields no fruit.

The undersigned are as follow and we are reachable at
1. Jurkuch Akuoch
2. Ayiik Anyang
3. Awan Awan
4. Awumtiaidit
5. David Manyok
6. Chotjak Charles
7. Aluong Angeth
8. Maluk Deng
9. Moses Achol
10. Peter Machuor
11. Majok Mayen
12. Anuan Anuan
13. Andrew Makuei
14. Thon Nhial
15. Thon Alier
16. Mabior Gai
17. Madol Anyang
18. Ayuen Makur
19. Magot Deng
20. Kelei Kur
21. Kongor Gak
22. Chol Atem
23. Machar Yuang
24. Marial Gai

Catalyzing Jacob Lupai’s radical approaches: By the people for the people

QUOTE: “Patriotism…..must be aided by a prospective interest or some reward. For a time, it may of itself push men into action, to bear much, to encounter difficulties. But it will not endure unassisted by interest.” George Washington, 1st U.S President

BY: Fanwell L. Edward, ACCRA, GHANA, DEC/08/2012, SSN;

This article was inspired by the one authored by Jacob K. Lupai and published on this esteemed website on 28 November 2012, titled “A Radical Approach Needed In the Interest of South Sudan.” That article is by far one of the better articles Brother Jacob Lupai has written in quite a while. It is refreshingly bold, incisive, void of fictitious propaganda, and above petty politics. He should be commended for the piece.

The author did a superb job of highlighting some of the problems that plague the young republic and its over eight million citizens. The author even suggested commendable radical approaches to myriad problems, including lack of delivery of basic services, rampant land-grabbing, ubiquitous corruption and empty rhetoric concerning national unity, among other issues. Unfortunately, these commendable radical approaches are not likely to see the light of the day because they are essentially steps that need to be un-taken by the government.

While indeed, social justice, delivery of basic services, and freedom from fear are some of the main peace dividends which people rightfully expect the new country to afford them after long years of deprivation, judging from the current state of governance in South Sudan, it is vividly evident that it will not be the approaches taken by either the government or the SPLM Party that will stop this new country from turning into just another failed African state where citizens remain destitute and ruthlessly dogged by abject poverty and rampant disease despite the country’s enormous financial and human resources.

The mindset of the people in power in South Sudan today is not dissimilar to that of the so-called ‘verandah boys’ –The die-hard supporters of the Ghanaian first president, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, — whose favorite mantra during the early days of the country independence was, “look, Osegyefo (the savior) has killed a great elephant, there will be plenty for all to eat, so pass the carving knife to the next person.” God helps us all whenever visionless individuals masquerading as leaders see a newly independent country as nothing but a fallen giant elephant on which the powerful and their tribesmen should feast with wanton abandonment.

The SPLM-led government is completely and firmly shackled by the formidable twin forces of irrational complacency and debilitating incompetency. While ignorance is the main cause of both the ubiquitous complacency and arrogance in the corridors of power in Juba and in the ten states, the insidious sense of entitlement and tribalism that permeates the thinking of those who never miss a chance to remind us that they ‘liberated us’ are now the main causes of the debilitating incompetency that ravages our workforce.

The ‘liberators’ are hell-bent on liberating community lands from the hands of their rightful owners (zanga, zanga, as Gadhafi would say) in the same manner they have entrenched their barely literate clansmen and relatives in high government and military positions. It is an open secret that land grabbing is either executed by high government and military officials or with their active complicity.

The ubiquitous ‘we are starting from the scratch’ phrase has done its share of engendering complacency in the minds of incompetent government officials who use the phrase to mask their ineptitude and to justify the exclusion of qualified individuals from holding office on the account of their ethnicity or political affiliation.

South Sudan did not start from the scratch, neither from financial perspective nor from the standpoint of manpower as the SPLM would like us to believe. On the contrary, the government of southern Sudan (GOSS) had billions of dollars, qualified workforce and time (six years) enough to have laid the ground for the independent country in terms of infrastructure such as roads, bridges, buildings and river transport facilities. Instead, the money was squandered with mind-numbing recklessness.

Not only did we grossly mismanage the funds that poured in from the international community and our own oil revenues, we also managed to mismanage our chances of negotiating a financial settlement for our divorce with the Republic of the Sudan vis-a-vis our share of the assets of the Sudan. In spite of that, South Sudan was in a better position at its independence than many African countries were at their own independence in terms of financial and human resources.

No one old enough needs to be reminded of the squalid conditions under which the regional government operated gallantly at its inception after the signing of the 1972 Addis Ababa Accord. That was starting from the scratch. The only things most of the officials of the present government are starting from the scratch relate to riding in huge land-cruisers, running a government office, and learning how to think on their own. Otherwise these officials seem to be adept and dexterous in trotting the globe in business class at the expense of the public and at siphoning public funds to their families in Australia, America, the UK, Kenya and Uganda.

In addition to the challenges of poverty, disease, lack of development in all spheres, corruption and bad governance, our government faces the monumental task of uniting South Sudan’s various ethnic groups into a national mosaic that could truly be called a nation. Fostering national unity needs almost no additional financial resources beyond the resources needed to effect basic services delivery to our people. Yet the government is not keen to achieve national unity. Indeed, our government does not seem to be consumed with engendering national unity because it obviously believes in imposing the hegemony of certain ethnic groups on the country, a project doomed to fail before it takes root.

Mercilessly lacking in ingenuity and foresight, our government resembles a deer mortified and disoriented by the headlights of a slowly-moving hunter’s truck. Unable to think, move or summon help from other parties, it shuffles and shifts its right front leg feebly, moves momentarily toward the right only to lift the left front leg, turns left without moving its hind legs. It timidly wipes its nose with its front left leg perhaps in a futile attempt to try to smell the on-coming danger.

With its Macarena-like jerky steps, it sustains the fleeting curiosity of the approaching hunter (a foreigner or unscrupulous home-grown native) just long enough for the high-powered rifle to deliver the coup de grace. The deer falls with a thud, and before the echo of the sound of the gun dissipates into the dense forest, South Sudan will be no more because South Sudanese and carpetbaggers alike would have already descended on the meat of the fallen animal with the ferocity of hungry wild beasts.

It is, therefore, both an underestimation and overestimation of the SPLM-led government to suggest that ‘for the SPLM to sustain it popularity, it must come out and declare openly the catastrophic failure of basic services delivery as peace dividends to the people.’

In the first instance, SPLM’s callous obliviousness to the basic needs of the average South Sudanese must not be underestimated or wished away. After all, the families and the relatives of those who are supposed to dedicate themselves to uplifting their fellow country men and women from poverty reside comfortably abroad.

Secondly, to assume that the SPLM is interested in sustaining it popularity by providing basic services to the people is to overestimate the party’s supposedly symbiotic relations with the polity. This is a democratic idealism that is as much removed from reality as the heavens are from the corners of the earth. The reality seems to suggest that the sum of the selfish interests of individual members of the SPLM party is far greater than the whole party. The party has not only turned into an empty shell, but it has unwittingly become a Trojan Horse of sort to be used by the SPLM’s own ‘verandah boys,’ former members of the National Congress Party (NCP), political opportunists, and foreign entities to realize their own selfish ends.

While many in the party regard the SPLM as a large spaceship that will uplift them from poverty and carry them to Eldorado and the land of milk and honey via the milky way, only a tiny minority labors dutifully to uplift the party from the quagmire of apathy and empty rhetoric in which it has been deeply marooned for far too long.

How then will the party survive the peoples’ wrath at the ballot box in a couple of years’ time? One may ask, “Who told you that there will be ballot boxes in the near future?” The man pacing restlessly at the Juba University roundabout with big muscles protruding from the short sleeves of his meticulously ironed military-police uniform would roar and bark at you menacingly like a pit-bull. He may even bite you for thinking ‘in the box’ about the ballot box.

Although you haven’t sought his opinion in the first place, the I-know-it-all military man will authoritatively and obnoxiously remind you that there will, indeed, be elections in 2015 or 2025 or whenever, but there will not be ballot boxes or foreign observers, and that the SPLM, the party that ‘liberated you, good-for-nothing’ will win by a landslide over all the ‘enemies of the people.’

“Yes, all enemies of the people who don’t like SPLM will be defeated the way we defeated the Arabs,” our gallant fighter-turned-politician will shout repeatedly at the top of his lungs until he shouts himself hoarse.

It is, therefore, charitable at best and wishful thinking at least to think that the SPLM will declare the ‘catastrophic failure’ associated with the delivery of basic services to the people. The party is too complacent and too intoxicated with power and arrogance to countenance such a course of action which it deems to be beneath its inflated dignity.

The ‘we-liberated-you brigade’ will continue to breath fire at the mere mention of people’s right to hold government to account for the lack of basic services and other essential services. The brigade will threaten to bring the house down on our heads as long as it believes that we mortals will not risk our lives for the sake of our ideals and liberty in a country which the ‘brigade’ wrongly assumes it has just bequeathed unto us magnanimously.

