Category: National

Sour politics of conflict and suspicion due to adversarial relationship between SPLM leaders

BZ: Akot Marial, SOUTH SUDAN, MAR/30/2013, SSN;

South Sudan is increasingly and ominously gripped by a palpable anxiety and fear in the preparation for SPLM forthcoming National Convention which precedes the expiration of the five-year term of the SPLM leadership, culminating with four SPLM luminaries expressing their interests for the top job.

Among them are Dr. Riek Machar, Pagan Amum, Madam Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior and James Wani Igga. All of whom except James Wani who’s decided to throw his weight behind Mayardit, but the rest plainly vowed challenging the incumbent SPLM Chairman Salva Kiir Mayardit in the run up to the National Convention.

Several failed attempts have been made by SPLM highest political organ, the Political Bureau, to put its house in order and to go to the national convention with just one voice as per 2008 convention, but found it outrageous this time round to convince the contestants to submit to Mayardit for another 5 year term in office.

The contenders are expressing their dissatisfaction that under Kiir’s Chairmanship, the SPLM has lost its vision and direction and needs to be rebuilt, which of course has to gain a popular support among the party members.

Eight years down the line have shown no proficiency in handling of party affairs and the nation as a whole given the current economic crisis, rampant insecurity, corruption, rebellion in the part of Jonglei and regular SAF incursion at the border areas of Kiir Addem, Warguet, Jau, to mention a few even after the withdrawal of our gallant forces.

All these amount to believing that Mayardit is losing popularity. Thus for him not to jeopardize his good deeds to the people of South Sudan, it’s therefore advisable that he should retire early and allow the party to select the best candidate among the contestants to lead the Country to the next level based on democratic principles.

Pres. Kiir has been given due respect as father of the nation and being a hero for the many remarkable achievements that he has done during the last civil war and for sailing our Country through to the shore of Independence.

As the nation gears for the ruling party national Convention, it has become a topic of discussions among the South Sudanese populace on the street and in public places both in the states and Juba. This proves a fragile situation in our Country that a wild rumour can grip the nation so quickly indicating the uncertainty and nervousness that underlie the body politic of our young nation, and graphically illustrating how precarious and precious is the stability of this recently independent State.

Nonetheless, the rumour of power struggle within SPLM rank and file masquerading as a fact surrounding the race for the top job of who will become the chairperson of SPLM as well as flag bearer come 2015 in the next convention among the SPLM luminaries.

The president of the Republic oscillated between a certain audacity and a prudent realism and indeed, that perpetual oscillation between despair and distracted joy of running a fair party politics or being rigged to widen the already despairing views of our Country.

President Kiir’s Speech during the Independent celebration on 9th July, 2011, outlining of his Vision for the future is for calmer and more confident South Sudan where endless confrontations no longer dominate the domestic agenda.

But the fate of our Country is still in the melting-pot where some leaders still think along tribal lines or rather the so-called greater regions, whatever you call them, is the cancerous disease that kills in the midst of the spirit of nationalism and unity of our people. I want to see a nation where political differences do not mean personal antagonism.

A nation which can hold its head up proudly as the nucleus of a new dynamic economic region. Above all, a nation that is free to concentrate her energies on progress and development. Only in this way shall we be able to harness our energies and confront our single greatest challenge, the challenge of poverty.

Another point of contention is how to achieve a permanent Constitution which is the supreme law of the land. It’s crystal clear that making of a constitution required the participation of its citizens and would have been tantamount that any Constitutional Review process should come after the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) convention as the two are very much interconnected when the political temperature had cooled.

But after subsequent Political Bureau meetings, little did we know that the ruling party elites would fail to forge a common ground of reaching political consensus as to who will become the SPLM chairperson and flag bearer among the SPLM leaders come 2015.

Lines have already been drawn whether on tribal backing or making allies within the perimeters of the ruling party in readiness of either unseating or maintaining the current status quo.

Britain, the United States, Japan and a number of European Union Countries condemned the excessive use of force on media censorship and silencing of journalists like the killing of political commentator, late Isaiah Abraham, and more especially our relationship with the United States of America is shaky due to alleged support to rebels in the north.

Meanwhile, the world superpowers failed to see the daily support rendered to David Yau Yau rebel in Jonglei by the Sudan government. Another case in point why the West abruptly distanced itself from our Country is that corruption is a controversial phenomenon which has attracted international censure.

Most of South Sudanese citizens condemn the doom-laden chatter of tribalism, nepotism, corruption and lack of cohesiveness among our people, saying that it would consume those who created it.

For as the silence about the forthcoming SPLM National convention sets in, with looming realignment of existing political structure, only if not handled with utmost political maturity may lead to possible split should either side lose the Chair.

This will send a signal that things won’t augur well ahead and in the aftermath of the SPLM National Convention unless otherwise our leaders put aside their political antagonism and instead strengthen the legitimacy of our new Country on a solid foundation where tribes, hatred, corruption and ethnicity don’t dominate the national agenda.

Akot Marial, is a South Sudanese citizen living in South Sudan and could be reach on akotmarial@yahoo.com

Does South Sudan hold any developmental paradigms?

BY: Chier Akueny Anyithiec, Aweil, NBGS, MAR/29/2013, SSN;

Untiring complaints from general public of South Sudan continue to rise day by day except for a small group which finds this system of governance good for having the chances of gaining in it. The question remains whether we are safe in this country. This is happening because the current government never met South Sudanese’ expectations due to the fact that the ruling Party, SPLM, failed to realize the reason for our long historic struggle.

I don’t know whether we lost fundamentalists during the struggle or else we are then moving in no direction. However, the fact always repeats itself and my writing mostly is based on economical issues since it does not matter to me whether somebody understands it in the wrong way or supports it but just to say it because it is the fact.

South Sudan as a young nation is engulfed with lots of problems which will never end unless we act as early as possible. Take for instance, that South Sudan is leading in terms of settled number of International NGOs, in addition to the indigenous ones, but yet it is the very country with the lowest level of employment in Africa and also indeed with the lowest level of education, as outsiders claim so.

But I do always dispute this because the war which took long, exactly two decades, while some of South Sudanese have been moving on with their education.

However, if in case this situation exists, the few youth holding Certificates, Diplomas, Degrees, leave alone Masters and PHD who are unmentioned. They are not harnessing their talents because the country is totally hijacked by a wrong ideology with basically foreign motives in one way or another to exploit this nation at the expense of poor South Sudanese.

Our notion of having a Ministry of Public services and Human Resources is in muted glimpse because our government did not realize of what kind of ministry is available.

While our big people at all times stick to wrong obsession which they always say that our young people don’t want to work, yes, they don’t want to work but where are the vacancies for sure?

It is of a great axiom that South Sudan is a new nation with lot of chances but these chances have been taken over by foreigners because they find us as people without aims or objectives. This is the situation you find that all foreigners are the marketers, drivers, officers, Human resources personnel especially in NGOs and in public companies and they are exactly the most well-paid group.

The secret of not allowing serious qualified citizens to top positions in NGOs, Companies, etc, is very high leaving the youth with nothing. As I am writing this article today, the number of foreigners working in the private sector in this country is 80% compared to 20% for the citizens.

But why should we allow this evil act for sure?

The chances of working in hotels are totally forgotten because energetic and skilled South Sudanese have been already blocked out. It took me three consecutive months, as a Degree holder, moving around Juba and my aim is to get a job in the hotel industry but my struggle was in vain and up to now, I failed to secure one.

Why? Where are these people who always say South Sudanese don’t want to work? Who always says this really? Is it President Kiir or his top group who say this untrue statement? I don’t see the reason to why our dear President established the ministry of Human Resources and Public Services? It is a ministry which doesn’t know its works and the reasons for which it really exists.

Furthermore, it is not only a single ministry that has failed us, however this particular ministry knows what is truly affecting South Sudanese young people. How can they only approve adverts but not persons that are employed?

Oh! I see they don’t consider which types or kinds of persons will take those positions; whereby you find NGOs deciding for themselves. For sure, this has become an interesting country with nothing but oratorical things happening against the living of simple citizens.

The development of a country is tackled in many ways which need rules, guidelines and some developmental paradigms that make a country have proper directives for the smooth running of the country’s affairs.

By Chier Akueny Anyithiec, currently in Aweil,
Can be reached at 0912701780

A Federal system and Kokora are two different things

BY: Jacob K. Lupai, JUBA, MAR/18/2013, SSN;

The concept that a federal system and kokora are two different things is to address some confusion in people’s minds. In the context of South Sudan some people may perceive a federal system and kokora as synonymous. However, it can be asserted that a federal system and kokora are altogether two different things. The confusion arises from a negative perception of kokora.

People need to be made aware that a federal system and kokora are not synonymous. They need some education to be confident to see the difference. One way of educating people is through the definition of kokora in contrast to a federal system. This hopefully may shed some light on the difference between a federal system and kokora.

Kokora
Kokora is not an English word and so cannot be found in any English dictionary. It is a word in the language used by one ethnic group, the Karo ethnic group, of Equatoria. The Karo ethnic group is composed of the Bari, Kakwa, Kuku, Mundari, Nyangwara and the Pojulu. In translating the work kokora into English, it may simply mean division. In 1983 kokora became a famous catchword in South Sudan.

In 1972 South Sudan was granted the status of one region through an agreement (Addis Ababa Agreement) concluded to end a civil war. As a single region South Sudan was administered through a high executive council headed by a president with a council of ministers. Previously South Sudan was composed of three provinces known as Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile separately answerable to the central government in Khartoum in the old Sudan. However, the agreement unified the three provinces into a single entity, the southern region.

In the southern region people of the former province of Equatoria agitated for decentralization. In contrast, the majority of non-Equatorians were vehemently opposed to the decentralization of the southern region into three regions corresponding to its former provinces of Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile. The situation became reminiscent of people in a tag-of-war. There was neither mutual understanding nor a middle way as suggested by Arop Madut-Arop in his book, ‘The Genesis of Political Consciousness in South Sudan.’

