Category: Politics

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

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

Date: 10th May 2015

MAY/23/2015, SSN,
Your Excellencies,

Re: The Way Forward for Peace in South Sudan;

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Kiir Government is Tribal Government serving Dinka interest in Chollo Kingdom

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Decentralized Federal System: the Best Option for Diversity Management

By John Juac, CANADA, APR/12/2015, SSN;

South Sudan is divided into ten states which correspond to the three historical regions of old Sudan known as Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile. These states are further divided into 86 counties and several Payams and Bomas; the transitional constitution of the new country, which was enacted in 2011, describes a decentralized system of governance with three levels of government: “the national level, which will exercise authority within a state in respect of the people and states; the state level of government, which shall exercise authority within a state, and render public services through the level closest to the people; and local government level within the state, which shall be the closest to the people.” (The Transitional Constitution of Republic of South Sudan 2011).

According to this constitution, while the national government has far-ranging powers, states also have broad executive and legislative rights giving them a fair degree of self-governance.

In many respects, some argued, the transitional constitution is fairly progressive with respect to devolving decision-making authority to appropriate levels of government. And this is especially true in relation to service delivery which is primarily the functions of states.

Even the local level of government is expected to undertake many functions that enhance broad citizen participation, the hallmark for good governance.

The constitution also recognizes traditional authority and lays a good foundation for a decentralized federal system of governance, and yet there has been a public debate in recent months about the merits and demerits of unitary and federal systems.

In a Sudan Tribune opinion editorial, one of the debaters made a strong case for a reversion to a unitary state, and argued that “economically, federalism hurts poor states and most of the time, it encourages unnecessary competition and selfishness. In another word, it breeds inequality and we do not want it happen in our land. Some states are rich while others could be left behind,” (Sudan Tribune2012).

Such arguments suggest two things: an inclination to weaken the decentralized structures in favor of a unitary state and a wrong assessment of governance systems in Africa and elsewhere.

The available written materials show that a unitary governmental system has failed many African nations in the past. So would South Sudanese still need unitary state structures to fail them?

One thinks that arguments in favor of a unitary state in a new country like South Sudan are wrong headed. Africa’s post-independence experiences with unitary state structures has been disastrous.

Unitary systems have produced the high levels of inequality, marginalization of vulnerable groups such as women, rural people, ethnic minorities, urban poor, and the promotion of policies that have made corruption and rent seeking endemic.

Unitarism concentrates power in the center and enhances the ability of the ethno-regional groups that control the central government to maximize their interests and values at the expense of other citizens, especially those which are not politically well connected (Kimenyi and Meagher 2004).

There is often a strong motive for ruling elites to concentrate political power in the central government, and this concentration of political power enhances the ability of ruling elites to redistribute income and wealth in their favor and their supporters’ favor, usually at the expense of the larger majority.

As has been the case in many African countries during most of the post-independence period, the common tendency for leaders has been to create strong unitary states.

Furthermore, those countries that had some form of decentralized governance structures before independence often had post-independence rulers that abolished such systems, arguing that they were not effective instruments of governance and economic development. These leaders saw the unitary system as the best institutional arrangement to unite the diverse ethnic and religious groups that inhabited their countries.

But the results of the strong unitary states on African continent are well known- abuse of power, high levels of corruption and financial malfeasance, as well as oppression of minority and other vulnerable groups and regional inequalities.

Many groups that came to view themselves as disenfranchised and deprived by the existing system of governance resorted to destructive mobilization in an effort to improve their participation in political and economic markets and to minimize further marginalization.

The results were brutal civil wars and extremely high levels of political instability.

Some of us who argue in favor of a unitary governmental system really do not know much about South Sudan. South Sudan is a very large country with a population estimated at slightly over 8 million with complex ethnic diversity.

There are more than 60 different ethnic groups of varying sizes currently residing in this new country, making diversity management particularly important. Effectively delivering public goods and services in such a varied and complex environment presents many challenges.

To deal effectively with these immense human development obstacles that our country faces, we must design and implement governance structures in which the civil servants and political leaders are accountable to the people and constitution.

Such governance structures must also allow for broad participation of South Sudanese people in social, political and economic affairs. Only a decentralized system would bring these desired outcomes in South Sudan.

The lesson from other highly heterogeneous countries is that “decentralized governance is the best suited in dealing with diversity, improving the delivering of services and entrenching participation and accountability” (Kimenyi 1997).

As the experiences of other African nations have shown, concentration of political power in the center is associated with a whole range of outcomes that undermine national unity and national development.

Conclusion
The story which has repeated itself over and over is that people of South Sudan have set out on the democratic path with revolutionary enthusiasm, but before long they have lost their way and settled back into a more centralized authoritarian regime.

This centralized authoritarian regime is characterized by the dominance of unable personalistic leaders who often pursue disastrous political, social and economic policies, widespread and blatant corruption among cabinet ministers and civil servants, arbitrary infringement of the rights and liberties of citizens, lack of standards of bureaucratic efficiency and performance, the pervasive alienation of traditional rulers, the loss of authority by legislatures and courts, the fragmentation and complete disintegration of broadly based political parties.

The primary fact is that all these problems are in the large part the product of the highly centralized system coupled with a dictatorial tendency.

The ruling political gangsters in Juba have reneged on a promise to move the country from its transitional constitution to a permanent framework of governance and focus on strengthening the federal system.

Now there are concerns that the centralization of political power in Juba is marginalizing some national groups and is creating corruption and wasteful allocation of scarce public resources.

The states and their constituent local governments are not really constitutionally functional entities. So what will you do as responsible South Sudanese citizens to rectify this situation?

You must forge a united urban revolutionary front, regardless of your political persuasions, ethnic and regional backgrounds, to resist the temptations by the ruling criminals and thugs to concentrate power in the national government at the expense of state and local levels of government.

