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South Sudan Addis Talks: Why Peace accord is likely or unlikely to be signed?

By: Peter Gai Manyuon, Journalist, MAY/17/2018, SSN;

As a fact, the 2013 crisis of South Sudan was caused by suspicion of the unknown among the so-called SPLM leaders. The ongoing peace talks or side meetings in Ethiopia’s Capital, Addis-Ababa, might not bring a genuine peace and stability in South Sudan unless otherwise President Trump of United States goes to Addis Ababa in person to witness what is currently going on among the SPLM factions or serious measures are taken by the world.

So far, the SPLM factions are only looking for what accommodates them not what benefits the common citizens in the Country.

On the same note, the issue of setting up the hybrid court is not in the interest of the SPLM factions mainly, SPLM in government and SPLM in opposition, since all these groups or factions committed crimes against humanity in one way or the other.

What’s likely, the two rivals are looking for the forming of a government where they’d together continue looting the country’s resources like what they did since 2005-2018.

According to their supporter’s comments on various social media platforms, any agreement that doesn’t recognize Salva Kiir Mayardit and Dr Riek Machar is not an agreement.

The two factions of the SPLMs (SPLM in government and SPLM in Opposition) are confusing their supporters day by day.

Another issue could be their families’ resources that might be frozen and the restriction of their travels in different parts of the world in case the two main parties to this crisis don’t agree on the peaceful resolution of the four years crisis.

Furthermore, the issue of two posts (First Vice President, Vice President) if not handled well in the peace talks will lead to the collapse of these talks in Addis. Only if the two groups compromise on the two positions then peace will be signed automatically.

Kiir and his group, on the one hand, wanted to be in top leadership of the Country in order to sabotage any accountability on their part.

Likewise, Dr Machar also wanted to be in the top leadership in order to protect himself using the little resources he might get in the process of running the government of National Unity along with Kiir.

In fact, these two leaders of the SPLM’s main factions wanted to work together again, however, it’s only their supporters and the G10 or G6 that wanted the government without the two, which is impossible at the moment.

The two leaders (Kiir and Machar) will be forced to work together by the issue of accountability since the two don’t want any process of accountability which might impede their participation in the coming elections.

Importantly, Kiir himself is under serious threat from the world regarding the setting up of a hybrid court and as well, Dr. Machar is partially in support while in fact, he doesn’t want any accountability himself since they both view the accountability process as a threat to their ambitions of contesting any future elections in the Country.

They don’t know organizing elections will come after the full agreement and from there, the world will decide to engage the two to account for what transpired since 2013-2018 or more.

The issue of elections should be left to the citizens of South Sudan but currently, the two leaders are soon facing serious isolation from the world and regional leaders, if they are not careful.

Evidently, the two are having serious threats from Trump administration and therefore, their only focus at the moment is how to tackle this issue of peace initiative and thereafter; they will do away with accountability or any threat regarding their positions.

Therefore, those are the issues that might affect and impede any progress in Ethiopia or bring peace in the Country in one way or the other.

Partly, President Kiir doesn’t want any negotiation since he believes on Uganda’s President Museveni’s support while on the other hand, the opposition of Dr. Machar only believes on the United States President Trump’s recent comments toward the government of Kiir in Juba and nothing else.

However, the two groups are believing in lies and unknown support, what they don’t know is that the United States doesn’t want anyone from the so-called SPLM to lead the Country.

But since the entire population of the Country is severely divided themselves mainly between the two rivals (Kiir and Machar), these two protagonists will be compiled to sign any peace whether shaky or genuine.

Thereafter, hopefully, some serious measures should and must be taken against the duo by the world.

Obviously, what is prolonging the crisis in South Sudan is the fact that the International community hasn’t identified the right choice of the candidate who could unite the Country.

All groups of the SPLM that have divided into the SPLM-IG, SPLM-IO, SPLM-FDs and the other stranded briefcase parties, have the same vision and philosophy of only looting national resources.

All lack focus and direction politically and each one of them for himself or herself and currently 80% of them are criminals blacklisted for crimes related to corruption in South Sudan.

In addition, the regional body conducting the peace talks is only interested in prolonging the conflict in South Sudan as a business to make money.

Unquestionably, leaders in South Sudan lack political ideologies and only focus on divisive politics characterized by hooliganism, desperation, primitiveness and worship of idols.

Similarly, these SPLM/A fragments, whilst not only confusing, dividing and killing the citizens, they sadly have the same goal of self-enrichment by looting the nation’s resources.

All of them are vision-less, only interested in what benefits them not the Country or it’s suffering people.

In conclusion, the International Community must impose time limitation on these talks and have an agreement reached sooner.

Furthermore, the world must question the top leaders of all these parties to account for the war crimes committed, crimes against humanity and cases related to corruption in the Country.

There must be seriousness on accountability on the part of these goons of the SPLM/A into an agreement so that a lasting peace returns to the Country and younger leaders take over.

Peter Gai Manyuon, is an author, Independent Journalist, and Columnist who has written extensively on Human Rights and Democracy in South Sudan He can be reached at southsudanjournalist@gmail.com or www.independentjournalistpgm.wordpress.com
Peter Gai Manyuon |

Why seeking an alliance when Machar’s SPLM/A-IO is well armed, big and self-sufficient, Mr. Faruok?

FROM: Deng Vanang, Spokesperson of FDP/SSAF, Nairobi, MAY/15/2018, SSN;

In his interview with one Edward Andrew Ashiek on a live video link from abroad and later published on Nyamilepedia website, Honorable Faruok Gatkuoth was so emotionally charged as he mouthed out venomous tirades around which are full of ironies against the personality of Honorable Changson Chang, Chairman and Commander-in-chief of FDP/SSAF.

According to him, he fingered Hon. Changson as one having no soldiers on the ground among several opposition groups he and others termed as opportunistic briefcase parties to lead opposition alliance.

While continuously insinuating that somebody you welcomed into your house {SPLM/A-IO], could not end up taking over your own house, in reference to Changson whom Machar previously accused of trying to snatch leadership of SPLM/A-IO, while he recently came to join the latter’s own movement.