Arop Madut-Arop’s conviction was that the division of the southern region into three regions of Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile should have been accepted but under an umbrella authority of the High Executive Council then. This was interesting. Had the southern politicians picked this up the situation might have been different and also the word kokora might not have been conceived as it was then.

Eventually when the southern region was divided into three regions of Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile, the Karo word kokora became synonymous with the division of the southern region, the division which was negatively perceived and vehemently opposed by non-Equatorians who strongly felt Equatorians wanted them out of Equatoria by all means. It is not therefore strange that the strong feeling against kokora lives on as a result of the division of the then southern region.

The feeling of people towards kokora may explain the confusion in people’s minds between a federal system and kokora. Some people imagine that a call for a federal system is in fact a call for the division of South Sudan exactly the way the division of the southern region took place in 1983 and the subsequent departure of non-Equatorians from Equatoria.

Federal system
Hardly any argument will be made for the merit of a federal system. It is rather to articulate that a federal system is not the dreaded kokora which took place in a hostile atmosphere. By then politicians across South Sudan were unfortunately in bitter opposite camps with less focus on a middle way forward as people of one destiny.

A federal system should not be seen as a target against political opponents or a way of throwing out those who belong to other regions or states. It is not a political tool to discriminate but rather a tool that is used to promote national unity in diversity. Many countries in the world use a federal system without being fussy. Why should South Sudan be so unique not to adopt a federal system while it is a country full of diversities?

Kokora is already history. It is now thirty years since kokora first appeared in the scene. The population of people under 30 years old in South Sudan is 72.1 per cent. The implication is that the majority of population of South Sudan was not yet born when kokora took place. The question is why should a tiny minority of old people prejudice the energetic youth who are the future leaders of this country. Kokora is now being used falsely to warn people of divisions perceived as detrimental to national unity.

It is obvious that national unity is of paramount importance. What matters, though, is how to attain national unity. National unity cannot be attained by lecturing others. It is something that all have to work for. As in the SPLM Manifesto 2012 the Chairman, Salva Kiir Mayardit, said, “A new nation comes with new challenges. We must face challenges with innovative solutions and a bold approach”.

We need an innovative and bold approach such as exploring a federal system that is unique to South Sudan in promoting national unity instead of being paralysed by paranoia of kokora. Kokora as it is now history, unfortunately, uprooted non-Equatorians from Equatoria. Nevertheless, it was not only non-Equatorians who were uprooted but Equatorians were also uprooted from the other regions. The pain of kokora was shared. So living in the past is not going to be helpful in nation building.

We may need to be liberated from the paranoia of kokora. This is in order to be rational in charting the way forward in attaining national unity because a federal system is not the same as kokora. At any rate it is the human being to make any system capable of delivering adequate services.

For example, human weakness in the system in upholding the rule of law may see an increase in crimes being committed hence rampant insecurity that may be a threat to national unity.

Unity of South Sudan
How to promote the unity of South Sudan is a challenge. A centralized unitary system is considered by some as the guarantor of unity. However, what this does in a country of a very low literacy rate and where people are inclined to be too tribalistic is the encouragement of disunity.

A decentralized system is claimed to be operational but the reality is that it is more of a centralized system. Others have claimed that South Sudan is already applying a federal system. This is false. A federal system is not being applied. Those prejudiced are resistant because of what appears to be a hangover caused by kokora.

What appears to be a hangover caused by kokora is nothing but a guilt feeling for unforgivable crude behavior which I one time called medieval behavior. It is not kokora but the crude behavior that makes people suspicious that a call for a federal system is a ploy to throw them out, for example, from Equatoria.

This is, of course, ridiculous. A federal system has nothing to do with throwing people out from this or that region or from a state for that matter.

A federal system is for an equitable sharing of power and wealth for the benefit of people regardless of their region, tribal, cultural and political background. Arguably, a federal system is not the creation of tribal homelands. What is important is a strong central government that has an iron fist to deliver.

A hot line of communication for consultation, cooperation and coordination between the centre and the regions should be established in promoting national unity. There are mechanisms of creating a unique federal system for South Sudan that will address the fear of kokora.

Appropriate system
As to what is the appropriate system for South Sudan is a matter of opinion. However, worldwide support for a federal system is greater today than ever before because of a growing conviction that it enables a country to have the best of both worlds, those of shared rule and self-rule, coordinated national government and diversity, creative experimentation and liberty.

In South Sudan a centralized system is being adopted but it seems the centralized system is not delivering basic services as expected. There is regional disparity, rampant insecurity and stagnation in development. How can national unity be promoted is such a situation?

It may be appropriate to try something else. When the fear of kokora is overcome, the appropriate system will be a federal system. This is because a federal system enables a country to have the best of both worlds, those of shared rule and self-rule. This can only be good in promoting national unity in diversity in South Sudan.

Conclusion
It is hoped that the difference between a federal system and kokora has been satisfactorily elaborated. The fear of kokora should not be unduly the fear of a federal system for South Sudan. It was understandable what the trauma of kokora thirty years ago had on people. It might have been an unforgettable experience for those innocent ones. However, apportioning blame won’t be of any useful purpose in the search for a better way forward because it takes two to quarrel.

We either carry ourselves together or we all fall. What is important is for people to be open-minded for governance that works for inclusiveness as the vision is to build an inclusive secular democratic developmental state according to the SPLM Manifesto 2012.

It is hoped it is now clear that a federal system and kokora are two different things. In all, people should rest assured that the adoption of a federal system is not kokora or a ploy. Nothing will change in the way of movement of people out of Equatoria.

Inter-personal and community relations may improve as there will be reduction in crude behaviours which have been the source of antagonism. For example, such a crude behavior as grabbing land or plots of legitimate owners or disrespect for the rule of law will not be rampant as it is.

This, however, does not mean that people with inherent crude behavior would have been ejected or thrown out of Equatoria. What that means is that in a federal system there may likely to be a behavioral change for the better.

In conclusion, Equatoria is an integral part of South Sudan. So the fearful of a federal system that it is kokora and that they will be thrown out of Equatoria should relax, for Equatoria is a home to any South Sudanese like Bahr el Ghazal or Upper Nile which can also be a home to any South Sudanese.

Who is a patriotic South Sudanese?

BY: Deng Mangok Ayuel, AWEIL, NBGS, MAR/14/2013, SSN;

“To oppose corruption in government is the highest obligation of patriotism ― G. Edward Griffin”

Dying for the sake of liberation for justice, freedom and democracy were jingoistic confidence in Dr.John Garang’s SPLM/SPLA which brought our independence. However, South Sudan as a newly born country in Africa has never been fairly breathing politically at times. This is because the ruling party is not given a break by individuals who think they can do things better than those who fought for decades. It is surprising to have had fought for decades and botched to unite as South Sudanese and a political family in democratic world. The unity of purpose or political rationale needs collective hands and minds for nation buildings. It is a work for all.

Whenever there is peace in hearts, there is hope or love among the people – that hatred, corruption, tribal conflicts and cattle raiding are evil exertions that can bring shame to the society. Experience taught us how to be the masters and servants of our doings. We must change our traditional ways of approaching issues in the country. Poverty has been residing in our minds and soul, simply rooting corruption in our institutions.

Who is a patriotic South Sudanese? Where isa patriotic South Sudanese in me? I am forcing back tears of pride at my South Sudanism. It is my moral outlook to grieve, tell the truth and join hands with others to work together than blaming, criticizing anyone. This is my own idiosyncratic thoughts of ‘patriotism’ and I believe that many South Sudanese have impending hopes for their future. I shouldn’t stop doing what I have been doing. I have to contribute for the success of our nation.

Amid our political disagreements, patriotism — an entrenched love of our country — remains striking a hungry hole in hearts that has the potential to bring us together, particularly at times of national reconciliation. Is it easy for South Sudanese to reconcile and forgive each others?

It is better for those who wronged others to apologize before reconciliation. This shows that anyone can make mistakes but acceptance of wrongdoings upshots to forgiveness. I urge everyone to embrace a culture of peace, love and political togetherness to stop corruption and tribalism.

Within my own painstaking rational tribe of thoughts, patriotism is sometimes considered as a ‘political problem,’ – chauvinistic that is morally fitting to be protected by South Sudanese constitution and human rights activists. Every South Sudanese has a tone to voice, regardless of political background, tribe and education. Of course, freedom of expression is not freedom of obligation; I am afraid to pronounce that ‘constructive criticism’ is oil to politics.

A patriot is a person who loves, supports, and defends his/her country. While it is true that in a democracy, citizens/politicians are free to embrace their own individual positions in a fair opposition to the government’s because there is no country without opposition if there is a need to oppose.

Patriotism is in the end, unifying. “United we stand, divided we fall.” This aphorism captures the spirit of what it means to be a patriot. While we may have differences, we still share a common bond in wishing the best for our country. Indeed, for the most part, it cannot be disputed that patriotism calls for people to stand together. Taking pride in one’s nation and proudly representing it – my country, my people.

Be it a soldier, a civil servant, a politician, or everyday citizen. To be a patriot however, doesn’t mean that you need to publicly announce your love of nation. It can be a private, personal pride. After all, patriotism at its core is a feeling and voluntary. There is no need for patriot to cry through writings.

The idealistic problem of patriotism is blind ‘self-perfection’ and intellectual assumption of oneself as the better person among 8 million South Sudanese. Some people think of patriotism as natural and proper zeal of affection to one’s own country in which he/she was born, raised and fought for the benefits of life on its soil, among its people, and under its laws. They also consider patriotism an imperative part of our identity.

Some go further, and argue that patriotism is morally binding, or even that it is the core of integrity. There is, however, a major tradition in moral thinking which understands morality as fundamentally universal and impartial, and seems to rule out local, partial relation and loyalty. It is you, who is a patriot, that all you should do is to be honest, willing, transparent and accountable.