For this nascent nation, a major focus must be the strengthening and not the weakening of decentralized federal system. Actions that weaken state governments are likely to create a volatile situation, as some national groups will be marginalized and deprived

According to experts, there are several advantages of a decentralized system of governance for a country like South Sudan.

First, decentralization when it is guaranteed by the national permanent constitution, brings government closer to the people and makes it relevant to their lives and the problems that they face.

Second, decentralization enhances the ability of the people at the local level to participate in the design and implementation of policies affecting their lives. This is especially critical given the fact that the people at the community level have more information about demand and supply conditions in their communities than those in Juba, and hence are able to help the government adopt policies that significantly enhance the efficient and equitable allocation of public resources.

Third, decentralization increases competition in government provision and therefore enhances government efficiency.

Fourth, decentralization improves accountability since civil servants and political leaders are forced to work closely with those who provide the resources- the tax payers that pay their salaries and support their activities.

Finally, decentralization enhances the ability of local communities to maximize their values and thus minimizes the conflict that often arises when some groups are forced to sacrifice their traditions and cultures in favor of some national values dictated by those groups that control the central government.

Only a decentralized federal system of governance would bring these desired outcomes in South Sudan.

John Juac Deng
Journalist/writer
Juacd@yahoo.ca

Why the AU-UN Trusteeship for South Sudan must be Supported

BY: JOANA ADAMS, MAY/072015, SSN;

Since the outbreak of the violent conflict in the new republic of South Sudan in December 2013, the Inter Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) composed of the East African countries bordering South Sudan, have tried to broker peace between the two warring parties of the Government of South Sudan under Salva Kiir Mayardit and the rebel movement led by former Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar Teny.

The reasons for the outbreak of the military confrontations which resulted in the massacre of hundreds and thousands of the Nuer ethnic group in Juba, from 15th-18th Dec, and thereafter, are now, well documented. Contrary to the lies of President Salva Kiir, there was no attempted coup.

We are thankful to former Nigerian President Gen Olusegun Obasanjo and his team for a job well-done, but are disappointed that in spite of repeated calls the official document has not yet been released.

We the concerned citizens of South Sudan especially the suffering women and children, who have born the brunt of this tragic war, demand for this Report to be released without further delay.

We are also grateful to the many patriotic South Sudanese who risked their lives to speak the truth to expose the heinous atrocities committed by the government of Salva Kiir Mayardit against its own citizens.

There are compelling reasons for this rouge government to be declared an illegitimate terrorist organisation, and those found wanting there in, held politically and criminally accountable.

The world cannot afford to have double standards. There should be nothing like African solution for African problems. African problems are human problems.

The same international legal standards that were used to hold those who violated human rights; committed war crimes; and perpetrated crimes against humanity in Bosnia, Rwanda, and elsewhere, must be unequivocally used to hold Salva Kiir and cohorts to account to ensure that such gruesome crimes are never repeated again in South Sudan.

In January 2014, a Cessation of Hostility Agreement was signed between the forces of President Kiir and that of Dr. Riek Machar. But this Agreement continued to be violated to date by both parties.

Several Peace talks conducted in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa between government and rebel representatives followed by face to face talks between the two protagonists Salva Kiir and Riek Machar have yielded little result.

The two SPLM/A factions continue to trade blames while stock piling weapons to secure final military victory against each other. The outbreak of the recent horrendous fighting especially in Upper Nile and Unity States are testimony to this.

The actions and inactions of the government is a clear demonstration that they are not interested in negotiating peace in good faith. President Kiir and cohorts continue to beat war drums while entrenching their position to illegally remain in power come July 9th 2015.

He has repeatedly rejected any provision to accommodate Riek Machar in a transitional government in any capacity. He dreads his former Vice President and finally enlisted the support of his preferred Vice President, James Wani Igga to rally Equatorian governors to defend a worthless position.

In his attempt to address the nation after collapse of the peace talks on March 6th, the President meaninglessly rumbled on making many incomprehensible childish statements to the astonishment of many.

One of the statements which caught my attention on the SSTV was that, if Riek becomes the Vice President what would happen if he (Kiir), accidentally dies? I have never heard of such childish nonsense with respect to cardinal national issues in my entire life before.

Is Kiir seriously imagining that he will continue to own and rule the South, even from his grave?

The venom of Kiir and cohorts; the likes of Makuei, Barnaba, Martin Elia Lomoro, against Western countries that helped us get our independence in the first place, is truly astounding.

As though the government alone cannot fight its battle, the government of Kiir has employed the services of the evil unconstitutional Jieng Council of elders, to randomly attack it’s carefully chosen targets: the IGAD, AU, the Troika, president Obama, alleging them to be perpetrators of the destruction of South Sudan.

Forgetting that they are the very ones who have destroyed the South and there is nothing further to be destroyed. People of good will worldwide can now only rescue the country from the abyss.

These war of words are intended to achieve at least 3 things:
-1) With-holding the imposition of the UNSC approved sanctions regime;
-2) Stopping the release of the AUPSC Inquiry Report and the grave consequences it would have on alleged perpetrators of the targeted killings in Juba, some of who are members of the Jieng Council of Elders;
-3) Preventing application of the AU (leaked) Report recommendation particularly the AU-UN Trusteeship of South Sudan.

Let the citizens be not deceived. These targeted sanctions will not affect the whole country but only the individuals deemed to be obstructing the peace process- and they are known. Sanctions will reduce their abilities to travel and use the money they have looted from government coffers to buy arms to cause further death and further destruction.

There is also a tacit declaration of war should the government of Salva Kiir be destroyed, in the process.

The Jieng Council of evil Elders transformed itself from the notorious “kitchen cabinet” during the CPA implementation, to a parallel institution that advises the president on national matters and interferes and intervenes whenever in their view their tribal interests are being threatened.

To make things worst, it has now transpired that this illegitimate Council and its destructive activities are being fully funded by the President through the illicit disproportional budget of the presidency.

