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What Legacy would SPLM Leaders leave behind in South Sudan?

By Tong Kot Kuocnin, Legal Counsel, JUL/03/2015, SSN;

The history of many African Liberation Movements have succinctly and coherently revealed that fighting for freedoms, in order to free your people from all yokes of oppression and marginalization of the repressive and most terrible despotic regimes in Africa is one thing and maintaining the legacy after the war to live longer is another.

Too many African liberation movements suffered this fate and SPLM as one of Africa’s strongest liberation movements of its time is thoroughly defaced by this disease and is on the next row.

The SPLM fought a fierce protracted civil war with the Islamist led government centered in Khartoum for more than two bloody decades which eventually culminated in the signing of the comprehensive peace agreement which formed the legal basis for south Sudan statehood.

That was such an admired and well received legacy the SPLM as a liberation movement registered in the history of our nation. But is this legacy worth living on as it should have been? It’s certainly not.

The SPLM after becoming a ruling party in both the former Sudan and the Republic of South Sudan seems to have fallen short of its visions and missions and certainly lost its right direction.

The legacy which it had earned is being eaten away by some ants in its own thatched house where its cleaners became the bosses. The legacy is no longer worth living in the hearts and minds of the peoples of south Sudan, maybe only the SPLM diehards like myself may say yes, it would be worth living but loosely because it is the same SPLM that is eating its own tail.

This is manifested by unethical and unprocedural reckless and quirky mismanagement of almost all the resources of the state misguided by this assumption of being leaders of SPLM.

This malfeasance conduct by these leaders led to the standstill and hence dysfunctionality of all the other organs of the party hence relegating some of them to become weak and useless.

These leaders thrust themselves out by stabbing at the back the legacy they fought so hard to win. And of course they won but they have washed away all the credits and veneration they had earned first as fighters in the bush and in the government.

But despite all this respect, admiration and love the people of south Sudan accorded them, they decided to immerse our beloved nation into the toilet.

They divisions, power wrangles and quarrels that have inconsistently been going on within the ranks and files of the SPLM show that SPLM as a liberation movement is going through the same hole most African liberation movements have gone through and has signal very resoundingly that it is suffering from the same disease.

However, belittling this infighting within SPLM in such ingenuity to its survival and rules won’t take this country ahead.

The legacy of mass killings of innocent and vulnerable women, children and elderly is such a mischievous iniquity. The legacy of burning all the villages and infrastructure worth living of human beings is such a worst legacy to leave in history.

The legacy of looting all the civilians’ properties, raping every girl child and kidnapping women for forceful marriages is menacing to the entire state of south Sudan and hence the most dirtiest history a party like SPLM has in the records.

Therefore, what legacy would these so-called SPLM leaders leave behind for the people of South Sudan to remember them?

Is it the killings of innocent people they have masterminded due to greed for power within the party?

Is it the looting of the properties of the civilians?

Or is it the burning of villages, raping of women and girls that we should remember them for?

The legend of this legacy has ventured and vanished away due to such inadvertent chaotic behaviors by the callous SPLM leaders as they called themselves, setting themselves unknowingly on such shameful shambles of history.

However, shamefaced by the fact that they have lost all the respect and admiration that have all been accorded them by the populace, they disgracefully embark on pandemonium acts in the SPLM leadership circles.

That legacy is very much lamented by many who had wished SPLM to move on as clean as it fought for the freedoms of the people of south Sudan. These leaders as they claimed in the SPLM cajole the people of South Sudan into a great calamity which will take some time to calibrate.

The cantankerous bigoted SPLM leaders begrudge each other over a plate that is big enough to feed all of them at the expense of the people they claimed to be theirs.

This unspeakable torment the so-called SPLM leaders callously impelled on the people of South Sudan is very much deplored and detested.

The imperiousity SPLM has earned in the sights and hearts of the people of south Sudan has been chattered away and completely lost and even thrown into the dustbin.

They have torn apart our social bonds which bind us together as one people of this great country due to their selfish interests and coherently coerce our people to believe in their mindless violence which eventually cost only our poor and vulnerable people very pricelessly.

They have uprooted our social cohesions and our being one people and begin to look at each other as tribes, as enemies and not as brothers and sisters who share common bonds and oneness.

Their debility in the SPLM house has debilitated all our social bonds and crippled them to a certain extent.

This legacy is such a legacy which deserved no special place in our history books.

The pain, the suffering, the destruction, rape and mass killings caused by these heartless leaders will surely be remembered for centuries to come as people who have caused and initiated unspeakable atrocities and untold human suffering of the sorts in the history of the Republic of South Sudan.

Tong Kot Kuocnin is a Master of Laws (LLM) Candidate at the School of Law of the University of Nairobi and a Practicing Legal Counsel at Deng & Co. Advocates and a die-hard Member of SPLM. He can be reached at: tongbullen@gmail.com.

The untold story of Israeli military exports to South Sudan and crimes against humanity

By: Adv. Itai Mack and Idan Landau (translation: Einat Adar), JUN/27/2015, SSN;

Since South Sudan’s independence, Israel has continuously sold it weapons, military training, homeland security and surveillance technology. The only problem? They are being used to commit war crimes and potential crimes against humanity.

We now know that Israel sold weapons to Rwanda in the 1990s as genocide was being committed throughout the country. The details of these dealings are still being kept secret and an appeal (Hebrew) to make them public is currently being examined in the High Court of Justice. No lessons, it seems, were learned from that affair.

For the last 18 months a bloody civil war has been raging in another African country, South Sudan, including documented war crimes and potential crimes against humanity. The international media is covering this war on a daily basis.

The Israeli media, on the other hand, reported about it during the first few months but has since become silent, even though atrocities are still being perpetrated.

This silence probably has a good reason: high-ranking officials in the government and the security industry are selling weapons, military training, homeland security and surveillance technology to factions in South Sudan. Any publication on these activities can seriously embarrass them.

Since the 1960’s Israel has been fighting a secret war in South Sudan by supporting the rebels’ struggle to break free from Khartoum’s tyranny. Israel’s support does not reflect its humanistic values or solidarity with a just and legitimate fight for freedom, but rather is the result of various strategic interests in the region.

In 2011 a referendum was held in South Sudan following massive pressure from the international community. Ninety-nine percent of residents voted in favor of breaking away from Khartoum, and on July 9th of the same year South Sudan became an independent country.

The State of Israel was one of the first countries to recognize the new state, and in 2011 Salva Kiir Mayardit, president of South Sudan, came to Israel on official visit.

For Israel, an independent South Sudan was a golden opportunity to further its security and economic interests in the area, and it subsequently made hefty investments in civil and military infrastructure there. The relationship between the two countries is exceptional even when compared to Israel’s close ties with other African countries, showing some signs of sponsorship.

This special relationship should also be understood in the context of regional power struggles. The local conflict between Sudan and South Sudan is sponsored by Iran and Israel respectively. As Iran reinforced its ties with Muslim Sudan, Israel strengthened its relations with Christian South Sudan, which also provides it with oil.

Two-and-a-half years ago Israel allegedly bombed an Iranian owned arms factory in Khartoum; a year ago the IDF intercepted a ship carrying munitions from Sudan to Gaza; and just this month an Israeli drone was reportedly shot down in Sudan. It is evident that Iran and Israel are fighting a proxy war through their African allies.

The only question is whether this semi-imperial strategy can, in any way, justify supporting South Sudan forces who perpetrate war crimes and crimes against humanity. No Israeli strategic interest, real or imaginary, can exempt it from the moral and legal responsibility to prevent the sale of any weapons that may be used for such purposes.

South Sudan’s celebration of independence sadly turned into one of the worst tragedies of our times. Since mid-December 2013 a civil war has been raging in South Sudan between opposing ethnic and political groups — a continuation of the bloody civil war that led to the country’s independence after 22 years.

