Category: National

Can Nuer-Dinka Wunlik Approach help in solving the endemic tribal conflict between Apuk and Aguok?

“When Truth is Denied, Peace Will Not Come.”

BY DANIEL JUOL NHOMNGEK, KAMPALA, UGANDA, SEP/18/2017, SSN;

The conflict between Apuk and Aguok has become a major concern not only to the people of Gogrial State but to the whole of South Sudan. The need to get permanent solution has recently prompted authorities to come up with the disarmament policy, which is currently going on.

The question, therefore, is disarmament alone without more of a solution to the conflict between Apuk and Aguok? The answer to this question depends on how individuals look at it and also how he understands the conflict between the two communities.

However, the fact is that disarmament per se is not a permanent solution though it is an interim solution that can be used as an entry point in finding a formidable solution. To get permanent solution to the conflict between the two communities, there is a need first to understand the dynamic of the said conflict.

The conflict currently prevailing between the two communities is rooted in history. This is why it is hard to deal with it. Where the conflict is deeply rooted in deeply divided communities, which is rooted in deeply rooted ethnic tension, the only solution is to engage the parties into discussion accompanied by deep reflections among themselves that will eventually result into forgiveness and the agreement that will govern their future relations.

In this context, the conflict between Apuk and Aguok is historical in nature but it is now maintained through the use of modern warfare tactics and equipments. This kind of conflict which has its background in history and continues in modern society is hard to find a solution where the modern approach is adopted without going back to make history as the starting point.

Failure to historicize the solution makes the conflict keep on resurfacing in several aspects but interrelated and dangerous face.

As it has been the case in the conflict resolution between Apuk and Aguok, those who are involved in searching for a solution to the conflict between the two communities try to end the conflict through the modern method which is the use of force through the forced disarmament.

The weakness of applying modern approach to traditional communities who need traditional approach makes it hard to tackle the conflict between the two communities. Consequently, the conflict between the two communities continues with devastating consequences on two communities and Gogrial State.

The matters are further made worse by the fact that the general conflict at the National level has caused a distraction from efforts to address the said conflict.

For all the above reasons, it is hard to predict the time the conflict between the two communities will end or when will the appropriate solution is to be found. Hence, the hope for getting the permanent solution to the conflict between the two communities is dwindling as all attempts have so far failed to materialize.

In order to get lasting solution, there is a need for an immediate change of appropriate from relying on modern method to the hybrid one. The hybrid means adopting traditional conflict resolution method alongside method which will help in maintaining peace between the two communities. The question that then comes into play after proposing the change in the approach is, can the new proposed approach be effective to permanently end the conflict in Gogrial State?

In the opening of this work, I clearly pointed out that the conflict between the two communities is rooted in history. Thus in my opinion, where the conflict is historical in nature, there is a need for historical approach though after getting a solution the modern approach is applied to maintain peace. This is done by creating a forum for People-to-People peace to freely to talk out their historical problems perpetuated by the current complicated problems facing South Sudan.

To get the permanent solution to the conflict between the communities, the question that should be put across here is what is the appropriate approach that can bring appropriate solution?

Can Nuer-Dinka Wunlik approach help in solving tribal conflicts between the two communities? The next question, which is invited by this question is, what is the Wunlit Approach?

The Wunlit Approach as referred to above, was an approach adopted in the resolution of the conflict between Nuer and Dinka. Wunlit was a place where the conference was held. Wunlit is found in Bahr El Ghazal, Sudan by then but it is now found in South Sudan. The conference was held on 27th February-8th March 1999 and it was facilitated by the New Sudan Council of Churches as well supported by the SPLM/A.

The conference brought together the people from the six Dinka and Nuer counties bordering one another on the West Bank of the Nile River. The Wunlit Peace Conference was attended by three hundred and sixty (360) delegates. These delegates were divided equally between Dinka and Nuer (i.e. 180 each).

In accordance with that division, thirty delegates were invited from each county from the six counties as already pointed out above. During the selection of the delegates, each county selected delegates in a way that there were 15 chiefs and 15 other leading persons including representatives of traditional leaders, women and youth. All these persons were crucial in the peacemaking process in playing different roles.

Besides, each of the teams came with an entourage of advisory and support persons such as chiefs, elders, spear masters, women, youth, ethnic militias, church leaders – raising the total number to well over 1,000 persons. In addition, numerous observers were invited to the conference as well as six Nuer chiefs and two Murle chiefs from the East bank of the Nile were invited with the hope of encouraging them to undertake similar peace initiatives in their respective areas.

During the conference local authority officials were involved, including the SPLM County Commissioners and the Executive Directors from each county as well as the military and security personnel. There were also external observers that included church leaders, representatives of sponsors, donors and several reporters.

The Wunlit Conference was then opened with the ceremonial sacrifice of a large white bull, provided by the chief of Wunlit, Gum Mading. The reason for killing white bull (Thon Mabior) in form of sacrifice was taken to be a sign of commitment to peace and communal reconciliation. Apart from traditional ceremony of bull killing, the Wunlit approach combined with Christian practices as the Christian Prayers were also conducted.

During the conference as a way of reconciliation the method used by the participants in indentifying issues was through four ways namely: storytelling and issue identification, working groups, synthesis and plenary presentations and consensus building and approval of covenant. After the identification of the issues, the second part was the truth telling that was started on the second day.

The second day was a day of celebration and reflection and at that point, the people who gathered at the conference began to speak of the wrongs that have been committed against them. This was possible because Nuer and the Dinka believe that reconciliation is possible only after the truth has been shared. Because of that fact, in that peacemaking process, a little more than a full day was given to either side to tell their stories to the other. This phase involves story telling.

During the discussion, one side was given a chance to tell the stories of the atrocities committed against them. Then the other side was given a chance to do the same and to respond in rebuttal. The time of telling the truth as it is always was a painful time as all speakers recalled their losses and sufferings. It was tense. Those telling stories would recount atrocities and name the people who committed them. Each tribe was given an equal amount of time to share their grievances.

In the process of talks, there was a time the talks might break down into accusatory and personalized attacks. However, despite the potential of anger and hatred, the talks continued peacefully. The stories ranged from raids, battles, abduction, and rape to slavery. The old wounds of past were reopened. The meeting hall is awash with memories, tears, and sadness. When the issues were identified, the participants engaged into intense discussion and by the end of the discussion they declared that:

“All hostile acts shall cease between Dinka and Nuer whether between their respective military forces or armed civilians. A permanent cease-fire is hereby declared between the Dinka and the Nuer people with immediate effect; that Amnesty is hereby declared for all offences against people and property committed prior to 1st September 1999 involving Dinka and Nuer on the West Bank of the Nile River; freedom of movement is affirmed and inter-communal commerce, trade, development and services encouraged; that local cross border agreements and movement are encouraged and shall be respected; that it is hereby declared that border grazing lands and fishing grounds shall be available immediately as shared resources.; that displaced communities are encouraged to return to their original homes and rebuild relationships with their neighbours; that the spirit of peace and reconciliation this covenant represents must be extended to all southern Sudan.”

After agreeing and then came up with the above declaration, the participants concluded that all resolutions adopted by the conference were hereby incorporated into the Wunlit covenant. The participants further appealed to the SPLM/A to endorse, embrace and assist in implementation of the covenant and its Resolutions. The parties further appealed to the international community to endorse, embrace and assist in implementation of this covenant and its resolutions.

As it can be understood above, by appealing to the SPLM and international community to assist in the implementation of the covenant, the participants were alive to the fact that even if they agreed to end their conflict for such an agreement to hold, there must be a central authority to enforce it. Moreover, for an agreement between the two communities to stand, there must be strong authority as well as independent judicial system to punish those who will breach the agreement in order to maintain the agreement intact, which is vital for maintaining peace after the agreement.

In summary, for everlasting peace to be achieved between the two communities, the similar approach that was adopted during the Wunlit Peace Conference as discussed in this work should be adopted. In fact, the same approach was adopted in the past between the two communities in form of Kal Kuel Covenant between Apuk Giir, Aguok Mou and Kuac Ayok that was signed, on September 27th, 2008.

The problem is not that people communities are not willing to go into compromise to achieve peace but the problem is that there is no political will on the part of National and State Governments to enforce what the two communities have agreed.