They have held the President hostage for a long time and should not be allowed to hold the country and the world at large, hostage too.

Their emergence on national matters is timely because it does support the cause for the country to be put under AU-UN Trusteeship until such a time when the general public are sufficiently literate and political aware to make their own judgments on matters that affect their lives, welfare and prosperity.

These men of letters are taking advantage of the semi-illiteracy of our President and the illiteracy of their so called political constituencies- their tribes. They are greedy selfish bastards who care for nothing but their political survival and privileges. They too should be held to account morally, socially, politically and criminally.

After failure to secure a peace agreement on 6th March, 2015, the negotiating body has now been expanded and renamed IGAD plus which include new players such as South Africa, Algerian and the Troika, namely United States, United Kingdom and Norway, the principal countries, that help negotiate the CPA 2005, which finally led to the independence of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011.

As expected Juba government immediately denounced this move and threatened not to attend should the Troika form part of the next negotiating body. They have since disclaimed the threat.

Despite the threats of the government and the evil council of Elders, the UN Security Council should immediately start implementing the sanctions regime they have approved.

The AUPSC Inquiry Report, must be released without further delay. Anything short of this is a total betrayal of the people of South Sudan by the continental body that has falsely raised our expectations, in the first place.

Going by the adage that there is no smoke without fire, the Recommendations of the (leaked) AUPSC Inquiry Report should be supported as the only sustainable solution to the profound political crisis in the country.

Indeed the violent reaction of the Jieng Council is a litmus test that these recommendations could work, otherwise they wouldn’t be petrified by it.

Power-sharing will never be a sustainable solution to the conflict in South Sudan. It will only act as a cease fire that will surely ignite again in not too distant a future.

President Kiir has made it abundantly clear that he loathes Riek Machar and does not wish to work with him ever again in his life time.

He attempted to assassinate his arch foe in Dec 2013. Even if both men are forced to compromise to form a transitional government of national unity, they are too suspicious almost paranoid of each other especially the President.

It will only be a matter of time before the one who strikes first will eliminate his rival which could again plunge the country into a fresh crisis.

The issue of power struggle between the protagonists is only one dimension of the conflict and should not be blown out of proportion by IGAD Plus, but put into context in so far as the larger national political dynamics are concerned.

The leaked AU Report has pin pointed the root causes of the South Sudan conflict when it asserted that the CPA, while it addressed the North South dichotomy, ignored intra South-South political dynamics.

That the CPA, gave the SPLA/M government the culture of “entitlement”. During the CPA implementation from 2005-2011, the SPLM government and key personalities in the SPLA constructed a government that gave them absolute power over the executive, the legislative and the judiciary at all levels of government.

This anomaly was compounded by the practice of tribalism, nepotism and corruption in recruitment of personnel in the military as well as in the civil services.

There is no rule of law in the country but what is grimly described as “rule of the gun”. The culture of corruption and impunity are rampant.

In fact the former UNIMISS chief in South Sudan Hilde Johnson affirmed that the foundation of the new state is totally flawed and should be “rebooted”, if any sustainable peace and obviously development is ever to be achieved in the new nation.

The problems in the country are now so deeply entrenched that the only viable solution is the implementation of the (leaked) AUPSC Inquiry Report recommendations that South Sudan should be placed under an AU-UN Trusteeship. The recommendation of the collegial presidency that will be overseen by the AU-UN, along with implementation of federalism, is a particularly welcomed development.

The collegial presidency will in the short term, eliminate the issue of political rivalry between peoples of the three former regions of Bahar El Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile at the same time give each region equal chance to participate in governing the country.

In fact after the transitional period, the collegial presidency could be transformed into rotating presidency between the 3 regions to ensure that democracy is not abused by the majority to exclude others from national leadership.

However because there has been profound destruction of the moral and social fabrics of the society; coupled with lack of basic infrastructure development; and the necessity to implement transitional justice, peace and reconciliation.

In my view, 5 years is too short a period to achieve all these and to lay a foundation for sustainable political stability and ultimate national development based on the principles of equality of citizenship, the rule of law, equitable access to finance, employment opportunities, health and education services.

The transitional government should therefore be extended for 7-10 years.

Equatoria’s demand for the Position of Vice President
Prior to their latest intervention, the Equatorian governors took a good stance in representing the position of Equatorians with respect to federalism. This position should be maintained at all cost. It is what will bring political justice and dignity to the people of Equatoria.

The position of Wani Igga as the Vice president or vice president is worthless. Wani Igga has always been a loyal servant to the SPLM first to Dr. John Garang and now to Salva Kiir. His constituency is the SPLM and not the people of Equatoria.

Why is he silent when the land and people of Equatoria are being violated by the government? Why did he not hold the executive to account when he held the second most powerful position of the Speaker of the Assembly from 2005-2013?

From the time, he joined the SPLM/A Wani Igga was a loyal son to Dr. John Garang and now he is a loyal son to Salva Kiir. Isn’t it ironic that when the position of Wani is being threatened the President sends Wani to seek protection from his fellow Equatorians and in turn asks Equatorians to protect their son?

The present illegitimate Transitional Constitution 2011, gives the President too much power. And this Constitution along with Kiir’s government must be dismantled. In his mind, Kiir believes he is a sovereign not simply an elected (2010) Vice- President of the Republic of Sudan.

He or any other leader is yet to be elected as the first President of the Republic of South Sudan, when the time comes. Thanks to the clarity of the leaked AU Report on this issue.

In a system where the President wields absolute power and the organs of government have no checks and balances of power, the position of the Vice President is rendered worthless. Vice President Wani Igga should have by now asked Kiir to step down and give him Wani Igga, the chance to be President to restore peace to the country. The question is, when will he pluck sufficient courage to confront his boss?

Where is it written in that flawed Constitution, that Equatorians must always deputise a Dinka, or a Nuer ? Under no circumstances should Equatorians or any of the so called minority groups from the 63 tribes should accept being treated as second class citizens in their own country. Does that ring a bell?