According to the latest reports, 50,000 people were killed, 2 million people were displaced or became refugees, and 2.5 million people are at risk of starvation due to the war. Human rights organizations and the United Nations estimate that 12,000 child soldiers are fighting in South Sudan.

All parties involved in the fighting, and especially the government and its allied militias, are implicated in war crimes, crimes against humanity and severe violations of human rights.

Neither side is able to bring the war to an end, and no ethnic group has a clear majority in the country. The Dinka tribe, which is currently in control of the government, is only 35 percent of the population. Some of the opposition fighters are former security forces personnel who defected to the other side, taking their weapons and military training with them, thus making it harder for government forces to defeat them.

For these reasons, the government decided on an alternative strategy: mass murder, systematic rape of other ethnic groups, and abuse of citizens identified with the opposition. As long as weapons continue to stream into the country, the government has no interest in reaching a compromise, and it continues to cling to a false hope of defeating their enemies in the field.

This situation led European countries to declare a weapons embargo on South Sudan and the U.S. to suspend its military aid. There were also attempts to pass a similar embargo resolution in the UN Security Council.

So far these attempts have been unsuccessful due conflicts and arguments between the members of the council, as well as the fear that the rebels will defeat the government forces.

Despite the political difficulties involved in agreeing on an embargo resolution, the gravity of the situation in South Sudan is clear to all. On March 3 of this year the Security Council adopted U.S.-sponsored Resolution 2206, giving both sides an ultimatum threatening a weapons embargo and other sanctions if the fighting is not ended.

Despite the world’s reaction, Israel’s secret war in South Sudan continues according to reports and information provided by human rights activists who have been, or still are, in South Sudan.

Since the country’s independence, Israel has continuously sent it weapons, training government forces and providing various security-related technologies. There is also a cooperation between the two countries’ secret services, and Israeli entities have established an internal control and surveillance system in South Sudan, which they continue to maintain.

The current Israeli involvement in South Sudan is exceptional in the history of Israeli military exports. This goes way beyond greed. Israel is currently fighting over the viability of a project that it has invested much in over the years — a project whose failure may damage its credibility in the eyes of other dictators and regimes that receive military aid from Israel.

An official publication by the Ministry of Defense from November 2014 (almost a year after the beginning of the civil war in South Sudan) boasts (Hebrew) about the success of the defense export department at Cyber Security exhibition, visited by 70 delegations from around the world, including South Sudan. There are testimonies that the South Sudan military is using the Israeli Galil ACE rifle.

Eighteen months before the outbreak of the civil war, a Sudanese newspaper reported on an airlift from Israel to South Sudan, providing rockets, military equipment and even African mercenaries (after training). The provisions still continue to flow. A South Sudanese delegation will visit (Hebrew) an Israeli armament exhibition to be held next week in Tel Aviv.

Think about it for a minute: a country in which crimes against humanity are perpetrated at this very moment, using foreign weapons and under a complete weapons embargo by U.S. and Europe, sends a military acquisitions delegation to Israel and is being welcomed with open arms.

Both international law and basic human morality forbid the sale of weapons or other military aid which may serve in war crimes and crimes against humanity. In the past, due to the political conflicts of the Cold War, the international community failed to fulfill this obligation, but since the 1990s it has been transformed into decisive law in U.S. and Europe, as well as among international conventions and international institutions such as the UN and international courts.

Israel has no real way of ensuring the weapons it sells to South Sudan are not used to massacre civilians or threaten women as they are being raped by soldiers and militia fighters.

Furthermore, there is no way to ensure that the training of security forces is not used for the murder and torture of civilians and that the technology it provides is not used for persecuting citizens for their political or ethnic affiliations — not to mention supporting horrific war crimes and crimes against humanity — unless it completely stops all military and security-related exports to this country.

It is important to clarify that international law also forbids the sale of technologies and devices that “don’t shoot” if they may be used in committing war crimes and crimes against humanity.

On March 12 this year, Adv. Itai Mack gave an interview about military exports to South Sudan on the radio program “According to Foreign Media” (Hebrew), which is aired on the “All For Peace” radio station (beginning 47:50). Mack revealed more details about Israel’s involvement in providing weapons and training to South Sudan forces. Following these findings, Adv. Mack appealed to the Ministry of Defense to stop military exports to the country. The appeal, unsurprisingly, was rejected.

MK Tamar Zandberg (Meretz) is currently trying to break the seal of silence, by demanding that the Ministry of Defense cease all military exports to South Sudan immediately. The demand was accompanied by an expert opinion prepared by Adv. Mack, which details the factual and legal aspects of the issue (you can find the request and opinion in Hebrew here).

The Israeli public must join this request. And the time to do it is right now.

Idan Landau is an Israeli academic at Ben-Gurion University. This post was originally published in Hebrew on Idan’s blog, Don’t Die a Fool. It is reposted here with the author’s permission.

The reinstatement of Pagan Amum to Secretary General of SPLM is inappropriate!

BY: Juach Garang Bul, Australia, JUN/25/2015, SSN;

Comrade Pagan Amum was the former Secretary General of the South Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM). He has been accused of pilfering SPLM party money and also as being a coup plotter. Pagan Amum was reinstated back to his previous position as Secretary General in accordance with the Arusha agreement to end the nineteen-month-conflict.

I’m opposed to this reinstatement, as the decision was made without lucid clarification to the public proving that he will work in favour of the system, not his political ego.

It would be best if Comrade Pagan Amum came out and reassured the nation that he will be honest and will defend the constitution. This would work towards keeping peace, as the ongoing conflict started amongst SPLM leaders, including himself.

As this has not happened, it suggests the government is keen to support the same politicians responsible for instigating the ongoing conflict.

It would be astute to bring peace first prior to reinstating those who called President Kiir an inept and visionless leader. Perhaps reinstatement of these SPLM leaders will result in the betrayal of president Kiir and his government, again.

Related to this, many people might question why someone such as Pagan Amum is reinstated back to the party while other elites are left out. What’s behind his reinstatement?

If President Kiir was being rational, Riek Machar would also first have been reinstated back to his position, as would other former political leaders from the SPLM.

The people of South Sudan want to know why individuals who killed innocent people are being reinstated back into political positions without publically apologizing and being held to account.

Who is going to be held accountable for the innocent Nuer killed in Juba?

And likewise, who is going to be held accountable for innocent Dinka killed in Bor and other UN camps by Nuer?

We, the people, have power to question the government as to why criminals in power have not been brought to justice.

We have power to highlight mistakes by the government because democracy means people power.

This means we, the people of South Sudan, have a right to question why the government and Opposition are still fighting when former SPLM leaders are returning back to Juba without accountability.

This lack of justice means that those involved in the fight for political attentiveness between the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and the White Army are blindfolded and dying in vain.

I know we are all desperate for peace, but it cannot come this way. Peace without justice is not genuine peace.

Peace without South Sudanese people knowing why their children were killed isn’t real peace.

As one amongst millions of South Sudanese affected by this senseless war, I disagree with the reinstatement of Pagan Amum without questioning what he will do differently from betraying and dehumanizing President Kiir and his government.

I may have concurred if President Kiir implemented the Arusha Agreement by bringing all former SPLM leaders back to the party, and promptly ended the conflict.

Allowing one individual to such a political position like this is corrupt and not appropriate.

What has Pagan Amum done that makes him deserve this reinstatement? END

Juach Garang Bul is a concerned South Sudanese living in Perth, Western Australia (Australia). He can be reached at his personal email for any inquiry at juach111@hotmail.com

Power sharing agreement not a solution to South Sudan conflict

By Jacob K. Lupai, JUBA, JUN/23/2015, SSN;

South Sudan is engulfed in a conflict that seems to have defied all attempts to resolve it peacefully. The conflict is now about 18 months old and despite every effort made to try to end it, South Sudanese are still to enjoy peace and stability after having shed millions of liters of their own precious blood to achieve independence from vicious colonizers.

The conflict has now become the concern of Africa in particular and the international community at large to chart a better way forward for South Sudan to realize peace and stability through whatever means possible.