The agreement of the warring parties can stand if it is enforced as they have agreed it without the authority in charge of enforcement applying discretion. Any discretion will be viewed by the party affected as being bias or partisan. The only way of dealing with issues that need some flexibility is to call the parties together and decide over something that needs flexibility or discretion. In short, for the agreement between two communities or other communities to achieve peace, it must be enforced as agreed by the parties but not as the authority enforcing it deems fit.

It should be concluded with the recommendation that for everlasting peace between the two communities to be achieved, the Wunlit modality should be adopted so that people are engaged in truth telling to say all that happened to them in the past. In doing that they should be given humble time to discuss all the issues and root causes including the atrocities they have committed against each other. It is after the parties have said all that has been causing them to fight that is when they can come up with declaration to commit themselves to peaceful co-existence.

After all these, the remaining part is the enforcement of the Agreement, which should be the duty of the state Government to enforce it as parties have agreed not as the authorities of the state think. Without these being done, even if the disarmament of the two communities is carried out several times, there will be no peace. The disarmament should be a short term solution to create conducive atmosphere in which parties can engage in peace talks.

NB//: The Author is a lawyer by profession; he graduated with honors in law from Makerere University, School of Law. He participated in various workshops and training in community mobilization in awareness of their constitutional rights in Uganda. He is the member of Public Interest Law Clinic (PILAC) and NETPIL (Network of Public Interest Lawyers) at Makerere University; he is currently doing research with NETPIL on private prosecution; he is trained in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR); he participated in writing Street Law Handbook on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Uganda. He is practicing with Onyango and Company Advocates Bunga—Ggaba, Road Kampala He is currently staying in Kampala Uganda where he is undertaking bar course training. He can be reached through juoldaniel@yahoo.com or +256784806333.

What have we learnt from “KOKORA” in South Sudan?

BY: Yakani Taban, AUG/10/2017, SSN;

At least every informed South Sudanese is aware of the political waves that wracked the south in the early nineteen eighties when the former military leader, Field Marshal Jaafar Mohamed Nimeri, issued a presidential decree dividing the then Southern region into three sub-regions of Equatoria, Upper Nile and the Bahr El Gazal.

The move was received with mixed reactions by the southern Sudanese masses; simply because of its implications, which denoted that Equatoria was for the Equatorians, Upper Nile for the people of the region and Bahr El Gazal for the Bahr El Gazalians.

While most Equatorians, led by the last president of the higher executive council, Joseph James Tombura, jumped at the decree, the people from Upper Nile and Bahr El Gazal regions, ground their teeth as they swallowed the above fire into their hearts.

No one can tell exactly the reasons behind that, however some just felt deprived from the symbolic capital of southern Sudan, Juba, while others had some major items in their heads.

At that very time the Addis Ababa agreement that halted the Seventeen years old Anyanya 1 guerrilla war was also brought to an end.

Coupled up with the Turabis baked Islamic September laws, Southern Sudan and other parts of the country were turned into blood fields.

Although not all the Equatorians supported the idea of the Kokora, they were all seen as the master minds behind the issuance of the decree. It was a concept that they did not like other people in their territory just because those people are different.

Indeed some differences existed between the Equatorians and people from the other regions of the South, but those ethnic difference per se did not pose any tension. On the contrary all the row that erupted were judgmental based on practical malpractices between the predominant pastoralists of the other regions on one hand and the mainly agriculturist Equatorians on the other.

Furthermore nobody could under estimate the level of political, social, security and economic crises southern Sudan was facing by then. Yet there were differences of opinions on the issue of Kokora which came at a time when people were still ignorant about the so-called federalism or decentralisation of power.

BUT the very big question that demands a critical answer is, why did some people opt for that Kokora? One may look into it as synonymous with asking the question, why did southern Sudanese demand a self determination from the Arab Islamic northerners?

Well, Sir Isaac Newton said, “to every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction”. Although Newton’s law is now fully engulfed in the text books of Physics, the day to day practices have proved that not all actions receive equal and opposite reactions.

Nevertheless every body reacts to a specific action in order to acquire a condition that will suit its status at that given time. So perhaps the demand that resulted to the attainment of the Kokora was simply a reaction to other events in the then integrated southern region for which Kokora was seen as a solution.

The single semi-autonomous Southern region under the Addis Ababa agreement might have fallen into hands that irrigated the germination of Kokora.

The idea of a “Kokora” [be divided], which emerged spontaneously among the people when other conditions could no more be tolerated by some in the then Southern region; did not just erupt because people wanted to live alone.

The sons and daughters of the greater Equatoria that embraced the kokora {the jungle federalism}, might have had their voices higher for some of the faults generated in the region; but the referees turned deaf ears to them. Whether it was because of ignorance that people did not know what was happening on the ground, no one could tell.

But the broad daylights revealed clearly the destruction of all those elements that are needed for human cohesion.

Men from different socio-cultural backgrounds can only be bound together by universal norms that are governed by basic principles of “Respect for one another” and abidance by the rule of law. Once the universal norms are undermined due to ignorance, tribal or selfish desires, then there is no any excuse for the fragments that follows.

So it should be made clearly that the new South Sudan that has emerged after the signing of the CPA should have been the direct beneficiary from the 1983 incident and embarked itself to provide the best for her people through proper governance.

It is not an easy task to accomplish as people are still recovering from poverty and post-war situation where the AK-47 rifles are still the best friends for some individuals. However more and more effort has to be exerted to allow a reasonable atmosphere for our minds to operate in so as to change the South for the better.

Good governance among others just entails avoidance of some elements, and adhesion to the universal norms which include the following:-

1-The rule of law:
Every body is equal before the law and no one is above it. As such the duty of every citizen is to respect and abide by what is rated as a law. In this respect a man who understands and respects the law will not be happy seeing some body stepping his feet on it while forcing others to be the prey.

It is also of much significance that the barrel of the gun remains as far away as possible to matters relating to laws to ensure that law and order are strictly observed. Equally important is the avoidance of judiciary biasness which is usually influenced by tribalism in areas where judges happen to be from one particular zone.

2- Avoidance of Nepotism.
A state grows rapidly when the right man automatically fits in to the right position regardless of where he comes from. And if the right man operates because of his capabilities, let him work in peace. However widespread practices of nepotism in both government and non-governmental organisations is a very serious disease that cripples every giant society.

No any sound society would tolerate selfish and greedy men rounding all their state properties for their relatives and friends and letting the vast majority go hungry; especially if the very relatives constantly prove to be incompetent.

3- No to Civil unrest.
Any normal person would not tolerate any sort of disturbance to his tranquility. It is crystal clear that the ultimate goal of every man on the earth is to have happiness or comfortable life. You can have all the resources but still will not be happy if you are constantly afraid of the uncertainty; not about the natural ones but those created by men’s barbaric behaviors.

Best examples include the use of force in what does not belong to you to the point of even killing the owner {i.e. banditry]. Let the fisherman, tailor, farmer, driver, butcher man etc, alone and they will be your friends. But you will be a worse enemy to a farmer if you happened to be his LOCUST, worst enemy to the trader if you are his bandit etc.

A lot of malpractices might have happened in the post-Addis Ababa agreement era that ultimately nursed the emergence of a group of people who felt that they would be better off alone than being constantly subjected to ways of life that do not please them.

“Kokora,” which is still a fresh history in people’s minds, was just the beginning of what is now being adopted as federalism in the whole country with the South having ten states instead of the three of 1983 being governed by people from the respective states.

There are those who saw that the division of the south in 1983 was the application of divide-and-rule principle intended to weaken the southerners; while others saw it as a decentralisation of power. Moreover, few enjoyed that status of keeping the fisherman near the sea, the teacher in a classroom and the pilot at the airport.

All the same, whatever it was, let its negative legacy be a lesion to every Southern Sudanese citizen. It has created a history that only the open-minded will benefit from. Wise man learns from his past mistakes.

As such it is my personal hope that our wise southerners will not let us down again by creating a vicious cycle. No man would wish to stumble twice on the same stone without thinking of either to remove or dodge it.

If Kokora was bad, and also other negative behaviours happened which resulted to the creation of Kokora; then it is time that people move with torches to avoid stumbling on the same stone again.

Southern Sudan is now in the era of the CPA where old wounds have healed and people are strongly working together to build a giant region.