The new republic of South Sudan is not a free gift to the people of Equatoria, it is a right that was also purchased with our sweat and blood.

From 1955 to 2004, the war of liberation was fought more viciously on Equatorian soil and today the capital city is located on our land too. If the present leaders of Equatoria, accept servitude, the next generation of Equatorians will assume that it is normal to be slaves to other men and women.

The onus is on the present generation of Equatorians to ensure that our young people learn the art to stand up for their human and civic rights and duties. Finally, let us join ranks and not be disunited, by the worthless position of vice presidency.

This could well be a cynical strategy to tie us down in internal squabbles to distract us from engaging in tackling the real national issues that plunged this nascent country into war in the first place.

Citizen Joana Adams

Shilluk Kingdom: The Monarchy Belittled and Betrayed by its own Sons

BY: Mayak Deng Aruei, Doctoral student, USA, MAY/03/2015, SSN;

The Chollo/Shilluks who are going through many horrors of our time must know that their own sons have opened a death corridor, and which passes through their homeland. There can be no meaningful peace in the Kingdom of Shilluk if their sons don’t stop being too ambitious to lead, too vocal in South Sudan’s affairs and too easy to catch political fires. The fact that certain people want to lead, be seen as leaders and want to make profound impacts on political grounds, their people will be forced to take part in the madness fueled by tribal sentiments.

So long as Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin, Dr. Peter Adwok Nyaba, Gen. Pagan Amum Okeich, Gen. Oyai Deng Ajak and Gen. Johnson Olony/Oliny or whatever the correct spelling is, and if they continue to aim high for military and political influences, Shilluk Kingdom would not be peaceful.

For unknown reasons, people are mixing national affairs with local’s land disputes. That is not only in Shilluk Kingdom, but across South Sudan where people are so confused, and cannot differentiate between national issues and local issues. Please go down the river of life and follow the trail.

First, let’s look at what the Shilluk Kingdom really means to South Sudan as a sovereign State. We know for a fact that Chollo/Shilluks have been ruled by Kings for centuries, and they are still under Monarch with some influential Chiefs leading the way in the affairs of their Society and the Nation as a whole.

Are we supposed to be discussing tribes when talking about crises in the Republic of South Sudan? Hell yeah, why not? The raging fire in South Sudan was fueled by tribal hatreds, and Shilluks have their part in the crisis. For that reason, reaching to the bottom of our problems is the way to prepare for better future, absence the tribal mindsets.

There is something very unique about the Shilluks, they have been very active in Sudan’s politics, played crucial roles in the liberation struggles, took part in the split of the SPLM/SPLA in 1991, famously engaged the Government of Southern Sudan on many avenues, and continued to do so after the independence of South Sudan. But why are Shilluks seen everywhere while their numbers are very few?

For God knows, Shilluks are too ambitious to lead and fragmented to hang on to their cause. Well, that is a too simplistic way to describe a tribe.

As a matter of fact, Shilluks are not alone in that quest, some small sub-tribes of Jieeng/Dinka (Chiefdoms), well known for shaping young boys into effective leaders have built enemies over time, out of nowhere, and have had their villages overrun several times, and by those who charge them with being too eager to lead, along with coined/made up terms, “born to rule.”

Without exaggerating what this community (Shilluk) really means to South Sudanese, we must give credits to those who have sacrificed their energies and times for the good cause of South Sudanese. For one thing, politics is not for everyone, but those who aspires to be politicians know or should know the risks associated with leading in a multiethnic nation like the Republic of South Sudan.

In the fresh politics of South Sudan, some of Shilluks, politicians and army officers are household names, for good or bad. We know that people like Gen. Oyai Deng Ajak, a courageous SPLA commander, the first Army Chief of SPLA General Staff in the Autonomous Government of Southern Sudan, former minister for Regional Cooperation, and lastly served as minister for Security in the Office of the President was a well respected Officer during the liberation struggle.

Along the same line, Gen. Pagan Amum Okeich was one of the high ranking members of the SPLM/SPLA (after the SPLM/SPLA-High Command became defunct), one of the key players in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), SPLM Secretary General between 2005-2013, and who campaigned pretty hard for the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).

And of course, we know the two vocal doctors: Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin and Dr. Peter Adwok Nyaba. As many people may remember, Dr. Lam Akol was alleged to have been the main Architect of the 1991 SPLM/SPLA’s split, a political Monster in both the Sudanese and South Sudanese politics, an academician whose education never become obsolete and the most feared opposition leader by the South Sudanese Government in Juba.

For the record, Dr. Lam Akol has written about the tragic event of 1991, presented a very detailed account of the event, and those who read for future generations can infer that he has admitted his roles, and blamed some acute fouls (killing of Dinka’s officers) on his boss, Dr. Riek Machar.

Before heading to the warlords, Dr. Peter Adwok Nyaba is another controversial political figure who switches sides whenever his political views are threatened, and never keeps quiet regardless of mounting pressures on his life. Let’s also give him credit for he sacrificed his leg for the good cause of South Sudanese.

Down the line, we know those of Colonel Robert Gwang (may be a General now in the Government of take-whatever-you-like/want), the then leader of the SSDM/A-Upper Nile Faction. In that same death squad, the now Gen. Johnson Olony was one of Robert Gwang’s deputies. The two warlords had a heated showdown before Robert Gwang signed his own peace deal with the Government of South Sudan, leaving Johnson Olony to sacrifice few brainless boys for his own political good.

These dudes, Gwang and Olony are criminals, they ought to be charged, tried for using children to fight senseless wars, abusing their youthful time and diminishing their opportunities to succeed in life.