It is evident that South Sudanese on their own have no power to end the conflict because they find it easier to disagree than agree. For example, an agreement on cessation of hostilities is easily dishonored with either side to the conflict vehemently blaming each other. The blame game continues monotonously while the country bleeds senselessly.

South Sudan conflict

The conflict in South Sudan began on 15 December 2013. However, according to South Sudan Human Rights Commission (SSHRC) Interim Report on South Sudan Internal Conflict December 15, 2013 – March 15, 2014, the genesis of the conflict can be traced back to July 2013 when President Salva Kiir Mayardit made a major reshuffle, dropping his Vice President, Dr Riek Machar from the Cabinet.

The reshuffle in July 2013 heightened political rivalries and tensions within the ruling party, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM). Prior to the reshuffle Dr Riek Machar as the Vice President and also deputy to President Salva Kiir Mayardit in the SPLM, openly expressed his desire to challenge the President for the leadership of the SPLM and therefore the President’s leadership as the Head of State.

The political rivalry between President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his former Vice President Dr Riek Machar for power and the leadership of the SPLM, and therefore the Head of State, is the cause of the conflict. A paper presented by SSHRC (July 2014) confirms that the cause of the current conflict is the struggle for the leadership and direction of the affairs of the SPLM and therefore the leadership of the country.

The start of the conflict was blamed on the alleged attempted coup to overthrow the government. However, others also claimed that there was no coup attempt but a fabricated one to silence critics. Nevertheless, whether there was a coup attempt or not what the people of South Sudan need right now is peace, stability and development to improve the quality of their lives. In addition, insecurity is so rampant that the very existence of South Sudan as a sovereign country may be under threat of disintegration.

Institutional reforms

In the absence of meaningful institutional reforms it is highly doubtful that a mere power sharing agreement is a lasting solution to the current conflict in South Sudan. Some may agree that power sharing is the solution to the conflict. Others may disagree while still there may be those who are not so sure. This may all suggest that the conflict is complicated. The complication is that the conflict has taken ethnic and regional dimensions where insecurity is the order of the day. A conception of power sharing agreement as a solution to the conflict is therefore too simplistic.

For any meaningful resolution of the conflict in South Sudan the primary priority is a holistic institutional reform. Reforms in governance, in the economy and in the security sector are a key to sustainable peace and stability. In governance the reform is the adoption of a federal system of government in a multi-ethnic, multi-lingual and multi-cultural country such as South Sudan where there are also regional diversities.

In a federal system powers are devolved to a lower level where there is autonomy with less interference from the national government. Through autonomy people have some freedom to run their affairs in their own way. This will likely promote unity in diversity. In South Sudan there could be three federal regions of Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile headed by prime ministers while the federal government is headed by a president. Within a federal region there could also be autonomous states with the three arms (executive, judiciary and legislature) of government headed by governors. Alternatively, the existing ten states in South Sudan could form the federation.

Reforms in governance

I am aware that a proposal for a federal system will be construed as “Kokora” by people less informed and lacking in confidence. There is no better system than a federal one in addressing the plethora of problems South Sudan faces on daily basis. The naïve ones and the less informed will erroneously perceive that a federal system divides people. This is false. On the contrary, a federal system promotes unity in countries, for example, with diversities of multi-ethnic, multi-lingual and multi-cultural backgrounds. Federal states are found in Africa, in the Americas, in Asia and in Europe. However, only the fearful with a hidden agenda are the opponents.

A centralized system is likely to create rebellions and a possible breakup of a country. The old Sudan is a good case study. The then Southern Sudan demanded a federal system of government to preserve the unity of the old Sudan but the demand was utterly rejected. The rest is for students of history. Hopefully South Sudan will not breakup the way the old Sudan did under naïve Arab Islamic leadership. Learning from the insensitivity in old Sudan, it is hoped that the leadership of South Sudan will be wiser.

Reforms in security sector

Institutional reforms in the security sector is of paramount importance in promoting a strong united South Sudan. South Sudan is a country of 72 ethnic groups. In the national peace conference of South Sudan tribes convened under the theme “Peace Now! South Sudan Tribes United Against War” at Nyokuron Culture Centre on 17 – 18 February 2015, 72 ethnic groups were identified and listed. This is an update of the previous number of 65 ethnic groups considered to be in South Sudan.

The existence of 72 ethnic groups in South Sudan clearly suggests reforms in the security sector must reflect the ethnic diversity of the country. Not having representatives of the 72 ethnic groups in the security sector is a clear disaster in the waiting. As power corrupts it is very unwise to have any ethnic group to dominate in the security sector because it will be extremely arrogant and this does not bode well in promoting national unity. It has been seen that people in uniform grab land using arms but are not accountable for their criminal behavior. The implication is clear.

In reforms in the security sector, a state in the federation should have its own home guards/militia to handle hardcore criminals. The state should also establish its own organized forces such as the police, criminal investigation department, the prisons wildlife and the fire brigade.

For economic reforms the states should have the power to tax in order to raise revenue for investment in development projects. They should have the power, without interference from the centre, to develop natural resources such as agriculture, forestry, animal resources and fisheries. They also should have the power to prospect for oil and minerals such as gold, uranium, zinc and so forth. For self-reliance, paramount in reforms is economic development, judiciary, public services and structures at all levels.

In all, the reform agenda is about the rule of law, the promotion of good governance and the protection of human rights. However, this cannot happen without strong and implementable guarantees. For example, in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005 Abyei was to have a referendum either to join Sudan or South Sudan. This did not happen. Also in the CPA the resolution of the conflict in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States did not happen. Right now wars of liberation are raging in those two States. This is an indication that without strong guarantees and committed guarantors an agreement will likely be dishonored with impunity.

As a resolution of the conflict in South Sudan there must be committed guarantors and they should be the mediators, and those who have actively participated in bringing about any agreement on reforms. This is the only way to have a vibrant united South Sudan where every citizen identifies with and ultimately calls it a motherland. This is also how to save the country from collapsing.

Conclusion

It will be a waste of time and valuable resources for any agreement which is supposed to address the current conflict in South Sudan is only restricted to power sharing. Without guaranteed institutional reforms it is most likely that the conflict will recur with far reaching consequences.

In conclusion, the only salvation of South Sudan from disunity and possible breakup is institutional reform where a strongly guaranteed federation of either three regions or ten states is adopted, reflecting the diversities of the country. There should also be a reform in the SPLM, where among other things, a time-frame should be indicated as to when any member can start to campaign for the leadership. This is to avoid the way Salva Kiir Mayardit was being openly challenged at any time by members without respect.

Jacob K. Lupai is the author of the book: South Sudan, Issues in Perspective published in 2014. The book is available in St Joseph Bookshop and in JIT Supermarket in Juba, and at Juba International Airport. For students who would like to borrow the book, copies owned by Juba University are available in the library.

The Bitter Pill: IGAD Plus Peace Proposal and Power Sharing Formula among the Parties in South Sudan Crisis

BY: Dr. Thon Giei Ajak, JUN/18/2015, SSN;

Take it or leave it, literally speaking, is precisely the summary of the IGAD Plus peace proposal for the parties in the South Sudan crisis. Surprisingly, the two chief negotiators of the warring parties have signed up to IGAD plus mediation process. After their signature, the two received the proposal document for consultation with their principals in Juba and Addis (Fagak).

It is understandable that Taban Deng Gai did not say a word on the proposal as his rebels lost most territories in Greater Upper Nile. But for Nhial Deng Nhial to keep silent without showing the world that South Sudan is a sovereign nation and that its territory now and previously is under the control of the Mighty SPLA and if it were not the rainy season, the government army would have shouted “ SPLA Oyee” mouth-fully in Pagak and that South Sudan Government under General Salva Kiir will never entertain calls for dismantling the country.

I say, without Nhial uttering any comments, that in my view speaks volumes on how the peace talks are being managed on the government side.