No one should think it is now time to punish those who called for the kokora, or feel reserved because of the legacy created by kokora. As such negative thoughts will take the South to nowhere other than the journey to Rwanda 94, or to the former Yugoslavia.

So, unless people remove themselves from the African hang-over where one refuses to learn positively from his past mistakes, then the desire to create a solid southern region will just remain an illusion on the minds of the policy makers and our beautiful South will constantly be a region that will not hold her children.

Two to three generations will pass and the region will still continue supplying the rest of the world with malnourished deprived children.

No one is condoning the circumstances that produced Kokora or the existence of that perceived Kokora, as everybody is hoping for a stable South Sudan. And this stable South demands a stronger unity of minds that is free of all sorts of tribal, regional or selfish influences. END

Keeping it real about South Sudan: Jieng ‘Luak’ Supremacy

By: Justin Ambago Ramba, JUL/27/2017, SSN;

For all practical purposes, the issues of war and Peace in South Sudan only came to take a foreign policy priority position when the USA administration under William J. Clinton, who was inaugurated in office in January 1993.

As the first USA president elected immediately following the end of the Cold War, President Clinton found himself face to face with what became known in the West as the new wave of Islamic Terrorism.

Coincidentally, it was the same time when the Sudanese Islamic fundamentalists seized power in the country through a bloodless military coup d’état, overthrowing a democratically elected government of Prime Minister Sayed Sadiq Al Mahdi on 30th June 1989.

Unfortunately, however, it is this narrow narrative which squarely links the future of South Sudan to the USA foreign policy and its national interest in the Sudan and the North-East Africa region that became the official face of an otherwise a wider South Sudanese struggle with how to properly govern itself since the days it started to enjoy a semi-autonomous status within the United Sudan.

First following the Addis Ababa Peace Agreement between the Military Junta headed by General Ga’afar Nimeri between 1972- 1983, and thereafter again following the 2005, Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and even today following its rightfully deserved declaration as a fully independent and sovereign state with a full membership not only in the United Nations, but also in many other regional and International Organizations South Sudan is still struggling with the very basics of how to govern itself effective as a modern state and not some kind of a tribal cattle Camp!.

To ignore the fact South Sudan had had the opportunity in past to govern itself under a semi-autonomous structure between 1972-1983 but failed the test, is to cut corners in an otherwise a very long story of how this part of the world has chronically struggled with governance issues

The truth be said, prominent elites who once ran the affairs of what was by then the Autonomous region of Southern Sudan, are largely still around to testify to the historical facts what is currently breaking this newly independent African country apart. All ills of South Sudan’s politics and failures lie in what is a deeply rooted ethnic bigotry.

Even long before the late military Dictator, Ga’afar Nimeri could decree the re-division of the then semi-Autonomous Southern Region into its original components of Equatoria, Bahr Al Ghazal and the Upper Nile, the southern Sudanese were already at each other’s throats as “one Single Tribe” looked at its numerical advantage and chose to declare itself as the only tribe out of the country’s 64 or so other tribes whose members are worth of not only holding the nation’s top positions, but especially the top job of President.

Little wonder, and hence, it came as no surprise when the infamous slogan of “Born to rule” made its way into the south Sudanese political vocabulary and public life even when the South Sudanese were still languishing under the successive dictatorships that took power in Khartoum since the dawn of the so-called postcolonial Sudanization that characterized the Sudanese national politics up till the official succession of South Sudan from the Old United Sudan.

Some of you may wonder as to if that was the case, who then come the South Sudanese all came to embrace the SPLA/M and fought under its insignia to get to where the country is now?

To keep it real, this is what the situation was like. When the SPLM/A rebellion begun in the Town of Bor, of ALL PLACES, the message it sent was of a Dinka frustration with the re-division policy decreed by Dictator Ga’afar Nimeri, obviously in contradiction to the articles of the Addis Ababa !972 Peace Agreement, but with a popular support in all across the Equatoria Region, and some parts of both Upper Nile and Bahr Al Ghazal regions.

But then something very important happened. Ga’afar Nimeri miscalculated the whole lot. When he chose to create a new alliance with the Islamist groups of late Dr. Hassan Abdalla Al Turabi and the Sufi Sunni Al Mahdi dynasty of the UMMA Party as represented by Imam Sadiq Al Mahdi, knowing or not, he had left the true basis of the Anya Nya Movement and the historical mutiny of Torit on 18th August 1955, no choice but to either come up with a rebellion of its own or tactically join hands with the Dinka dominated SPLA/M. The later choice prevailed and the rest is now history.

This brief prelude to the background of South Sudan’s politics is hoped to serve those not well versed with some of the nitty gritty and bits of one of Africa’s very dynamic political dispensations. And it is against this benchmark, that the author hopes his readers will be in unique and informed position to accept one solid, but very important fact, that the proliferation of violence, displacement, and food insecurity under dictator Salva Kiir Mayardit is not new to South Sudan, and so are their root causes.

The 2005, Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), which Paved the way for the succession of South Sudan from Sudan. It was essentially an Agreement between the National Islamic front (NIF) of the predominantly northern riverain Arabized Nubian tribesmen and SPLA/M of the predominantly southern Dinka tribes. The CPA for practical reasons exempted the once again Autonomous Southern Sudan from any forced Islamic influences and jurisdictions, an outcome embraced by all south Sudanese of all ethnic denominations.

However, as it became abundantly clear later, the failure of the guarantor of the agreement to pressure for a democratic transformation in the country, South Sudan went to the referendum boxes still imprisoned in the “Dinka” prescribed “Tribal-Luak (Kraal -style) in both state governance and life-style. This is the same primitive and narrow scoped governance regimen that earlier led to the dismantlement of the Addis Ababa agreement in 1983.

Since 2005, this regime which continuously revitalizes itself in the name of “Bahr Ghazal Jieng Supremacy”, has already had devastating military confrontations with far reaching massacre of civilian populations in the Shillukland, the Murleland, the Equatorias, among the “Fertit” and even among the so-called Bahr Ghazal Dinka” communities from where the rogue and pariah regime draws most of its fighting forces.

As I write this piece, the “Bahr Al Ghazal” Dinka of Gogrial are busy killing one another under a state sponsored civil unrest, labelled for convenience sake as the “inter-clan war” between the Apuk and Aguok both of the so-called Gogrial state, dictator Salva Kiir’s own homeland.

Unless of course we want to cover up the burning fire in South Sudan that primarily stem from the poor governance and intentionally created chaos by the ruling elites and their power base in the ‘Jieng (Dinka) Council of Elders’ (JCE).

Throwing dry grass over this fire, and it is exactly what those benefiting from the status quo are doing, in an attempt to cover up, arguably in the name of national sovereignty and the ‘JCE’s version of National Unity, is only as good as following in the footsteps of those tribal zealots who knowingly or otherwise, led to the dismemberment of the Old Sudan.

But let’s keep it real even if only for fairness’s sake. Any talk of national sovereignty or national unity, during the existing government only serves to promote the ‘Jieng’ (Dinka) hegemony, expansionism and their ill-advised ethnic supremacy.

The ongoing proliferation of violence, displacement, and food insecurity the countrywide is there to stay and even get worse as time goes, unless of course a radical settlement to the root causes of the crisis clinical and preferably surgical intervention.

One is made to wonder more and more, as South Sudan finds its fate in the bloodiest hands of the most incapable duo, dictator Salva Kiir Mayardit and opportunist Taban Deng Gai.

Can anyone in their rightful mind really trust the so-called unilaterally declared ceasefire by the regime in Juba, when the very regime is simultaneously engaged in heavy military attacks against the SPLA-IO HQs of Pagak?

Even the dump pro-government “ALL DINKA MILITIA” of Mathiang Anyoor, themselves will testify that they are under strict orders not to spare any villages and their inhabitants in the recent governments scorch earth campaign in rural Equatoria, Western Bahr Ghazal and many parts of Greater Upper Ile regions.

The current situation in the country renders any discussion of elections in the foreseeable future as an unnecessary diversion from the primary goals of achieving peace and reconciliation.

South Sudan’s leaders, neighbors, and regional and international partners must first focus on achieving peace based on the realization of a total new structure of governance in the country – democratic Confederalism.

This and only this extreme form of FEDERALISM as represented by CONFEDERALISM can bring about the end of the bloody struggle over who or which ethnic group (s) rule and monopolize the power in a centralized system governance, and thereafter create the conditions needed to hold credible elections.