The warlords (Robert Gwang and Johnson Olony), with the help of the Sudanese Government in Khartoum engaged the Autonomous Government of Southern Sudan before the historic Referendum. If there is any particular tribe that South Sudanese should fear, then it is not the Jieeng/Dinka or Nuer/Naath, but the Shilluks in the Shilluk Kingdom.

Given their acquaintance with Arab civilization, the Shilluks are relentless, and they forge political Alliances in any community. Let’s analyze the grand picture, especially their quest for power and recognition in all walks of life.

Let’s take a deep breath, and focus on political venom that they inject in any political wrangling. Well, that is not all fatal, and can be utilized for the good of South Sudan. It is of a prime importance that we (South Sudanese) reexamine who we are, and move forward with a full understanding of ourselves.

While they have been known as trouble makers, we should consider that particular community as a model for coexistence. Over the years, Shilluks have been very influential in all corners of politics in the Sudan and South Sudan, and if they have managed to play such roles, overcame being too few, in the middle of populous tribes (Dinka & Nuer), then who cannot wow his/her supposedly hardcore political rivals?

Not yet finished with the narrative story of the century. The Shilluks are well known for befriending all kinds of people, and they entertains political marriages throughout South Sudan. Take for instances the many Shilluk Kingdom’s daughters that are married, have established their families in Dinka’s prominent families: Paramount Chief Deng Malual Aleer of Nyarweng and other families across South Sudan.

As recent as the 1980s, Cdr. Nyachigak Nyachiluk, one of the first SPLM/SPLA fearless field commanders, and a prominent Murle, got married to a daughter of the Shilluk’s Paramount Chief, Amum Okeich, sister to Pagan Amum and he has been all at odd with the Government of South Sudan.

And the other being the then Cdr. Oyai Deng Ajak, who got married to a Dinka girl (name withheld for the obvious reasons), a marriage suspected by many to have earned him the greatest trust among Jieeng. All of these events make Shilluks rather very unique people one can work with, and people who have crossed tribal boundaries.

While Shilluks are easy going, they are also very sticky, and cling to their ambitions at the expense of their kinfolks.

Despite all the shortcomings, Shilluks Kingdom is very crucial and a place where people should look for coexistence rather than killing their ambitious effort to lead others.

If Dr. Lam Akol fearlessly contested against President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar, the Tribalists of our time, lost the election and still kept his ambition high enough, and engaged the Government of South Sudan and lived through State directed wraths, what else is the effective leadership?

If the then Cdr. Oyai Deng Ajak successfully led predominantly Dinka soldiers, and succeeded in getting the Movement to where it should have been, what else is the effective leadership?

If Pagan Amum has won the hearts of Dinkas & Nuers, pushed the Sudanese Government in Khartoum to sign the Referendum bill, what else is the effective leadership?

If col. Johnson Olony fought a meaningless war against the Government of South Sudan, signed the peace with the Government and was trusted again to deputize Gen. Johnson Gony Biliu, what else is the effective leadership?

Just a side note: not everyone who is too ambitious become a leader? Greed and dishonesty brings people down. Oops, I don’t know about the 75 blacklisted corrupt officials in the Government of South Sudan? The President of the Republic reserved the right to retract the charge he made, withdrew the case and we don’t know what happened since then?

With all the back and forth gear shifting, there is a huge price attached to being too ambitious. We know for a coin that Government of South Sudan tried several times to connect Dr. Lam Akol with armed militias in Shilluk Kingdom, charges he denied categorically, and was exiled for two years.

In all of these messes, a reality check will surely guide us through the moment of confusion. How many innocents have been lost or have lost their lives in those wars fought by those officers against the SPLA-Government, whether they have some links with Dr. Lam Akol or pure loyalists of Gen. Johnson Olony?

As recent as April 2015, Dr. Lam Akol’s house was allegedly surrounded by security elements/national security agents, and it happened immediately after fighting broke out between Gen. Johnson Olony’s Government allied militias and armed guards of Governor Kun Puoch. Who is losing in all these maniacs?

The last statement made by Gen. Olony claimed that he is still with the Government. What? So, killing in South Sudan is an entertainment? Where in the world can active army General stage a coup against state’s government, and still be considered as being loyal to the central Government?

Won’t it be nice to connect all the dots? During the second South Sudanese liberation struggle, there was a Dinka’s Band known as “Akut ë Kuëi.” and they composed songs that warned Jieeng/Dinkas (Junubiin in general) against taking part in many meaningless wars. They had this to say: ‎”…Muɔnyjäŋ wek bë thöök ë tëreek, wek Jiëëŋda bë thöök ë tëreek ( Jieeng you will be finished by wars…).”

As we speak, Dinkas, Nuers and Shilluks are finishing themselves for no good reason, and the same song can be applied to the three tribes that dominate South Sudanese politics. It was not long ago that Gen. Johnson Olony was a notorious Rebel commander, allied with the Government, fought against rebelling SPLA’s forces around Malakal, was seriously wounded, and has now started another war with the Government and under the pretext of not wanting the Governor of Upper Nile state.

What do we make of all those scenarios? Well, you can make your own judgments, generate your own opinions, but I will tell you one thing. Leadership is not all about doing good things all the times, it is about mobilizing, energizing and keeping followers closer to the visions. Good leadership delivers on promises, and leaders in that path try to strategize on the best course to serve the people.

The other day, Dr. Lam Akol was asked by the SBS Radio’s Host, and about his former political rival, Dr. John Garang de Mabior, and he had this to say: “Dr. John Garang always knows what he is doing, how he is doing it, and you can only disagree with him because you don’t like what he is doing.”

That is statement tells us something very important, and all the aspiring politicians should take note: honesty in politics is a path to success, and provides a road map to all sorts of shortcomings. For those who only hate their opponents, dismiss what they are doing and fail to avail their own visions, they run the risk of being seen/viewed as incompetent leaders.

As the freedom fighters get weaker and weaker every single day, former child soldiers, the Red Army/Jesh Al-Mer are filling in the gaps (few are towns’ mayors, counties commissioners, military officers and others are states ministers).