None of the two government and rebel chief negotiators, have wondered how did the document come out to light? Who was the brain behind the power sharing arrangement? Who was the architect of the document? What criteria did she/he use to put the knife on the throat of South Sudan Nation (the proposed division)?

If the parties to South Sudan crisis agree to the proposed document, then that would be a farewell to a country called as South Sudan effective from 9 July 2011.

What is good in dividing South Sudan into Greater Upper Nile under the murderous Riek Machar rebels who has slaughtered civilians on ethnic grounds where they operate militarily, and South Sudan under executive president Kiir administration of Greater Bahr-El Ghazal and Equatoria?

What peace would be realized in South Sudan particularly in greater Upper Nile if the SPLA is to pull out from the region, and Oil facilities and the government in the 3 states of Upper Nile to be handed over to the murderous Riek Rebels?

And what would be the position of the opponents to Riek rebels in the states of Upper Nile (Bull Nuer in Unity state, Padang Dinka in Unity, Upper Nile and Jonglei states, Maban ethnic group and Dinka Jonglei (Bor)?

Will the above opponents of Riek rebels leave their lands and resources to Riek rebels, because they will never accept to surrender their fate to the rebels?

Rejected by both the government and rebels and welcomed by Pagan Amum of SPLM-FDs (according to radio Tamazuj), IGAD Plus proposal is going to have far reaching implications for the future of South Sudan being the first step to divide the country on power sharing and resources.

The methodology used in calculating the percentages of 53%, 33% and 14% for the rebels, the government and others in the 3 states of Upper Nile respectively, remains unclear and undisclosed and every South Sudanese has the right to know.

If the calculation of the percentages in power sharing was based on the ethnic make-up of greater Upper Nile in accordance with 2008 census, then IGAD plus team and its South Sudanese informants and bad wishers, have made a fatal and unforgivable mistake as it wrongly assumed that all Nuers and all Shilluk in greater Upper Nile are rebels or support the rebels.

The Bul Nuer and Padang Dinka in Unity state have been a thorn in the throat of the rebels and managed to chase rebels out of South Sudan borders.

In Upper Nile state, Teet-Bai forces in (Baliet, Akoka, Malut, Renk and Maban) have maintained their grounds and given hot pursuit to the rebels; Teet-Bai forces proved to be a heavy shield, kept the rebels away from Upper Nile oil fields and in May 2015, Teet-Bai forces (Abu-Shouk: Shouk, Shouk, Shouk) annihilated the rebels forces in the battle of Peel-Bier in Akoka County.

In Jonglei state, the Eagle forces kept the enemy away from Bor, restored peace to Duk and Oror counties and advanced to capture Akoba County.

So if the government in Juba wants to pull out its forces from greater Upper Nile State as part of IGAD proposal, the inhabitants in greater Upper Nile and who are opposed to the plan of genocide and ethnic cleansing of Riek rebels as evident in the massacres of Bailiet, Parieng, Bentiu, Bor, Malakal, Akok, Malut and Majak of Renk County: I say the opponents of the rebels in Upper Nile will take of the situation under their own control.

The IGAD plus proposal is a two-edged weapon to both the rebels and the government. If the rebels accept the proposal to enjoy the 53% governance in the 3 Upper Nile states as well the oil (the sharing formula to be worked out), it will abandon its allies in Bahr El-Gahazal (Dau Aturjoung and Wau trouble makers) and Equatoria (Afred ladu Gore and Maridi and Mundri trouble makers).

The rebels will therefore, abandon the national agenda and become a regional force to advance its agenda for statehood of the region it controls.

If the rebels reject the proposal, it will be a difficult position having lost territories in Unity State, if not rainy season and the rebellion of Johnson Olony, the government forces would have controlled fagak in Upper Nile, and again if not rainy season, Akoba would have fallen to SPLA forces.

So the rebels are in difficult military situation and have to accept any form of peace to allow them to regroup, retrain, re-arm and re-deploy for future combat missions.

On the other hand, if the government accepts the proposal, it will abandon oil facilities that provide 98% of the revenue, sacrifice greater Upper Nile to the rebels and worse, having set the blue prints for Eguatoria to follow Upper Nile and practical disintegration of South Sudan into 3 independent states.

If the government refuses the proposal, it will appear as if it has rejected peace and opted for war and the IGAD plus machine will move to impose sanctions (targeted or non-targeted) and the threats of referring government officials for International Criminal Court (ICC) for trials of crimes against humanity.

So the IGAD plus proposal is a screw nail for both the rebels and the government and none of them will come out if it clean.

The government negotiating team in Addis Ababa was proportionally imbalanced in terms of representation based on the 3 greater regions (Bhar ElGhazal, Equatoria and Upper). It looks the team did not have enough representation from Greater Upper Nile to reflect the war impacts (death, displacement and claims).

In comparison, the rebels’ representation looks 99% Upper Nile. So the South Sudan Crisis on Addis Ababa negotiating table looks like Upper Nile (rebels) against Equatoria and Bahr ElGhazal (government).

Based on this observation, IGAD Plus came out with that proposal. The government needs to work on representing greater Upper Nile on the peace talks to clarify issues linked to tribal composition and position in making peace.

Lastly, the government needs to conduct popular consultations for the people in greater Upper Nile (in displacement) as to what is their position regarding the proposed peace plan. The government team should not confine consulting itself in Juba and heading back to Ethiopia for talks.

It needs to conduct popular consultations of the people concerned and affected directly by war.

Dr. Thon Giei Ajak, is a concerned South Sudanese and can be reached at thongiei288@gmail.com

SPLM ex-detainees set to return to Juba and re-unite with Kiir

By FRED OLUOCH, TheEastAfrican Special Correspondent, May/30/2015, SSN;

IN SUMMARY:
The return — which is part of the reunification of the three SPLM factions as per the Arusha agreement signed in January — is seen as a major boost to President Kiir’s side after the government in March issued a decree of amnesty to all those in exile.
The adoption came as a result of diplomatic efforts by Kenyan and Ethiopian foreign ministers, plus mediators of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, who in the past week consulted President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and President Kiir.
The new arrangement gives 10 former detainees, who were released after President Kenyatta intervened, a major role in reconciling the warring factions.
However, the rebels led by Dr Machar, said the former detainees were simply trying to gain relevance at a time when there was still increased fighting between the two warring sides.

Negotiators of the South Sudan peace process in Addis Ababa have adopted the Arusha Accord in a fresh bid to end the 17-month civil war.

The Accord — signed by those loyal to President Salva Kiir, former vice president and SPLM-IO head Riek Machar and party officials — seeks to reunite the three SPLM factions.

The adoption came as a result of diplomatic efforts by Kenyan and Ethiopian foreign ministers, plus mediators of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, who in the past week consulted President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and President Kiir.

The new arrangement gives 10 former detainees, who were released after President Kenyatta intervened, a major role in reconciling the warring factions.

Five of the former detainees were scheduled to travel to Juba on June 1 for two-day consultations in a bid to reunite the three SPLM factions.

Former Cabinet Affairs minister Deng Alor will lead former Finance minister Kosti Manibe, former Justice minister John Luk, former Postal Services and Telecommunications minister Madut Biar, and Cirino Hiteng, a former minister for Culture, Youth and Sports.

Dr Hiteng told The EastAfrican that the former detainees would work to narrow the gap between President Kiir and Dr Machar and hasten the implementation of the Arusha Accord and the Addis Ababa process.

“We have remained moderate and have not been an obstacle to the peace process,” said Dr Hiteng. He added that after Juba, the group would visit Pagak to deliver the same message to Dr Machar.

The five were set to leave for Juba, accompanied by South African Vice-President Cyrile Ramaphosa, Tanzania’s Chama Cha Mapinduzi Secretary-General Abdulrahman Kinana, Kenya’s Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, and Ethiopian Minister for Foreign Affairs Tedros Adhamon.