Patriotism has many eyes in political South Sudan. On 9th July, 2011, my colleagues and I celebrated the day to remember our fallen heroes and heroines. It was the genesis of our political achievement in which you and I deserve the right to enjoy the fruits of the struggle. Therefore patriotism versus nationalism but in one –!

According to George Orwell’s contrast as I quoted, “Nationalism is about power. Its adherent wants to acquire as much power and prestige as possible for his nation, in which he submerges his individuality. Patriotism is a devotion to a particular place and a way of life one thinks best, but has no wish to impose on others. Nationalism is aggressiveness and patriotism is defensiveness.”

When we celebrated the day – we were patriots and nationalists in our pending desires. Some of us have different interests that need unique strategies. It is about employment – either political, civil service, private sector job or joke vacancies. However, patriotism and nationalism are distinguished in expressions of the strength of the love and unique concern one feels for it, the degree of one’s recognition with it.

South Sudan is for everyone. If you feel that things are diverging, the good way is constructive dialogue and informative media approaches to create awareness and problem-solving mechanisms. The cure for fire is not fire.

South Sudan’s independence from the Republic of Sudan on July 9, 2011 was met with joy, hope, worries and many challenges. Despite the fact that South Sudan is gifted with large amounts of natural resources, the country faces hindrances. These included a population suffering from invincible poverty and cattle raiding; extremely low levels of human capital amassing, food insecurity, poorly developed economic infrastructure, invasive bureaucratic corruption and political opposition for nothing. As mentioned there is nobody to blame, our country is new and needs patience than oppositions. Patriotism is not opposition.

Patriotism has a fair number of critics. The morality of writing to inform is, writing to die or stop writing to forget anything anywhere by everyone when it is enemizing. Are opinion writers patriots? Be it. I wanted to be an enemy to English vocabularies only – ‘English words’ not English or South Sudanese. And I am fighting now with my keyboard on the computer in order to avoid confrontation with words by those who usually disagree with anyone.

All in all, patriotism is not a disgrace at all. It sounds like this as they put it: “on my honor, I will do my best to perform my duty to God and my country.”

In my previous article titled, South Sudan: prides of our generation, and in my own wordings, “South Sudanese are great people. I graphed how uncles have balanced their lifetime as rebels during the civil war in Sudan and after separation as politicians in the Republic of South Sudan. They are patriots with hearts for their people and the next generation. There has been optimism in what they had been doing – that we have been socially and politically ordained by their visionary success in which you and I are now South Sudanese. There is no better time than now. The time to work, dream, excel and forget the past. It is our time to make things happen, milk our dream or enjoy the fruits of success.

Deng Mangok Ayuel lives in Aweil. He can be reached at: mangokson@gmail.com

We’ll neither improve nor forget under the SPLM Oyee regime

BY: Akic Adwok Lwaldeng, RSS, MAR/07/2013, SSN;

It has been the toughest year since we become free from Jallaba, more people are struggling to cope with rising situation in our beloved country, many are feeling the pain and disappointed about the incompetent Government in Juba. At a time when some of our citizens are travelling back to neighboring countries for safety, our country has been ruined by our selfish SPLM Oyee leaders, eight out of ten people say they are worried about the soon-to-be unstable country.

Everyone knows that shutting the oil down was wrong and a madness, no plan B, just hoping instead that Sudan Government will collapse. Hitherto, the oil revenues were spent unwisely, and some revenues went to individual bank accounts. It is a disgrace by the SPLM ruling party to misuse the power for their selfish ends.

I do not know any country in this world where stealing is as cool as in our country. In the a couple of years coming, if we’re still under this corrupted regime, we will have probably the highest density of thieves in the whole East Africa, maybe Africa.

Today there are more thieves in this government including some MPs in the National Assembly (JUBA) than before in the times of General Joseph Lagu and Justice Abel Alier, if I am not mistaken.

Stealing and deceiving or cheating are the most vices committed in South Sudan among the awful things in the human history and it’s a sin. However, I was brought up in the tribe where they consider that any acts leading in dishonesty are prohibited, eventually, you and your family will be denounced as evil in the community.

Even people will create a song in your family`s name and not that alone but no one will marry from your family, nevertheless, nowadays you can find some of my fellow tribes-people in this government are collaborating with dark hands from other communities where stealing and other evil acts are legitimate.

What is the source of this moral decadence that has permeated our society? Take a look at the top leadership of the nation, we have a president and vice president who are never letting any opportunity go by, they are reminding us that they are there to destroy our National wealth, in which both are the champions of corruption. And a null leadership character.

How we define corruption in this dispensation, I do not know. But the international community has put us at the extreme point of corruption index in the world. Forget World Bank and IMF, that the same organizations have found that the overwhelming percentage of this corruption takes place in our country is unbelievable. However, corruption, according to the presidency definition, is only when money is transferred to personal accounts.

Remember, allegedly that the President and some of his friends bought houses outside of our country at over over Millions of dollars. Assuming that he/she did not spend a penny of his salary since he started earning a living, there is no way he/she could has saved such money those days, even taking into consideration the alleged bank loans. How have those loans been repaid?

Think back, a former Finance minister, he is a closed friend of our president. He embezzled close to a billion dollars with his cohorts. This money was money meant for infrastructures and paying local and national services in the country.

He was arrested before he escaped the prison, yet our President did not fire or discipline him. Not only that, but last year 75 ministers and officials of SPLM/A stole our public funds with no shame. And he allegedly instructed that they will be tried in the future, nothing happened until the present.

We know that our president has been as silent as a lamb. These fellow thieves will be quietly investing their looted money on the properties outside of the country.

As South Sudan continues its bleeding, an overwhelming percentage of the best brains in the land are abroad. There are more intellectuals living overseas than are in South Sudan.

At home, half-baked and semi-illiterates are ruling us and ruining the country and they do not have any clue in the international politics and economy.

Given our resources, we should plan on launching satellites, instead our leaders go to shrines to swear to alien deities. I know some of them go for black magic that convinces them that he/she can hold up their positions if she/he can kill and harm their fellow human beings. Yet, we are not discriminating enough to ask ourselves why he/she lives in such squalid poverty and ill-health.

South Sudan may be one of (depending on which information you choose) the greatest oil producer in our continent (Africa), yet South Sudan is listed as one of the poorest country on earth. But individual South Sudanese are among the richest people in East Africa according to the BBC reports.

In short, this current government’s concept has destroyed our society; therefore, we all as a community should say with loud voice that enough is enough, we can’t go further.

Or we will start honoring the corrupt and the thieves with various titles, each title dotted with specified amounts. The only qualification for such honors is nothing other the bank accounts of their own and-or their children. Rather, such honor should go to the humble heroes’ widows and widowers, who work hard daily to barely scrape a living.

Missing from such lists are hard working honest people whose only disqualification is their bank account.

Finally, I am certain we will not give-up or dampen the spirit of our unity that will help us to discover the true meaning of the country. As the wise man says, the greatest gift which you can give to your people is unity and solidarity and it cost nothing.

But all that will not come through if the current thieves, SPLM Oyee regime, is still ruling us.

Akic Adwok Lwaldeng
adwokn@yahoo.co.uk

Politics of Self Determination still lingers in South Suan.

By: Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, MAR/05/2013, SSN;

“United we stand, divided we fall.” This very old phrase has been used in mottoes, from nations and states to songs. The concept is that if people are not united, they can be easily destroyed. No one understands this phrase any better than the people of South Sudan who had to struggle for their independence – fighting wars after wars for almost half a century.

But in fact it is also this very people who understand the opposite side of this phrase which they too adopted to garner international recognition for their self determination of the state of South Sudan as they fought for secession from the united Sudan. In a total agreement with the reverse used by Def Leppard in the song “When Love & Hate Collide,” “..divided we stand, baby, united we fall,” south Sudanese overwhelmingly voted to break the unity with Khartoum in January 2011. What goes around, comes around – but we shall come to that later in this article.

The second Equatoria Conference

Following the second Equatoria Conference held in Juba between 14 – 15 February 2013, the nascent state of South Sudan is now treading a route well known to all its citizens both at home and in the Diaspora. Indisputably this second conference has so far succeeded to bring the new country’s elites face to face with the horrors of ethnically driven political agendas which are already eating up the very foundation of what is left of its “ all but talks” national unity project.

Even in so doing this article in its humble attempt to shed light on the current turn in the politics of the country, the author is aware of the fact that it might not even add much to what is already the “day to day politics” of a land and a people seriously arrested in time and development. As a direct consequence of a gross misrule and poor governance that started the post independence South Sudan on the wrong footing, the current SPLM leadership will squarely bear the responsibility.

It also goes without saying that it is unsurprising to witness just within a year and a half of the immediate post independence period, that misrule and the chronic failures to address the root causes of the general discontent that fueled the first self determination and subsequently the secession from Khartoum’s rule has resurfaced here again.

Many of this nascent country’s post independence challenges were and are all well forecasted by people with indepth knowledge in the region’s history and politics. This is not in any way an undermining of the much deserved 9th July 2011 independence, but rather it is an eye opener for those who were quick to assume that all was done once the country seceded from the Arab Islamic North.

Tribal and regional favoritism which were inherent in tribal communities are still ripe in South Sudan and to no one’s surprise it continues to stare us in the face the moment we set foot in the Juba International Airport. While this kind of attitude isn’t in any way unique to this new country as the African continent is already infamous for it, the issue in our case is that this monster and everything that is negatively associated with it may very soon prove detrimental to our prosperity and stability. Even too sooner than anticipated.

The phrase “Finger pointing” has become the defense weapon used by the perpetrators and beneficiaries of the current tribal politics and ethnic favoritism in their futile attempts to silence any protests against their otherwise savage treatment of others. This obviously is not the right phrase to describe those who complain of communal injustices, nonetheless many out there continue to use the phrase with the sole aim of undermining the intentional sufferings that they and their tribal communities have so often inflicted on the others.