For all the reasons outlined above, and perhaps due to my belief that there already exists a critical mass of opinion in and outside this country that suggests that the country is craning dangerously toward the abyss, a radical approach to safeguarding the national interest and welfare of South Sudan and its citizenry must not be left in the hands of a non-benevolent government that seems to be stuck in overdrive gear, and like a drunken driver, the only time it drives straight ahead is only when the road curves at the dangerous point overlooking the great abyss.

This being the stark reality, the government will have to be made to bend to strong winds in order for it to implement the radical approaches suggested by Brother Lupai. As nothing shakes the leaves of a stubborn giant oak tree like strong winds do, nothing shakes the complacency and arrogance of a recalcitrant government the way people’s power does.

The people of South Sudan have been too polite so far to use their collective power to prod the government and peoples’ representatives in both the central Parliament and regional parliaments to deliver peace dividends to the people.

Looking on from the sidelines in bewilderment, the people seemed genuinely disarmed or confused by the contradictory positions of the government which, on one hand, employs scare tactics by calling on the public to refrain from engaging in independent acts of self-expression that are not sanctioned by the government under the pretext that the ‘enemy’ could use such activities to sabotage our national security, while, on the other hand, it lures the people into falsely believing that their government having ‘liberated’ them from the yoke of 2nd and 3rd class citizenship was working day and night to provide basic services to them.

Some unscrupulous opinion writers from South Sudan and some European expatriates with ulterior motives swallowed and have continue to perpetuate the myth that suggests that the newborn South Sudanese state is too fragile for the people to exercise their constitutional rights. Staging pro-government demonstrations, according to this myth, is highly encouraged any time.

The people are waking up slowly now and discovering that the myth of the fragility of the state and the fear of foreign threats conceal the sinister motive of entrenching a state of permanent autocratic rule that would effectively exterminate any notion of participatory democracy in the new state in the foreseeable future.

Adolf Hitler used these very tactics to disastrous effect, establishing and entrenching the most rapacious dictatorship in the recent history of mankind. The rest is, literally speaking, history that must not allowed to repeat itself.

The SPLM-led government has unwittingly pushed people against a rough wall full of spikes that the people have no choices but to invoke their constitutional right to judiciously and peacefully use the universally recognized nonviolent approaches of nonviolent protests and persuasion; noncooperation in matters that violate citizen’s welfare; and nonviolent intervention to impede the progress of policies and actions that impact negatively on the state and on its citizens.

These nonviolent approaches could be used invariably and incrementally to effectively catalyze government’s lackadaisical approaches to the implementation of the crucial tasks of basic delivery of services, fighting land grabbing and corruption, and fostering national unity, among other issues.

Nonviolent protests and persuasion, the mildest form of nonviolent method, involves symbolic gestures and vigils to highlight unjust occurrences such as land grabbing, for instance. People could also hold vigil at the National Parliament for its failure to actively fight corruption, nepotism, land grabbing and other vices.

The process of fostering national unity among young people, for instance, could benefit a great deal if citizens and civil society organizations conduct peaceful marches and vigils at the Ministry of Education to demand the return of student dormitories to schools. It goes without saying that boarding schools were once upon a time the incubators that provided students as young as eight years of age with the basic nutrients and vital ingredients of South Sudanese national unity and solidarity as these young people study, live, play and learn with their fellow South Sudanese from various parts of this culturally and ethnically diverse region.

Non-cooperation approach involve the right of the citizens to refuse to cooperate vis-a-vis social, economical or political activities that the people deem detrimental to their own welfare or that of their region or that of the state as a whole. The right to down tools is a form of noncooperation approach to protest low wages or unsuitable work environment.

Nonviolent intervention is the most advanced form of nonviolent approach. Its purpose is to frustrate ongoing activity, policy, or process. It includes sit-ins in businesses or offices or blockage of bridges and roads. This approach also includes ‘psychological intervention’ such as self-imposed fasting by individuals or churches and other places of worship.

Our communities, especially the ones that are greatly affected by land grabbing could effectively use sit-in tactics by staging sit-ins on grabbed lands as soon as the owners of land inform the community of the incident.

The Parliament and the Council of Ministers are legitimate targets for nonviolent intervention activities aimed at stopping the first from simply rubber-stamping legislation passed by the executive branch of our government and stopping the latter from wasting time and money on pedestrian deliberations such as bestowing accolades on Miss South Sudan.

Juba Airport, the busy revolving door through which our president, government ministers, SPLM officials, governors, chairmen of commissions and other Very Important Personnel (VIP) who troop in and out of the country to foreign lands at these tough times of biting austerity measures, should also be a prime target of nonviolent intervention aimed at drawing attention to the wasteful travel by our government officials and their commuting families.

Of course, the use of nonviolent demonstrations is not exclusively limited to protest against actions or policies. In fact, the people could also use their nonviolent self-expression to show pleasure with positive actions taken by the government and other entities.

Indeed, the use of nonviolent approaches by the people to aid the processes of uplifting them from the jaws of poverty, on one hand, and to prod a recalcitrant government to discharge its responsibilities, on the other hand, is a long and arduous road that must be traveled without fail for it leads inevitably to liberty. The brutal forces of the ‘we-liberated-you’ brigade will definitely attempt to use violent means to make the cost of people’s participation in nonviolent activities exorbitant.

But like democracy, nation building by the people and for the people is a work in progress that should have started yesterday, and to postpone any of its vital components under any pretense is to increase the cost of the fight for democracy in the future for by then dictatorship would have spread like a cancer in the body of the nation and in all of its vital organs.

The people are prudent enough to use nonviolent methods of change judiciously and in combination with the radical advocacy approaches which Brother Lupai suggested in his excellent article.

In conclusion, it is only fitting to reiterate the wise counsel offered by John Adams, 2nd U.S. President, to the people who yearn for liberty and whom he urged not to, “….suffer yourselves to be wheedled out of your liberty by any pretenses of politeness, delicacy or decency. These as they are used, are but three different names for hypocrisy, chicanery and cowardice.”

The author is a South Sudanese working and living in Accra, Ghana, West Africa, and can be reached at

South Sudan needs to introduce anti-nepotism policy

“When the line comes into sharp focus is when the beneficiary of nepotism isn’t pulling her or his weight, when incompetence is overlooked or ignored, when wrongdoing is rationalized away. (“That’s just John being John”).

BY: Lok Franco Kok, South Sudan, DEC/07/2012, SSN;

During these tough economic times, nepotism (favoritism directed exclusively or mainly toward friends or relatives regardless of merit) becomes the most chronic ineradicable disease, which no one cares even to apprehend. Nepotism is an illegal act. This act is destroying many societies today.

Giving a position or something to a relative or friend with the use of discretion is seen as unlawful and illegal. Granting a new job, promotion or higher career opportunity regardless of merit is illegal. Nepotism can have a high negative impact on peoples’ lives.

It is mainly caused by selfishness since the persons on top wishes to channel the resources to their families and else, scarcity of jobs also have a role to play in bringing about nepotism. South Sudan’s public opinion is wary of the extent nepotism is reaching. Many people do believe that nepotism and is closely initiated by the wide spread tribalism related practiced, wide spread corruption that conquers nearly all government institutions in the Country.

Instances of nepotism can be found in almost every level of government institutions with no exception. Nepotism creeps up in all manners in everyday life and in the workplace as well. It is becoming one of the most perplexing phenomenon practiced nation wide. It has also been a general disease of politics and other private and public services.

Nepotism can be seen as dysfunctional, which is very destructive in political, economic and social order.

Higher education scholarships have been granted recently by many different countries for South Sudan students to study abroad, but to get the chance was not easy at all for those with no people in the central corrupted government. Though nepotism has been a way of life in all government institutions, there are signs that change may be coming if civil society stands firm to strongly denounce the continuation of nepotism.

Nepotism is “to put incapable people in important positions” When left unchecked, many people would get friends and family on the payroll or so, instead of putting the best and the brightest applicants.

What is really happening? Are the public offices going to be used for the benefits of the majority or personal gains. Nepotism is a tool of corruption.

The best example of these corrupt institution was the Jonglei state coordination office in Juba. The above mentioned institution has been corrupted due to the misuse of scholarship forms [i.e scholarship provided by Petronas company to all south Sudanese that met the requirement, three degree programs where provided by Chinese oil company which comprised of chemical engineering, geo-petroleum sciences and petroleum engineering].

The ministry of petroleum and mining had distributed these forms to all ten states of south Sudan to be easily accessed by the applicants. But instead, Jonglei state coordination office has used the dirty politics i.e nepotism and bribery, when you paid then you get a form, if you don’t pay, no chance for you.

They continued lying that they have limitation of forms which they put up a delaying tactic being used by this authority as the deadline for the application is due on 15/12/2012.

I don’t know whether our people understand the importance of the future of this nation. Imagine you forge certificate for your son or your brother-in-law to go for scholarship, what do you think he will do? instead he will come back empty-minded, because the conditions and terms are beyond his capacity as follows.

It is very unfortunate that people are wasting the precious chances on incompetent applicants. Therefore people must be careful about this issue and take it seriously. The truth only meant something when the person who is listening understands it.