President Kenyatta on May 29 met the 10 former SPLM officials and former detainees, representatives and guarantors of the Arusha Accord.

Those in the meeting were Mr Adhamon, who is the chairman of the Igad Council of Ministers, Ms Mohamed, Mr Kinana, representatives of Igad and two special envoys from South Africa, Reddy Mampane and Mandlenkosi Memela.

Pagan Amum, the former SPLM secretary-general, said their first task was to unite the SPLM party and to deal with obstacles blocking the Igad process, which had not made significant progress because the South Sudanese leaders, including himself, had been stubborn.

The return — which is part of the reunification of the three SPLM factions as per the Arusha agreement signed in January — is seen as a major boost to President Kiir’s side after the government in March issued a decree of amnesty to all those in exile.

South Sudan Ambassador to Kenya Mariano Deng told The EastAfrican that the government had guaranteed the security of the former detainees based on the Constitution and had even allowed them a minimum of 60 soldiers from countries of their choice to witness their protection while on the ground.

However, the rebels led by Dr Machar, said the former detainees were simply trying to gain relevance at a time when there was still increased fighting between the two warring sides.

The SPLM-IO representative in Kenya Adel Sandrai said the credibility of the former detainees was dented because the conflict was brought about by the mismanagement of institutions that the detainees were part of.

The former detainees — who were among 11 politicians arrested in December 2013 for disturbance, and charged with treason — have been in exile in Kenya for over a year.

The initial seven were released in late January 2014, with the remaining four released in April after the government dropped charges against them. The four are Mr Amum, former security minister Oyay Deng Ajak, former deputy defense minister Majok D’Agoot Atem, and former envoy for Southern Sudan to the United States, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.

The government maintains treason charges against Dr Machar, former governor of Unity state Taban Deng Gai and Alfred Ladu Gore, the former Environment minister, who are accused of being behind a coup on December 15, 2013. END

The Way forward for peace in South Sudan: Equatoria Community in UK

From: The Equatorian Community in the United Kingdom
To: The Chair of IGAD-Plus, C/o H.E Hailemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (IGAD, TROIKA, UN, AU, EU, and China)
cc The Government of the Republic of South Sudan (GRSS), SPLM/A-IO, and Governors of Equatoria States.

Date: 10th May 2015

MAY/23/2015, SSN,
Your Excellencies,

Re: The Way Forward for Peace in South Sudan;

We, the Equatorian community in the United Kingdom, met in Manchester, England on 18th April 2015 and discussed the ongoing conflict in our beloved country.

We appreciate IGAD and the international community’s relentless efforts in finding a peaceful solution to the conflict in South Sudan. We note with great sadness that the ongoing conflict has caused untold suffering and looming humanitarian disaster to our people in the country.

We are also deeply disappointed that the parties to the conflict (GRSS and SPLM-in Opposition) have continually violated The Declaration of Principles and Cease Fire Agreements already reached.

It is our conviction that the solution to the current conflict does not lie in simple power-sharing modalities as trends of the ongoing negotiations indicate. However, we strongly feel that addressing the root causes of the war and in particular the inclusion of all stakeholders in the peace process – as stipulated in the IGAD Agreement of the 9th May 2014 – will bring meaningful, sustainable and just peace to the people of South Sudan.

In this document, we urge IGAD-plus and both the negotiating parties to seriously consider our assessment of the problems and the humble solutions offered. We have focused our attention on two main contentious areas: (1) Security, and (2) Governance.

1. SECURITY
The ongoing civil war has adversely caused severe insecurity across the country. Many citizens have been forced to leave their places of origin in search of peaceful settlements in relatively unaffected cities, towns and villages in Equatoria Region. The influx of these Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) has significantly impacted on relations between indigenous population and IDPs as the latter arrived fully armed.

Also, their presence and behaviours have consequently affected security situation in the area. The vices of insecurity, human rights violations, absence of rule of law, land grabbing and occupation, destruction of crops and so forth become rampant.

Besides, corruption and nepotism practised by key government officials including those in law enforcement agencies cause mayhem to ordinary citizens in Equatoria. This is because almost all the security sector in South Sudan is predominantly controlled by one or two tribes.

As Equatorian Community in the United Kingdom, we strongly urge IGAD-Plus and the two warring parties to take into consideration the following points:

i. Ending the War:
The negotiating partners are hereby urged to negotiate in good faith in order to settle the conflict amicably. The voices of Equatorians in the Diaspora, rebel- and government controlled areas must be taken into consideration. If given opportunity, Equatorians in the UK are willing to send their representatives to take part in the forthcoming peace talks.

ii. Reforming security sector:
The composition of the security services in South Sudan is to be restructured to reflect ethnic diversity in the country. The ten states should be allowed to employ and manage their own organise forces (e.g. police, prisons and game wardens). In addition, there must be strict control of arms; and all military installations/sites must be relocated at a minimum distant away from civilian areas.

iii. The military structure during the interim period:
It is proposed that the structure of the armed forces be reformed into the following four commands:
 A national command with equal representation from the three former regions of South Sudan, namely Equatoria, Bahr el Gazal, and Upper Nile. The leadership command of the national Integrated Armed Forces shall be representative of the three regions.
 Equatoria Division: commanded and composed of soldiers from Equatoria;
 Bahr el Ghazal Division: commanded and composed of soldiers from Bahr el Ghazal; and
 Upper Nile Division: commanded and composed of soldiers from Upper Nile.

In order to ensure that military power is not concentrated in the hands of one tribe or region to the detriment of the rest, it is important that future security arrangements and armed forces be divided into regional commands, with each of the three former regions of Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr el Ghazal take control of their respective security forces (Figure 1).
(Figure 1: Proposed security arrangements in South Sudan)

This structure for reforming the national army should be implemented during the interim period.
Currently, the army is dominated by only two ethnic groups. Our country would not have been plunged into this devastating war had recruitment into national army was handled on the basis of proportional representation of all tribes across South Sudan.

As a matter of fact, the ongoing war initially started along ethnic dimension – Dinka vs Nuer- whereby revenge killings resulted in tremendous loss of lives from both sides.

To make sure this scenario does not repeat itself in the future, the formation of the new national army and security services must be formed on the basis of proportional representation among the three regions of Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr el Ghazal.

iv. Return of all Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to their places of origin:
As soon as the ongoing war ends, all IDPs and their cattle must return to their places of origin.
—– Their presence in Equatoria causes significant insecurity and intercommunal conflicts between IDPs and the indigenous communities; left unresolved this could ignite future conflicts.
—– IDPs have contributed adversely in community relation in South Sudan, especially in Equatoria. This is because most IDPs are involved in land grabbing issues, conspiracy to out-manoeuvre the indigenous population, oppressed them and permanently occupy Equatorian land. ——– There is also the irreconcilable lifestyle difference between pastoralists’ ways of life of IDPs as compared to agricultural lifestyle of Equatorians.

v. Land issues:
Land laws should be reviewed to address respect for other people’s land. Acquisition of personal property(ies) including land must be carried out in a rightful and legitimate manner; by seeking consent of the rightful owners.

vi. Human rights:
We commend the efforts of the African Union Human Rights Commission for investigating possible human rights abuses in South Sudan. Furthermore, we appreciate the efforts and determination of the former President of Nigeria, Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo, for conducting investigation into atrocities committed, human rights violations, destruction of properties, other war crimes and their perpetrators. We therefore urge the chairman of IGAD to ensure the release of this report with immediate effect.

We believe that this report holds the key to bringing those implicated in committing the atrocities and other war-related crimes to face justice. We also urge IGAD plus to follow through the implementation of all recommendations in that report.

vii. Implementation of the UN Security Council sanctions
We thank the UN and its various agencies for their humanitarian support for the suffering people of South Sudan, the IDPs, those in UNMISS compounds and those in neighbouring countries.
We would also like to join other concerned members of the international community in supporting the UN Security Council resolution 2206 (2015) for immediate imposition of targeted sanctions against individuals and entities who are seen to be obstructing the peace process, and those responsible for committing war crimes.