To set the otherwise deliberately distorted records straight, first of all SPLM/A-IO he, Faruok, termed as Riek Machar’s personal movement supposed to have different name since its membership is drawn from the Nuer people and other ethnic nationalities fleeing indiscriminate mass killings and originally from different political parties before conflict erupted on December, 15th, 2013.

It is the same political usurpation by a handful individuals pursuing self-interest that SPLM/A-IO assumed such a weird name not consistent with realpolitik playing out on the ground.

Secondly, alliances are not forced on those with whom one wants to ally. They are mutual agreements parties to them reached in their common interests.

Thirdly, one doesn’t need to align with anyone he deems useless if he feels sufficient enough.
There must always something lacking to be complemented by somebody one wants to work together with.

And fourthly, when an alliance is already formed and there are others interested to join in, the incoming members must accept already laid down basic rules and regulations.

Once accepted, they are allowed in and be ready to join leadership queue until their different turns come to lead the alliance either via popular consensus or competitive election.

Flaunting being politically big with gallant army to boot that failed to solve the problem chronically facing people, is an act of bullying bereft of an iota of common sense at far with intellectual argument.

Because it is unfortunate for one in person of Riek Machar to give condition that he should join an alliance if only given the leadership of an institution that is already formed by others.

A line which Machar cited against Changson while still in the SPLM/A-IO, but now he, Machar, wants not to be applied in his case to join South Sudan Opposition Alliance, SSOA.

Hence, from where does Dr. Riek Machar get such a natural entitlement and why should he always be the one to lead others?

Over to you big brother Faruok to answer.

Deng Vanang
Secretary for Information, Public Relations and Spokesperson for Federal Democratic Party/South Sudan Armed Forces, FDP/SSAF. He is cordially reachable at: dvanang@gmail.com

Is the SPLM/A 16th/May/1983 still a celebratory day in South Sudan?

BY: Bol Khan, SOUTH SUDAN, MAY/15/2018, SSN;

Should the South Sudanese people continue celebrating the official date of SPLM/A foundation on 16th May of 1983 every year, even after the independence of South Sudan? I repeatedly, on some few occasions, put this question to several South Sudanese citizens since May 2011.

Of course, there were both YES and NO groups of people from those that I asked. However, the vindications and answers the YES group would give me were in some ways ambiguous and contradictory.

They would tell me that 16th May was SPLM/A’s inception day; some say it was the day the SPLM/A’s Founder, Dr. John Garang de Mabior, rebelled against Khartoum, some would say it was the day Keribino Kuanyin, William Nyuon and others mutinied in Ayod, others would say NO, 16th May was the day on which Southern Sudanese people shot the first bullet in a fight for total independence of South Sudan from Khartoum’s successive regimes …etc.

Hence, they all believed that 16th May was a national day which people in South Sudan should celebrate every year, even after independence.

Now, it has been exactly seven (7) years down the line —after South Sudan’s independence, 2011. Therefore, today, I would like to bring up a similar question as I did in 2011: Is 16th May still a celebratory day in South Sudan?

Our recent past observations evinced that majority of South Sudanese citizens, including the SPLM/A members have developed a very huge apathy towards 16th May, that’s it’s less important after South Sudan got its independence from Sudan.

Since then, the expected turnout of ordinary people was increasingly becoming low right from 2012-2016. In May 2017, the day was entirely not celebrated/commemorated at all and as this one of 2018.

This tremendous disinterest developed by the people towards 16th May remembrance day did not come out of the blue. Below are varieties of moral and legal reasons identified to be the main causes:

First, after South Sudan’s independence in 2011, the name “Sudan People Liberation Movement” (SPLM/A) morally and lawfully appeared outdated — it bears the name of another country (Sudan).

Therefore, the Transitional Constitution of Republic of South Sudan talked of both military and political transformation and reform of the Sudan People Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A).

Now, there in the constitution, the ‘Sudan People Liberation Army’ (SPLA) was changed to be ‘South Sudan Armed Forces’ (SSAF). And the SPLM political wing was set to change its name in 2013 National Convention that turned into the 2013 National Carnage.

Again, President Salva Kiir Mayardit, on 16th May 2017, restructured the army and changed the “Sudan People Liberation Army (SPLA)—to South Sudan Defense Force (SSDF). All these were legal and constitutional names transformation South Sudan should have used (instead of SPLA) since 9th July 2011 and 16th May 2017 respectively.

Why, because anything enshrined in supreme law of the land or announced by the President in the name of the nation needs to be implemented as long as it is the populace aspiration.

The current SPLM/A’s factionalism are: (1) SPLM/A-N (which is the real SPLM/A without mentioning North Sudan), (2) SPLM/A-IG, (3) SPLM/A-IO and (4) SPLM-FD. Among all these factions, the only faction which took the lead in transforming itself and erasing the name was the SPLM-DC of Dr. Lam Akol.

Perhaps, the SPLM-IO of Dr. Riek Machar was going to change its name in Juba, either in late 2016 or early 2017 (but failed). SPLM/A is plainly extraneous in the Republic of South Sudan.

Secondly, given the past and current events, South Sudanese people have realized that the SPLM/A is a flagrant, hooliganistic and predatory movement which only feigned a war for dictatorship and global terrorism in the name of freedom and democracy.

Historically, the SPLM/A’s ideology is full of hatred, antagonism, blood & loss of lives which are always caused by the ambiguity of its visions and missions!

For instance, going back to those deadly splits that occurred among separatists and unionists in 1983, 1991 and again in 2013, all those events could describe the SPLM/A’s principles in details.

The people of South Sudan are now with such a great dislike of not only seeing the SPLM/A (with all its factions) as ruling party gone but also want to depose its existence in the Republic of South Sudan.

Thirdly, the war and struggle for Independence of South Sudan wasn’t started first on 16th May 1983. The SPLM/A was taking on the same objective which the already existent Southern Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SSLM/A—Anyanya 1 & 2) of those of nationalists Gai Tut and Akot Atem were fighting for.

Sadly, it was SPLM/A founder, Dr. John Garang and current president Salva Kiir Mayardit who colluded and killed these true nationalists in Bilpham, Ethiopia, the name ironically given to the SPLA Headquarters in Juba.