Believe me or not, all those individuals and communities alike who are on the receiving end of injustice in South Sudan, can never be silenced this way and all that this does is to strengthen their voices of dissent. Hence the promoters of injustices and their apologists will say what they want to say, but the voice of the truth will always be heard. We as south Sudanese need to bring openness into the center of the debate between the different opposing groups. The way forward is to part with the old tradition of trying to silence opponents through the use of “bully-politics,” and this practice must cease, for it only makes an already bad situation worse.

No two can differ on the fact that the ruling SPLM party has since long started the new country on the wrong footing by adopting the politics of patronage, and the dishing of job opportunities to the chosen ones only – cronies – kinsman – and old buddies.

And as if to add salt to injury, many people all across the different ethnic groups have vividly chosen to align with the current corruption riddled leadership in an attempt to consolidate their grips on power and promote a kleptocratic welfare policy aimed at serving this club of parasites. This too will however come to an end very soon given the wave of political awareness that is currently sweeping across the new nation.

It is an SPLM sponsored and managed Conference for Equatoria.

But what is this Equatoria Conference, before we lose the track of events? One view is that it is a conference of people native to the former province of Equatoria ( Equatorian) i.e. by Equatorians for Equatorians. This is only true as far as the 1st conference was concerned. However the second Equatoria Conference which is responsible for the current wave of debates is, at its best an SPLM sponsored and managed Conference for Equatoria.

Hon. James Wani Igga, the National Assembly Speaker and SPLM’s second deputy chairman together with the governors of the three States of Equatoria and many other SPLM cadres were ubiquitously present at the conference. Many of these politicians also doubles as prominent members of the SPLM’s National Liberation Council as well as members of the party’s Political Bureau. And for the conference to conform to the government of the day’s policy, it was made as a point to represent the Head of State by none but the presidential adviser Hon. Telar Deng ( Mr Deng’s second in a row) – and the vice president Dr. Riek Machar.

However as to why the Equatoria Conference ever came into existence in the first place and why it is being confirmed by the ruling SPLM party as a viable political forum for discussing the nation’s problems is a thing for this political party which has maneuvered itself into the center of the event to explain.

Nonetheless given the confused state of affairs in the country, coupled with poor governance and widespread corruption it becomes only natural for the SPLM in Equatoria ( or any other group for that matter) to take advantage of it, since they consider themselves as the sole representatives of both the so-called politically marginalized and the SPLM rule at the same time or at least that is how they are made to feel.

Visiting the resolutions of the 1st and 2nd Eqatoria conferences it is surprising to see the magnitude of the very hot national issues that they reflected . Although of course the resolutions of the conference are colored here and there with what looks like topics of regional political dimensions, still issues of national interests were also given a wider space e.g. governance, freedom of the press, human rights, land ownership and many others. To this end we can see why other people applauded the conference while others whose personal and ethnic interests appeared threatened quickly went ballistic on the offense.

We are yet again witnessing a new emergence of the old and too well known phenomenon of political and socioeconomic domination by elites from a single ethnic group at the expense of all the others. This on the other hand has drawn a wide reaction from all over the country and loud voices of protest are on the rise in every corner. The marginalized communities are bent to applaud the several demands for the redress of ALL injustices as they are listed in the Equatoria Conference’s resolutions, without having much to bother about the backgrounds and the immediate political interests of the conferees.

While before even talking about those voices out there who are ruthlessly condemning the Equatoria conference mostly so for its regional nature, in spite of the many national issues thereof discussed, one would like to underscore this very important step that has to be overcome by the Equatoria Conferees if any of their many demands and proposals are to ever see the light.

The success of this thing labeled Equatoria will only come about following the accomplishment of the much needed bottom to top enlightenment and mobilization of the grass roots and the masses. This must in all cases precede any other steps that will only follow later if this latest wave of mass liberation is to yield its truest fruit. For it is either this or to surrender to the modern day slavery forever, a simple fact that a villager in Equatoria seems to understand far better than the so-called” five star elites.“

For clarity purposes it doesn’t need any over-stressing before we can appreciate how Equatoria looks at itself as a social-political unit. It has since been acknowledged as such since the turn of the last century. Hence its only natural for the people now known as the Equatorians of South Sudan to freely identify themselves as such. It’s within their human and constitutional rights that Equatorians identify themselves as Equatorians – and no opinion on earth will change that.

Just as Abyei is the rightful homeland of the nine Dinka Ngok chieftains and not the Messeiriya Baggara, so is Equatoria Region a homeland of the people who collectively refer to themselves as Equatorians. This represents ethnic politics at its furthest extreme and mind you that no one has the monopoly on going ethnic.

Expectations of the grass-roots in Equatoria.

Coming to the modi operendi of the Equatoria conference follow-up committees – it is high time that they live up to the expectations that they have generated all across Equatoria Province. This they can only achieve by stepping forward to fill in and provide the much needed steering leadership role. Not too long the so-called SPLM party will become completely irrelevant to address any of those issues raised in the last conference. For a true and prompt realization of equal citizenship for all in South Sudan, an Equatoria political union is in fact an urgent necessity.

While it is a good routine to raise the conferences resolutions and suggestions to the Head of State for consideration, people shouldn’t underestimate the fact that the SPLM chairman remains true to what he stands for, and that is the promotion of his kinsmen while personally masterminding all those policies aimed at the systematic marginalisation of Equatorians.

My personal advise to all the political powers in Equatoria is that they should better speed up the process of organizing themselves into functional political units. This is not to undermine the broader unity of the country as a sovereign state. But the truth is that the current tribally driven political agendas in the country can only be counter-balanced by an effective and purposeful political and economic unity of All Equatoria.

Furthermore if these conferences and their follow-up committees are not going to metamorphose into political tools and entities to defend the rights of all Equatoria, then there won’t be any use for their existence in the first place.

Hence its time that those politicians from Equatoria who continue to pay allegiance to this terribly compromised political organization of the SPLM and its fatigued leadership are in for more disappointments. They must understand that they have become irrelevant – first to the current developments on the ground and not too long they also will become irrelevant choices in their own constituencies.

Whistle-blowing on self determination.

Somewhere in the media a prominent opinion writer Dr. I.S. Sindani is well ahead in turning people’s attention to the possibility of Equatoria going for Self Determination should the SPLM led government continues with its institutionalized tribalism and marginalisation policies. Whether we agree with Dr. Sindani’s whistle-blowing or not the idea of possible self determination for Equatoria is indeed a scary development.

In other words the cat has already been let out of the bag. At this juncture we better all sober up and focus our views on the issue as matured and experienced citizens. And especially given our well known political past in the former united Sudan, we should be able to predict what is awaiting us as a country and act accordingly.

The freedoms that the SPLM/A fought for from Khartoum is no where to be seen in the independent republic of South Sudan under president Salva Kiir Mayardit and his SPLM government. For this reason it is just natural for people to move and desist and reject injustice and discrimination, whether they are from Upper Nile, Bahr Ghazal or Equatoria. Meanwhile trying to teach a government of under-performers is itself being complacent with the rotten system, it is worth remembering that “only you can satisfactorily scratch your skin”.

The right to self determination which is universal is not limited only to the Equatoria Region of South Sudan and the reasons to seek this right is totally left to whoever is calling for it. In other words although we do all have the same right to have opinions, yet we cannot decide for others what will merit a sound reason for opting for self determination.

As such those who disagree with Dr. Sindani will be doing so because they want to protect either their personal, national or group’s interests – but they cannot by any means out reason him over the reasons he so viewed as enough to warrant a call for Self Determination. For when love & hate collide, we must be fair enough to see the rationale behind the choice of “ divided we stand and united we fall” as it becomes the only logically option to go by. Remember it is about when love and hate collide!

Federal system of governance.

Of much interest is the call by the conferees for a federal system of government in the republic of South Sudan. This crucial development in the politics of this turmoil region exactly mirrors the period that immediately followed the Sudanisation of jobs on the eve of the declared independence of the former united Sudan

An Equatorian elder, Agriculturist, politician and well known columnist, Jacob Kwaje Lupia has for since long been writing and advocating for the adoption of a true Federal System of Governance in South Sudan to replace the current heavily centralized and maximally corrupt and grossly tibalised unitary system which only a few are milking mercilessly while others gaze. Sounding like a diehard federalist JK Lupai is a voice from the heart of Equatoria that will never relinquish its core beliefs.

On a personal note it is my conviction that South Sudan will only return to be a good place when the administrative structures of the new country are taken back to the old system of the “three provinces”. We know why the enemy north divided our people into the current artificial units of ten states and it was exclusively meant to serve their interest only and not ours.

A South Sudan of Three federal states must not only be seen as an initial step towards the implementation of the much anticipated Federal System of Governance, but it is indeed an integral part of the grand pacification project all across the violent regions of this beautiful country . Our future lies in a Federal Republic of South Sudan with Three Federal States. This will bring back the trust we have lost in one another, for under the old structures south Sudanese will go back to healthily compete as three provinces or states instead of the current unhealthy competitions which are solely driven by our loyalties to our countless tribes and clans.

It is for all practical purposes that a federal republic of South Sudan under three former provinces is the only one sure route to achieve a sustainable national unity for all the citizens. Jacob K Lupai is a well known South Sudanese elder who has written a great deal about the politics of South Sudan and the issues of Food Security in the post independence era and he should be seen as one of this country’s dedicated sons, who has also given his time to educate us intensively about Federal System of Governance. We thank him for a work well done!

In the wider perspective, writing opinions are good for sharing views and educating the public as well as selling one’s ideas, we must also be seen to practically live by what we believe in. This goes further to stress that Dr I.S. Sindani is entitled to his opinions and as such will only be practicing his fundamental rights whenever he propagates his ideas of Self Determination for Equatoria. I for one I won’t be surprised if some people out there find what Dr. Sindani has opined is unacceptable to them, yet he deserves respect.