In reality, the practice of favoring and promoting relatives or paramours, more commonly known as nepotism, is widely practiced in big and small institutions, in state and federal levels across the country.

Persons in authority making the decisions must be aware of temptation toward nepotism and make sure that decisions are for the good of all involved and are based on objective factors. They also must be aware of their own tendency to rationalize favoritism as being for the good of all when it is really based on what is good for their own relatives.

However, everyone must realize that it is best to avoid even the appearance of evil. What people perceive becomes the ‘reality’ to which they react. If the situation leads to low morale, low productivity, or a seeming lack of integrity, it should be evaluated for its effects.

The ‘sin’ of nepotism is choosing someone based on their family other than qualifications on that relevant position. Here is a prime example I’ve seen in our local politics. A man was elected to a governmental position where he had the power to influence the creation of government jobs and who was hired and fired. Less than a year after he took office, a completely new government job was created and his nephew was appointed to fill it.

There’s nothing necessarily wrong with wanting to help out a family member by providing a job if they are competent. Whereas, choosing key jobs for people you know well and can trust completely or wanting to build an enterprise, that’s a family project. But such things easily become part of an us-first lifestyle.

When it comes to nepotism, the pendulum is swinging. The rules are now becoming more stringent. Relatives were always given consideration. The deleterious effects of nepotism on higher education government scholarship cannot be overstated. It is more persistent that favoritism is the first considered condition in selection of the admitted candidates. It is not just a bad habit, but an addiction that bloats budgets, hurts morale, and undermines the public’s trust.

Friendship is good, and so is loyalty, and there is a lot to be said for the belief that good people surround themselves with other good people. But the logical flip side is that people of questionable morals surround themselves with the same. At minimum, bad behaviors can become normative when co-workers include friends and family.

Nepotism also is a byproduct of networking, and the line between the two can often be quite blurry. Like most people, I, personally, have had a few professional situations in my career in which I wasn’t quite sure if opportunities presented to me were offered because of my qualifications or because the offer came from a friend or mentor.

In either case, I always viewed the possibility of nepotism to be a serious risk, and always tried to make sure my work was above average in terms of both effort and outcome. That is, I never lost sight of the blurry line.

There is ample evidence to suggest that nepotism brings many problems with it. It is often perceived as a practice using a non-objective measure of employment based on kin relations rather than an objective measure such as skills or professionalism. It is often contrasted with meritocracy while others have contrasted it with professionalism.

The dangers of nepotism in the workplace shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s not only wise to promote anti-nepotism policies but also to regularly monitor your staff to ensure that such relationships haven’t developed. Allowing nepotism at any level creates excess damage to the organizational culture.

Especially, nepotism at the higher management or leadership levels will greatly spoil the system image and growth. Leadership roles are very important for the organizational culture and growth.

To protect citizens’ rights and freedoms, defend the public interest, guarantee national security and ensure the proper functioning of the legislature, executive and judiciary and administrative authorities and discharge of duties by public servants and assimilated persons in line with the Constitution and other legislation by preventing, detecting and eradicating offences related to corruption, eliminating the consequences and punishing guilty parties, as well as by preventing, detecting and eradicating nepotism.

The author of this article is South Sudanese reached for comments at

South Sudan: The Country needs responsible opinion writers at this stage and NOT the “Isaiah Abraham” type!

BY: Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, DEC/01/2012, SSN;

The absence of a free press in the new republic of South Sudan can’t be over-stressed while the incumbent totalitarian SPLM-led government continues to silence all its critics by openly beating them up in the streets and locking them incommunicado in the countless ghost houses run by state security agents.

The end result of living and writing under such environments where basic human rights and the freedom to express an opinion is simply not there, many weak-hearted opinion writers have chosen to write under some false names. A case in question here, is this prolific opinion writer none other but the so-called “Isaiah Abraham!”

What is this “Isaiah Abraham” who claims to write from Juba, the capital of South Sudan when he can go at length to bluntly point out some of the governments shortcomings? But obviously of course he only does it in well selected cases and in a style that confuses every reader? However there are times when “Isaiah Abraham” has said more than his share as compared to others who were arrested, tortured and even had their papers shut down for issues far more trivial.

So who is this “Isaiah Abraham” who is free to say anything about the SPLM-led government and even at times direct personal attacks at President Salva Kiir Mayardit himself and remain untouched by the security agents who are known for their zero tolerance for these kinds of issues?

One thing is for certain and that “Isaiah Abraham” is an agent of ‘political distraction’ and many theories have already been suggested and put forward to give a face to this “King of Distraction.” With the best possibilities, he the so-called Isaiah Abraham is a hired-pen recruited by the same corrupt regime to distract the peoples’ attention at certain particular times. Many might have noticed this as well!

But in another equally competing case scenario, Mr. “Isaiah Abraham” is nothing but a “media clown” and a one that suffers from acute dementia for as he writes, he too often than not forgets to link up his issues and ideas. Can anyone tell me that they had read any of this writer’s articles and never got struck by the too many inconsistencies that poked them right in the eye?!

Hence as responsible citizens, the so-called intellectual community of South Sudan and those concerned about the welfare of this young nation, you all have the moral duty to stand firm in the face of this weird writer.

Having said this, it’s indeed my deeply held personal belief that the freedom of expression should be granted to ALL for it is part and package of their human rights. In other words I am not in any way trying to silence “Isaiah Abraham,” but I would rather suggest that he commands some degree of courage and comes out to his readers with his true name and identity.

Whatever he is and wherever he comes from, this writer (“Isaiah Abraham”) needs to respect our collective minds by remembering this simple fact that his written opinions are being read by people who enjoy some degree of reasoning capacity. Let us face it since I haven’t doubted for even a single second that an average person who reads and follows up political opinions in the media is obviously a matured and a learned person! And they deserve every writers respect. Don’t you agree?!!

There are many issues of controversy in “Isaiah Abraham’s” opinion article that appeared under the title of ‘Sudan should allow the flow of South Sudan’s Oil,’ dated November 19th 2012, (…)

In this article the author seemed to have intentionally chosen to confuse his readers in almost every line that he wrote. He also seemed to be having trouble struggling with how to appear balanced in the eyes of the authorities in the higher offices of the country given the ‘beat first then investigate later’ culture currently prevailing in the new country.

Whatever the reasons behind “Isaiah’s” weird attitude in that particular article and no doubt it also showed up in many of his previous writings, it’s not working well for him because by saying the positive and the negative at the same time in the futile attempt to appease those in power across the two Sudans’ political divide, everything in his articles was unfortunately watered down, if not totally compromised. Could it be that the writer is suffering from some kind of a deeply rooted hypocrisy or is it a manifestation of opportunism?

By trying to naively praise president al Bashir of the Sudan and flatter him by singling him out as a hero who facilitated the independence of South Sudan, that to me doesn’t in any way a patriotic gesture. To say the least if anything it only suggests the kind of behavior that constitutes the popular African adage of ‘colonial hangover.’

Before we go any further, please let me put this crucial question across: What does South Sudan stands to benefit from these kinds of writings full of flattery as it has always been the case with “Isaiah Abraham” when he compulsively misinforms and mis-educates our children to an extent that he wants them to believe that this very al Bashir who killed our people in their millions is also at the same time our Redeemer?

Is it not this same Al Bashir who solely joined the Sudan Armed Forces and graduated from the Sudan Military College with a Diploma as a qualified killer? He then went on to wage war in which well over three million South Sudanese and other indigenous African people from the Nuba Mountains, the Blue Nile Region and the Western Province of Darfur lost their lives, a crime to which he is still to answer in the International Criminal Court (ICC)?

My dear reader, I think it’s worth reading this quotation from the writing of this undoubtedly confused “Isaiah Abraham” and I quote:

“President Omar Al Bashir would be received in Juba with pomp and dances if ever the well-publicized and politicized visit will take place.” Isaiah wrote. (SSN 22 November 2012)

“President Al Bashir is respected here and shall continue to enjoy being respected because of his Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) with our hero Dr. John Garang de Mabior. No Northern politician has that gut like that of Gen. Omar Hassan Ahmed Al Bashir.” He went on to add!

As matured citizens of this new country, we already know that no future will be easy with our northern neighbors without me going into any specifications. It is our history and as we jointly made it, we too jointly own it.

What he (Isaiah Abraham) refers to as ‘the threat to South Sudan’s Oil exportation by Khartoum’ being real, is indeed true. But the real question is: Is it a new development that “Isaiah Abraham” has just come to understand now and only now? Or is Khartoum’s continued undermining of the South Sudan’s Independent sovereignty by any means a new phenomenon that has never become clear to him (Isaiah Abraham) up to now?

By Mr. “Isaiah’s” own confession the leadership in South Sudan is weak. Here I quote him again:

“Dr. Lam must not deceive himself that our people will surrender to the North again. It is only here that we have a weak leader who is led, we couldn’t have given away Panthou, Hofra Al Nahas, Kafi Kingi, Warawar/Mile 14 and Abyei.” This what Isaiah wrote in his article? (SSN 22/November 2012)

This confusing, confused and partial columnist, although a prolific writer seems to behave as if he alone owns the sole right to opine in the whole of the republic of South Sudan. One wonders as to whether this writer as inconsistent as he is, does actually write independently or is he a pen in the market?