History is a higher mountain of facts!!

Conclusion:

The South Sudanese people from all walks of life have lost appetite and moral support (not interested any more) to continue celebrating the 16th May 1983 after the independence of South Sudan.

The nation now looks up to the day it will officially integrate the 16th May celebrations into the real day. What is the real day which the nation supposes to be celebrated yearly?

That is your delicious food for thought! So, 16th May 1983 is not a celebratory and popular day in South Sudan.

The author is a South Sudanese freelance Writer. He can be reached for comments on khanrom8@gmail.com

Taban Deng, Kiir’s vice president, formally rejoins SPLM ruling party: LATEST

By AFP, Today, MAY, 07/2018, SSN,

In Summary:
In the years since millions have been uprooted, triggering a regional refugee crisis, and millions more have been pushed to the brink of starvation, while tens of thousands have been killed, mostly civilians;

South Sudan’s vice president, former rebel Taban Deng Gai, on Monday formally folded his party into the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) of President Salva Kiir.

The move is aimed at bolstering the legitimacy of Kiir’s regime and undermining rebel leader Riek Machar, to whom Deng was formerly allied.

Deng split from Machar following heavy fighting in the capital Juba in 2016 and, siding with Kiir, took his former boss’s job and is seeking to strengthen his position in the government.

In a confusing move, both Deng in Juba and Machar, under house arrest in South Africa, continued to call their respective factions SPLM-IO (In Opposition) despite now being on opposing sides in the four-year-old conflict.

On Monday, Deng insisted he was implementing a political resolution to the conflict by officially rejoining the ruling party.

“Reunification of SPLM will give more power, more spirit, and more energy to the party to strive on the areas of making peace a lasting resort,” Deng told journalists.

The world’s youngest nation which achieved independence from Sudan in 2011, South Sudan descended into civil war in late 2013 when Kiir accused Machar of plotting a coup.

In the years since millions have been uprooted, triggering a regional refugee crisis, and millions more have been pushed to the brink of starvation, while tens of thousands have been killed, mostly civilians.

While originally siding with Machar, his fellow Nuer tribesman, Deng switched sides ostensibly to help bring peace, but fighting has continued since, and talks have faltered.

“The new rejuvenated SPLM will be fighting tribalism. We reconcile the communities, we stop child abduction, cattle rustling. We will continue with the disarmament of the civilians so that people are secure,” Deng vowed Monday. END

To Prof. Andrew Akon, Pres. Kiir’s doctor: Kiir a Disgrace and Sexual Abuser!!!

MAY/02/2018, SSN

Dear Professor Andrew Akon,
Head of Presidential Medical Unit, Consultant Gastroenterologist,
and Presidential Adviser, JUBA, South Sudan;

I’ve read your letter dated 30/04/2018, to the public trying to cover up the truth about the health status of President Salva Kiir.

I pity you because you’re not only writing in emotions but because you’re ignorant and blind with the bloody money you’re sucking at J1 (Presidential Palace, Juba).

You, as a trained physician and with the advances in the medical technology, I want to challenge you to take blood sample from President Kiir and blood samples from some few children of his personal guards and to expose who’s the actual parent of these children.

Do you think these tests results will not reveal that President Kiir is the biological father of more than 50% of these children?

Do you think it’s still a secret that President Kiir on many occasions sexually abused the wives of his personal guards?

Do you think it’s still a secret that President Kiir has turned J1 into a cross-sexual center?

Do you think it’s a secret that on many occasions the presidential guards have retaliated and taken revenge (sexually) in their anger on Mama Ayen, the First Lady?

Do you think it’s still a secret that president Kiir knew that Dr. Makur Koriam is the boyfriend of his wife and First lady and he, Kiir’s not able to take action?

Do you think it’s still a secret that President Kiir has on many occasions raped innocent young girls in both his office and at J1?

Do you think it’s still a secret that President Kiir has disgraced the church and sexually abused many choir girls in return for the public money he gives them?

Do you think it’s still a secret that on many occasions President Kiir has slept with many young girls in return for his approval to them of dollars?

Do you think it’s a secret that president Kiir has on many occasions slept and sexually abused his women ministers, namely Awut Deng, Jemma Nunu and Nadia Arop?

Do you think it’s still a secret that president Kiir slept with the wife of Mr. Mayen Wol, the current Undersecretary in the ministry of Petroleum?

Is it not the wife of the same Mr. Mayen Wol who has threatened president Kiir of going to the media about this sexual affair and using it as a trump card to force president Kiir to unconditionally release Mr. Mayen whom he’d jailed for allegedly stealing millions of dollars, and has now as a result made him an Undersecretary in the ministry?

Which president Kiir are you defending, you, Professor Akon, and with all the above facts, do you still want to say that president Kiir is sound and busy with the HLRF (High Level Revitalization Forum of IGAD) and the National Dialogue?

The fact remains, President Kiir is unfit and has caused more damage to the Country than any other person else. He’s a disgrace to not only his family or the Dinkas (his dominant tribes-people), but to the nation as a whole.

The people of South Sudan need Truth and Justice. I need justice for all South Sudanese and the people abused at J1.

BY: Dr. Mawien Akot, (now living in) CANADA

EDITOR’S ADDITIONAL NOTES:…………………………….

THAT THIS Professor Andrew Akon Akech, M.D, who’s head of Presidential Medical Unit in Juba, a Consultant Gastroentrologist and Presidential Adviser, in a letter:

  • Ref.RSS/OP/PMU/L1/04/18, titled: DR. MAWIEN AKOT’S IN THE CYBER SPACE,
  • was responding to Dr. Mawein Akot’s comments on the alleged deterioration of President Kiir’s health and mental capacity in a video tape posted online on April 29, 2018, and he declared that “Dr. Mawien Akot was never a physician nor has ever been associated with the healthcare of the president.”

    Prof. Andrew Akon Akech further stated that, “Records at the PMU (Presidential Medical Unit) are unequivocal: Dr. Mawien Akot has never been a full time or part-time employee of the department. It’s thus inconceivable that a practitioner in his sound mind and senses should claim having knowledge on the medical condition of a “patient” he’s never seen nor examined.