These are urgent goals, and to achieve them, there is an equally urgent need to promptly revitalize of an inclusive and credible peace process by African Union and the UN Security Council.

This shallow belief that a peace process for South Sudan must receive financial and other resources from the West as represented by the TROIKA and the European Union or even the USA, are at their best representation of neo-colonialism and Imperialism.

The question that begs for an answer is, “If we the South Sudanese and our neighbors are capable of sponsoring the ongoing dirty War, Mass Killings, Rape, and Lawlessness”, why then it becomes an issue that must necessarily require a EU and TROIKA to Bankroll a Peace Process, if we really want peace and stability to reign in our midst!

BUT, if there is no political will from within our populace and political elites in country and the IGAD countries to the realization OF A PEACEFUL CO-EXISTENCE in South Sudan based on a new political dispensation as clearly proposed above, then there will be very little wonder if the fire were to consume both the green and the dry, in the country and the region at large!

Believe me, the historical inability of South Sudanese to face up to their inborn cultural differences and the political nurturing of hatred can keep South Sudan burning indefinitely. A small leaf from the rich political experience of South Sudan vis-à-vis North Sudan over the have a century of atrocious coexistence between the two sections of what was a one country, clearly underscores that all we are witnessing are non-starters on a genuine peaceful settlement.

Starting with the declared ‘One sided’ and bogus “National Dialogues”, fake and hypocritical “ceasefires”, basically meant to serve as military ploys and the futile attempts at entrenching a “One Party Rule” in the name of unification of the ruling party, as is the case of the embattled SPLM now high on the agenda, all are futile attempts at misleading the public opinion, but especially of course directed at soliciting foreign financial supports to sustain both the civil war and the dictators grip on power.

Again, another lesson learnt from the Old Sudan, clearly shows that any attempt to merely change or replace those in the seats of power in Juba, although likely to bring about a chance towards a conducive atmosphere for a serious dialogue, however, carried out in isolation of such well thought through programs is not in any way enough to bring about an everlasting Peace and stability.

On the other hand, given the fact that the current dire situation in the country is by all measure the outcome of a greedy and visionless leadership, this chronically devastated part of the world, will never have the opportunity for a genuine dialogue under the current regime, which itself is part of the crisis and not a solution.

Peace can only be realized when the regime in Juba is uprooted completely and replaced by one that will first seek the boldness to reconstruct the governance structures, a new social contract between the various nationalities if they would genuinely subscribe to the very idea of staying together as one country and under what arrangements yet to be agreed on and not imposed.

Radical as they may sound, but the author is optimistic that these proposals are the only viable options if South Sudan is ever to live in peace with itself. Maintain the status quo, is out of question and neither the idea of unification of the SPLM with the hope of surrendering every citizen’s hope for a better life to the regime’s so-called “Unknown Gunmen” – who are now well known and can be traced back to the doors of the J1 or the Republican Palace.

Author: Dr.Justin Ambago Ramba. A concerned South Sudanese and a Voice for the Voiceless and marginalized Millions.

Justice under Fire: The Dismissal of 13 Justices & Judges from the Judiciary of South Sudan

By Tong Kot Kuocnin, LLB (Juba), LLM(Nairobi), Specialist in Law, Governance & Democracy, University of Nairobi.
JUL/15/2017, SSN;

One is not surprised at all to hear and see the dismissal of the honorable justices and judges from the judiciary of South Sudan by the president.

As the justices and judges went on an open strike two months ago protesting against the leadership of the honorable Chief Justice and requesting the head of state to remove him from office for his failure to manage the judiciary effectively, and efficiently, the men and women of honor faced the wrath of the misdeeds of the president and his in-law, justice Chan Reec Madut.

It is not unknown to all South Sudanese what the intentions of both men is regarding this great institution of ours.

It is not a new thing either to be surprised that innocent justices and judges can be dismissed from the Judiciary especially those who are opposed to the chief justice’s corrupt and dictatorial tendencies.

The first victim, a man of honor was justice Ruben Madol Arol, the former deputy chief justice who’s unlawfully removed from office simply because he asked the chief justice to excuse himself from the bench since the litigants were no longer enjoying any trust and confidence in him in presiding over the case brought before the constitutional panel in the Supreme Court challenging the order of the president which created the 28 states at the time.

Hitherto, the repeat of unlawful removable of the senior justices and judges occurred again simply because they have demanded what rightfully belongs to them.

In this article therefore, I shall not waste time narrating the ordeal these justices and judges went through under the embattled chief justice who took over from his predecessor, Late Justice Prof. John Wuol Makec but I shall labor to bring to the forefront, whether or not, the dismissal of the honorable justices and judges has met the constitutional and statutory requirements and procedures laid down under the Transitional constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011 (Amended 2015) and other subsidiary legislations governing the conduct, appointment and removable of the justices and judges of the judiciary of South Sudan.

There are quite a number of statute laws in this country dealing with how the judiciary of South Sudan should be governed, giving effect to the constitution which is the fundamental law of the land.

First and foremost, the transitional constitution provides under Article 123(1) that judicial power is derived from the people and shall be exercised by courts in accordance with customs, values, norms and aspirations of the people and in conformity with the constitution and the law.

This succinctly means that the power lies not in the chief justice and not the president either to do whatever they like with regards to this great institution.

The chief justice is a mere administrator who should run and supervise the officers of the judiciary in accordance with procedures which have clearly been stipulated in legislations governing the judiciary itself.

However, Article 123(2) stipulate further that judicial power shall be vested in an independent institution to be known as the judiciary, but nothing is said about chief justice having a power to tell the president to dismiss any justice or a judge as an officer of the judiciary.

The president as a head of state exercises the power given to him by law not Chan Reec to remove the justices and judges only on grounds of gross misconduct, incompetence and incapacity and upon the recommendation of the National Judicial Commission as provided for under Article 135(2) of the Transitional Constitution, 2011(Amended 2015), which in this case, the national judicial service commission hasn’t sat and made any recommendation for the dismissal and removable of any of the justices and judges of the judiciary of South Sudan.

This clearly puts justice under fire as the chief justice who is also an uncle to the president’s wife, an in-law for that matter, scooped for himself powers which aren’t defined in the constitution and any other legislation governing the management of the judiciary.

Hence, by relegating and compromising the independence of the judiciary, it has been made a private family business enterprise.

On the same token, the Judicial Service Council’s Act, 2008 provides under section 7(e) that the Council has the power to recommend appointments, promotions and removable of justices and judges in accordance with the provisions of Judiciary Act, 2008.

But more interestingly, section 8(2) provides that council may delegate to the president of the Supreme Court any of its powers and functions; provided that, the council shall NOT delegate its functions over appointments, promotions and removable of justices and judges.

Where on earth the chief justice and the president did get their undefined and unscrupulous powers to unjustly remove these honorable justices and judges from?

The laws are very clear and straight forward. Let us not read our laws, more especially our constitution upside down.

Yes, the president of the Supreme Court can make recommendations to the judicial service council on the removable of justices but such recommendations will be effected only when the council is convened to deliberate, examine and decide on the recommendations in accordance with the provisions of the Judiciary Act, 2008.

Again very clear that the only institution having power to remove justices and judges, is the judicial service council and not the chief justice and the president.

Justice is truly under fire because instead the demands of these justices and judges are addressed, they felt prey in the hands of their colleague who should have stood by their side, conniving with his in-law and a family best friend to dismiss them without following any proper procedure as provided for under the constitution and other laws currently in force in the country.

Justice is under fire as the judiciary remained closed for the last three months with all accused persons in various detention facilities continue experiencing the most inhumane, agonized and brutal ways and manners in which the wardens of those detention facilities treats them.

Justice is under fire as the rule of law is deeply buried and the rule of man reigns high.

These honorable justices and judges became victims not of their own interests but that of all of their colleagues and for the benefit and proper functioning of the entire judiciary of South Sudan, for those sitting in offices now and for the future generations.

His obdurate conduct of the judicial affairs has obfuscated and completely obliterated the prospects of a judiciary in a democratic society.

The judiciary cannot sustain its credibility on its own and win the confidence and trust of the people if the credibility gap grows steadily wider day and night between the institution and the general public and more notably the people whose rights have been violated.