This is the bottom line for under tribal politics like everywhere else in Africa, the distance between rivaling ethnicities will only continue to drift apart as long as we remain arrested in this institution so-called tribalism. Unfortunately South Sudan for all anthropological, geographical, historical,economic and political reasons lies in the heart of this mess. The rest is common sense!!!

Author: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Secretary General – United South Sudan Party (USSP).

South Sudan’s crying of dereliction: Why has God forsaken us?

BY: Tongun Lo Loyuong, RSS, FEB/27/2013, SSN;

For those of us unfamiliar with the technical theological phrase “cry of dereliction,” – it is a theological expression of the puzzling biblical utterance of “my God, my God why have you forsaken me?” – the last words/lamentation attributed to Jesus on the crucifix, moments before his death (see Matt. 27:46; and Mark 15:34). Biblical scholars and theologians have long found this to be one of the troubling verses in the New Testament. If this was God’s son, and God sent him to save the world from sin, then why did God abandon him while he was submissive to God’s plan and when he needed God the most?

Consequently, several interpretations of Jesus’ cry of dereliction emerged, two of which are mainstream and worth mentioning for our purposes here. The first is the theological explication championed by the biblical literalists, which tend to argue that in the cry of dereliction, God abandoned Jesus to preserve God’s Holiness, for God could not behold or be associated with our sin, which Jesus took upon himself on the cross.

Therefore, God turned the other way, which then provoked Jesus’ cry of dereliction for being abandoned by God. This was all part of God’s atonement plan for Jesus, aimed to achieve the objectives of the salvation plan for which Jesus volunteered. But the constraint with this type of interpretation is that it contradicts the pervasive biblical presentation of God as loving, accompanying, comforting, and assisting particularly in our trying times.

However, it may be asked, if God is willing to turn the other way in the face of gross injustices and wickedness, how the hell are we supposed to overcome the powerful evil and corrupt forces of greed in this world?

The second salient theological discourse of the cry of dereliction, which I find more appealing maintains that it is not in God’s nature to abandon God’s children. According to this school of thought, the verse must be interpreted metaphorically. Understood this way, the cry of dereliction is in fact a cry of vindication. This is consistent with Old Testament’s lamentation practice of prayer, such as found in Habakkuk 1:13, and the opening line of Psalm 22 and other lamentation passages in the Scripture.

In this form of prayer one is justified to raise complaints to God about deep sentiments of pain and suffering. It is an indication of a strong faith and intimate relationship with God, where one rhetorically questions God’s vindication intervention policies and sin-tolerance practices in the face of persisting injustices. In so doing, one knows that good will ultimately prevail over evil.

It is in the context of this latter theological explanation that the choice of the somewhat provocative title in this piece lies.
In this season of lent, a cry of dereliction is fitting and depicting of the endless suffering of an average voiceless and powerless South Sudanese throughout our history, and more recently during and after the “liberation struggle.”

As was the case with Jesus, it is indeed not hard-pressed to suggest that most South Sudanese feel God-forsaken in light of the prevailing deteriorating social, economic, and political state of affairs. “What kind of life is this?,” a friend recently quipped with disgust when sighting one of the extravagant convoys of our “liberators” marauding in the dusty streets and the overwhelmingly underdeveloped and poverty-stricken environs of Juba.

In a manner consistent with being locked in the colonial logic, the convoy sped in the narrow streets of Juba with such an aura of arrogance that does affirm the dawn of new phase of a colonial period in South Sudan. How disenchanting to see the lack of any moral conscience in the political leadership of this God-forsaken country.

Few will disagree that since the signing of the CPA, and the advent of the southern independence, most South Sudanese are by now resigned to the fact that the so-called “liberation” of South is no better than the preceding liberation of Sudan from the Anglo-Egyptian rule before it. Second class citizenship remains the order of the day and abject poverty persists.

Unsurprisingly, the lack of value added by successive empty “liberations” of the greater Sudan from different colonial masters both from within and from without, is a persistent pattern throughout the history of this country. This is an undesirable legacy that will continue to dominate the mindset of some of our people in the South for a long time to come.

It is ironic that we do not seem to learn from our tragic history. Such was the case with the so-called “independence” or “liberation” of Sudan from British colonialism in January 1956. The South came to suffer from another cycle of colonialism, of Arabic and Islamist mentality of domination that led to a southern mentality of resistance, which resulted in the birth of the liberation struggle in the first place.

Yet, no sooner were we supposedly liberated, than the emergence of yet another batch of colonial masters ensued. It is more painful this time because these are supposedly our own brothers, but who continue to be victims of the intractable colonial and slavery legacy in this country. These people need some serious help. They even unashamedly dare call a fellow southerner a slave.

As his Lordship Bishop Pio Lako, the Auxiliary Bishop of Juba recently aptly put it, “some of our people continue to tell our people to sit down.” “We liberated you, or we sacrificed more than you in the liberation struggle — so goes the pretext for justifying their master’s status entitlement in Juba, nowadays.”

Sit down. “We are born to rule.” Born to rule what? What is this liberation? As Jok Madut Jok once forcefully phrased it, “liberation from what and to what end?”

If Sudanese liberations’ history is, therefore, anything to go by it seems we are locked in the liberation struggle for God knows how long. Often after a liberation has succeeded, those who have made selfless sacrifices are overlooked or even rewarded with a form of punishment and subjugation, while the opportunists and those conspicuously known for political whoredom and harlotry and conspired with the enemy, are rewarded and end up reigning supreme.

As a result, one is left but to cry in dereliction to God, why have you forsaken us when we needed you the most while we continue to be subjected to all forms of undeserved suffering and indignity for more than 1160 years of our documented history to the present.

How long will the women of Jonglei continue to suffer from violence and rape as a result of the so-called cattle rustling? How long will the children of Warrap and Unity States in the peripheries continue to die from hunger, malnutrition, and curable diseases while some greedy elite few in the center enjoy ugly filled bellies and health purchased from quality healthcare overseas by South Sudanese public funds?

How long will the people of Central and Eastern Equatoria States continue to lose their lands to those in possession of power and gun? How long will the youth of Western Equatoria continue to form vigilantes in order to defend their women, children, and property from insecurity and brutality created by LRA and local criminals?

How long will the people of Greater Bahr el-Ghazal States be massacred by security forces with impunity and support from the corridors of power in Juba, and be incited to commit atrocious inter-communal violence amongst each other?

How long will the elite and corrupt few continue to enrich themselves, while the whole country wallows in abject poverty, unemployment and lack of adequate social service provision? How long will the freedom of press, and the basic human right to freedom of expression be suppressed?

And how long will those who attempt to speak out against these vices be framed as rebels and unpatriotic, and arbitrarily imprisoned indefinitely and without due process, or in worse case scenarios be eliminated or made to disappear?

In short, will we continue to suffer indignity and human rights abuses indefinitely?

Framing our problems in terms of a cry of dereliction seems a theological construct that best conceptualizes and gives meaning and perhaps, a sense of much needed consolation and hope that signs are written on the wall that vindication is well underway to South Sudanese.

And so we raise our voices in the cry of dereliction as a God-forsaken people eagerly anticipating vindication sooner rather than later. The clock is ticking!

The Doctrine of Constitutionalism in the Republic of South Sudan can only be Upheld and/or Contravened by Lakes State Scenario

BY: Juma Mabor Marial, RSS, FEB/23/2013, SSN;

In the past month, article 101 (r) of the transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan 2011 has been the issue of fundamental debate on whether the decree issued by the president of the republic relieving the Lakes state governor (now former governor) Eng. Chol Tong Mayay of his duties was constitutional (lawful) or otherwise. This phenomenon has drawn mixed reactions even among the legislatures both at the national and state levels with the adversaries contradicting one another on the actual interpretation of the above mentioned provision.

This unprecedented episode has left the layman with nothing but anxiousness on what the true constitutional interpretation would be in the face of this glaring uncertainty. Some enlightened citizens have so far suggested that article 101 (r) should be taken to the constitutional court for legitimate interpretation. I am of the contrary opinion because; this can only come as an attempt of the last resort.

Why is this the case, South Sudan so far has experts in constitutional matters and their skills and knowledge can be utilized to break this deadlock. This fact notwithstanding, the office of the president where the decree relieving the former governor and appointing the military caretaker governor has a legal department and advisory board that drew the attention of the president to execute the provision of article 101 (r).

Moreover, we have the national legislature which passed these laws including the transitional constitution which granted the president such powers as declaration of state of emergency, declaration of war and relieve of elected governors among others. However, the above three institutions are halfway failing to explains the consequences of the presidential decree that relieved the former governor and installed a caretaker one.

With my knowledge of Law, the changes that affected the Lakes State government are issues that can be well address by critical constitutional analysis and objective interpretation of the concern articles of the south Sudan transitional constitution. For instance, the relieve of former governor engineer Chol Tong Mayay from his duties as Lakes state governor emanates from Article 101 ( r) of the constitution wherein under the functions of the president, he (the president) is mandated to sack any governor in the event of threat to national security and territorial integrity.

This provision is synonymous with what happened in Lakes State where in very unfortunate circumstances; the rival groups of the Dinka agar tribe (the so called Panyuonn and Amothnhom) extended their troubles to the state capital and shot indiscriminately killing amongst their target the elderly, women and children. This magnitude of insecurity justified the president’s action of sacking the governor of lakes state and he scored one hundred percent in this test. It is also the best opportunity that article 101 (r) is applicable beside that of Jonglei and Western Bhar El Ghazel in the recent past.