For how does “Isaiah” consider himself the rightful person to point out the weakness in the leadership in South Sudan as it clearly appears in the above quoted lines of his, while at the same time he smears all others as being traitors and thus non patriotic, whenever they choose to exercise the same rights? If this is what he and his type used to do during the bush-war days, then they better sober up for times have indeed changed.

The other argument here is how on earth this Mr. No direction wants to rally the people of South Sudan behind the very leadership that he has categorically designated as weak? In “Isaiah’s” own words the weakness in South Sudan’s leadership is so huge that it led to the loss of territories, the latest being the Mile 14 Area. But as if to confirm his hypocrisy and flattery, we can still read about Isaiah’s loyalty to the same system.

Where does this leave us, my dear readers? Does “Isaiah” take the people of South Sudan as his herd of goats that he can direct at wish? What our confused friend has seemingly dedicated his life to promote can only operate and be understood in the context of some secretly brewing political dispensation which his behaviors and writings are about to betray

To fully understand the above, we will need to jointly revisit these lines that I quote from the writer’s article:

“We must rally as people of South Sudan behind our president and stop traitors from undoing our gains. We will not bow down to Khartoum’s moves. It is better we die with dignity than return to the wilderness under Khartoum. We are better off without food on our tables.” Isaiah Abraham wrote!

Exactly if this what Mr. “Isaiah Abraham” wants the leadership in South Sudan to do, then all he has to do is to join the citizens of Northern Bahr Ghazal in their ‘No Recognition’ of the 27th September so-called Comprehensive Cooperation Agreement over the inclusion of the Mile 14 Area in the suggested ‘Demilitarized Zone’ and stop lecturing us that South Sudanese are ready to dance and sing for Omer al Bashir should this wanted criminal put his feet in Juba.

In his own obsession “Mr. Abraham” went on to claim that Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin of the SPLM-DC is behind the non-implementation of the Cooperation Agreement between Juba & Khartoum. In short he wants to rally public opinion to support his own laid and hatched theory that the main reason behind Khartoum’s unwillingness to allow the flow of the South Sudan Oil through its territory squarely rests with Dr. Lam Akol’s political aspirations and ambitions. What an oversimplification of issues solely driven by tribal politics?!!

This is exactly where he (Isaiah) got it terribly wrong and it only explains how he (Isaiah) and his types have become so paranoid of the so-called Dr. Lam’s assumed intentions to overthrow the incumbent government of South Sudan. Is it something that can happen that lightly and overnight?

If we are to put “Isaiah’s” proposition to test using his own logic as presented in his article then Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin should in fact be happy to see the Oil from the republic of South Sudan get exported through Port Sudan and not block it. For by the same logic a savvy politician of Dr. Lam’s caliber cannot be expected to bite the very hand that feeds him, assuming that he is indeed an NCP ally for that matter!!

Let me say this to you, my dear readers about Dr. Lam’s position on the Oil exportation issue; however before I do that I would like first to inform you about my own position on the issue, then we can make informed comparisons.

My position on the exportation of South Sudan’s Oil has since been made public through my many writings. I strongly believe that the true Independence of South Sudan can only come about through economic disengagement between Juba and Khartoum. I also maintain that for as long as Juba continues to depend on Khartoum, and how minimal that dependency maybe, then South Sudan is not yet Uhuru! I will continue to stand by my belief and continue to propagate for it, for it is indeed a noble stand!

Coming to Dr. Lam’s stand and I quote from the man’s mouth: “South Sudan’s Oil stands a better chance if it is to be exported through Port Sudan as the cost of doing that will by-far remain cheaper than if new pipelines are to be constructed either through Ethiopia to Djibouti or through Kenya to the Indian Ocean. This position is not any different from the ones reverted to by the ruling SPLM Oyee leaders in Juba. And now it even includes Mr. “Isaiah Abraham” who is more than willing to spend a whole day dancing and singing for Omer al Bashir in return for exporting South Sudan’s Oil through Khartoum.

On the other hand the realities on the ground have convinced the Western governments and those who call themselves the friends of South Sudan that the new country is on the verge of economic collapse if Oil export is not resuming immediately. Where many of them cannot even differentiate between the SPLM as a political party and South Sudan as a country, the drama becomes even too bigger to withstand.

The bottom line now is that the SPLM-led government in Juba due to its failure to raise the necessary funds is not capable of achieving the dream of constructing any alternate pipeline for exporting the country’s Oil through the proposed route of Kenya or Djibouti.

To save the already dire situation in both the Sudans, the US administration and the international community suggested that Juba and Khartoum should patch up their differences and amongst many other things should immediately resume the export of South Sudan’s Oil through the territory of Sudan.

In short, that was how the Comprehensive Cooperation Agreement [CCA] between SPLM and NCP came into being.

However, at this particular point in time the NCP-led government in Khartoum has other urgent priorities and that’s to crack down on the growing home brewed dissent within its ranks. Oil transit and normalization with the republic of south Sudan though import but is no longer the ideal panacea to stabilize the al Bashir’s wing of the NCP to hold fast on power as it could have done some few months ago.

Things don’t even stop there for today as it stands (the current political uncertainties and the imminent security threats from old buddies to the very existence of al Bashir in power, the 27th September 2012 Cooperation Agreement between SPLM and the NCP is even now seen by al Bashir’s loyalists as a ploy likely to aggravate the already volatile situation on the ground than help ease it.

The whole world is aware and especially so the US administration that Juba has better relations with the rebels of the Sudan Revolutionary Front (the new alliance formed from the SPLM-North and the different Darfuri rebel factions) than it has with Khartoum, just like Khartoum has better relations with the Hamas regime in Gaza than it has with Juba.

The two countries are now interlocked in what can be described as an ideological tug of war by design. Khartoum which clearly is not in any hurry to implement the CCA with Juba will continue to drag its foot on the agreement. It knows too well that Juba will NEVER sell-out its comrades in the Nuba Mountains or the Blue Nile Region, but this is one good thing that it [Khartoum] intends to use at will in order to disrupt any attempts to normalize with South Sudan.

Realistically speaking this latest Addis Ababa CCA was a still-born truce, and even the attempts by the AU or the UNSC or even the US administration to resuscitate it is definitely a waste of resources. It’s only a naive minded like “Isaiah Abraham” who will continue to raise people’s hopes that there will be an easy breakthrough any soon.

As things with the Sudan under the NCP Islamists and currently joined by ultra-nationalist like the ‘First State Uncle’ al Maybe Mustafa, of the Just Peace Party JPP), the relationship between Khartoum and Juba maybe not even improve within the lifetime of these current regimes across the two Sudans’ political divide.

Soon the two neighbors may enter a state of no-war-no-peace and then things may from there get frozen pulling the two countries into a propaganda war and subversive activities across the existing ill-defined borders for maybe some decades to come or even forever. It’s for this very reason that our pathetic leaders should be brought to understand that they better prepare themselves for a long economic drought and readjust accordingly by opening up to democracy and more freedoms.

But most importantly it must be remembered that throughout the human history failed economies are notoriously known for shortening the life spans of governments worldwide and neither Juba nor Khartoum will be exempted.

So instead of apologists like Mr. “Isaiah Abraham” wasting their writings in sub-standard spins, they will do much good to themselves and the country by propagating for a democratic system that can see a peaceful transfer of power as determined and thus necessitated by the evolving realities of the day.

Author: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Secretary General of the United South Sudan Party (USSP). He can be reached at: or

Open Letter To Pres. Kiir: Is this current South Sudan the Country we fought for since 1955?

BY: Bol Garang de Bol, CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA, NOV. 27/2012, SSN;

Your Excellency, the President of the Republic of South Sudan, General Salva Kiir Mayardit, as you may be aware, although our request, advice, opinions seem to be ignored by you and your Ministers, we will not abandon our responsibilities as citizens of South Sudan to let our voices be heard. I write to you or about you not to attacking your policies or interventions either in the present or in the past.

However, on this occasion, I am writing to you to let you know that many South Sudanese including myself still believed that there was still South Sudan, our country, which we had once fought for, our freedom, democracy. But where is it now?

The aim of this article is to ask you to use your powers and position to tackle the issue of ethnic cleansing through parliament and in your cabinet. There are two distinct issues in connection with political turmoil in South Sudan that has claimed at least an estimated 120,000 lives since 2005 and displaced more than 250,000 people.

The failure of government to address corruption and violence that has transmuted into ethnic cleansing across the country are the biggest issues facing South Sudan. The second issue has alarmed the entire international community because the world views it as the way Rwanda genocide began.

Your Excellency, President Salva, over the last seven years, I have always dreamt that one day, a single God or a group of gods will come and solve South Sudan’s problems. In the process of waiting for these gods, I have realized and even learnt that the New Nation’s
biggest problem is the dangerous mind-set of our people, yours and mine inclusive which needs no superman to solve because I/we and you can do it.