The judiciary which is the last hope to retrieve back those rights is the one that reneged on peoples’ rights, then hostility will eventually ensued and the private citizens will take the law into their own hands.

In conclusion however, it is imperative to conclude that you’re heroes who have been working under president Kiir’s government for the last thirteen years and Chief Chan Reec for the last seven years.

You have undergone all hardships and other turbulent agonies in an attempt to serve your people. I called you heroes because you stood tall and lowered yourselves to deliver justice to those who need it most.

I saluted and commended you for all the tireless efforts you made to deliver justice to those who have been victimized by powerful and wealthy people in this country.

I called you patriots because you haven’t taken up guns to kill innocent lives just to get what you deserved but chose to use democratic means to demand for what is rightfully yours.

Your records speak louder to us who have been on this journey of delivering justice to the paupers with you than what Chan Reec and his in-law have shamelessly done to you.

Dr. Riek Machar’s Detention: Why South Africa returns to its dark moment?

By Dr. Gatluak Ter Thach*, USA, JUL/01/2017, SSN;

In June 1961, African National Congress (ANC), the current Republic of South Africa’s governing social democratic political party’s executive, considered Nelson Mandela’s suggestion on the use of violent tactics and agreed that those members who wished to involve themselves in Mandela’s campaign would not be stopped from doing so, and this led to the formation of “Umkhonto we Sizwe,” a violent force—and because of that group, Nelson Mandela was arrested in 1962 and sentenced to five years of imprisonment with hard labor.

From 1964 to 1982, Nelson Mandela was incarcerated at Robin Island Prison near Cape Town, and while in prison, his reputation grew for positive change in South Africa whilst he communicated with his supporters.

Like South African’s Apartheid Movement had done to Nelson Mandela, the current South Africa governing political party (ANC) is doing the same thing now to an innocent South Sudanese political leader, Dr. Riek Machar in South Africa.

There is a speculation that South Africa’s Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, has a deal with the South Sudanese regime to retain South Sudanese’s opposition leader on an assumption that keeping him away from returning to his country will empower his political opponent to bring to an end the crisis in the country. (http://www.reuters.com/article/us-safrica-southsudan-exclusive-idUSKBN1421YZ).

It is a human rights violation to impede individual’s political and civil rights. In the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, resolution 2200A (XXI) of 16 December, 1966, in accordance with Article 49 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, “the ideal of free human beings enjoying civil and political freedom and freedom from fear and want can only be achieved if conditions are created whereby everyone may enjoy his civil and political rights, as well as his economic, social and cultural rights, considering the obligation of States under the Charter of the United Nations to promote universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and freedoms, ” (ICCPR, 1966).

It is an insult as well to deny someone his rights of travels, because of a monetary compensation. (https://africanspress.org/2017/05/24/breaking-news-2-millions-dollars-receives-by-south-africans-embassy-in-washington-to-keep-dr-riek-machar-in-south-africa/)

Dr. Riek Machar is an opposition leader with an overwhelming support in the country. It is a mistake for the South African governing party and the international community to think isolation as such would bring a lasting peace in the country.

Like Nelson Mandela, who believed all South Africans can live together regardless of their political, economic and ethnic differences, Dr. Riek Machar believes peace can be achieved in South Sudan if everyone does his or her part.

Dr. Riek Machar went to Juba, South Sudan Capitol in 2016 while his supporters and sympathizers did not trust his political opponent and believed he was risking his life for an unimplemented peace.

In spite of official denial by South Africa’s deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa’s spokesperson of the claims of South African government’s taking bribes from President Kiir’s government, some revealing evidences suggested that South Sudanese’s opposition leader is being blocked from going back to his country on a ransom deal. (http://theinsider.ug/index.php/2017/04/29/south-sudan-pays-south-africa-450000-a-month-to-keep-dr-machar-silent-and-in-a-guarded-premise-in-pretoria/.)

Nelson Mandela would not be pleased if he has to rise up and see what have become of the new South African’s ANC. Mandela changed an organizational system of ANC when it divided people along racial lines and/or involved on different activities.

Mandela joined ANC in 1944 and engaged in resistance against the ruling National Party’s apartheid policies, and his actions got him in trouble, but he finally was able to manage the change he wanted.

When comparing and contrasting leadership competencies, Mandela was a unique human being. Like President George Washington, Mandela held office to practice good leadership, not to hold on to power or involve in bribery business.

Like Washington, Mandela chose to stay on the presidency for just two terms. Had Washington claimed to be a king, or refused democracy, US would be a different nation today.

After Mandela was released from the prison due to international pressure, including pressure from the United States, he plunged himself wholeheartedly into his life’s work.

He strove to attain the goals he and other leaders had set out almost four decades earlier. In 1991, the first national conference of the ANC, since the organization was banned in 1960, was held in South Africa and in 1994, and Mandela was elected the first black president of South Africa.

What makes his example more important to me was his ability to encourage and motivate his followers throughout the world to work for freedom regardless of the situation he had found himself in.

For someone who almost died in jail to gain power and then freely give it back to his people is an extraordinary example for others to follow, and ANC governing party should not do away with Mandela’s core legacy by denying an important political icon in South Sudan his political freedom.

Whether it is true or not, blocking Dr. Riek Machar from traveling and participating in the political process in South Sudan due to the monetary means or whatever will delay the peace process and continue the suffering of the people of South Sudan. (http://theinsider.ug/index.php/2017/04/29/south-sudan-pays-south-africa-450000-a-month-to-keep-dr-machar-silent-and-in-a-guarded-premise-in-pretoria/)

Dr. Riek is the Mandela of South Sudan. He is the remaining hope people of South Sudan still have and believe through him South Sudan will come out of this man-made crisis and become the peaceful and developing nation in the region.

South Africa’s ANC governing party must free Dr. Riek Machar to join the peace process in South Sudan.

I believe South Africa will not solely live up into the lasting legacy of Pres. Nelson Mandela, but it will also continue to demonstrate the great leadership in the African continent for a possible replication.

Author lives and works in Nashville, TN (USA); email: pelkuoth@gmail.com

UN: Splintering of South Sudan war makes peace more elusive: LATEST

By REUTERS, THE EAST AFRICAN, JUN/20/2017, SSN;

South Sudan’s civil war has mutated from a two-way fight between the president Salva Kiir and his ousted former deputy Vice President Riek Machar to a fragmented conflict, making it harder to put it back together and peace more elusive, the top U.N. peacekeeper in the country said.

David Shearer, head of the 13,000-strong United Nations mission, welcomed signs that regional leaders were reviving the peace process. Adding that any initiative must include all factions, including that of former Vice President Riek Machar, and discourage the multiplication of armed groups.

In Summary
David Shearer, the head of United Nations mission says while regional leaders were reluctant to return to the “old formula” of insisting on a potentially explosive face-to-face between Kiir and Machar, there was recognition that Machar’s camp needed to be represented in talks and he could too, further down the line.

South Sudan slipped into civil war in 2013, in a conflict ignited by a feud between President Salva Kiir and Machar, resulting in around one third of the population –fleeing to neighbouring countries for safety.

However, an escalation of fighting since last July that forced Machar to flee the country a month later has seen clashes spread to previously unaffected areas.

“The situation now is somewhat different to what it was a year ago, when it was largely bipolar,” Shearer told Reuters in an interview late on Monday.

“We are seeing a lot more of the conflict being played out at a very local level and that is worrying because as it fractures it becomes more difficult to try to put the pieces back together again.”

The spike in fighting resulted in South Sudan having the fastest growing refugee population in the world as civilians poured into Uganda. Tens of thousands of civilians have fled to camps within South Sudan that are ringed by U.N. troops.

Peacekeepers have frequently been criticised for failing to do enough to protect civilians but the U.N. leadership says troops are obstructed and restricted by the army.

Places at the table

Analysts and diplomats say regional peace efforts have stumbled for much of the last year as neighbouring Uganda, Ethiopia and Kenya adopted a more bilateral approach to the conflict.

But Shearer was optimistic that a recent meeting of regional leaders in Ethiopia would result in a more collective approach to the crisis.

“There was a sense that they want to rejuvenate the peace agreement and start moving that forward. That collective effort hasn’t been apparent for the last year,” he said.

Machar remains in exile in South Africa, excluded from the process.

Shearer said while regional leaders were reluctant to return to the “old formula” of insisting on a potentially explosive face-to-face between Kiir and Machar, there was recognition that Machar’s camp needed to be represented in talks and he could too, further down the line.