On the other hand, there is nowhere in the whole world let alone south Sudan than the capital city like state headquarters that can be safer to live in and therefore the case of Rumbek was catastrophic and immediate action ought to have been taken and indeed it was so done by Mayardit, Bravo…

Now that is all in the past and the question that should be asked by south Sudanese in general and lakes state citizens in particular is, what are the post Chol Tong constitutional implications and political consequences. For me, the president and other stakeholders must be reminded that the application of article 101 (r) should be supplemented by the subsequent sub section which is in article 101 (s) which state that the president shall appoint a caretaker governor to organize for elections in sixty (60) days.

This provision should not be ignored despite the much rhetoric that people thinks south Sudan will not follow the constitution by organizing elections in lakes state. such sentiments are tantamount to classifying ourselves as ignorance of the principles of constitutionalism because if indeed the elections are not organize in lakes state in two months, then the president would be indirectly nullifying his decree of relieving the former governor by implications because he cannot afford to apply the provisions of the same constitution selectively by sacking Chol under article 101 (r) and refusing to order for an election in lakes state in two (2) months under article 101 (s). This if it so happens will amount to unprecedented violation and highest degree of contravention of the constitution in the history of mankind.

In addition to these facts, the caretaker governor although appointed on a security background must learn to select his words cautiously and gives himself the task of the paradigm shift from his military orientations to a civilian and if need be a political figure. Why do I have these convictions, so far, the caretaker governor has rubs shoulders or a bit pessimistic provokes the other constitutional organs of the government in a very undeserving manner especially on his utterances against the ineffectiveness of the judiciary and judicial officers and the threat towards parliament of shutting it down if the members don’t desist from deliberating political motions.

This is a violation of the constitutional doctrine of separation of powers and the caretaker governor ought to be advice accordingly. I wouldn’t agree less with Ateny Wek on his sentiments that the main task of members of parliament is to shape the political destiny of the nation or a state for that matter and their task is to debate political issues without fear, favor or intimidation from either the governor or the president. The caretaker governor should refrain from this venture. Altogether, article 189 of the transitional constitution of the republic of south Sudan 2011 gives the mandate to declare state of emergency exclusively to the president and the caretaker governor should not imply to invoke it regardless of their private discussion with the president on which direction they want to take lakes state to.

Currently, in almost all the public rallies that the caretaker governor have held, he is seems to think that he operates in a situation of state of emergency where some institutions are declared ineffective and most of them suspended. I quoted him recently as saying that there would be no politic and questions of human rights in lakes state until 2015 when and if the next elections are held which in a nutshell, he is trying to inform the nation of south Sudan and particularly the citizens of lakes state that he has some secret information and powers to remain in power until 2015 and this is not what the constitution under article 101 (s) tells us.

This indicator rings the alarm in our ears and there must be every reason to believe that the scenario of lakes state may be the unprecedented test of the doctrine of our constitutionalism as a nation. The president must give our caretaker governor another evening phone call and tell him to limit down his speed. I think he also needs some legal advisers to give him some lieu on issues of governance.

Recommendations:

Lakes state is reined by rampant insecurity and this is the primary reason that it has remain behind in terms of development and other levels of progress towards the achievements of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and it is therefore imperatively significant that the president have decisively chosen to deal with this situation once and for all, however, as an independent state, there must be ways of skinning a cat and so is it also applicable in restoring law and order in situations such as the one in lakes state. Our institutions and constitution are the supreme pillars of our nation and we must learn to keep them alive and it is therefore the recommendation of this author that:–

1. The president must ensure that, article 101 must be applied in its holistic provisions and this mean election should be held in sixty (60) days in lakes state in order to reaffirm our commitment to the respect for the rule of law and adherence to the principles of constitutionalism.

2. The president must ensure that he has frequent phones conversations with his caretaker governor to avoid a war scenario between the executive arm of government on one hand and the judiciary with the legislature especially on the other at the state level. This will enhance safeguards to the respect for the principles of separation of powers and interdependent among the three arms of government for effective service delivery to the people of south Sudan. In addition to this facts, the caretaker governor must slow down on his utterances against the issues of human rights because we are a member of the United Nations and south Sudan achieved her independent as a result of oppression from the other country and therefore, human rights covenants are part of the treaties that south Sudan as an independent state acceded to and must be respected accordingly.

3. The president if he wishes to maintain status quo in Lakes state by Keeping the caretaker governor on until 2015 on security grounds must introduce an amendment to article 101 (s) of the transitional constitution of the republic of south Sudan 2011 in the national legislature just like he did with the article 202 of the constitution with regards to the national constitutional review commission. This is a professional way of violating the constitutions globally but it has stood the test of times because it has been given the nick named “ amendment” and so it has remain popular in countries where the governments are able to keep their interests intact.

4. The caretaker governor of lakes state must now know that before he was appointed a caretaker governor of lakes state, he was initially relieved from his active military service and put on a reserved list which resulted on his appointment as a caretaker governor and his second reserve list now is politic because he is so far removed from the first reserved list and it is upon him to play his cards closer to his chest such that he can remain relevant in his future endeavors, keep the security of lakes state, that is your national duty but also relate to civilians and politicians because you belong in this category now. Never make blunders that you are going back to where you came from; you are now on another route of life.

5. Finally, I plead with all stakeholders in every level of government including the citizens of this country to be law abiding and uphold the provision of our supreme law; the constitution because this is the only way our country will surmount all these challenging times. I equally urge the president to swiftly and promptly call for amendment on article 101 (s) of the transitional constitution of the republic of south Sudan 2011 to allows lakes state gain momentum in terms of security under the stewardship of caretaker governor General Matur Chut Dhuol. This action will help the president kills three birds instead of proverbial two with one stone i.e.

Upholding the constitution of this republic by introducing the amendments to extend Dhuol caretaker ship up to 2015 (the wording will be done by legislatures), restoring law and order in lakes state and finally, avoiding the stress and expenses of elections at this austerity ages. If Mayardit manage all these aspects, I think, he will remain the best president as we look forward to his long awaited reshuffling.

Juma Mabor Marial is a Lawyer and Advocate under training. He is reachable at hussenjuma@hotmail.com.

South Sudan on a road to ungovernable State

BY: Gabrial Pager Ajang, South Sudan, FEB/17/2013, SSN;

Can you imagine what the United States would do if a group of gangs or people abducted children, raided cattle and killed people at the Heartland? What if the same scenario happened in Europe and Australia, what would these governments do? I asked these hypothetical questions because I would like to put issues and challenges facing South Sudan on global contexts.

The beacon of American democracy and the root of American order were largely shaped the by framers and founding fathers of the United States, and I will this discuss their ideas later. As a United States citizen and have worked for Nebraska State legislature, I know very well that the United States government will move heaven and earth, and all necessary resources from the United States military to bring those who committed those heinous crimes to Justices. The government would punish these criminals to the fullest scale of their crimes because it is incorporated in the U.S constitution killings, abductions of children or taking another person’s property is a crime.

This is just a food for thoughts for those in our government who think they would be saved by the United Nations and the international community in an event of foreign aggression or mounting internal crisis. However, the restoration of peace and security in South Sudan lies with the president, interior minister, the head of police and the governors. It is their sole responsibility to join forces to combat the looming perpetual violence. Nevertheless, this paper will critic fault-line in the transitional constitution, escalation of child abductions and cattle rustling, implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

The SPLM convention is imminent as the party struggles to prioritize several of its nerves wrecking issues facing the nation. The cattle internal rustlings and child abductions, wide spread corruptions, implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, controversial transitional constitution and many more. From the onset, it is important to point out that most tribes in South Sudan still use their traditional laws because they do not understand the transitional constitution, and its consistency with traditional laws?

These tribes have been governed by customary laws, and these laws have allowed them to live and thrive for many centuries in their respective geographical locations. The traditional legal systems were informed by their norms, values and cultures. They have never imported Khartoum legal systems to resolve their issues because these tribes have had well-structured and respected hierarchy and order. The members of south Sudanese societies for many years have been adhering to laws and orders set and implemented by their community chiefs.

Tribes have been guided by rules and laws but for purpose of this paper, I will use the laws of Wath Alal in Warrap State and Pawel ee Lith laws in Jonglei States as the two legal systems that indicated that South Sudanese societies have had established judicial systems that ensures criminals were brought to Justice. The two traditional laws are equal in case of intends killing or murders. Both traditional laws assume that human beings are rational actors who consider the consequences of their behavior before deciding to commit a crime, for instance, Pawel e Lith fines for murderer is 50 cows for unmarried individual, while married is fined for 30 cows and Wath Alal: fines 31 cows. The people who commit adultery were fined for 7 cows in accordance with Wath Alal laws and Pawel ee Lith.

The constitutional intents and traditional laws have not only been about the protection of economic rights, human rights and customary rights of those who did not commit crimes but put in place sentencing systems of incarceration, incapacitation, punishment to deter all sorts of criminals that have either killed people, raid cattle or stolen nation’s wealth. The constitutional deterrence is not alien from our traditional laws, because both sentencing policy initiatives have often been implemented with the goal of enhancing the deterrent effects of the criminal justice system.

Under the rubric of getting tough requires both the executive and legislative to annex policies of combating child abductions and cattle rustling design to deter criminals with the threat of imposing substantial terms of imprisonment for convictions. The judiciary system should also provide deterrent effects, and policy development regards whether to enhance sanctions or an enhance possibility of being apprehended, could provide any additional deterrent benefits as it did in South Sudan Societal laws (traditional laws).
The Roles of South Sudan Legislature.

Nevertheless, people of South Sudan have been hopping and dreaming of a government that will annex and adopt a better transitional constitution that would protect their political, economic, human and customary rights. There was also a hope that the South Sudan’s constitution would seek to remedy and ease post conflict issues. However, the paradoxical and complicated situation of South Sudan created by the last 50 years of war is unraveling and they impede the judicial progresses and legislative oversights. It is worth noting that the United States constitution took one hundred years before its ratifications, but the framers first dealt with the fierce urgency of those issues.