    “Dr. Mawien’s derogatory remarks could be perceived as a cabal whose intention is to gratuitously muckrake an individual or institution.”

    Dr. Mawien Akot, who said he is working as a consultant physician at the presidential medical unit said during a Facebook Live video from Canada, where he is now residing in, had declared that, “The president is not in his mental capacity, and he is not in his physical capacity to rule the country,” Mr Mawien said of President Kiir on Friday.

    “In the next one month or two months, I might be going back to Juba. I will go to my position as a consultant physician, and what I say I am the one responsible for it. Even if they will kill me, I know I will die for my country,” he said.

    “I am a Canadian trained physician. I cannot disclose the real information about somebody whether he is in sound mind or not. But what I can tell you is that the leadership in South Sudan in the next six months, you will hear a lot of things happening, without mentioning names,” he added.

    President Kiir’s spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny said in a statement to Radio Tamazuj earlier that the country’s president is in good health, pointing out that Dr Mawien was telling lies from Canada.

    “The President is fit and healthy to continue to lead this nation to normalcy, the elections and beyond,” Ateny said.

    The presidential spokesman said Mawien Akot has never attended to President Kiir’s health, pointing out that Mawien was not part of the presidential health unit. Ateny said Dr. Mawien was working only at Juba Teaching Hospital.

    IGAD and the question of impartiality on South Sudan

    By: Duop Chak Wuol, South Sudan, APR/29/2018, SSN;

    One of the main reasons the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) was formed was to maintain peace in the East African region. In its mission statement, the bloc claims that it is the premier alliance for preserving peace in the region. This is an attempt to show why IGAD has not been neutral in its quest for peace in South Sudan.

    There are irrefutable problems with IGAD being the lead player in South Sudan’s peace talks. The East African regional bloc began its search for a peaceful solution in 2014 as a capable agency.

    For instance, in January 2014, IGAD brokered the first ceasefire agreement between South Sudan’s warring factions.

    The pact was praised both locally and internationally. However, the supposedly peace-loving regional entity suddenly resorted to trying to sell Kiir’s tyranny to the people of South Sudan by imposing the August 2015 power-sharing deal and passing questionable resolutions.

    IGAD’s protect-IGAD-head-of-states policy has enabled Kiir to commit more atrocities.

    In any armed conflict, a lasting peace can only be achieved with the involvement of an unbiased mediator, and only when the root causes of such a conflict are properly addressed and the rival sides compromised reasonably.

    It is good to remind people that Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni proclaimed two weeks after the war broke out in Juba that the entire East African region gave South Sudanese rebel leader, Dr. Riek Machar, four days to accept a ceasefire offer or face a collective military action from IGAD’s member states.

    In addition, the Ugandan leader claimed that a deal to punish Machar was agreed upon by IGAD’s leaders in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi. Museveni was in Juba when he announced such a demanding warning to Machar.

    Museveni’s assertion was never echoed by any other East African leaders.

    It would be unnecessary for me to speak of Museveni’s support of Salva Kiir’s tyrannical regime since millions of South Sudanese were already aware of it before fighting erupted in Juba.

    Museveni is a documented co-founder of South Sudan’s civil war. IGAD failed to uphold its mandates as a regional player and instead empowered Kiir to keep obstructing the peace and waging his brutal campaign against the people of South Sudan.

    The 2015 agreement was not a plausible pact because the bloc forgot the fact that Kiir was prepared to hinder its peace implementation.

    There are reasons to believe that the bloc has not been impartial in its search for peace in South Sudan.

    In the 2015 deal, IGAD placed too much emphasis on assigning ministerial percentages to factions of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) and other political parties, and little attention to peace execution.

    The bloc gave Kiir’s faction 53 percent, whereas 33 percent were allocated to Machar’s group and 14 percent to Former Detainees (FDs) and other parties.

    One of IGAD’s blunders is that when it assigned ministerial positions to all four main groups, it thought the establishment of the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) would succeed and that the agreement would be fully implemented.

    The power-sharing deal also stipulated that Juba must be demilitarized and it called for an external force to take over security in the capital.

    There was also a need to monitor locations and movements of rebel and government forces. IGAD was fully tasked with enforcing and verifying many mandates needed for peace to succeed.

    Nonetheless, the regional bloc failed to enforce its own rules. Because of IGAD’s inaction, Juba was not demilitarized: government troops were simply re-positioned into different strategic areas in the capital, and there was no third-party force running the security in Juba.

    Besides, when Kiir attempted to assassinate Machar in July 2016, IGAD was disgracefully silent.

    As noted above, IGAD’s pro-Kiir position is real. In July 2017, the bloc shocked the people of South Sudan when it declared that it will not allow the South Sudanese rebel leader to participate in the peace revitalization talks.

    The reaction against its decision was loud and clear. The people of South Sudan were furious.

    After South Sudanese questioned the motive behind its decision, IGAD then turned around and claimed that Riek Machar’s ideas would be incorporated into the negotiations and suggested that the rebel leader send his representatives to the revitalization forum.

    Most of IGAD’s actions are not those of a neutral mediator. The bloc acts as if it has been infiltrated by Juba’s regime. Any unconscionable person would argue that IGAD’s position on South Sudan’s conflict has been questionable.

    One would argue that trusting the bloc is like trusting a cunning tyrant who tries to convince his people that his ruthlessness mysteriously evaporated into thin air overnight and that they should trust him.

    I know for a fact that not all IGAD leaders want to prevent Machar anymore from participating in South Sudan’s politics.

    The people of South Sudan know Uganda and Kenya either colluded with Kiir or at least represented his interests in the bloc. Other East African nations should tell Kampala and Nairobi that IGAD is not Kenyan or Ugandan — it is East African — and that ending the suffering of the people of South Sudan outweighs their self-interests.

    Is IGAD really an entity for maintaining peace in the East African region as it claims in its mission statement, or a bloc merely meant to protect the leaders of IGAD’s countries?

    Does IGAD conspire with Juba to prevent Machar from participating in South Sudan’s politics?

    Is South Sudan’s oil money being used to bribe some members of IGAD?

    Is there any external power influencing the bloc’s decision on South Sudan? Can the people of South Sudan still trust IGAD?