The displacements and replacements of the warlords is not going to be done in a single day, a month or a year, it will be a gradual change that the society as a whole must envision. We know for one that humans do not live forever, and the mentality of leaders’ children taking over without proper training is just too unrealistic. We can tells from the files and ranks of the SPLM/SPLA, and the kinds of people who made names during the liberation struggle.

The Shilluks case was presented as a way to reexamine who we are as South Sudanese, and why certain people are dominant and visible in politics, and all other areas of life. People don’t wake up on a given morning and become Army Generals, the same thing applies to competent leaders/politicians.

If South Sudanese really want to achieve beyond extraordinary, then they should stop fighting senselessly, invest in education and start the reconstruction of their COUNTRY immediately. What? Can South Sudanese really strategize on the best course to run the country?

Yes we can, but only if competent leaders are put in charge of public programs, and not those who cannot even prepare a simple speech for a symbolic commencement since independence. We have learned that political wrangles, aided by illiterates are very catastrophic, and should cease if South Sudan is going to be a nation where citizens move freely.

The fruits of our independence have been enjoyed by few, and that is why South Sudan has been burning all these years.

A while back, somebody familiar with the refugees’ lives had this to say: “A hungry refugee is an angry refugee.” In our case, poor freedom fighters can plunge the country into meaningless wars, and they are likely to revisit what they are good at, killing self-made enemies and political opponents to get by.

Take for instance the bunch of semi-literates and illiterates in the Tiger Battalion (Presidential/Republican Guards), loyal to individuals rather than the country and the White Army from the let’s go, and who plunged South Sudan into the ongoing war. Those who read should feed their brains with things that make sense, and those who hear should feed their hearts with courageous songs that encourages people to live side by side.

In concluding this piece, Shilluk Kingdom is in peril because its own sons are too ambitious to lead, and they have done that for decades. That is not a bad thing, but in a NATION where tribes rule, a Kingdom like Shilluk, and in the middle of war-liking Nilotics is likely to be burning every year.

As a refreshment, Shilluks fought in all wars: alongside the Khartoum based regimes, in the SPLM/SPLA Main Stream, split along with Dr. Riek Machar in 1991, defected with William Nyuon Bany in 1992, defected back/returned to the SPLM/SPLA in 1992, fought successful battles in the Bright Star Campaign, implicated in the 2013 coined up “attempted coup”, are part of the G-10 and some are active players in the SPLM-in-Opposition’s political drama.

We are quick to judge what Shilluks are all about, but they are nationalists, key players in South Sudan’s politics, and they would be like that until Dinkas & Nuers start investing in education rather than fighting senseless wars, and over the chairmanship of the derailed ruling Party.

The terms ‘Belittled and Betrayed’ opened up a pandora box for discussion, and may or may not mean much when it comes to political aspirants across the board. The Siege and the Surge continue, Junubiin!

The author here is Mayak Deng Aruei, a doctoral student in Organizational Leadership: Organizational Development. He is also the author of ‘Struggle Between Despair and Life: From Sudan’s Marshland Village, Child Soldiering, Refugee Camp and America.’ He can be reached at Kongor.da.ajak@gmail.com

Jieng equals Jallaba Council of Elders

BY: Michael Koma, APR/26/2015, SSN;

Attitude and Practice:
The Executive Director of the Community Empowerment Progress Organisation, Mr. Edmund Yakani, had at one time informed that they had planned to organize a public lecture in the University of Juba entitled, “Attitude and Practice,” to be held on 24 April of this year but it did not materialize for now. I thought this is a wonderful topic chosen by CEPO. CEPO deserves my congratulation; Mubruk yaa nas CEPO for this vital topic and the location to discuss it.

I hope it will happened soon. From the onset, it looks like an irrelevant topic. But in fact it is relevant and excellent as South Sudan is concerned. It is important to reflect on our attitudes as individuals and as a nation and its relation on the recurring of conflicts in our communities.

So what is Attitude?
Attitude is an opinion or general feeling about something. In our context what is that “something” we view it as negative in our South Sudanese society that keeps tearing us apart; or keeps us to fight from time to time among ourselves especially after we had some sort of peace agreement in 1972 and 2005.

Following the Addis Ababa Peace agreement, Junubeen were in state of fighting.
After the Addis Ababa deal it took us only 10 years. We are back to war with Sudan. That was understandable because the Addis Ababa Agreement did not address all the grievances of the South Sudanese people.

But before we jumped into the bush against the Arabs, the ten years period of self-rule was full of problems. One was Kokora (re-division) of southern Sudan regions into three provinces (Equatoria, Bahr el Ghazal and Upper Nile).

By then Juba was a very small town, in places such as Konyo Konyo and Gabat there are fighting along tribal lines. In markets there are grouping along tribal lines, settling in neighourhoods were along tribal lines.

The Bari speakers, the Madis, Mundari, and the Dinka are not in peace among themselves. Emotions were very high. A Dinka and a Bari cannot see eye to eye, eat together, stay together or dance in the same Disco Hall. You can clearly see there was a problem but the politicians tended to hide them that there are no problems; everything is fine.

In one of Francis Mading Deng book called the war of vision, he wrote that “what is not being said is what divides us.” In that book Francis was talking about the situation in the old Sudan. Why the south and the north are divided, why the Arabs felt superior to the so-called African brothers in South Sudan.

By then we were divided because Khartoum saw there was no problem in the Sudan. Kulu Sii tamam (everything is alright) they claimed on insisting that “nahnu ikwa”. We are brothers while the facts and realities on the ground say we are not.

It was a pure posturing. Khartoum defines Sudan as an Arab-Islamic State where Christians are forced to coexist with the Islamic salafists; the jihadists or the hardliners against their will.

Can we or can you, who is an African Christian really co-exist with the types of the current Islamic State as is the case now in Syria, Iraq and Libya, and by then in Sudan.