“What we don’t want to do is to encourage a greater degree of conflict or arming of groups in order to be relevant and have a place at the table,” he warned. END

National Dialogue of the deaf and blind is a waste of time

BY: Alhag Paul, South Sudan, JUN/07/2017, SSN;

The dynamics of the National Dialogue have thrown up interesting social realities. One of these realities is the newly emerging willingness of some intellectual members of the Jieng community to speak out openly.

This is a good development because the blanket silence of the Jieng over the horrendous behaviour of their leaders and the regime in Juba is fueling hatred toward them.

The debate on the National Dialogue is offering opportunity for expression of such change. During a meeting on the subject at Westminster University on 28th March 2017, Peter Biar Ajak surprised some by coming clean.

Peter and the other speakers unanimously agreed that if the National Dialogue is to work, President Salva Kiir must not be the patron as he is part of the problem to avoid the issue of partiality of the process.

They also stressed that the National Dialogue must be inclusive and it should be held in a neutral place to ensure security of the participants.

These concerns have been raised internally by the various South Sudanese political groups and externally by international community.

For example, the People Democrat Movement (PDM) produced a detailed comprehensive document on the topic and the Chairperson of the African Union Commission emphasised the need for impartiality and inclusivity during his visit to Yei, South Sudan.

Peter crucially went further to touch the nexus of Dinkocracy to the National Dialogue. Important as it was, it nearly went unnoticed had Peter not brought it to light.

It appeared as if Peter was clear that the stain of Jieng tribalism would make the National Dialogue exercise lose its credibility.

This is not because over 40 percent of the steering committee of the National Dialogue including its leadership is Jieng, but rather because of the emerging picture about the Jieng government following the resignation of Lt. General Thomas Cirillo Swaka and others from the army.

The resignation letters of these patriotic servants of the people laid bare the tribal nature of the army.

Peter highlighted this point powerfully as an academic distancing himself from the tribal regime and appearing to be patriotic. He stated to the audience that, “since the creation of the Jieng Council of Elders (JCE), the structure of the government (of South Sudan) turned into Dinka government. With defection of General Thomas Cirillo now the remaining five Chiefs of the army are Dinka and this is now Dinka militia.”

He went on to say, “Dinka nationalism is becoming a threat to South Sudan”. With this truth, Peter in effect joined a new group of Jieng converts who are now seeing the light and want to act patriotically.

In contrast to Peter’s view, The Sudd Institute in their paper titled, The Dialogue Brief, South Sudan’s National Dialogue: what it should be and why it should be supported dated 31st March 2017 attempts to manipulate its readers.

It deceptively paints the national dialogue of President Kiir as a process that has a huge support throughout the country.

This sort of misinformation and manipulation should not surprise anyone as the Sudd Institute is one of the three Jieng think tanks funded clandestinely by the government of President Kiir.

The others are: Ebony managed by Deng Lual Aciek and Centre for Strategic Analysis and Research managed by Peter Biar Ajak himself.
Peter has spoken the truth.

Dinkocracy reigns supreme in South Sudan. Whether Peter’s expressed truism is honest or not, it does not matter. He has at last demonstrated that as a Jieng he has the capacity to be objective.

It would be wrong to say that Peter of all the Jieng is the first person to state the truth about the regime in Juba. Nearly a decade ago, a Jieng lady called Ayeng Jacqueline and few others complaint against Jieng imperialistic behaviour.

In my article, ‘Tear down the SPLM’: will South Sudanese now respond? I wrote about their novel efforts.

“True South Sudanese like Ayuen Panchol and Ayeng Jacqueline Ajak who expressed her view in “Let’s try to reform our people. A Dinka woman’s point of view on Madi land issue” published in February 2009 by South Sudan Nation are leading the way in the Jieng community to do the right thing for the country.

South Sudanese should stand up with them. They are caring of the country and its people. These are individuals who have demonstrated their human values. They say things as they are.

If South Sudan had the majority of its population with the likes of Ayeng and Ayuen, the country today would be a different place to live in and Oyee would have been history.” (http://www.southsudannewsagency.com/index.php/2012/09/02/tear-down-the-splm-will-south-sudanese-now-respond/)

The disappearance of these patriotic Jieng from the political scene of South Sudan must be a result of Jieng group pressure. As such we the non-Jieng need to support the good Jieng and where possible protect them to counter the tribal pressure exerted on them to conform.

These complaints must not be forgotten because this is the evidence that women are part of the struggle and they should not be made invisible by male dominance as experienced by women worldwide.

Of recent, converts such as Kuir Garang Kuir have been very vocal against the regime and credits should be given where it is due.

This will help in making the Jieng understand that they are not hated but rather it is their imperialistic behaviour that the people do not like.

Therefore, Peter Biar Ajak being a Jieng from Bor will go a long way if he starts to talk the truth about the Jieng occupation of Madi land, Bari land, Chollo land etc.

I have no doubt that people like him can persuade the Jieng to shun their colonial mentality if they so choose to be on the right side of history.

The impact of Jieng imperialistic adventures on the image of the Jieng and above all Jieng relationship with others is so unhealthy to the extent that it risks serious repercussions for the Jieng as a people.

Presently, Jieng unity that enabled them to abuse South Sudanese is in crisis. The Jieng delusionally committed horrendous crimes in believe that they will remain invincible.

Well, in life there is nothing like that. Human beings act in groups primarily as individuals and individuals have personal ambitions which if suppressed may lead to group fissures and ultimately to disunity and conflict.

This process now seems to be taking place among the Jieng. The squabbles in the heart of Jieng power triggered by the removal of Paul Malong from his military position have opened up cracks rippling through their supposed iron cast unity.

Paul Malong now most likely feels bitterly deceived, used and abused by President Kiir. He may virtually be going through emotional and mental turmoil.

To a large extent, he is possibly a person in crisis with the probability of posing danger to himself and the society.

What makes this situation worse is President Kiir’s Machiavellian restrictions on his movements which suggests he is under house arrest.

Worst still, His supporters are being weeded out of the system and disarmed at lightening speed while his opponents such as General Dau Aturjong are being rehabilitated and fast tracked into position of power.

In a nutshell, Paul Malong to President Kiir is now an enemy exactly like Riek Machar. What an irony? The conflict between this two is similarly replicated throughout the entire Jieng tribe mirroring the bigger conflict of the Jieng against the other 63 tribes.

To illustrate the cracks in the Jieng community, look at the following picture.

The Agouk Jieng of Chief Justice Chan Reec are accusing the Apuk Jieng of President Kiir of Apukanising Warrap like they Dinkocratised the country.

The Malual Jieng of Paul Malong are accusing the Apuk and the Agouk of using them as cannon fodder in their war of imperialism in the country.

The Tonj Jieng of Nhial Deng Nhial and Akol Kur are working hard to replace President Kiir.

The Bor Jieng of Michael Makuie are busy strengthening their militia after being armed by the state to start military incursions into Murle, Mundari and Bari lands.

In addition to this the Bor Jieng have started to challenge the Bahr El Ghazal Jieng groups re-igniting their centuries old rivalries.

The question to ask is: where is the supposed unity of the Jieng? Clearly the so called unity of the Jieng is something that is held by the feeling that they own the state of South Sudan which is sheer fantasy.

In 2015 Ambassador Telar Deng emphasised the importance of Jieng unity to hold on to state power in South Sudan.

Holding on to state power without smooth unity is unworkable. The fissures in the Jieng community are unlikely to heal in the short or medium term because it involves deceit and spelled blood (sacrificed Mathiang Anyoor for Jieng glory).

Again, take the classic example of Paul Malong whose character is highly questionable, please see, The coin of power: Gen. Paul Malong aspires for president!! (http://www.southsudannation.com/the-coin-of-power-gen-paul-malong-aspires-for-president/).

He mobilised the Jieng youth in their thousands who they (JCE) then sacrificed on pursuit of the illusion of Jieng supremacy. Now he Malong himself has fallen foul of the very Jieng system he wholeheartedly supported.

Was it really worth it? Is he any better than Riek Machar whom he tried to kill for President Kiir? Should this not serve as a lesson to every Jieng that Dinkocracy does not pay?