    IGAD’s actions on South Sudan’s peace negotiations speak for themselves. The bloc has simply become a useful tool for Salva Kiir. Kiir uses IGAD’s anti-SPLM-IO resolutions to impede the revitalization of peace.

    South Sudan’s peace can only be achieved if parties to the conflict compromise fairly and their concerns are addressed in a way that is acceptable to both sides.

    Millions of South Sudanese were stunned when they saw the rather dubious communiqué IGAD issued on March 26, proclaiming that it is ready to lift Riek Machar’s house arrest in South Africa and that it will relocate the rebel leader to a country outside the East African region.

    The decision was not only baseless; it was a clear glorification of Kiir’s atrocities. The statement was clearly a resolution to protect Kiir’s regime. It baffles me that IGAD passed such a communiqué when the people of South Sudan have been patiently waiting for more than four years hoping that the bloc would find a reasonable solution to resolve the young nation’s crisis.

    If there are entities that hinder the revitalization of the 2015 compromise deal, then IGAD likely qualifies to be in the cluster of organizations standing in the way of peace.

    Most of IGAD’s peace proposals have been conducted in secret consultations with Juba’s regime. The bloc is no longer impartial and has proven itself to be an agent for Juba’s atrocious regime.

    IGAD’s confinement of Machar is a colossal mistake. His house arrest did not stop the war — in fact, it only intensified the conflict.

    If IGAD believes it is working for a real peace in the young nation, it must utterly release Machar. Relocating the rebel leader from South Africa to a different country should not be called a release: it is merely a change of location of the same arrest.

    If the bloc really wants a lasting peace in South Sudan, it must also ask Kiir and other political leaders to denounce violence. IGAD’s complicity has allowed Kiir to obstruct the implementation of the 2015 deal, kill with impunity, and loot state resources.

    Whether Juba uses plundered oil wealth to bribe several of IGAD’s leaders is another topic. The African Union (AU) and the international community should not allow IGAD to play with the lives of innocent people by crying for peace during the day and colluding with Kiir at night.

    The East African regional bloc — which seems to be suffering from a crisis of credibility — is no longer a reliable body and cannot be trusted to play a leading role in the peace process.

    If IGAD wants to regain its credibility, then it must stop acting as Juba’s agent. Protecting a murderous tyrant is rather reprehensible.

    The author can be reached at duop282@gmail.com.

    Pres. Kiir and Machar must be given a chance so that peace may reign in the country

    By: Apioth Mayom Apioth, USA, APR/29/2018, SSN;

    It has become commonplace knowledge that both Pres. Salva Kiir and rebel leader, Riek Machar, are political liabilities and unfit to steer South Sudan toward a new dawn of a bountiful fortune.

    Salva Kiir’s promiscuous personality would never allow him to stick to any consistent strategic policy formulation.

    After the breakout of the war in December 2013, he allowed himself to be controlled by two hardcore ethnic chauvinists in the name of Paul Malong Awan, the Army Chief of Staff, and the Jieng Council of Elders (JCE), and to a certain extent by a group consisting mostly of former Khartoum politicians, whose political allegiance is questionable at best.

    Paul Malong Awan’s infamous greed for everything is well known. He wants to have more wives than everyone else. He wants to be the wealthiest person in history that ever lived at the expense of the taxpayers.’

    He is rumored to have two mansions in Uganda and Kenya: one in Kampala and another in Nairobi as we speak. On his last SBS Radio’s interview dated April 10th, Ateny Wek Ateny stated that “during his time in office as army Chief of General Staff, banks were opened at night for General Malong to take the money and he squandered a lot of money that time.”

    During the first attempt at peace which ended in Riek’s escaping from Juba in July 2016, Malong was heard to have said that he’d only allow Riek to come to Juba over his dead body.

    Now after stirring up trouble with Kiir, he now sees himself as a harbinger of peace. Paul Malong Awan should never be near at any position of power in South Sudan because he only cares about getting something out of people and leaving them in tatters.

    Salva Kiir is naturally an introvert, meaning he is an inward seeking individual as opposed to extroverts who seek outside challenges for pleasure. That is why he can’t handle criticism very well.

    The widespread security challenges run counter to his natural strength. Even if Salva Kiir stays on in the August House for twenty to thirty years, he’d never have the urge to resolve the security challenges afflicting our nation.

    Riek Machar is only interested in the highest position in the land, and nothing else in the universe will compensate for his thirst to occupy that seat of South Sudan.

    Time again and again, his military’s past grievances tell the whole story. During the 1990’s or the current conflict, whether he was fleeing from a victorious militia group or South Sudan government soldiers, he was always seen fleeing single-handedly, leaving his bodyguards and his people in total danger, just to save his dear life.

    A leader’s first priority must be to see that the security of his/her respective constituents is well taken of before embarking on a newer project.

    This is also the man who opined that Donald Trump had a chance to win the US general presidential elections after he was interviewed by the Foreign Policy magazine sometime in 2016 after the peace deal came into effect.

    How in the name of our Lord, can a South Sudanese presidential aspirant liken a dirty racist White supremacist to occupy the highest seat in the US?

    Donald Trump envisions a world where black Africans are wayward, mere inferior savages and susceptible to be used by white people as their toy-things.

    Riek Machar may have one of the most infectious widest smiles ever, but he has a hidden corrupt part of himself that has eluded us for quite a long time.

    In sub-Saharan Africa, politics is seen as the most legitimate means to propel oneself to a higher-celebrity like figure since there are few other economic prospects to become someone like Oprah Winfrey, Lebron James, Bill Gates and so on and so forth.

    Sub-Saharan Africa’s economic prospects are still poor in that respect. It is the president of the nation that gets to welcome someone like Rihana when she visits for a charity cause or any significant cultural phenomenon.

    And also because, institutions of democracy that protect the common person from corruption are still in their infancy, all sorts of what have individuals flock to the leadership mantle to preach to us about how they will better our prospects from dire poverty.

    Some of these individuals are sheer wretched of the earth and pitiful looters like Paul Malong Awan and others are like Salva Kiir Mayardit and Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon who are what I call the political moths, who just like moths can’t subdue the temptation to jump at the beauty of the light (leadership in this case).