Ending the political violence and ethnic cleansing must be accorded the top priority for two reasons or more. First, a stolen verdict can be fixed in a year or two but it will take decades or a generation to fix a country destroyed by ethnic violence. If, I may recall that the collapse of South Sudan began in 2005 immediately after the death of Dr. John Garang de Mabior. The country used to be part of old Sudan has not recovered socially, economically and politically and it needs an estimated number of years to be rebuilt. It is so easy to destroy but formidable task to rebuild.

Second, ignoring ethnic violence is the major threat to nation security in our country and contributed to the failures of our country. The failure of government to delivery services to the people proved that the Republic of South Sudan is not the country we had fought for.

Mr. President, General Salva Kiir, during the 22 years of SPLA struggle, you, late Dr. John Garang, William Nyuon Bany, Dr. Riek Machar, Dr. Lam Akol, Commander, Arok Thon Arok, James Wani Igga, Kuol Manyang Juuk and many more always talked about an important country deserve to be liberated. Shall we wait for that country? Or you mean, the current South Sudan under your leadership is the country we had fought for?

If this newly independence South Sudan is the country we had fought for, the past years since our country signed the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) are characterized by a pile of disappointing experiences such as failures, let downs, state/rebel sponsored murders, torture, rape, forced-sodomy, social neglect and other awful experiences which many South Sudanese have had to endure, have caused a great deal of anger, hate, revenge-motives and the dangerous social divisions which exist in our societies.

These negative experiences have and continue to re-affirm old suspicions, doubts in the future, deepen mistrust, shatter hope and have now started producing even greater despair and this is not the country we had fought for or we proud to be citizens.

You and many politicians point at social capitalisation as the only way to redeem this country out of the dark abyss in which it is. And I agree that social factors most especially those which are negatively associated with health, cause disorganisation and disruption, perceived helplessness and lack of support, low educational attainment, and poverty.

In the same reasoning, I also posit that you cannot achieve these development goals when the majority of the people in our communities are angry, revengeful, hateful, and are waiting to carry-out their unfinished business.

In my opinion, I would argue that whilst there is a need for massive development projects which we all think that will develop our country, there is a need for all sections of the society to develop a new relationship which can take account of our importance to each other and which will also inculcate a reciprocal nature of our connection that will help to avoid a repeat of the painful past experiences which our people have endured.

Since June 12 1947, at the time of Juba Conference, South Sudan has not had the opportunity to address their past, neither have they ever addressed the pains it causes them. Our people have never healed because they have never been given the opportunity to heal. All they get is the threats of revenge, genocide, and hate by different aggrieved parties.

How can a society with hidden dirty feelings forge a united future without any remorseful spirit being coached between and amongst them?

President Jaafar Nimeiri used a wrong approach since he took over in a military coup in 1969 by only focusing on security and development and forgetting to help the nation to heal. President Nimeiri never gave the Sudanese the opportunity to bury the hatchet and to start a new emotional chapter since the signing of Addis Ababa Agreement in 1972.

The same mistake done by President Nimeiri is facing President Kiir Mayardit. By so doing, the current development in South Sudan may turn into dust.

Mr. President Salva, the purpose of this letter is to inform you that South Sudan needs an amnesty law which will help those who have perpetrated injustice to fellow South Sudanese to apologies and be forgiven unconditionally. This will help South Sudan to draw the line with their past, open a new chapter in their history and start re-building the nation all over again. I am fully aware of the expired amnesty law but this law only catered for recent events yet, the grievances of our people predate this period.

President Mayardit, to me and other advocates of social justice, it is very challenging, to sort out and work through the barriers which exist between the perpetrators of injustice, their victims, and the social political environment that inhibit progress. This has increasingly made it difficult for us to turn the painful experiences of our people into opportunities for growth and change.

However, I do have hope that this can happen because it occurred in South Africa and Kenya during Mau Mau War.

The positive experiences which this amnesty law shall bring will engender hope and trust, to the people of South Sudan. It will also convey a comforting sense of being understood and accepted to the changed-perpetrators of injustice. Mr. President, this desire is also true for people of South Sudan who keep asking questions about their experiences and getting no answers from the perpetrators of injustice.

At the same time, the perpetrators of injustice are very insecure and in one way of the other, their insecurity even drives them to carry out more injustice out of fear that people are out there waiting to kill them.

I do have a strong belief that healing will be brought about by the kind of forgiveness which will be protected by the amnesty law. By making such a huge political intervention, we will be able to address other issues such as health and social inequalities.

At the same time, we have to be mindful that if we do not support healing through forgiveness, we shall be fueling the continuous cycle of political and military abuse of our people’s human rights.

It will of paramount importance for our country and for all men and women of good will if my request meets your consideration. As such, the outright denial of bail for certain offences would constitute a fundamental breach of human rights which accord equal protection of the law to all.

Lastly, your Excellency, to add rioting to the list of the category of offences that should not be granted bail, assumes that all persons who may choose to peacefully demonstrate and voice opinion on matters affecting them are criminals. This will have the net effect of deterring South Sudan from exercising their fundamental human right to freedom to assemble and to demonstrate together with others peacefully.

The Executive arm of government, in simple term, your Ministers must respect and uphold the rule of law and that all organs of the Government are independent and free from interference.

The Government has to ensure that all criminal cases are dully investigated, prosecuted and that individual criminal responsibility is apportioned impartially without undue regard to an accused person’s political inclination. This will go a long way in eliminating impunity and will deter the wanton abuse of human rights by State and non-State actors.

Bol Garang de Bol is a South Sudanese living in Canberra, Australia. He can be reached at

Dr. Ambago Ramba: Mile 14 is different from Abyei


One may wonder why Dr. Justin Ambago did politically compare Abyei issue with Mile 14 which was recently signed on 27 September, 2012 by the negotiating team to the surprise of Dinka Malual who own the land. In your article (SSNA, 3 November), as I quoted, “It only suffices here to say that any attempt by Khartoum to appease the Messeiriya warlords by blocking the Abyei Referendum, in the face of what is an unanimous decision by the AUPSC will definitely expose the regime to the wrath of the international community”.

On the other hand Juba may face a similar fate should it attempt to stroll an extra mile trying to appease General Paul Malong Awan, Governor of Northern Bahr Ghazal State as he and his people stand opposed to the inclusion of Mile 14 Area in the demilitarized zone.

However, Abyei has been a contested area and had stipulated in the CPA, 2005 to go for referendum but Khartoum didn’t respect the agreement before South Sudan became a country, 2011. Lately, Abyei shall have its referendum in 2013, inshalla!

Besides, Abyei is an area with huge population as inhabitants than mile 14 within the areas of Northern Bahr el Ghazal in Aweil North County, Gokmachar. The Ngok Dinka Area is currently political troublesome and a social limbo to settle in peaceful hand when coming to Sudanese ways of handling political issues.

Who is appeasing who on mile 14?

Well, mile 14 is geographically not a grazing land to Dinka or any Arab tribe but home to Dinka clans. Clearly, mile 14 is not the name of the area but miles proposed to be demilitarized zone within the parts of villages were people are partially residing. These miles in the south of Kiir River fall within the villages of Warguet in the East and Majook Diing Wol in the West.

I think you were not trying to say that mile 14 was proposed to be given to Sudan for replacement of Abyei when coming to the term “appeasement “as you put it. Besides, the boundary between Rezigaat and Dinka Malual was imposed by British colonial governors of Darfur and Bahr el Ghazal in 1924, but Dinka Malual didn’t accept the agreement that go beyond Kiir River.

After talks between Rezigaat and Dinka Malual’s chiefs, the Rezigaat and Beggara of South Darfur accepted that Kiir River and beyond, from Koot Ayeek, far north of Kiir River are Dinka Malual’s land. The Rezigaat has been continuously coming to our land with their animals in search of water or grazing, through understanding or agreement with local authority; they have had shown that this land, Kiir River and extended areas belong to Dinka Malual.

Who are Ngok Dinka and Abyei Area?

The issue of Abyei is big but deserves proper analysis when compared to mile 14. Yeah, Abyei is the land of Ngok Dinka of Bahr el Ghazal region. It has been the most disputed area in the history of our generation. The dispute over the Abyei Area has been the most volatile aspect of Sudan’s 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and risk unraveling that increasingly shaky deal.

The CPA, 2005 granted the disputed territory, which has a significant percentage of Sudan’s oil reserves, a special administrative status under the presidency. Considered a historical bridge between Sudan and South Sudan, the Abyei Area has had previously been considered part of the larger Abyei District within state of South Kordofan because it was transferred. Under the terms of the Abyei Protocol in the CPA, 2005, the Abyei Area was declared, on an interim basis, to be simultaneously part of the states of South Kordofan and Northern Bahr el Ghazal.