If Paul Malong of all Jieng can be trashed like he has, who is the average Jieng? Thus, the Jieng should emancipate themselves from Dinkocracy and adopt democracy.

Paul Malong’s predicament should be a lesson to every one – personal safety and happiness can only be achieved in an authentically democratic state of law and order with a government that protects everyone regardless of tribe, gender, age etc.

Anything other than that is a fantasy and bound to fail.

From the above, unless the Jieng are saved from themselves by honesty of their own tribes mate, they are likely to take all of us down with them. I said this elsewhere and I reiterate it now.

So the good Jieng need to follow the example set by Ayeng Jacqueline, Ayuen Panchol, Kuir Garang ,Peter Biar etc but also go further to join their fellow countrymen in the real struggle against Dinkocracy in other national political movements.

How can South Sudan get a democratic government so that finally the people can begin to experience the benefit of independence?

The panellists at the Westminster University meeting expressed hope that the National Dialogue could be the process.

Also according to Sudan Tribune, Mr David Shearer, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General in South Sudan, believes that the National Dialogue will help in resolving the conflict in the country.

“The national dialogue, initiated by Kiir, is both a forum and process through which the people of South Sudan shall gather to redefine the basis of their unity as it relates to nationhood, redefine citizenship and belonging, as well as restructure the state for national inclusion.” (UN official urges “common strategy” on South Sudan’s political process. http://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article62544)

I would like to argue that the optimism expressed by the panelists and Mr Shearer may be unrealistic. It is possible that Mr Shearer may not have seen the letter written by Cannon Clement Janda dated 3rd May 2017 in which he declined President Kiir’s appointment to the Steering Committee of the National Dialogue.

Cannon Janda listed the following crucial points as reasons why the National Dialogue would not bring peace:
Quote
1. The decree is very vague on the issue of governance of our country. By issuing the decree President Kiir believes that the process of National Dialogue will end up on his desk for his final consideration and or decision. This is totally unacceptably on the issue of how South Sudan is governed and how the present rulers have drained all national blood and wealth can not be considered a serious process.

2. A credible National Dialogue could only be conducted in an atmosphere of complete freedom. That freedom includes freedom of press to all views of the participants without fear and favour. That atmosphere does not exist in present South Sudan.

3. A genuine dialogue must be done after political process and by limited elected persons with authority to air the views of their communities. Being picked makes every individual only loyal to President Salva Kiir and not to their communities. Such a process is worthless.

4. The country is bleeding. Half of its population is either in refuge in foreign countries or rounded up in internally displaced camps. The other half is threatened with man-made famine. Who is there to dialogue?

5. Finally I noticed the majority of the membership of the National Dialogue Steering Committee are people who helped President Kiir to destroy our beloved country. What credibility is there for such persons who should be arraigned in front of an international criminal court to account for their deeds. Is the inclusion into the National Dialogue Steering Committee an attempt to massage their images. Unquote

Cannon Janda’s views are shared by majority of South Sudanese and arguably he could be seen as the voice of the people. He actually has been vindicated after the swearing in of the National Dialogue Steering Committee on 22nd May 2017.

Mr Abel Alier, one of the co-chair has a murky history in South Sudan.

He is not only a tribalist to the bone and the architect of Dinkocracy, but he is the man responsible for dividing South Sudanese by practising tribal discrimination in 1970s as the President of High Executive Council of Regional Government of Southern Sudan.

At the time he Jienganised the police and unleashed it on the other tribes which resulted into the redivision of Southern Sudan into three regions namely: Equatoria, Bahr El Ghazal and Upper Nile.

The Equatorians fought Jieng abuse of power under the slogan – Kokora. Alier singlehandedly is the person responsible for training, mentoring and nurturing the current crop of hardcore tribalists known as JCE.

It is his ideas that waters the tree called JCE. How can such a person as Cannon Janda asked be credible leader of the National Dialogue?

Deducing from the above, Jieng unity is clearly unsustainable and there is a slow realisation among them that their regime is atrophying. Hence, the reasonable ones are now marching into the camp of patriotism.

President Kiir’s launching of the National Dialogue as a vehicle of deception to rescue the regime is experiencing serious resistance and the signs are that it will flop.

This leaves us with only one viable option for solving the problem of South Sudan which is: a National Conference for peace in South Sudan. Such a conference must not be led by IGAD or AU for obvious reasons.

From December 2013, these regional and continental organisations woefully demonstrated beyond doubt immaturity in handling the problem of South Sudan due to their members own interests.

Countries such as Uganda and Kenya could not resist being partial and evidence indicate that their lack of impartiality has actually pushed the country to where it is now.

In South Sudan needs intensive care (https://pachodo.org/latest-news-articles/pachodo-english-articles/7643-south-sudan-needs-intensive-care), IGAD and AU were warned of President Kiir’s introduction of tribal militia and they did nothing and what we have now is a total mess.

Therefore, the proposed conference should be:
a) held outside South Sudan preferably in Tanzania;
b) inclusive of all the stakeholders and,
c) led by one of the renowned elders of the world such as Mr Koffi Annan or Archbishop Desmond Tutu or Ms Mary Robinson with full backing of the Security Council.

I have elsewhere made the last point in few articles couple of years back. I still believe it is the only viable option left.

Finally, the addiction of the Juba regime to violence at any cost to maintain Jieng hegemony and its failure to listen and seriously take advice from the stakeholders and the international community means that the National Dialogue amounts to a partial self dialogue of the deaf and the blind.

Essentially this is an interaction that will be characterised by ‘unresponsiveness’ to the real national crisis and as will be expected, it will not lead into any peace.

So it is utter waste of time and resource though it will help President Kiir in distracting attention of the world from horrors in South Sudan.

[Truth hurts but it is also liberating]
Elhag Paul
elhagpaul@aol.com

South Sudan makes us all look bad: Africa must advice or oust Kiir from power now

By Charles Onyango-Obbo, THE EASTAFRICAN, MAY/17/2017, SSN;

IN SUMMARY:
Africa needs to read the riot act to Kiir to piece the country back together, or marshal an invasion force and oust him if he won’t. South Sudan makes us all look bad.

The sacking of an army chief anywhere in the world, particularly Africa, is usually big news.

But the panicked reaction to the news that South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir fired army head General Paul Malong on Tuesday was extraordinary.

Many feared that the situation could get worse in the world’s newest nation, which has been ravaged by war since Kiir fell out with his deputy Riek Machar, resulting in savage fighting that made many ashamed of knowing the South Sudanese.

They had reason to be afraid. Malong was no longer an ordinary army chief. A polygamist with 40 wives and enough children to fill two villages, he was seen as the puppet master in South Sudan, and Kiir the puppet. He was the hardline Nuer iron fist behind the throne.

On Wednesday, Kiir trotted out the SPLA spokesman to say that Malong had withdrawn with his security guards to outside of the capital, Juba, but was not planning a rebellion.

Maybe he won’t, because the new army chief James Ajongo is alleged to been picked by Malong. He is a kind of Malong lite.

Hopefully, Kiir will now strike a more moderate posture, because he may still have a country, but will soon run out people.

More than 1.8 million South Sudanese have fled the country as refugees, according to the latest UN figures. Most have ended up in Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Sudan.

Uganda hosts most of the refugees, nearly 800,000. In Kampala on Tuesday, Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda said the country would next month seek $2 billion at a UN refugee summit in Kampala to help fund relief operations for the South Sudanese refugees.

With a population of 12.4 million, South Sudan has made nearly 15 per cent of its population refugees in fewer than four years.

In addition, more than 3.5 million people have been internally displaced since the fighting erupted in mid-December 2013.

If the war doesn’t end, and intensifies, in another three or so years more than 25 per cent of South Sudanese could be refugees. And if the number of IDPs were also to double over the same period, accounting for those who will have been slaughtered in war, fallen to disease, or starved to death in the famine, virtually the whole population of South Sudan would be living outside their homes and off their land.

For a country like Uganda, the prospect of say two million South Sudanese pouring into the country by 2020 is scary, its much-praised refugee policy notwithstanding.
The only place where the South Sudanese are living properly at home could be the street on which Kiir lives in Juba.

That is overdramatised, yes, but it is to make the point that Africa must finally do something bold to stop the madness in South Sudan.

Among other things, it should ensure that Malong leaves South Sudan, either by force, or by being paid off Yahya Jammeh-style. He has a lot of prime real estate in Nairobi and Kampala, and a small country of a family to feed, so he may be susceptible to generous inducements.