Therefore I am mindful that it will take many years to bring laws and orders and balance of powers among branches of government. We wish that there were draft provisions in constitution of South Sudan that could supports the full implementation of CPA, but unfortunately none was drafted by the South Sudan legislative Assembly. CPA implementation could have been anchored in the constitution. But because this was not envisioned and done by famers and the legislative Assembly, it will continue to haunt Kiir’s administration, and indeed it has caused the political gridlocks between the North and South that has impeded the progress.

Concurrently, it was not well spelled out in South Sudan’s constitution that the CPA must not be renegotiated. The numerous renegotiations of the CPA by the South and North have made it almost impossible to implement. The several renegotiations of this accord made it more bureaucratic and create loopholes for its violations. While the peace talks between the South and the North were in progress, the legislative assembly in Juba did not annex policies that would have assisted its implementation, instead they support policies that backtracks the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

Presently, the policies proposed by the government of South Sudan for the last 7 years to remedy these complicated issues have done nothing but infringe on individual rights and slowed the judicial progresses. The roles of citizenship and Media rights have been denied. Political rights and rights to freedom of expressions have been infringed upon. Contrary to the government policies, South Sudanese citizens were hopping that the legislative assembly would craft laws that would secure the rights of citizens but the legislators did not successful adopt laws that protect economic rights, human rights, and customary rights. These rights have been enjoyed by South Sudanese tribes for hundreds years and virtually this government allows them to be robbed.

Despite, the freedom of press and expression enshrine in the South Sudan’s constitutions journalists have been illegally arrested by government security agents. While our elected officials have constitutional duties to investigate and ask serious why citizens from their constituencies are incarcerated without properly legal standard taken. Members of the legislative assembly have rights to exercise their constitutional duties as elected officials by investigating issues surroundings assassinations or unwarranted arrest made, while ensure all the judicial procedures that requires that all the arrest made must be warrant by the judge or court.
Despites members of legislative assembly constitutional rights, citizens are arrested without due process.

It is simply unconstitutional for any security agent to arrest citizen because all the arrests are made by the police following democratic legal procedures. In recent incidents, Journalist was arrested in Awiel for failure to cover and air what was termed as the most important speech from the president. This month, another journalist was arrested in Juba for failing to cover another event. These incidents occurred because the transitional constitution of South Sudan fails to restrain and constrain security officials from arresting these journalists. These arrests have been seen by many through lenses of tribal eyes but these are rather classical example of failed South Sudan Legislative Assembly to intervene and investigate what led to these arrests.

The child abductions and cattle rustlings have rampant in South Sudan. The transitional constitution must immediately criminalize child abductions and cattle rustlings because these are the primary cause of tribal conflict and internal instability. SPLA can deal with few rebellions here and there, because that is the primary roles of the standing national army. It is also essential for South Sudanese societies to know that the child abduction is defined as crimes under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Documents but it is unfortunate it is not clearly delineated in the South Sudan’s transitional constitution. The post war issues are difficult to resolve in the time frame but I hope that the South Sudan’s constitution could offer legal framework of resolving child abduction and cattle rustling to at least ensure adherence to all code of human rights and political stability in Jonglei, Warrap, Lake Unity States, at least where conflict is raging.

Without question, a significant number of South Sudanese has blamed the President. However, the legislators do have duties and responsibility to ensure that laws that would guide government functions and life of citizens are protected.

The Legislative Assembly could ensue following constitutional rights if people cling to power and their performances are not yielding tangible results:
1) It is the obligations and responsible of the legislators to impeach the president.
2) The legislators can pass vote of no confidence.
3) Grill and scrutinize seniors’ members of judiciary, military and executive that are suspects of having commit crimes, issue illegal and unwarranted arrest from the court and harassment of journalists.
4) Summonses officials that have engaged in money laundry and embezzlements
5) Pass provision that would cease and prevent further renegotiations of the CPA.
6) The renegotiation of CPA have led to lose of 60% of Byei to Sudan,
7) The renegotiation of CPA violates the clauses of January 1st 1956 borderline between the South and North,
8) The renegotiation risk territorial integrity of South lands, and causes Pathou, Kaka, Anas and many more as parts of disputed towns.
9) The renegotiation of CPA change dynamic of the Security Arrangement Protocol, and suggest that SPLA withdraws from South Sudan lands and left it to the North.

Notes: there is nothing more honorable and dignified than for the president or minister to say that I have failed to discharge my duties and obligations entrusted in me by the citizens, therefore I resign from the presidency or ministerial position.
The legislators failed to exercise their duties bestowed upon them by the constitution.

The Framers of the South Sudan Transitional Constitution
The framers of the South Sudan constitution were not visionaries. They did not at least reflect on how constitutions of other democracies were drafted. For example, the framers of the Western countries’ constitutions were visionaries. They envisioned constitutional laws that would serve their citizens, which is the constitution that was founded upon democratic ideals. The founding fathers annexed constitutions that would address the enduring issues of their times and of the future. These men reflected on good ideas of the past that would better serve citizens in the future. Because of this very reason, the founding fathers of the United States constitution grounded their constitution upon democratic ideal known as the social contract in (1762); this principle of rights that enhances roles of the government and citizens was coined by Jacques Rousseau during the Age of Enlightenment. The situations that engineer this idea were difficulties and conflictuals. The evidences show that the Enlightenment communities were engulfed in raging wars and violence’s. Hence, Rousseau idea was significantly important for citizens to give up some sorts of their liberties in order for them to be protected by the government. Did the framers craft effective transitional constitution that would serve and protect citizens of South Sudan? I doubt it.

Indeed, all concern citizens have doubted whether the Bill of Rights embedded in the transitional constitution were strong enough to secure the economic, political and customary rights of all citizens. The written constitution shows opposite. It is difficult to comprehend understand how the framers could fail to craft better constitution in the midst of mass resources and human capitals that could have helped them? It is even amazing to see that the drafters failed to annex a constitution that would protect the roles of citizenship, freedom of expressions and political rights. We were all hoping that the transitional constitution would grant citizens due process and protect their rights.

The transition constitution of South Sudan should have been grounded in the following ideas:
1) The framers of the transition constitution could have first and foremost seek to find a constitutional remedies to all issues and conflicts of the past five decades by writing a constitution that would protect life, property and land of citizens.
2) The framers by far failed to use the comprehensive Peace Agreement as blueprint of the South Sudan constitution and failed to incorporate and blend the Western’s constitutional ideas and South Sudanese traditional laws into the transitional constitution. At the core of the CPA is protocol, a set of system and principle that was put in place to protect and guarantee protection of life, land, and property of people of South Sudan and marginalized areas. This could have not been overlooked.
3) The framers alienated the Western countries in the process of writing constitutions for example the United States, and other Western democracies, which in the first place support our independence and could have helped in the process of drafting. We should be mindful that Japan’s constitution was written by team that sent from the United States. And the whole Europe that emerges from its ruin of Second World War was assisted by the United States.
4) The South Sudan government failed to recruited western educated sons and daughters of South Sudan to help in writings of the constitutions. There is no reason whatever why the government cannot see for the brighter and the best our country can offer to help in the process of achieving our statehood. The government of South Sudan failed miserably to at least execute policies and laws in its book.

In this globalized world, there could be no substantial reasons or explanation as to why our constitution was not well written. There should be no debate about basic human rights because we are expected to know the basic rights of our citizens. There should be no debate about what kind of laws that could be used to punish criminals because we all know traditional laws of our societies if in fact we do not know laws of constitution for one reason or another. The bottom line is that the people of South Sudan must be exclusively granted economic, and political, customary rights or this government will fail! The government must be made aware that the indigenous rights and customary rights, because these rights are well incorporated in the Universal Declaration Rights. The fact that their children are abducted and their cattle are raided is a clearly violations of international law and the Legislative Assembly must be made aware.

The most fundamental concept of democracy is the idea that government exists to secure the rights of its people and this principle is based on the “consent of the governed” an idea that enhances and develops from the social contract. James Madison, framer and father of the United States constitution took the consent of the governed and use it to design and craft the United States Constitution, and this idea has endured for more than hundred fifty years. Likewise, the framers of South Sudan constitution could have drafted a transitional constitution that would address current specific challenges facing the nation and envision future problems. In so doing, they would have established the foundational principles that would sustain and guide the new nation into uncertain situations of the future.

Despite all existing constitutional issues, the framers blindly grant wide arrays of powers and privileges to the president probably for one reason or another. These powers given to President undermine and diminish the status of our country among the nations. It also shows citizens’ rights to elect their governor are deprived. It is disappointing because it sends wrong messages to the world. I still wish the drafters could have crafted a constitution for current citizens of South Sudan and for the next generations because the constitution lives forever but the presidency ends with the terms limit. I hope the people of South Sudan understand the gravity of this issue.

Since, we long for better ideas in our constitution, the concept that shapes the United States constitution and makes it better than any other western constitutions was an idea derived from the English greatest philosopher and political writer, John Locke. He coined and echoed that the government should protect life, Liberty, and property. The framer and the founding father of the United States constitutions, Thomas Jefferson remarkably and momentously refurnished the same idea and put it in these words “we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” It is very evidence in the United States constitution that the life, liberty and property of all citizens must be protected. It is also evidences in South Sudan that the insecurity will remain as the sole sources of problems as long as the child abductors and cattle raiders are not criminalized.

The Kiir’s administration must with the issues of child abductions and cattle rustlings in the constitution to avoid tribalization and accusations of human rights violations. The legislative assembly has presided over the most fraudulence transitional constitution ever in the history of the world. The constitution serves the president and infringes upon the rights of all citizens. Although, the president rightly uses his constitutional power to fire the governor of Lake State, it is absurd for any president to layoff leader that was elected by the people. Could this be a wakeup call for the so call legislators to amend or review the constitution? It is simply stunning for the world to see the country it supports to gain independence acting abnormally.