    Salva Kiir and Riek Machar were subdued by the sheer novelty and power of the leadership when in reality they have nothing to offer us.

    Like it or not, Salva Kiir and Riek Machar have an enormous wealth of power and following in the nation.

    Riek Machar has become almost like a cult-figure simply in that he has been at the forefront of South Sudanese politics for over thirty years.

    Even now in his confinement in South Africa, he is still seen as a peerless leader of the opposition.

    During the short-lived and failed attempt at peace by which he was installed as the Vice President in 2016, things were beginning to look rather peaceful.

    Salva Kiir still occupies the most coveted seat that every South Sudanese aspires to. And he has the means to occupy it for twenty or thirty years more to come, even if we may still languish in unspeakable poverty in the diaspora for that long.

    Both Salva Kiir and Riek Machar have an insatiable thirst for power and they will always try one thing or another to come back again and again unless we give them a chance to serve their heart-content for this time around, and that is the only way they may leave us alone for good.

    Kiir says he would only leave the presidency after they snatched the last breath out of his flesh and bones. Riek Machar believes his dream will only be fulfilled after having served as the commander in chief.

    South Sudan may be one of the newest nations on planet earth, but her people have been on the block just like everyone else in sub-Saharan Africa.

    South Sudanese were dwelling in East Africa and all over Africa even when the Europeans were still ruling Africa.

    It is out of place for our innocent citizens to expect any politician to be free from deep-pocketing his/her personal suitcases with public money because they have learned every possible trick of corruption from their East African brethren.

    Earlier this year, an honest and one of the few politicians we all thought to be free from all the ills of corruption and mismanagement of leadership was caught red-handed to have stolen $1.2 million and bought a mansion in Australia. James Hoth Mai, our former general Chief of Staff was the leader who did all that behind our backs.

    We may rush to the sides of our current crop of leaders in celebratory mood, and may even compose songs to highlight their accomplishments, and say that he/she is our son/daughter and our tribesmen, but at the end of the day, he/she may hire a few people, five or ten people to be precise out of tens of thousands.

    His/her first priority and perhaps the only reason why she became a politician in the first place was to loot as much as wealth that he/she can gather during her time in office.

    We tend to be going through the same roller-coaster ride over and over again crying crocodile’s tears for something that we as individual beings in our localities can prevent from ever taking shape in the first place.

    Unknown gunmen are rampant; here you are putting an end to a life of an innocent person and you will cry foul later saying it was caused by a failed leadership of Salva Kiir and Riek Machar.

    Kiir may have failed as a leader, but he wasn’t responsible for ending the life of that sweet citizen of ours.

    In a lawless society like ours, the same incident could be taken up by another heartless individual and that is exactly what happened.

    Our young people are still lured into believing that we can only bring down the leadership of Salva Kiir through the barrel of a gun; one problem with that ideology perhaps lies in our shared brotherhood and sisterhood and attachment to our common motherland called South Sudan; in essence we are the same people, even if we may go by different tribal names.

    It is out of the question and totally unthinkable to fight your brother/sister over a grievance that you can settle through dialogue.

    Another problem is our big grandfather staying next door in the Pearl of Africa who goes by the name of Yoweri Museveni. When Riek tried to take the war to Juba, he was stopped in his tracks by some bloody manna of death that was falling from the sky.

    Our politicians are only in politics to make a living for themselves. In sub-Saharan Africa, politics attracts unspeakable and downtrodden pitiful wretched of the earth individuals who only see the wealth flowing from the Ministry of Finance as if they have seen the fabled biblical heaven itself.

    “The highest result of education is tolerance,” says Helen Keller. South Sudanese have been through three different separate wars: the first Sudanese civil war from 1955 to 1972; the second Sudanese civil war from 1983 – 2005; and the current South Sudanese malaise which started in 2013.

    In totality, we have suffered for a total of 42 years and counting. Every time a war breaks out, South Sudanese flee to different lands and we all witnessed first hand the sad living conditions in those countries.

    When an Azande youth says he wishes Awado was one of their own. He meant it would have been great if Awado, who is a Bari by affiliation, was an Azande. Our young people still do not know how to tolerate the people different from their own ethnic group.

    They may be in their twenties, but they still possess the thinking of those of our grandparents. That is why illiteracy rate still stands at 73%. While the war was fought on land in South Sudan, it was also transferred to social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

    No matter how great the social media may be in connecting people from distant lands at the same time, it is one crazy battlefield that possesses the worst arena to opine one’s views especially when no institution of higher authority could filter its content.

    As one people who have been through many trials and tribulations of life, we should never allow ourselves to be swayed by the greed of our politicians whose utter interests do not align with the interests of our own: which is to live in one peaceful and prosperous South Sudan.

    The reason why 70% of South Sudan population is comprised of youth is that the older generation paid dearly with their blood so we may be a free nation and live in total peace and enjoy all the civil liberties that the freedom can afford us.

    After everything else in the world has failed us and we have run out of places to turn to; the only place we can turn to is home and the only home we have always known is South Sudan.

    And South Sudan is comprised of 64 tribes. We have to stop turning to violence every time our politicians lose their positions because we also have livelihoods to sustain.

    Some 2.5 million South Sudanese perished in the second Sudanese civil war, so perhaps we should take a second look at ourselves this time around and think again whether we deserve this utter and out of this world suffering.

    Apioth Mayom Apioth has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Sciences from the Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA USA. He is an Admission Counselor from the University of North Dakota. He can be reached at: agutkeu@gmail.com.

    Vice-Pres. James Wani Igga cowardly and buffoonish attack on Church Leaders

    From multiple sources, APR/24/2018, SSN;

    The Vice President of the failed government in Juba has accused religious leaders of inciting churchgoers against the government, spreading violence and hate messages dissemination.

    According to James Wani Igga, some preachers insult politicians openly during church services instead of advising them in person. Typical of his shameful cowardice and submissiveness, Igga avoided publicly naming any of the clergy, although it’s well known in the country that his greatest critics have been his own Catholic priests.

    “Some clergymen have resorted to preaching against personalities in this country. They misinforming believers that President Salva Kiir and the government are bad,” he was quoted saying on Sunday.