2. GOVERNANCE
The governance problems facing the Republic of South Sudan can be summarised as follows:

 Tribal domination of the country by one tribe: The three organs of the state (judiciary, executive, and legislation) are dominated by the same tribe; the security organs are also dominated by the same tribe; and the country is slowly moving towards tribal hegemony.
 Human rights abuse: The killings of civilians are not addressed; there is rampant injustice with impunity.
 Corruption: The citizens are witnessing looting of state resources; and there is lack of accountability for loss of those national resources.
 Structure of states in the Country: The structure of the state needs to be reviewed to determine the viability of the current ten states versus the 3 former regions (Equatoria, Bahr el Ghazal and Upper Nile), and the recently proposed 21 states by SPLM-IO.
 Type of Leadership: The limitation of current leadership is the focus on positions, and ruling by decrees. We need to identify the systems of Federalisms that best suits independence of each regions/state in the country.

The Solutions
viii. Federal system of Governance: Federalism should be adopted as the system of governance in South Sudan.

Given the ethnic diversity and divergent political aspirations, coupled with vastness, remoteness and poor infrastructure in the country; the Republic of South Sudan (RSS) needs to adopt a new model of governance – FEDERALISM.

Under the present government, power and resources have been concentrated at central level leaving states and counties with limited abilities to exercise real local governance; to influence development, enforce laws and maintain security. Given that the current status quo is not working well, and therefore unacceptable, the interim period is a good time to pilot Federalism, which will be ratified in the permanent constitution.

We, the Equatorian community in the UK, add our voice to the call for federalism. This is because a genuine federal system will enable separation of powers between levels and organs of the government. This needs to be included in the peace agreement to be implemented by the proposed interim government of national Unity.

ix. Develop and adopt a shared vision for South Sudan:
As South Sudan is a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, multi-lingual and multi-religious country, its existence as a just, united, peaceful and prosperous country will depend on recognition of the people of Equatoria and other ethnic minorities as equal stakeholders in the forthcoming peace talks. Strong foundation for nation building in South Sudan will only be realised if our leaders consider shared vision and responsibility for all the tribes in the country.

x. Inclusive Government:
All the 64 tribes must be represented in all the national institutions (Executive, Legislature, and the Judiciary). Proportional representation of all minority groups must be clearly outlined in the future constitutional review.

xi. Corruption & employment policies:
New employment policies need to be developed and adopted that will ensure adherence to equal opportunities in all government institutions. Laws against discrimination need to be enacted and there should be transparency in recruitment and appointment of public service officials, and the security sector. Employment must be based on merit where the best person for the job must be recruited.

Financial probity and accountability for the national resources must be instilled in all Government Institutions. This should be legally enforced.

The International community, including TROIKA, EU and other countries must exercise their influence to ensure that the financial support they give to the Government of the Republic of South Sudan are properly accounted for. As Diaspora community, we contribute through the tax system in funding the financial aid to South Sudan, and therefore we too demand assurance that our tax payers’ money is being used for the intended purpose.

xii. The Presidency:
Given that the current conflict has directly implicated President, Salva Kiir Mayardiit and former Vice President, Dr Riak Machar, – both leaders have failed the nation; hence they should step aside from leading the Transitional Government of National unity (TGNU) during the interim administration.

A new leader must be selected from one of the minority tribes in South Sudan, as a neutral figure to bring South Sudan together.

Equatoria has a track record of unifying the people of South Sudan and we therefore recommend an Equatorian to be tasked with the responsibility of leading the country during the interim period as President.

To avoid the issue of ethnic domination of the country in the future, consideration should be given in the permanent constitution to ensure that no President of the country serves more than two terms or 10 years. Term limits for the President must be 2 terms of 4 or 5 years, which cannot be changed by parliament, but by a referendum.

Secondly, the presidency must rotate among the three greater Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahr el Gazal regions.

xiii. Elections: There should be free and fair elections after the interim period.

xiv. Chiefs: The traditional role of chiefs should be restored and recognised in the constitution. It has to be made clear that the chiefs are accountable to the people rather than the Government.

xv. Constitution:
The present constitution of South Sudan was written by the SPLM within the framework of the CPA and do not represent the principles and norms of an independent state. We therefore condemn it and call upon the forthcoming interim government to organise a constitutional conference for all stakeholders to review it and come up with a permanent constitution that is grounded on certain principles and norms agreed upon by all South Sudanese to form the backbone of governance and the supreme laws of an independent South Sudan.

In conclusion, we welcome the expansion of IGAD to IGAD-plus and we hope that you will now try to deliver the much needed peace for the suffering people of South Sudan. To realise this, we call upon the inclusion of all stakeholders, especially Equatorians in the forthcoming negotiation.

Signature:
Federico Awi Vuni
Chairman, Adhoc Committee,
Contact email: livi.hope@yahoo.co.uk
Skype: redbox08

The most misconstrued and misunderstood concept by Jieng Council of Elders

BY: Dr. Peter Kopling, MAY/19/2015, SSN;

In response to the well-received article by Simon Kur published in SouthSudannation.com, Southsudanliberty.com as well as Nyamile.com, a reader on Southsudannation.com, Mr. Dengchol Machar Atem, a self-purported Jieng faithful, reacted in the comment sections, and addressing Mr. Kur, stated, “In your own article, Simon Kur, one wonders whether inciting hatred between communities is a way forward. As an intellectual, why not preach for peace, love, togetherness, humbleness etc. rather than just inciting hatred.”

It should be pointed out that, this is a very common Jieng Position in response to a dissatisfied and a grumbling nation. What made this unique is, this was a Jieng responding to another Jieng! It seems, while all Jiengs may consider themselves to be one people, the elite in power consider themselves superior to other Jiengs and that not all Jiengs are created equal.

Take Simon Kur for example, his article brought hope in my heart, telling me, when Jiengs consider South Sudan first, then there is hope for us to be under one nation.

However, Mr. Atem’s reaction tells me those who do not sing the popular songs coming out of Juba, controlled by the infamous Jieng Council of Elders are considered to be not true Jiengs, worst traitors.

Alas! How about Madam Garang Mabior, wife of Dr. John Garang, and her Children? If they are not Jieng for opposing the current genocidal Tyranny in Juba, then who is?

I discover when Southerners complain about the bondages they suffer under the Jieng government, the Jieng people consider it as incitement of tribal violence and when their fellow Jieng complain, they are considered Traitors! Why is this?

Mr Atem, have you ever asked the question, why we, Southerners, in the first place fought the Jalabas? Was it because they are brown in color and we are black or was it because they have “Amarats” and we live in grass-roofed houses?

Yes, I will say it, was it because they have dresses and you Jieng then mostly ran naked in your villages?

From the behaviors of the Jieng government, it seems, your fight, contrary to the rest of South Sudanese against the Jalaba, was mainly due to material things and the desire for power.

This is very evident, given that as soon as the CPA was signed, like children rushing to take the front seats in class, you the Jiengs ran and grabbed all that is meaningful to South Sudanese, to include even other peoples ancestral lands, as you are totally numb to justice and equality for and with other southern brethren.

Look no further than in Juba, every vehicle with GOSS number plate on it, likely has a Jieng driving it. Government money buys most V8 Vehicles and a Jieng driving it. Jieng owns most “Amarats” and the ones walking around looking important and carrying an air of invincibility and authority while dressed in suits are likely the Jieng!

The street moneychangers in all cities in South Sudan are mostly illiterate Jiengs, relatives of those in high places.

Mr. Atem, have you realized what you are saying? What the Jiengs like you are doing is this! You have all taken the advantageous positions in South Sudan, from government positions to wealth, from Military forces to the land itself!

You are comfortable with the way things are and you have no quarrel with the status quo because it benefits you, or at minimum this government is not harmful to you as to the rest of us.

Things can remain like this forever and you neither see nothing wrong with it nor any need to change it!