In contrast to the border of the former district, the Abyei Protocol defined the Abyei Area as “the area of the nine Ngok Dinka chiefdoms transferred to Kordofan in 1905. Whenever I talk of Abyei as a South Sudanese, I don’t like to bring Messiryia to the attention of my readers in my writings.

Messiryia tribe doesn’t have land in South Sudan. Messiryia tribes are neighboring pastoralist population whose large traditional home area lies to the north of Abyei with Muglad as its principal town. They have had been residing in Abyei for decades but pastoralists from Kordofan, no wonder if the land of Ngok Dinka goes back to South Sudan through referendum in 2013, then individual Messiryia tribe members may decide to go to Sudan or stay in Abyei as nobody is expelling them.

Where Messiryia tribes come from in Sudan?

The Messiryia tribes are known also under the name of Messeiriya Arabs as a branch of the Baggara Arab tribes. They are originally from Kordofan. The main divisions of Messeiriya in Kordofan are Messiryia Zurug and Messiryia Humr. However, in Sudan today, still they are called Messeiriya Humr and Messiryia Zurug and they acknowledge their common history and ancestry.

Hence, I would like to assure Dr. Ambago that mile 14 and extended miles belong to Dinka Malual; there is no logical reason as to why you call it an “appeasement” if the government attempts to stroll extra miles of Dinka Malual and eloquently stated that Dinka Malual is opposing the move.

And who gave this land to Sudan? It was signed by negotiators. Some of Dinka Malual’s elders and intellectuals were consulted after a mess. I call it a mess because the land owner was excluded during negotiation. That is why you regarded us as opposition.

The political situation between Sudan and South Sudan deserves literal dialogue and mediation than appeasement since NCP leadership with its leader who had been indicted by ICC for war crimes and crimes against humanity is like a wounded lion. Khartoum is politically sick and the international community and AUPSC shall be its medical doctors. At least, South Sudanese are free from Khartoum’s political headache.

Deng Mangok Ayuel is the citizen of Northern Bahr el Ghazal State, Aweil. He can be reached at

South Sudan: One year of turbulent survival, what next for a successful State?

BY: Beny Gideon Mabor, JUBA, NOV. 12/2012, SSN;
The Republic of South Sudan got independence on July 9, 2011 exactly one year and three months ago, but however, what next after independence? The Republic of South Sudan has a lot of similarities with the powerful Jewish State of Israel right from oppression to resources and the Jewish common identity worldwide. How Israel got independence compared to South Sudan?

Now,, how did Israel establish their state from scratch with such lowest population, an enemy of the whole Arab world and a lot of challenges of nation building?

Thus, what can the Republic of South Sudan learn from Jewish State of Israel? A country that is one year old with a turbulent survival, what next is the agenda of nation building in the Republic of South Sudan? I am afraid that these questions will not meet correct answers but we pray for the best from the relevant actors.

The Republic does not mean physical symbols such as National Flag, National Anthem or any organ but a country must lay down tasks for nation building which the government officials and the general public fully implement to be a successful state. These tasks are spelt out in the Constitution and subsidiary legislation to include inter alia, strict accountability, transparency, rule of law, delivery of fundamental services to the people, protection of lives and properties, infrastructural development and protection of territorial integrity and the list is long.

These tasks will not be achieved in South Sudan unless there developed an enabling strategic development plan or task by qualified people deployed to the respective institutions at all levels and then followed a political will to implement them.

In the Republic of South Sudan, quite uniquely, it has proven difficult to implement accountability amongst other elements of good governance to hold into account for somebody in power with malpractice. A case in point is 75 high profile individuals alleged to be behind painful loss of 4 billion US dollars. The 75 accused persons and other categories accused of corruption related offences are seen to have certain blanket immunity, a protection that is nowhere to be found in our laws. Yet, they enjoy comfort of such accusation despite a public outcry to weed them out in the government and be held accountable because they lost credibility before the law and the general public.

Why accountability does matter a lot? It is simply because accountability is the very fountain of democratic government worldwide. For example the world newest nation in accordance with the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011 stipulates that South Sudan is established and governed on the basis of a decentralized democratic system and is an all-embracing homeland for its people. It is a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, multi-lingual, multi-religious and multi-racial entity where such diversities
peacefully co-exist.

In order to swallow such bitter trust, the political stability of South Sudan will rest on the direction of SPLM ruling party through its internal democratic reform. The SPLM-led government, however, must allow political space for other political parties, civil society organizations and media to operate without intimidation.

A tangible achievement of freedom of speech is so far scored by the SPLM-led Government but a lot needs to be done more specially on the legal framework and peaceful environment for a multi-party politics.

The legal framework should include that the SPLM-led government cancel the executive and legislative participation of other political parties in the government, except parliamentarians elected. This is to enable other political parties play an oversight function of opposition politics.

There is no any basis upon which other political parties are included in the government when there is no coalition agreement. The only manner in which other political parties assume power is for the government of the day to give them the said political space in order to campaign for elections with their parties ideologies and manifestos unlike that of the ruling party.

However, my good intention is to avoid conflict of interest because a party cannot criticize a government with whom you are a part and have collective responsibility and at the same time an opposition. Thanks to other political parties who were either not consulted for inclusion or rejected an inclusion.

With this piece of analysis on our current issues, the critical questions come: What is the expectation of the general public with
regard to the management of resources that shall now be accruing from the cooperation agreement with Sudan and indeed the oil proceeds?

First, the new resources need complete new face of the government under President Mayardit with renewed promise from the top leadership down to the lower administration to ensure equitable allocation of resources in the next 42 months of the cooperation agreement and beyond.

The general public needs no return to previous history in the management of national affairs but demanding the political leadership and other relevant stakeholders a real business of nation building.

The second most prioritized agenda is peace and security of people and resources. The government must look into some key elements in
understanding security situation analysis specially the ability to quickly read a conflict or insecurity early warning in our communities and to apprehend such escalation by immediate application of operational and structural prevention. This proactive approach is in line with Article 36 (3) of the Transitional Constitution which says The security and welfare of the people of South Sudan shall be the primary duty of all levels of government.

The third priority is the diversification of non-oil revenues. In the past, Sudan was said to be breadbasket of the world. In fact, it is South Sudan which is the real breadbasket of the world and therefore the government must now focus on developing agriculture and other natural resources to meet the concept of sustainable development for present and future generations.

Last but not least is the economic austerity measure. The austerity measures cannot be applied to a growing economy leave alone subsistence economy like South Sudan whose economic status is basically meant for survival. In a stringent financial term, austerity measures are only applicable in a developed economy. Therefore the adoption of austerity measures in South Sudan was misplaced and there is high need to reverse it.

How can government impose austerity measures when our nascent state regardless of rich agricultural land and natural resources never produces even local products or the people have seemingly refused to work?

We have achieved independence and handed it over to foreigners, a subject to be addressed separately. We are totally consuming imported goods and services.

With the austerity measures now in place, the government and the public could not benefit anything because no reserves were saved to be protected or significantly used for the said austerity period. But rather both suffered with daunting economic challenges that the
diplomatic missions intervened and advised political leaders in both countries to sign a cooperation agreement.

In South Sudan unlike neighboring Sudan, life is so expensive as a result of high prices for such imported goods and services and we have no option than to adhere to the economical principle of opportunity cost at the expense of other important services.

With these few words, I am of the opinion that South Sudan does not have such huge workforce in the public sector that the government may impose some public service arrangements such as downsizing. We really need more teachers, more doctors, engineers and development oriented strategists at all sectors of a promising developing state, provided that such recruitments are done on the merit of qualification and national interest to save the Republic of South Sudan.

Beny Gideon Mabor is an independent commentator on politics and governance. He can be reach thro: or call

Beny Gideon Mabor,

South Sudan: To Either Abide With Human Rights and Cooperate with the UNMISS or Quit the UN Family All Together!

BY: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, NOV. 10/2012, SSN;

Following the expulsion of the UNMISS Human Rights Investigator, Sandra Beidas (a British National), from South Sudan, this new country seems to have opened yet another chapter in a wider confrontation with the international community.

This development surprisingly comes at a time when the very Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation who declared Ms. Beidas a persona non grata is desperately appealing for international assistance in settling the Abyei question in the face of the difficulties to the yet to be consolidated Addis Ababa Cooperation Agreement recently inked between the Republic of South Sudan and the unpredictable regime in Khartoum.

However the ultimate reasons behind this move by South Sudan’s government which gave this UN Official no more than a period of 48 hours to leave the country have not yet been officially disclosed.

In the absence the government’s official version of the story, the vacuum in information has led to the widespread general speculation that the South Sudan’s ruling party the SPLM as well as its military wing, the SPLA have both been angered by a UN report that was pilled and published in August 2012. Now as things stand this speculation is gradually turning out to be right.

In that report the UN came out criticizing the South Sudan army (SPLA) and accused it of incidents of torture, rape, killings and abducting civilians during the civilian disarmament campaign in South Sudan’s Jonglei State.

Earlier on, this very report which raised a lot of controversy had already been rejected by the Governor of Jonglei State. The Chairperson of the South Sudan’s Human Rights Commission and The SPLA spokesperson,were quick in joining the Governor in condemning the UN Report that they all described as a bunch of lies and a 100% nonsense.