South Sudanese have foreseen that the imposition of Arab Islamic identity on the whole Sudan was a problem. But Khartoum attitude was that there was no problem. The setback was constant denial of no problem. So Attitude can be equated to arrogance. (Arrogance is a pride, overconfidence, superiority).

The Arab-Islamic face of the Sudan were/are (Saggiya, Jaaliya and Dongolayi). These are the first class citizens of the Sudan. They are positioned in strategic ministries: – Defence, Interior, Foreign Affairs, Finance, Energy, Mining while the Junubi (a South Sudanese) was given the Ministry of Stores.

These classifications were not in the constitution. The constitution was fine. These things were in the unwritten constitution of the Jallaba Council of Elders as is the case now with the Jieng Council of Elders (mostly represented by southerners who served under the Jalabas in the old Sudan).

The problems were not being said as Francis Deng noted in his book but were being implemented arrogantly against the cries of the Junubeen (South Sudanese). Whether you like it or not, it is not their business. If you want to rebel, it is your choice. If you want to stay humiliated as a second class citizen in your own country it is your choice.

After years of wrangling with the Arabs, this abnormal relation between the Arabs and the Africans in Sudan was clearly demonstrated in the signed peace deal of the year 2005; the CPA.

The CPA accepted the late Dr. John Garang de Mabior to assume the position of the First Vice President but on condition that when the post of the president falls vacant, constitutionally Garang was not allowed to become the President.

By that arrangement the ruling Arabs elite in the Sudan have cemented that an Arab person is a first class citizen of this country where Africans are the majority. It is a country where an African Muslim person is a second class while an African Christian or Animist person is a third class citizens and the others are the commoners.

So what is the link between Khartoum and Juba; does that attitude relate to our situation as of today?

First let me say this. You may agree or disagree with me on this. What was then in Khartoum wasn’t different from today’s South Sudan political and economic situation. As you read this opinion piece, it might reflect in your mind that some of us are too arrogant and aggressive. We are missing humility.

The attitudes of Khartoum’s elites are deeply embedded in some of us. That is why there is conflict in our country. To move away from old Sudan style we need to embrace modesty in our lives.

Humbleness is peace. It can create relative form of homogeneity in a diverse society such as South Sudan. One of the characteristics of a nation-state is uniformity and equality.

Unfortunately we are full of arrogance. This unnecessary pride is the tearing us apart. I have reached to a conclusion that we are a tribal nation. We are a country made of tribal kingdoms.

We are more proud of our tribal belongings than positive nationalism. We are overconfident of our tribes. We are blinded of our superiority. With all these do we still have courage to say that we are really one nation and one people?

Are we relatively homogeneous people who inhabit a sovereign state? The answer is simply no.

How this arrogance is demonstrated:
Even before the 2013 crisis erupted, the language of not only politicians but many South Sudanese was of violence or was preparing for war. In the internet you find words such as you are a “nyagat,” a reference to a Nuer as a traitor or an enemy. How come you have betrayed us in 1991 and you want the presidency by any means?

The statement such as “the problem is that he wants to become president” is an expression of arrogance. It has to do with inner feelings, it represents emotion of the speaker that nobody deserves the presidency except him or his tribe.

It is a similar attitude of the Jaaliyin. The statement cited above indicates that those speakers are against anybody having or have expressed ambition to rule, to become a governor, minister or commissioner.

He is expressing a sinful desire that “others” should not ‘think’ of leading this nation.

This is an attitude that encourages conflict in a diverse volatile society such as South Sudan. As an example, even in the University of Juba there is one group which wanted to dominate student’s bodies. The attitude of conquering others is a colonial attitude. Colonialism has no specific colour. It is not necessarily related to the white man or an Arab.

E-mail: michaelkomaa@gmail.com or michaelkoma@yahoo.com

The Ever-changing Face of Dr. Lam Akol in the politics of South Sudan

BY: Taban Abel Aguek, State MP, RUMBEK, APR/18/2015, SSN;

In a press conference in Juba last week, the leader of South Sudan Opposition Party SPLM–DC, Dr Lam Akol, criticized the government of South Sudan on being against the West. The issue seems to weave around the involvement of TROIKA in the upcoming IGAD Plus talks in Addis Ababa. The Government has since made its position clear that TROIKA should only be involved in an observer role, and nothing else. And for that, the government spelled out its concerns which are convincing to the South Sudanese public.

I believe this position of the government on TROIKA’s role is what Dr Lam has perceived as being against the West. Those people who know Dr. Lam well are now left confused on seeing him swap his attitudes towards the West in 2015.

Dr. Lam, by the time he was National Minister for Foreign Affairs – was a hard critique of the West. Both Lam and Beshir had to depend on Russia and China to thwart the West’s effort for peace and civilians protection in Darfur in 2006.

Now that Dr Lam publicly condemns the government of South Sudan on being harsh to the same West that he used to scorn upon during our days of the ‘united Sudan’ is quite interesting. Perhaps, it does justify the long-held notion that in politics “there are no permanent enemies, but only permanent interests”.

That remains that. But what is trending now is the developing perception among the South Sudan’s public that Dr. Lam Akol might have developed the ‘strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Hyde’.

This was coined from the novel by a Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson, “The strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde”. And it is commonly associated with the rare mental condition often called “split personality”, referred to in psychiatry as dissociative identity disorder, where within the same body there exists more than one distinct personality.

Now this has been taken to describe a person who is vastly different in moral character from one situation to another.

In politics it becomes even much worse. If one cannot agree with himself, then how does he expect people to agree with him? I heard him speak over the Miraya FM the other day and there he made me think about how many faces he has changed over the period he has been in contact with our national issues.

As mentioned earlier, in the prime years of the CPA, when Dr Lam Akol was a powerful Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Government of National Unity, he was a hard critic of the West.