    He said some of them are misleading their faithfuls and this, he believes, cannot promote peace in the country.

    “You just come and shout on the altar with the motive of misleading the Christians to turn against their government. That is counterproductive and even God will not accept it because it will end in violence,” said Mr Igga.

    In March, 2017, Catholic Archbishop, Paulino Lokudu Loro said the government must choose between peace, unity, reconciliation and justice over rape, killings and arbitrary arrests.

    “Mr President, go into the room [after this gathering] to pray for peace in your country,’’ he said.

    The cleric warned further warned the president, stressing that torture, corruption, raping, arbitrary arrests and tribalism would continue if the latter misused his prayer.

    He admitted that this has prompted some leaders to desert churches. Typical of his well-recognized cowardice, Wani Igga did not, dare to bring forth a name any of these clergymen he accused. It’s well known that whilst both President Salva Kiir and vice Igga are Roman Catholics, they’ve been directly and persistently castigated by their own clergy.

    The Auxiliary Catholic Bishop of Juba, Santo Lako, a critic of both Kiir and Igga, once said, “It is a joke to hear the president of the country calling prayers while at the moment, the soldiers are hunting people across South Sudan,”

    Igga, while addressing the congregation at All Saint Cathedral Church of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan in Juba Sunday, claimed some said some clergymen were orchestrators of violence.

    “Some clergymen have resorted to preaching against personalities in this country. They misinforming believers that President Salva Kiir and the government are bad,” he was quoted saying on Sunday.

    “We should not mix politics with religion, but we are out to be advised honestly,” he added.

    However, even the the bishop of the Episcopal Church of Wau Diocese, Moses Deng, in June 2014, explained in the diocesan newsletter that “the country is ruled by former rebel generals from the president to state governors down to the county commissioners.”

    “The church has been playing a great role in peace and reconciliation. Had it not been for the church, South Sudan would not be where it is today, but could have been worse than Somalia,” Bishop Deng said.

    Igga was speaking during the enthronement of the Primate of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan at the All Saints Cathedral in Juba on Sunday.

    Archbishop Justin Badi Arama, a former ECS Bishop for Maridi archdiocese, was elected in January this year.

    He succeeds Daniel Deng Bul who retired in January months after the split of the church from the Sudan.

    To Pres. Trump & US Congress: South Sudan Crisis Must Stop

    FROM: Dr. George P. Imurro & Peter G. Kuel, Political Activists, APR/16/2018, SSN;

    Dear, Pres. Donald Trump and the US Congress:

    We, the undersigned representatives of South Sudanese activists’ civil society organizations in the United States, are writing to express our deepest appreciation for the direction you have taken about the crisis in South Sudan since you took office.

    We, the South Sudanese American in US, thank you for your leadership for trying to bring to an end the suffering of people in South Sudan who are anguishing under their corrupt leaders.

    The arm embargo, the sanctioned of some corrupt leaders and your administrations’ continue to support the ongoing peace effort in Addis Ababa, as well as the unwavering humanitarian aids to the displaced people in South Sudan have shown how much you as a person and the American citizens empathies and compassions for the humanity and thank you!

    Indeed, we are concerned for the ongoing crisis in South Sudan and appealed to your administration to use its ultimate power as one of the world leaders with a special role to play in global politics to take strong measures and thrust South Sudan regime in order to implement possible solutions and halt the immense suffering of the people of South Sudanese.

    Salva Kiir and Taban Deng Gai will never do anything to stop the killings if nothing touches them.

    To date, it has been over 4th years since the conflict was unleashed on the South Sudanese people upon declaring a false coup by President Salva Kiir Mayardit on December 15, 2013 in Juba, South Sudan.

    During this horrific conflict, the previous US Administration did not do much; consequentially, the regime’s perpetrators unrelenting with their violence and placements did not come to an end.

    The regime in Juba had been enjoyed the absence of a decisive leadership from Washington DC, and that’s why the regime had never held on an agreement since no one made it accountable for the violations. The killing of innocent civilians have kept on the rise.

    In the absence of serious, credible and dependable actions from the international community, especially the United States during the last administration, hundreds of thousands of innocent South Sudanese have been killed; more than 4 million people displaced with about 2 million internally displaced and sought refuge in neighboring countries assisted by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

    The US taxpayers spent billions of dollars to save the lives of the displaced persons in South Sudan while the regime, other the other hand, with help from Uganda and few other countries, was spending the Oil Revenue on weaponry to continue killing of its own people.

    The South Sudanese internally displaced persons are living in dire conditions in UNMISS camps in Juba and around the country, while president Salva Kiir continued to receive financial support from other countries in the region and internationally.

    By far, the last ambiguity of U.S. policy toward South Sudan has created an environment where the regional bloc – Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD) started behaving dishonestly in bringing to an end the war.

    Such ambiguity gives Salva Kiir’s regime undeterred leverage to inflict humanitarian sufferings and amass an unprecedented power to pursue an ethnic cleansing policy in all the three regions of the country.

    There is no doubt that this war will continue to intensify if the United States Government does not take a decisive leadership role to end the war in South Sudan.

    However and historically, it was the United States that made it possible for South Sudanese people to achieve their hard-earned freedom of statehood. Notably, it was during the Bush Administration that a bipartisan coalition of members of Congress known as the “Sudan Caucus” was enacted.

    Those members of Congress, American Christians and Bush Administration worked very hard to ensure South Sudanese get the recognition they deserved from Sudan.

    In 2005, a Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) was signed because of their hard work leading to 2011, where South Sudanese got their Independence from Sudan.

    The South Sudanese American Activists and communities at large will rally today, April 16, 2018 in Washington DC, appealing to your administration Mr. President Donald Trump and The Congress to take the leading role and stop the war in South Sudan.

    You have to bring President Salva kiir to face International Criminal Court for the human rights crimes such as:

    • The genocide of Nuer civilians, women and children on December 15, 2013;
    • The Massacre of Nuer civilians at the UN camps in Jonglei State on April
    17, 2014
    • The Massacre on Shilluk and Nuer civilians in the UN camps in Malakal-Upper
    Nile state on February 18, 2015,
    • The Massacre of Western Bhar Ghazal people in Wau starting from June 24,
    2016,
    • The targeting and continuing ethnic killing of Equatorian people,
    • The rape and displacement of Nuer civilians in Bentiu,
    • The case of “Unknown Gun Men” terrorizing citizens in Juba including
    activists, foreigners, and Journalists.