And Africa needs to read the riot act to Kiir to piece the country back together, or marshal an invasion force and oust him if he won’t. South Sudan makes us all look bad.

Charles Onyango-Obbo is publisher of data visualiser Africapaedia and Rogue Chiefs. Twitter@cobbo3

INSIDE STORY: Why Kiir Sacked Malong & the Failed Assassination of Taban Deng

By: Dickens H Okello, CHIMPREPORTS, May/14/2017, SSN;

The attack on the convoy of First Vice President Taban Deng on Tuesday on its way to Bor was a planned assassination to frame army Chief Gen. Paul Malong, arrest and kill him in a staged rescue.

Trouble between President Kiir, Malong and Intelligence Chief, Akol Koor stemmed from plans to deploy SPLA in Bor.

The sacking of SPLA Chief of General Staff, Gen. Paul Malong on Tuesday evening was expected but also an audacious move by President Salva Kiir.

Since his appointment during the height of internal war in South Sudan in early 2014, Malong became so powerful in the army, trimming the influence of then Defense Minister Kuol Manyang Juk.

It is widely believed that Malong was positioning himself to succeed Kiir due to his vast influence in the army.

Malong’s influence has undoubtedly been a challenge to those near the president and definitely Kiir himself.

This investigative website received and has been corroborating reports from intelligence sources in South Sudan and the region since Tuesday night.

Genesis of the trouble

According to a source at the National Intelligence and Security Service, the insecurity in Bor over tribal struggle between Murle community and Jonglei youths, caused disharmony between Kiir and Malong.

President Kiir reportedly issued a memo ordering the deployment of SPLA in Bor since Jonglei youths had refused to withdraw from Murle tribe territory.

Malong ignored the order and instead asked Kiir and the Director of National Intelligence Security Service in charge of Internal Security Bureau, Lt. Gen. Akol Koor Kuch to leave the matter to him.

A crisis meeting was immediately called by the president at the presidential palace commonly known as J1.

The meeting became so hot, generating serious verbal exchanges between Malong and Akol as Kiir watched them in disbelief.

Malong reportedly picked his small stick from the table and hit Akol on the shoulder though the aim was his head.

The meeting then ended without a resolution.

Assassination plot

After the open show of arrogance and power by Malong, a general in the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) was reportedly given orders from “above” to “handle” the belligerent army chief.

We have withheld the name of the NISS general for security reasons.

The visit of the First Vice President, Gen. Taban Deng to the same area (Bor) was due and hence the great opportunity to also get Malong.

The NISS strategists and operatives quickly arranged a plot to take out Taban Deng in a planned shootout and immediately release a report blaming Malong for the incident.

Malong would later be arrested and detained for killing the First Vice President.

A choreographed rescue attempt by the pro government militia, Mathiang Anyor who were largely recruited and trained by Malong, would happen, spark a deadly shootout and the latter shot in the struggle.

Malong reportedly got the intelligence and tried his best to foil the assassination.

“He was lucky to get the intel before its execution. I think it’s beyond luck,” a source in NISS told ChimpReports.

On Tuesday morning at exactly 10:00am, the convoy of Taban Deng moving to Bor was attacked between Tameza and Sudan Safari area.

The official report from government said 3 bodyguards were wounded but according to sources about 2 dozen soldiers lost their lives.

“Bodies were littered everywhere. There was serious blood bath in about a football field (area),” the source who reached the scene some minutes after the attack said.

“It was a short lethal combat exchange. The attackers disappeared without a trace and no one was picked.”

Taban Deng on Tuesday didn’t use his convoy but instead took a plane to Bor. The change in the plan was reportedly made Tuesday early morning.

Meanwhile, Malong had started ferrying arms from the army headquarters in Bilpam, Juba to his home area in Aweil, immediately he got the intelligence to terminate his life.

The armory in Bilpam is now said to be “almost empty”.

“Guns have moved from Bilpam to Aweil. It’s a difficult situation for Kiir now,” a source at army headquarters said.

Malong left Juba on Wednesday early morning without handing over to his successor or communicating to Kiir.

Kiir confirmed in a press conference at J1 on Thursday that he had to initiate communication with Malong and ask him to return to Juba.

“Personally, I am communicating with the former Chief of Staff, General Malong,” Kiir said.

Succession

The original 3 allies of Kiir who were believed to succeed him after his departure are former Foreign Affairs Minister, Nhial Deng, Malong and Akol Koor.

Since December when Malong’s influence became a source of tension in the Juba regime, the succession talks zeroed on Nhial Deng and Akol.

It is now largely believed that Kiir wants the intelligence chief, Akol Koor to succeed him and he has been the first general to openly talk bad about Malong after latter’s sacking.

Pres. Salva Kiir sacks murderer and tribal ally, SPLA chief Paul Malong but appoints Malong’s Dinka relative as next chief

From Various sources, MAY/06/2017, SSN;

South Sudan President Salva Kiir sacked his powerful, hardline army chief Paul Malong on Tuesday, a government spokesman said.

General Paul Malong, long regarded as an ethnic supporter of Kiir’s majority Dinka tribe, was replaced by General James Ajongo Mawut, a close relative of the fired ex-chief. Not surprisingly, Malong has quickly made an about turn and is on his way back to Juba and possible reconciliation with president Kiir.

Not surprisingly to most South Sudanese, President Kiir chose to appoint another Dinka as Chief of Staff to replace the dismissed Dinka chief, a move seen by most other South Sudanese as a perpetuation of the tribal tyranny and domination as well as to continue with the tribal way currently being perpetuated by Kiir’s tribe against the majority.

Meanwhile, Ater Achuil Chol, representative of the Aweil leaders, thanked President Kiir for appointing James Ajongo as the new army chief.

“I am talking on behave of the leaders of Aweil. We thank the president for appointing our son James Ajongo as SPLA chief of staff, so we are very grateful, we stand behind our son to unite the forces to work for the unity of this country,” he said.

“The decrees are two: one for the relief of Chief of General Staff, General Paul Malong Awan, and another decree is for the appointment of former Deputy Chief of General Staff for Administration and Finance General James Ajongo Mawut as the Chief of General Staff,” Kiir’s spokesmen Ateny Wek Ateny told AFP.

Ateny said the move was a routine changing of personnel. “This is a position that can be held between two years and four years and Malong has spent three years so this is the prerogative of the president” he said.

In February several senior army officers resigned, accusing Malong of conducting an ethnic war against non-Dinkas and ruling with an “unqualified clique of friends and relatives”.

Among those who quit was Lieutenant-General Thomas Cirillo who has since announced plans to launch his own rebellion.

Malong is widely regarded as being the mastermind of fighting that erupted in the capital, Juba, last July killing hundreds and dashing hopes of a power-sharing government between Kiir and his former deputy turned rebel leader Riek Machar, a member of the Nuer tribe.

ECONOMY COLLAPSES: While critics say the economy of South Sudan has now “technically collapsed” and that no measures can rescue it, traders are calling for government intervention.

“The economy is now biting, people are suffering, prices of commodities have tripled. It’s only those in authority who can survive the current economic situation. Everyone in villages is crying out for help,” said Lojur Molu, a concerned South Sudanese.

Government officials in Juba, who earn about 1,500 SSP, cannot afford to feed their families and have opted to take their children and wives to refugee camps in Uganda, according to a senior Uganda police officer.

“In 2013, if a government worker was earning an equivalent of Shs700,000 as a salary per month, he would now earn only Shs2,000 if he continues to earn at the same rate,” the source told this newspaper last week, suggesting the crisis is compounded by the shortage of dollar.

“The government in Juba spent all its US dollars in the conflict,” the police officer said.

The Dinka and the Nuer are the two largest ethnic groups in South Sudan and have a history of bloody rivalry.

UN investigators were among those who blamed Malong for the bloody attacks in July in which civilians were killed and foreign aid workers raped.

The US subsequently failed to get Malong sanctioned and put on a UN blacklist, subject to an assets freeze and travel ban, for his role in the ongoing conflict.

South Sudan has been at war since December 2013 when Kiir fell out with Machar, accusing him of plotting a coup.

The conflict — characterised by brutality and human rights violations — has triggered famine in parts of the country, forced millions from their homes and killed tens of thousands so far.