The current situation on the ground

The issues of who decides policies in the new republic of South Sudan have since long surfaced as a central concern for both its citizens and its government of the day. Equally concerned with the matter are the countless institutions that represent the international community, the foreign governments and all the other stakeholders who operate in the country.

It’s no longer a secret that although on the face value all political and socioeconomic players in the country prefer to be seen as operating under the instructions of the de jure political leadership of President Salva Kiir Mayardit, yet the realities at the terminals where policies are eventually translated into actions, things tend to suggest the contrary as multiple de facto deal sealers continue to dominate the scene.

The new country’s army, the SPLA has already had two bitter military confrontations with its traditional rival, the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF). The first was over Abyei, where a SPLA soldier was alleged to have started the shooting at a time when the SAF were at the point of withdrawal from the area as requested by both the UNSC and the AU. What followed thereafter was a full blown battle and it resulted in the total destruction of Abyei town, and the neighbouring villages with displacement of the inhabitants.

The second battle between SPLA the SAF was the Panthou/Heglig war and again it was obvious that this was equally decided by a field commander in response to recurrent SAF attacks on SPLA positions. Unfortunately while the government of south Sudan was far from prepared for this war in as far as the political and diplomatic ground works are concerned, knee jerk decision taken by this field commander almost dragged the region into yet another unplanned all-out war.

Where we stand now as a country it can no longer be denied that this last military showdown with the North is actually behind the legacy that we are living today as it drew in a lot of international condemnation, more so from friends before the enemies.

Back in Juba the SPLM led and dominated government was too slow to explain nor defend its position in as far as the accusations by the international community where Juba was considered not only the aggressor, but also condemned for occupying a foreign territory, as it failed to convince both the US administration, the African Union (AU) and the UN Security Council (UNSC) about its claim on Panthou/Heglig.

With a weak foreign policy and the absence of a competent and robust diplomatic representation in New York, South Sudan was easily muzzled into accepting the UNSC’s position that considered the presence of the SPLA troops in Panthou/Heglig illegal. And before we knew anything, the once victorious SPLA was ordered to pull out and hand the land they so fiercely fought for back to the enemies in Khartoum.

Another incidence where the SPLM led administration in Juba is seen to be weak when it comes to dealing with the SPLA ( the Military) is in fact how the financial books at the Bilpham military Head Quarters continuously escapes the auditing process that has long started in the country.

The Auditor General Hon. Steven Wundu is yet to present to the South Sudan National Parliament the full findings on the finances of the President’s Office, the Ministry of Presidential Affairs and that of the Ministry of Defense.

Till such a report is presented by the Auditor General, our country’s transparency policy will remain at its best a mockery. There are general feelings that any financial auditing of the above centers of power are likely to reveal corruptions that will no doubt dwarf the missing $4 billion being used by the President as his favorite weapon against some of his former and current officials.

The fall out with the UN:

Besides the United Nations (UN) involvement with the Humanitarian Assistance to South Sudan during the long years of the protracted liberation war and well beyond the cease fire between the two enemies to the signing of the comprehensive peace agreement (CPA), this International League of Nations continues to assist South Sudan as it emerges from the rubble of war to become a new nation with full membership in the League.

Today as we hear about the widespread news of how the SPLM led government in Juba has fallen out with some officials of the United Nation Mission in South Sudan (the UNMISS) it may however be a good thing to refresh our collective memories about how the country ended up with these Blue Helmets on the ground in the first place and how it all developed to Chapter VII thereafter.

Things all started during the early phases of the marathon peace talks between SPLM and the Islamic regime in Khartoum that took place in Kenya between 2002 and 2005.

It was in fact the SPLM/A delegation to the Peace Talks who insisted on the deployment of a UN Peacekeeping Force in the country, while the Khartoum government had consistently opposed the idea.

How much did this UN Peacekeeping Force contribute to the actual realization and preservation of Peace in the period between 2005 and 2011 is left for the Sudanese across the political divide to assess.

Following the outcome of the referendum on self-determination in which South Sudanese overwhelmingly chose independence from Sudan, it was again the SPLM led government in Juba that insisted on retaining the UN Peacekeeping Forces on its territory while Khartoum opted to send them out, and this was how UNMISS came to exist in the post-independence South Sudan.

The general resentment being lately expressed by some segments of the South Sudan government against the UNMISS are in fact to some extend based on narrow party, tribal or personal interests.

It is the leadership in Juba that has failed the people of South Sudan by employing incompetent loyalist and tribesmen in the government apparatus.

Unfortunately when things go bad, something often expected of a substandard personnel, this very SPLM led government and its apologists are quick to sing their monotonous and over used song of “we are just starting from scratch or We have just come from the bush etc… etc.”

Unfortunately although the above excuses are being used in order to escape criticism, what the ruling SPLM party fails to see is that in so doing they have also painted a bad picture of not only the government but also of the country.

Under this type of impression South Sudanese are either collectively seen by outsiders as incompetent people or often loosely referred to as lazy and largely a people suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome as a result of the two decade war. It is this impression that encourages foreigners to feel justified when they meddle into the country’s affairs. After all it has been directly taken from the mouth of either the president of the country himself or his close aides.

The repercussion of expelling the UN Human Rights Officer:

What took place right from the time of when the CPA was being negotiated and throughout its implementation the SPLM/A dominated delegations that represented the people of South Sudan have demonstrated that when it comes to international politics, they are indeed far naive than their counterparts on the other side if not for the continuous assistance from the international community..

It is they the SPLM) who handed the sovereignty of the state to the international community. It’s understandable that they did it in order to keep Khartoum away from reneging on the agreement and equally to guarantee a credible monitoring for its implementation. The introduction of the UN Chapter VII into the South Sudan & Sudan/UN politics if anything it is a strong proof that the UNSC is keen to see that Peace, Order, the Rule of Law and full respect of Human Rights return and prevail in South Sudan first then the region a large.

But now that Juba is increasingly becoming uncomfortable with the UNMISS which it fought to have in the first place, then it’s likely that it will lose many of its friends who are not only permanent members of the UNSC, but they also played crucial roles in the realization of the independence of the new country.

The UNMISS boss herself a former government minister in her native country of Norway has been known for her strong ties with the ruling SPLM since the days of the liberation war and throughout the marathon negotiations that led to the signing of the CPA.

Today as things stand in Juba, it will not be an over statement to say that the very SPLM/A that benefitted from her support in the past, is now at the verge of openly label her as persona non grata if she doesn’t stop talking about SPLM and SPLA’s poor Human Rights records and the widespread corruption that has lately engulfed the new country in its entirety.

The US government on the other hand has already come up to openly condemn the expulsion of the UNMISS Officer. The Acting Spokes son at the US State Department, has made it abundantly clear that his government fully supports the UNMISS and its efforts to strengthen government institutions, provide humanitarian relief, and to monitor, mitigate and prevent conflict throughout South Sudan.

The Senior US Official went on to stress that and I quote:

“Human rights monitoring, investigation and reporting are core elements of the UNMISS mandate. It is important that the Mission’s Human Rights Officers are allowed to carry out this work without fear of reprisal or expulsion,” Toner said.

“Fostering deeper respect for fundamental freedoms and human rights will strengthen South Sudan’s democratic civil and national identity, as well as encourage further progress in that regard.” He added.

Reading the US government’s position on this issue and considering the fact that it has always been Ms. Susan Rice, the US Permanent Representative to the United Nation who time and time again stood with South Sudan in its disputes with the republic of the Sudan, one can see that this new country is likely to frustrate its intimate friends.

The issue of Human Rights will remain central in the South Sudan politics be it locally or internationally. Furthermore, whether this plays to the taste of those who formulate policies for this embattled SPLM led regime or not, one is certain that the country needs the UN more than the UN needs the country and especially so at this crucial moment when every thing is in tatters.

The SPLM led government in Juba may think itself smart when it is given the free hand to isolate the actions of UNMISS staff whom they disagree with and then proceed to deal with them as individuals often away from the mother organization, the United Nations in New York.

However let’s not forget to appreciate that these individuals on their own are just as effective as any of us. Nonetheless the UN must stand by its members of staff if it is to succeed in its mission specially so in volatile regions like South Sudan.

Allowing host governments to treat UN staff members as if they were just mere individuals in spite of the fact that these UN Reports do in fact represent the organization’s view doesn’t really go well and no specific individual staff should be crucified for it as if they are just ordinary attention seekers or people who represent no one but themselves.

For how long will this go on? Not too long the former UN Human Rights officer Benedict Sannoh was ruthlessly beaten up by the South Sudan police personnel in Juba, the new country’s seat of government, and now they have expelled yet another UN Human Rights Investigator. At the local level Members of the Civic Society, Journalists, Opposition Politicians and Human Rights Activities are routinely being harassed, beaten and continue to suffer arbitrary arrests by security personnel.

The world needs to act and fast. Otherwise for how long will the donor community continue to pour in its hard earned taxpayer’s money from the western countries into this system of governance that has failed to come into grips with the basic principles of Human Rights?