    We, therefore, recommend that the US enacts the following measures:

    • Declare Salva Kiir illegitimate president for his role in the genocide of ethnic Nuer, Chollo, Equatorians, and Western Bhar Gazal’s Fertits in Juba and in other states,
    • Ensure justice and accountability for the gross violations of human rights committed by Salva Kiir’s regime in order to end the culture of impunity in South Sudan.
    • Impose targeted sanctions on the regime in South Sudan—including freezing all assets, and the Oil Company, Nile Pet and arms embargo.
    • Assist the International Community to provide Humanitarian Assistance (health, education, food and shelter) to the war-affected areas in South Sudan.
    • Assist UNMISS to increase protection of displaced persons who are stranded in UN protective camps across the country.
    • Redirect Oil Revenue to Humanitarian assistance instead of leaving it to regime to buy weaponry to kill its own people.

    We thank you, Mr; President Donald Trump, for you time and consideration.

    Sincerely,

    1. Alliance for South Sudan In Diaspora- Dr George Phillip Imuro,
    imurot@yahoo.com
    2. South South Sudan International Advocacy for Human Rights-
    Peter Gatkuoth W Kuel peterkuel@yhoo.com

    Cc: US Congress
    Cc: South Sudanese-American Civil Society Council
    Cc: file

    Is Kiir allowing Egypt back again to dig the controversial Jonglei Canal as Nile talks fail with Ethiopia?

    By FRED OLUOCH, THE EASTAFRICAN, APR/08/2018, SSN;

    Egyptian politicians are said to be lobbying their government to negotiate with Pres. Kiir’s government in Juba to resume the digging of the controversial Jonglei Canal in South Sudan as an alternative plan as discussions on the use of the Nile waters aborted.

    Sudan’s Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour on Friday announced suspension of the tripartite talks between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia without reaching a consensual solution regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

    Samir Faraj, former governor of Luxor region along River Nile is among those pushing for the revival of Jonglei Canal project, arguing that the canal would enable Egypt to get additional 4.7 billion cubic metres of water annually from the White Nile.

    Since the start of the digging of the controversial Jonglei Canal in the late 1970’s, South Sudanese and environmentalists around the world wholly rejected the project because of its humongous negativity on the environment and the its deleterious impact on the lives of the riparian tribes along the Nile.

    Then, at it’s announcement, students and citizens across South Sudan demonstrated against the digging of the Jonglei Canal and many heroic lives of students and citizens were needlessly lost during Abel Alier’s puppet government in Juba.

    Egypt is embroiled in a dispute with Ethiopia over the Renaissance dam, which Cairo maintains is a threat to the flow of the 50 billion cubic metres of water the country receives annually from the Nile.

    Cairo is worried that it will interfere with the flow of water to the Aswan High Dam, given that Blue Nile contributes 80 per cent of the waters to Egypt.

    But Ethiopia remains adamant, saying that the $4.8 billion dam that is expected to generate electrical power of up to 6,000 MegaWatts, is for the benefit of its people.

    This week, talks on the tripartite agreement on the utilisation of Nile waters and the impact of the GERD, resumed in Khartoum.

    In Summary
    ***Egypt is embroiled in a dispute with Ethiopia over the Renaissance dam, which Cairo maintains is a threat to the flow of the 50 billion cubic metres of water the country receives annually from the Nile.
    ***Egyptian politicians are said to be lobbying the government to negotiate with Juba to resume the digging of the controversial Jonglei Canal.
    ***Those pushing for it say it would enable Egypt to get 4.7 billion cubic metres of water more annually from the White Nile

    Fluid bilateral relations

    The last time the issue of Jonglei Canal came up between South Sudan and Egypt was in 2008, when the then Sudan vice-president and now South Sudan President Salva Kiir visited Cairo and discussed the prospects of resuming work on the canal after Juba’s Independence.

    The then Egyptian prime minister Ahmed Nazeef, told the media that the project was on the agenda of the Supreme Committee between the two countries.

    Juba has not issued any statement on the issue as it remains emotive. But a diplomatic source in Juba told The EastAfrican that Cairo has dropped interest in the Jonglei Canal project due to the current political instability in South Sudan, and the fluid bilateral relations between Juba and Khartoum.

    Egypt was the financier of the project, with loans from its development partners, and had hired the Bucket Wheel used for excavation from the French government.

    Egypt wanted the additional water from Jonglei to help grow food for its burgeoning population. Since the mid-1970s, however, water has become the limiting factor for agricultural expansion in many parts of northern Sudan, since new irrigation projects need more water.

    Ecosystem

    Research had shown that the digging of Jonglei Canal would have serious repercussions on the delicate ecosystem of the Sudd region that include negative effects on the aquatic, wild, domestic plants and animals, and interference of the farming activities of the people in the region including displacement.

    Other negative impact include reduction of rainfall as the region will dry up after the canal takes water to Egypt and Northern Sudan, because the Sudd moisture contributes to the formation of rain in the region.

    Shuttle diplomacy:

    Despite the environmental concerns, former director of water resources in Kenya, John Nyaoro, told The EastAfrican, Egypt would gain up to additional 10 billion cubic metres from the project.

    “While the waters that leave Lake Victoria through the White Nile is 40 billion cubic metres, only 20 billion arrives in Khartoum where it meets the Blue Nile from Ethiopia. If the Jonglei channels are opened to allow quick flow water, it would solve the problem of stagnation which results into loses through evaporation,” said Mr Nyaoro.

    But the GERD remains a big concern to Egypt and President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has been crisscrossing the Nile basin countries trying to lobby against the dam and amendments to the 2011 Nile Treaty that allowed greater use of the waters by riparian states.

    Egypt considers damming and major irrigation projects by the riparian states on the Nile waters as a major threat to the flow of water it receives.

    -Additional Reporting by Joseph Oduha