You do not want to rock the boat because doing so will threaten all these Jiengs holdings, thus when those who are at disadvantage because of your privileges are crying out loud (These writings of mine included), you take it as inciting of violence, because in this violence you stand to loose the most.

Why because the rest of us have already lost all to you except for our lives but in itself is at risk! Whereas for you the Jiengs, you stand much to loose if true equality were to kick in, thus you do not want any writings to expose these evil deeds.

From the perspective of those of us suffering under the Jiengs colonization and oppressions, we see our writings as consequence of your evil and un-brotherly ACTIONS! It is these oppressive and colonial ACTION of the Jiengs inciting Violence and breeding divisions not the words written in response to them!

THESE JIENGS UN-BROTHERLY ACTIONS ARE WORSE THAN THE WORDS YOU READ IN REACTION TO THESE ACTIONS!

The actions gives birth to the writings! If you are truly for one nation, then you will preach to your fellow Jieng to stop ACTIONS that incite violence, if we talk about it or not.

You should ask us as to what is it that we really want? What is it that we consider brotherhood or one nation!

Indeed, if nationhood and peace matter to you, do not preach about it as you suggested, show it to us, live by example, live and behave like a brother not like an enemy.

What you do to me, brothers do not do! Don’t knock me in the head and when I cry, you then turn around say, STOP crying, by doing so you are provoking disunity and inciting violence!

What is nationhood in the world of the Jiengs? What is brotherhood for a Jieng? Emerging from Nomadic lives to becoming settlers.

Those who traditionally have no sentimental values to fixed place and cry for a cow’s rather than a brother’s death are now the ones in the drivers seat charting the path for our national brotherhood, is it any wonder it is disastrous?

Is brotherhood in the Jieng’s world not simply an alliance to protect the cows at all costs even death to oneself, thus what seems bravery is indeed human sacrifices for the lives of cows, isn’t this actually primitivism at its highest order?

I will tell you for the rest of us what brotherhood is not. It is not letting you sit on my great grandfather’s and father’s land, it is not letting your cows graze freely in my farm, it is not your cows being safer in the country than my children! It is not letting you take my sister by force.

The greatest ills the Jiengs have engineered in South Sudan are ethnic displacement and land grabbing. Unless any peace brings an end to this evil we shall be locked in perpetual war.

Was this not at the core of our 50 years of struggles against the Arabs? It surprises me that the shadowy Jieng Council of elders has not learned this lesson the great Satan in the North themselves came to bitterly swallow.

Brotherhood to us is not letting you Jieng occupy all the critical posts in the country: The presidency, Defense minister, Chief of staff, Minister of interior, Chief Justice etc.

So Mr. Atem, as you can see this is neither my government nor that of the nation, this is not a national government but rather JIENG NATION! What makes it mine?

Why do I want it to stay peaceful, why do I want it to last forever? What makes you different and better than the Jalaba occupiers that came before you?

Therefore, its being a malignant Government, robbing my Children of their tomorrow and giving it to your Children alone in exclusivity, I want it to fall! Simply, because your Children will do worse to mine!

I want nothing to do with Jieng nation but all to do with a national government!

I said it in the past and someone said it recently, Nationhood is family-hood. In a family you have your brother. He has his house and you have yours, he has his wife and you have yours. To have peace you must respect his house and his wife. You cannot cry fault when you impose yourself in his home and he denounces you and kicks you out.

Unity does not mean you squat in your brothers’ house and sleep with his wife and reduce his personal space. You have your house and your wife. What makes you family is Mutual respect!

I know I am right because the golden rule says, “DO UNTO OTHERS AS THOU WOULD HAVE THEM DO UNTO YOU.”

Mr. Atem, just imagine if for whatever reason a given tribe convinced themselves that they have rights to everything in South Sudan in exclusion of others and literally occupies South Sudan as you the Jiengs have down, will your (Jiengs) reactions be any different from ours?

If the table where to be turned, will you still hold the same position you articulated above?

If Riek Machar was the President of South Sudan and turned around and killed Dinka and clear Juba of Dinkas as Kiir did on Black December 2013 against the Nuer, will you (Jiengs) not have done worse than what the Nuer did to you in revenge attacks?

Therefore, choose this day between brotherhood by actions vs. continuing in the path of enmity, which shall continue to bleed the nation. If those of us who expose this evil action are silenced like Isaiah Abraham or not! As you can see, he does not talk anymore, are we any better?

(He who maintains silence in the face of a massacre is a murderer himself)

Dr. Peter Kopling, MD
Juba, RSS.

Pres. Kiir’s health deteriorating fast: Claims a former rebel who met Kiir personally

BY: Simon Kur, Juba, RoSS, MAY/18/2015, SSN;

South Sudan leader’s health is deteriorating at a high rate, said one of the former rebels who gave up the fight to overthrow President Salva Kiir. The unnamed source revealed to South Sudan Liberty News in an exclusive interview with him in an undisclosed location in Juba. The official who recently renounced achieving peace through the barrel of the gun claimed he met with President Kiir in his presidential office in Juba.

This meeting took place after they accepted the amnesty deal extended by the president to those who have not committed crimes.

This former rebel, who hails from Chollo majority clan, said President Salva Kiir may not be able to survive much longer time because he is visibly very sick, constantly looking very tired, and exhausted. He further went on to claim that Kiir is living on borrowed time, may not live to the end of the year.

Question: How is Kiir as far as his health is concerned?
Answer: when you look at the man himself, he looks very exhausted. He has fear of his own life. He looks shaky and traumatized.

Though the former rebel official who returned to Juba with the general amnesty extended by President Kiir could not pinpoint the kind of illness Kiir is suffering, he thinks it might be stressed related illness. This he said can be recalled when as you all might recall president Kiir collapsed during one of his trips to Khartoum on mission to meet his counterpart El Bashir in December 2014.

Other sources have also indicated that Kiir is suffering with undisclosed illness though his close aides declined to comment on his health.

Question: How does it feel like meeting President Salva Kiir face to face? And what do you say because there are people saying Mr. Kiir is not an intelligent man and often the decision to run the country is made by his chief of staff?

Answer: Well, Kiir is just a normal person like anyone of us. Just like any normal person, I can see he has emotions. I also see rudeness in him big time. During the time we spent in his office, I sensed rudeness and ruthlessness in him. I saw that one minute he can act normal and within the next minute he turns deadly.

I suppose this anxiety is due to the situation he finds himself in. Kiir admits during our meeting that he realized some of the mistakes he made and now he had wanted to correct those mistakes. He is open to accept any positive solutions to end the conflict in the country so that ordinary people will go on with their daily lives.

The official claimed in his answer that Kiir said that he cannot accept to see the country descending into further chaos. “I can no longer afford to see the suffering of my people and South Sudanese at large,” said Kiir.

At this juncture, South Sudan Liberty News cannot verify this statement claimed by former rebel official.

Question: There are people who claimed that President Salva Kiir is not the one running the daily administration of the country, but Dinka general elites are the one running the daily business of the country, what are your views?

Answer: You know this is what has dragged the country into civil war. There is a group which calls itself the “Dinka council of elders.” These are selfish and egoistic individuals who have not only misled the president but have damaged the image of South Sudan at the international level.

The so called the Dinka council of elders believed and have tasked itself with new Dinka imperialism culture. They are trying to build on nepotism, tribalism and this untold wrong concept and morally unacceptable ideology that they the Dinka are the masters.

The others are slaves is the common cancer that has inflicted hatred and has placed the Dinka ethnic group in an odd position with others and there can be no peace until a cure is found to heal this cancer.

Now, unless this is corrected now, South Sudan will not be at peace, because no single tribe can survive without the others. These council of Dinka elders believes that it is only the Dinka who have the absolute authority, and supreme power to live anywhere on other people’s ancestral land, this is very common practice by the Dinka and Nuer in Equatoria, and Upper Nile.