In conclusion there must be a way out of this new country’s Human Rights Crisis whether SPLM wants it or not. No country or any society for that matter should be allowed to terrorize its citizens by denying them what is easily taken for granted in most parts of the civilized world.

UNMISS is there to stay in South Sudan specially so when the current leadership needs to be re-cultivated into the universally accepted human values of democracy, freedom of speech, and Human Rights in its broadest term.

This can only be achieved by more resilient Human Rights activists on the ground, dedicated and motivated investigators and die hard propagators. I don’t mind if UNMISS is to cease all other activities in South Sudan and concentrated only on Human Rights, for that is the only way to build a peaceful and inclusive society on the rubble of the five decade war that has practically destroyed all the fabrics of humanity and civilization in this part of the world.

The other alternative available for the proud and arrogant SPLM leadership is of course to remain defiant and possibility quit the UN family of nations all together if they have the guts for that. Let us now see who will blink first, the SPLM led government of South Sudan or the UNMISS as backed by the UNSC and the international community at large!!!

Author: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Secretary General of the United South Sudan Party (USSP). He can reached at: or

People of South Sudan craving for good leadership in South Sudan

*I can hear them saying, I can hear them murmuring but their voice fail to become loud because of fear, intimidation, harassment, banishment, torture or imprisonment but they talk in their corners.*

South Sudan became independent on the 9th July 2012 following a long protracted war that claimed nearly 2 million lives. The declaration of the independence was welcome by all and was thought to usher in a long anticipated period of peace, tranquility, democracy, socio-economic development, transparency and accountability in addition to respect for individual rights.

However, the people of South Sudan are yet to begin reaping these products of independence. Instead what has emerged in the infant but resourceful country is unfortunate state of misrule, disunity, socio-economic stagnation and political upheavals. This is attributed to none other than the SPLM party that took the ruins of power following the rigged elections before the independence.

It is dreadful that in a young country like South Sudan, where the struggle for freedom took 23 years and claimed nearly 2 million lives, democracy and human rights, natural values and dignity have been stifled; corruption has become the order of the day creating few millionaires in Juba while the majority of the South Sudanese are wallowing in adjunct poverty.

Failure of the ruling SPLM party to lay good foundation for the progressive future of this young nation has left the people of South Sudan craving for good leadership; a leadership that can champion the future development of a united democratic South Sudan. It does not really matter where this salvation leadership comes from; be it SPLM itself, the opposition, the generals in the army, the civil society or the people themselves, it would be a welcome change.

The leadership the people are craving for is that which can bring unity and justice to the country and the people. The basic aim is to initiate reconciliation and harmony among the various tribes in South Sudan and to usher in democratic rule based on rule of law, transparency and accountability.

The people crave for leadership that can wrestle back South Sudan from the few elite and bourgeoisie in Juba who have used corruption, tribalism, nepotism and personal greed to exploit the vast resources of the country to enrich themselves while the socio-economic development of the country has stagnated.

The leadership that can give to the people of South Sudan the rights and voice to claim what is truthfully and rightly theirs and express themselves on issues affecting them and their society so that a country founded on democratic principles of unity, justice, equity, equality, transparency and accountability is firmly established and fostered.

It is my crystal ball strong perception that the overall motive of creating a leadership in a country lies on the belief that leadership should strive to foster socio-economic development of the people leading to material change in the lives of the people. This means the leadership must put in place and nurture policies that can raise the standards of the people of South Sudan instead of few individuals enjoying the resources.

As a result the people should then enjoy better living working conditions, better health and nutrition levels, good educational standards, reasonable income, more jobs and greater life expectancy. More so leadership should aim at expanding the range of economic and social services in South Sudan for the benefit of the poor and the entire population.

Due to the ineptitude of the government in South Sudan to realize these leadership qualities and attributes, the people have all inherent rights to crave for leadership that can focus on reduction and eventual elimination of poverty by equitably distributing the resources in South Sudan to meet the needs of all. A leadership that strives to provide health care for all, improve literacy levels in South Sudan and can spare no effort to make South Sudan a solidly united nation where insecurity becomes a thing of the past, freedom of ideas and expression is not suppressed.

Where strong self sustaining devolved government exists to serve the people, where the health system is strengthened to avoid the current health tourism practiced by the elite in Juba, where educational system is overhauled to ensure educational standards are improved and schools are properly managed to produce the much needed human resource of the future, where road, river and air infrastructure are built to facilitate fast movement of people and goods that can foster rapid economic development.

Where government is elected by the people, is for the people and managed by the people and where the parliament is not only independent but also works, judiciary is free from the executive manipulation and its independence is under the principles of checks and balances and indeed the separation of powers among the three arms of government is not perceived to exists but really exists and exercised.

This leadership that can usher in a peoples government that trusts the people, responds positively and promptly to their needs and cannot discriminate citizens according to tribe, race, gender, religion, age or political orientation; a leadership that lays emphasis on South Sudan nationalism, South Sudanese dignity, and their rights. These include the rights of the farmers, workers, the poor and the unemployed.

A leadership that can also focus on affirmative action to ensure equality and equity; a leadership that can work steadfastly to accelerate socio-economic growth that can be sustained and ensure that human resource development is sustained.

The people crave for leadership which is committed to guarantee freedom of expression, movement and right to live anywhere within the Republic and to own property legally; a leadership that can protect every South Sudanese and foreign national living within the borders of South Sudan.

Above all, the people crave for a leadership that can be inclusive, consultative, honest, transparent, accountable, progressive, open and accommodating.

The question is therefore, for how long can the people continue craving for this kind of leadership without realizing that they themselves can bring the leadership that they want? The time to stop craving is now and not tomorrow.

I think the coming elections should present the best opportune time for the people to bring a change in the country as you did during the referendum in South Sudan. Indeed your own destiny and that of the country is in your hands when you exercise your democratic right to choose the new leadership come the next elections.
(The views expressed above are solely those of the author and not of the website)

Sindani Ireneaus Sebit
Nairobi; Kenya

To Nuer Youth Executive: Why not join hands with other young people in the country?

BY: Tearz Ayuen, JUBA, OCT. 27/2012, SSN;
DEAR NUER YOUTH EXECUTIVE COUNCIL: I read your press release in which you are calling for immediate release of your chairman, Peter Tut Hoth and SPLA Major General Simon Gatwec Dual, who got detained by the alleged Dinka security agents recently. In the press release, you also urge every Nuer in the government to resign from Salva Kiirs government. That is interesting!

You even *de-nuered* the SPLA Chief of General Staff, James Hoth Mai, for having not supported your cause. He must be thinking himself to death now, trying to figure out which tribe to relocate to. And whether there is any tribe willing to welcome him? Oh poor Mai!

What is Nuer Youth Executive?
Is it a political party?
Or is it a civil society organization?
What are its goals?
When was it formed?
Does the government recognize it?
What does it intend to achieve in the next 2 years, 3 years, 5 years or 10 years?
Where is it headquartered? – Its physical address?
Who funds your projects?

There is something I do not understand here. Your chairman was detained by the government, the very government a Nuer son is the second most powerful man. Besides, hundreds of Nuer sons are holding strategic positions in the government. So, what makes you think that the Dinka, the whole tribe of about 4 million people, is behind the arrest of Tut?

If the Dinka government was picking on Nuer youth at random, why did the military intelligence not pick Lam Tungwar or Manasseh Mathiang or any other Nuer youth? Why Peter Tut?

I am not sure if you are aware that there is a government, a democratically elected government that is running the affairs of South Sudan, with the help of a constitution. They call it South Sudan Transitional Constitution. It contains rules and regulations that guide the activities of the government and the citizens.

As a youth group of today, you cannot call for a release of an individual the government is holding over some sort of a crime. It is illegal. If you do, others will regard you as a tribal head. And you do not respect the constitution. But you can pressure the government to speed up the judicial process: trial, hearing. And that is if you are a registered institution.

Yes, threatening the authorities to release criminals is a guerrilla-war-era way of tackling issues of public concern, and is a bad idea at these critical times. Keep in mind that I am not saying Tut is guilty of whatever the government has accused him of, but I am just encouraging you to go it the proper channel.

Again, I am not saying you are an illegitimate group but I am afraid, I doubt your legitimacy. If you are a registered body of whatever kind and the government knows you, why do you tribalize the arrest of Tut to an extent of asking members of Nuer community to leave the government?

Here is a secret. You are not the only youth group that does not like the way the government is managing the affairs of South Sudan. The youth have a common enemy – the ruling SPLM party which is made up of our aunts and uncles. Do you not think it is about time every young South Sudanese ceases being a kuku, Murle or Anyuak?

Millions of youth are yearning for a change. Why can you not join hands for a bigger, stronger and smarter body that could act as a mouthpiece for all the young people in the country?

You have a beautiful name though… Nuer Youth Executive Council!
Yours sincerely,
Your brother from another tribe called South Sudan. Tearz Ayuen, a journalist based in Juba. Thanks.