The fundamental principle that anchored a nation on strong foundation is Bill of Rights. The human, political, economic and customary rights could have been the cornerstone of South Sudan transitions constitution but unfortunately kiir’s administrations knowingly violate these rights. The South Sudan Legislative Assembly presiding over this fraudulent transitional constitution that serves nobody but the president fails to act. I personally doubts whether legislative assembly knows its primary responsibility. It is interesting to see the legislative Assembly allows citizens to be robbed of their rights which basically left citizens left at the mercy of the President.

Even in the midst of these tragic and unbearable situations, the people of South Sudan are optimistic and have remained calm. They have developed patriotic faith and love for their country during the liberation struggles. Citizens hope and dream for a Leader that would enhance management capacity, as well as ensuring a constitution that protects their rights. We are optimistic society, therefore we will continue of dreaming if this leader does not change it course. We will continue dreaming for a leader that would play integrating roles of nominating people who would champion diplomatic policy that would serve the interests of citizens and maintain our ally around the world. We would long for a president that would frequently send ministers to survey and assess villages that were ravage by war and reports on how such situations can be remedy. We basically need a leader that would frequent visit states and reacts when his citizens are killed. In this nascent nation, domestic policies should be aimed at training and development, performance management, public service ethics, and succession planning, because better understanding of public leadership begins with an understanding of one’s self within a framework of guiding policies and tactics of getting things done.

Let us be practical in term of implementing a policy, decision to move headquarter out of Wau was a colossal failures. It is not a good sign of any democracy to abruptly move the headquarter without the consent of the governed (citizens). The president and governor would have joined their hand and sell their policy of moving headquarter out of Wau to citizens. This policy would have created a better debate and dialogue between the governor and citizens. It would have also revealed the positive and negative consequences of this policy. The consent of the governed is an essential part of the constitution. It is the responsibility of all the public officials, the president and governors to draft policy and sell that policy to citizens. The citizens are the ultimate decision makers, they can choose to accept or reject policy based upon policy benefits and disadvantages. It is vitally essentially for all government officials to allow all the stakeholders understand what sorts of policy, its repercussions before its implementations. Notes: that if all the procedures of implementation policies were taken, lives of people in Wau would have been saved and Wau’s tragedy could have been avoided.

To conclude, the SPLM must redeem itself from its sins of the past seven years in its Extra-ordinary Convention, if indeed this convention is worth to be given this name. Our party must elect a candidate with credentials and leadership capacity, other elements of resolving public controversies include employing effective communications skills and strategies and the ability to resolve conflicts and disputes for 2015 elections. Among the most important qualities of leadership is the attitude toward change. In fact, effective public leaders are distinctly dissatisfied with the status quo. They are often willing to take risks to initiate improvements. The skills of an effective leader include: recognizing opportunity and knowing how to make the most of it; optimizing group effectiveness; understanding the basics of planning; the ability to effectively network; willingness to delegate; knowing how and when to challenge others understanding the benefits of change and not hesitating to implement it when needed; and willingness to take risks.

We need a leader with clear judgment and ability to reach logical conclusions and make high quality decisions based on available information, and skills of identifying educational needs and setting priorities. Ministerial positions have been recycled and I think the recycling is completed. I urge the president and ministers to give the new progressive generation a priority to serve their country. The Lost boys possess a unique traits and behaviors of effective developmental leaders whose primary focus is the development and democracy. They have been asked to wait since 1987, when will their tomorrows come? I think they have been prepared and groomed to tackle huge issues and challenges of today.

The South Sudan land owed them huge debts. The torch must be must passed to them if we want our country to be put in a road to good governance, rules of law and democratic ideals. This generation is prepared to handle external and internal forces pressure on leaders and they could find ways of delivering services to citizens while maintaining high government ethics.

Gabrial Pager Ajang
The writer holds BA, MPA and PhD student
He can be reached @ ajangassociates@gmail.com

SPLM leadership has always lagged behind events

BY: Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, FEB/15/2013, SSN;

South Sudan is often referred to as the quickest changing country in the world, but this is only so because so many things are happening simultaneously in a place where very little else ever existed before. However this observation must be viewed with a pinch of salt as not every change here happens for the better.

For even Juba the seat of the country’s government and the main center of events, although it has witnessed many changes since 2005 up to date, it can hardly be said that these changes have been for the better. With an unplanned population rise from an initial of less than 250,000 in 2004, it is now a home to around 1.0 million inhabitants.

It has barely developed from a tiny garrison town into a modern day shanty town with no sewage disposal, no clean drinking water and no central electricity supply. The town’s planning authority cannot cope up with the rapid pace of returnee citizens, villages to town immigration and the across border influx of workers and traders.

Caught off guard even the modern buildings that are meant to replace the ramshackle structures have mostly been constructed on either illegally acquired pieces of land or unauthorized plots. What were designated as open parks and playgrounds are now sites of all kinds of buildings.

Unsurprisingly the new country has been more under spontaneous changes than anything planned so as to speak. And the leadership under President Salva Kiir Mayardit is for the best part characterized by slow decision making and inability to prioritize projects and programs in spite of the abundant access that it has to free expert advice and technical opinion.

The decision to abruptly shut down the oil production came towards the last week of January 2012, and for the president to wait until August 2012 to form his belated committee tasked with studying the reconstruction of the government is indeed a very late reaction.

While president Kiir took his time to react to what was an obvious and an expected downside of his decision to shut down the Oil production, it has to be stressed here that other concerned South Sudanese and in its forefront is the United South Sudan Party [USSP] did indeed come out openly not only to suggest but also went on to emphasize the importance of immediately dissolving this bloated cabinet and replacing it with a lean cabinet of technocrats. Follow this link to read the whole article. www.alloexpat.com/sudan…/country-needs-a-care-taker-government.

The SPLM led government of South Sudan under President Salva Kiir Mayardit is infamous for its established characteristic of slowness in considering vital national issues and the snail pace in implementing important projects.

Throughout the reign of this leadership South Sudan has never had anything delivered on time. And I mean anything with the exception of the 2011 self determination referendum and subsequently of course the declaration of the country’s independence on July 9th, 2011, both of which were directly overseen by the international community.

Coming to the mother of all issues and that’s the construction of alternative pipelines to free South Sudan from depending on the “Jallaba regime” in Khartoum, it can be seen that this same slow thinking leadership failed to read the political forecast properly in as far as the future of the country’s Oil Industry is concerned in the light of the ever bumpy relationship that South Sudan has with its northern neighbor.

Many voices have been shouting in the wilderness trying to draw the attention of the people of South Sudan and especially so the attention of the current political leadership – and in fact warning them about the uncertainty attached to the future of the Oil industry. Had they taken heed they would have realized ahead of time the importance of building an alternative pipeline to the Indian Ocean.

Again the USSP has been a forerunner in providing an in-length enlightenment campaign for the construction of an alternative pipeline which it started in 2009 and went on to intensify it in 2010 around the run up to both the general elections and the self-determination referendum. To read the whole article please visit southsudannewsagency.com as it appeared on Jul 10, 2010 under the heading: “Oil Pipelines to the Indian Ocean are as important as Independence itself.”

In that time and the satellite storage centers for information will remain our sole witness for all the doubting “Thomases” – what we heard from the then national minister of petroleum Dr. Lual Acheick Deng, a senior member of the ruling SPLM party, was nothing but a classical rhetoric of a diehard Unionist. His argument was that an alternative pipeline was not an economical viable project. Follow this link to read the whole article. www.gurtong.net/…/Criticised-Minister-Lual-Dengs-Support-For-Uni.

Today the true nationalists are all out there to challenge those who wanted to guarantee their daily bread at the expense of our long awaited independence. So my dear disciples of the New Sudan Vision, where do you now stand in as far as the economic viability of an alternative pipeline are concerned?

Which one would be easier for you or say economically viable for the republic of South Sudan to undertake so as to save its economy: To disarm the SPLM/A – North (9th and 10th SPLA divisions as preferred to by the NCP) and then be allowed by the Jallaba to use their pipeline or will you go with dignity to support the construction of an alternative pipeline – or seek other ways of exporting the country’s Oil to the world markets?

Now almost three years since we have been campaigning for the alternative pipeline and sadly enough till the time of writing these lines, no light exists at the end of the tunnel. We have heard all these stories about Lamu in Kenya and Djibouti in the Horn of Africa over and over again.

We have also heard about the Japanese Toyota Company and a certain Texan Company and other American companies as well, but we haven’t seen any work being started yet.

As recently as last year president Kiir knew very well that his enemies in Khartoum are more likely to inflict damage on our citizens using their notorious Antonov which randomly drop bombs where that may be. Yet he took the boys to fight without a sky cover.

Those who read Sudan Tribune on February 13, 2013 will have come across this news heading: Kiir orders troop deployment to border areas with Sudan http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article 45494.

The question that begs an answer is: “Has president Kiir learned anything from the Panthou [Heglig]? And has he now upgraded the army [SPLA] with the much needed anti-aircraft hardware? Which ever way you look at the current situation along our northern borders, it’s likely that sooner than later the two countries may easily go back to war.

With all these eminent security threats our army [SPLA] still does not posses any of the sophisticated guns to bring down the enemies Antonov planes which indeed have proved to be a nuisance along the border regions. The military solution to this should have taken the priority.

We cannot talk about not having the funds each time an important issue is discussed when some 75 clearly identified individuals are allowed to walk away with no less than $ 4 billion dollars. That’s Kiir’s leadership for you.

This is a leadership which only thinks of doing something when the right time is long gone. Why don’t they understand that unless a thing is done at the right time, the impact will never be the same?

There is an optimum point in time when an action can yield a maximum result. Otherwise the unnecessary habit of delaying or deferring decisions and actions can be terribly counterproductive.

Author: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Secretary General – United South Sudan Party [USSP]. He can be reached at: justinramba@doctors.net.uk