Also, these two initially warring tribes must change their concept of thinking that only they alone fought therefore they owned South Sudan and accept that South Sudan belongs to all of us.

Question: Why did you decide to come back to Juba and how are you going to fight the regime you once described as displaying nepotism, tribalism, dictatorial, genocidal and dominated by one tribe?
Answer: I and my colleagues decided to come back to Juba after we have seen discrimination by the Neur colleagues to our Shilluk men engaged in the front-lines. We learned this when we visited them in frontline after Pangak SPLA-IO conference in February 2015.

They told us how they were mistreated and killed in frontline by their comrades from Neur tribe. We were convinced and prompted by the devastation done in shilluk land by Neur and we tried to put the grievances of our people before Dr Riek Machar who is the chairman of SPLA-IO but he said there are things happening beyond him which he has no control of.

Here he was referring to what are happening in the frontline and in battle fields.

He added like the Dinka, the Neur have dominated rebellious, their common manifesto that they are fighting for the just cause and freedom, and fair liberation is used as a pretext by the Nuer to gain sympathy and empathy from other tribes to join them.

He blamed the leadership of SPLA-IO for not supplying Shilluk men with better weaponry to fight the regime in Juba, and also cited their return to Juba on promotion; everything is dominated by Nuer including promotion.

Based on that, we decided to come and fight for reform from within because we realized there are many solutions to address the current conflict.

Question: What would you do if the regime in Juba fails to implement the agreement you signed with the President Kiir, given that you are now here in Juba without army?

Answer: When we met the President we told him if he will kill us after our return to Juba. The president looked and laughed and he said, he did not massacre anybody he cannot even kill a chicken. We told him our coming back here in Juba is an open door for many to lay down their arms.

If the President and his government refuse to implement the agreement we have signed with him, this will close doors for many others to refrain from rebellion and armed conflict will continue.

And if he fails to honor his commitment to the parts, we have other means to fight for the right of Shilluk land, and our return to Juba has been negotiated by General Johnson Olony.

Let’s hope for the sake of peace President Kiir will live by his words, but if anything happened to us, we have our men ready even here in Juba to launch an attack, but it is our hope that we learn how to address our issues on the table as brothers of this nation as we all fought for our hard earned independence from Khartoum with our dear blood.

Question: What would happen to the forces under your direct authority?
Answer: We want to create an autonomous-like Great Pibor to address the grievances of our people. We are not fighting for anything but we want our presentation in the national government. We want the current governor Simon Kun to be removed and be replaced by Shilluk and the president has agreed.

The difficulty is we understand the current governor is giving 2% from the oil revenue from Upper Nile to maintain the president that is why the President cannot easily relieved him from duty.

We found it hard to believe that a serving president has to be bribed to do his work. If that is what the constitution requires of the sitting governor of Upper Nile to pay due fees of 2% from the revenue of the state to the president, then it is worth for a Shilluk governor to do that in Shilluk land not a Nuer governor.

“It is ok if we can have a Shiluk governor in the office not Dinka or Nuer governor to give the president the 2%” because Malakal is traditionally inhabited by Shilluk not Dinka or Nuer.

Please note that this interview has taken place before the recent claimed of victory by the united forces of Johnson Olony and SPLA-IO, over government forces in Malakal, therefore some of the information could have changed on the ground.

Simon Kur Peter

Kiir Government is Tribal Government serving Dinka interest in Chollo Kingdom

By: Michael Kalakon, MAY/15/2015, SSN;

Land dispute is killing people in Chollo Kingdom. All records show that Salva Kiir regime is a tribal government just for the interest of his tribe. Reference to Niavasha peace agreement chapter II, article five (5) concerning land ownership, it says very clearly that community land shall include all lands traditionally and historically held or used by local communities or their members; they shall be defined, held, managed and protected by law.

Now when we come and look into the situation in Upper Nile State, Dinka are claiming land traditionally and historically held or belonging to Chollo people Community.

And Kiir regime did arm Dinka civilians to empower them against their neighbours, the Shilluk under the pretext to protect the oil pipelines as if there is no national army in the country, and yet the Shilluk tribe didn’t fail to understand the Dinka and their government’s plan.

When these oil pipelines were under imminent threat, Dinka militia didn’t fight to protect the oil pipelines.

Instead, Chollo youth under General Johnson Olony were the force that liberated all Upper Nile region up to Wat Akon!!

And immediately after liberation of Wat-Akon county, General Johnson Olony’s vehicle came under heavy attack in Renk town, the attack was planned by the government of the county and no serious investigation done by the government of Juba.

Again, when General Johnson Olony arrived in Makal, another deadly plan was made by the state government in cooperation with Dinka militia in Makal town against General Johnson Olony and his fourteen officers were killed including his deputy, Major General James Bwogo!!

That took place in north of the town of makal. Kiir regime in Juba didn’t take any serious investigation to bring the criminals before the court of law, this negligence made it very clear that the government in Juba was behind all these incidents.

When General Johnson Olony reacted, all SPLA Dinka and Dinka militia including Mathiang Anyor which is Salva Kiir’s own specially trained militia that he used to kill Nuer in Juba, were sent to Chollo land supported with 45 tanks and many heavy artillery to fight the Chollo youth under general Johnson Olony who are defending Chollo land against land grabbers.

Not only that, but president Salva Kiir himself unlawfully grabbed Chollo land and gave it to his Dinka, that was Pigo area, the land of Adhiethiang which, he, Kiir. gave to Padang Dinka.

Now the big question is this: is Chollo Community part of South Sudn or is it enjoying the supposed independent nation of South Sudan?

Or has the Chollo kingdom actually switched from a bad Arab colonial rule to a clearly worst Dinka colonial domination?

Today in the Chollo land, Dinka militias supported by Salva Kiir in Juba are doing worse than the Arabs in the history of the Chollo Kingdom, that kind of practice never was done by Arab Northerners in chollo kingdom in the history of the old Sudan.

The lands that we’re talking about today were held by Chollo kingdom before 1545, by then there were no Dinka around in those areas. However the only tribe that was neighbour to the Chollo was Anyuak tribe.

Supposedly the Dinka started moving into the land at about 1905 according to the available records of the area. Until 1937 there were no Dinka inhabitants in Makal town, according to The Rev. J. A. Heasty’s reference book, “The American Mission, Dolieb Hill, The Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. 1937.”

So even, if we can ignore the above-mentioned records and just take it from Sudan’s independence time in 1956, nothing could have brought the Dinka into Chollo land if it wasn’t for president Salva Kiir, the one person now creating and exacerbating the problems between the communities.

Indisputably, the Boundaries are very clear and they are strongly in favor of Chollo community.

Dinka Apadang made three (3) attempts to claim Chollo lands but both three attempts came out in favor of Shilluk communities, two of those attempts were during South Sudan regional government, 1980 and 1982.

Committees were sent to the area to look into the disputed land, the outcome of the finding was in favour of Chollo Community.

Another attempt was in November 2004 during visionary leader and SPLA/M head, Dr. John Garang de Mabior, who just ignored Padang Dinka claims because it was an obvious case and it was a nonsensical claim from Dinka Padang, knowing that land belonged to Shilluk community.

Now when the ignorant President Kiir took over, the case came up more deadly again, the tribal President backed up his tribe using state power to fight the Chollo for the benefit of Padang Dinka tribe.

Finally, we know very clearly that in this country, South Sudan, you can not differentiate between the Dinka as a tribe and the Kiir-led government nor between the national army, the SPLA and Dinka Militias.

This is because the SPLA is basically conceived as purely a Dinka militia and just likewise, the Dinka militia is the SPLA.

But will the Chollo (Shilluk) allow Dinka to take over by arms their land in their watch because president Salva Kiir’s regime is supporting his own Dinka?

This question absolutely remains for the Chollo Community to promptly respond to it.

The author is a concerned Chollo.
His is living in Diaspora (USA) and can be reached at: okalakon14@gmail.com