I remember one of the hotly contested issues between the West and Sudan was whether the UN should deploy its forces in Darfur or not. President Beshir opted to term the UN civilian protection in Darfur as an invasion of a ‘sovereign’ state of Sudan. And Dr. Lam worked for him and agreed with him even when he said that he would ‘rather lead the war against a foreign invasion than allowing them abuse the sovereignty of the Sudan’.

The person that was doing all the shuttle diplomacy was none other than Dr. Lam Akol on behalf of President Beshir. Both Dr Lam and President Beshir lost faith in the West; and therefore, they inclined to go to the East and got sanctuary in China and Russia. Yet, in doing that, he was going contrary to the position of his then nominating party, SPLM and the then semi autonomous government in Juba.

In one of his diplomatic trips abroad, Dr. Lam claimed having achieved ‘victory’ on behalf of the Beshir’s NCP when he came back with a green light for the formation of dysfunctional hybrid force “UNAMID” for Darfur. Judged by current events, the deployment of UNAMID became a victory to Khartoum and a bad loss to the people of Darfur.

Working for Sudan Tribune Daily Newspaper in Khartoum, which some circles claimed was sponsored by Dr. Lam himself; I had no any other avenue to lodge my pleas than to take to the internet. I wrote an article titled, “South Sudan: dumped in the mouths of some Khartoum SPLM Traitors” and it was posted in Sudan Tribune.

The SPLM traitor was Dr. Lam Akol and his associates that benefitted from CPA but allowed themselves to be used as walking sticks by the same old foe – the NCP.

I thought Dr Lam would stick to his old hard criticism against the West. Or else he needs to tell us what made him change his mind now to be a sympathizer of the same West he stood against during the days he was serving as a minister of Foreign Affairs in a united Sudan.

That Dr. Lam has changed face to be a supporter of the same West he fought fiercely against is to me a surprise. That is Dr. Lam’s Change of face number two.

One may wonder why this should be change of face number two. Get it here again fast tracked! Dr. Lam was the architect of the document known to most literate South Sudanese as “Why Garang must Go!”.

Together with Riek Machar they decided to launch a ‘bush coup’ against Dr. John Garang. They proudly announced a coup which did not only end in shambles but, like the current war, caused skirmishes and reduced gains of SPLM/A and South Sudan.

Dr Lam, few months after accepting to work under Riek, opted to form his own party in complete betrayal to Riek. He failed to work with Dr Garang, chose Dr Riek and divorced him again in a very short time.

That represented swapping of faces in very short time by him but we can call it Dr. Lam’s Change of face number one that we came to know.

Shortly after the failed coup in Juba on December 2013, Dr Lam Akol appeared to condemn the actions of Dr Riek Machar. He got the public support to lead the team of opposition parties at the Addis Ababa talks.

But a few days into the talks Dr Lam changed immediately from standing with South Sudanese public position to confusingly spreading his legs over on the IGAD proposals and bilaterally chose also to hold ‘secret’ meetings with Dr. Riek Machar.

Maybe those people who argue that he was lured into an idea that both President Kiir and Dr Riek will not be allowed to participate in the transitional government impacted his decision.

But still he could have been advised but he took the decision. That might have prompted him to lodge himself into possibility of replacing Kiir as the President of South Sudan.

From condemning the coup to supporting Riek, Dr Lam left many of South Sudanese confused. That is Change of face number three!

It was all announced that South Sudan wanted to hold elections in June this year. But backed up by the International Community and Civil Society Organizations, Dr Lam led a campaign against the conduct of elections. Dr Lam even went further by leading a coalition of political parties to court to challenge the decision.

South Sudan, under that pressure, rescinded the decision to hold elections. But the decision not to hold elections also carried legal implications. There is no way elections can be called off and put nothing in the vacuum. That would lead to constitutional crisis.

The best way to accommodate the peace talks without a constitutional vacuum is seeking the parliamentary extension of the term of the Government and parliament to give room for Addis Ababa negotiations with a legitimate ruling system.

That there was one Dr Lam Akol who asked for postponement of elections and the same Dr Lam who again opposed the suspension of elections represents an amusing change of mind in the swiftest of time. Change of face number four!

Dr Lam Akol ought to know – and I believe he knows – that the South Sudanese he is dealing with are not the same South Sudanese of the last decades. If Britain were to colonize South Sudan today, they would have found it very difficult. There is no way we can allow any move to go uncalculated and people are so vigilant nowadays.

It is a fact that Dr. Lam has been relevant with the South Sudanese politics since the inception of SPLM. It is a big credit to South Sudan and Democracy that there has always been an opposing voice.

According to me, that is healthy politics. But it must be noted that criticism must rightfully be placed. And one should not oppose just for the sake of being in opposition.

The Opposition and all the groups that led a campaign against the holding of elections should not look at the extension of government as means for Kiir to earn extra years in power. Rather, it should be viewed as a concession by the government.

President Beshir of Sudan has been constantly extending his rule through bogus elections. South Sudan has tried to avoid such a case. Kiir would have contested elections and likely win a five year term in office.

But the decision to delay elections was taken to give time for peace negotiations. By God’s grace, if the final peace deal is signed, then its terms may take complete precedence to what was done by parliament.

Someone needs to tell me how we can pass peace documents without a functioning Assembly? We need the assembly to enact into law the agreed terms of the peace agreement.

South Sudan is not against the West as alleged by Dr Lam. It’s him who holds records for being so ardently against the West. For him to change sides now is simply foxing.

Nevertheless, Dr. Lam Akol is a role model for so many young people. He is indeed a capable leader. But the society we are in is one of the most difficult ones. Every act is placed under a scrutiny. Therefore, one needs to calculate his actions and take decisions that garner the public support and then stay by them.

To change is not bad, but to keep changing is not healthy. It’s high time that Dr. Lam tries to make up his mind and tell us one thing. South Sudanese should not be told to move to the sun and when they are there, someone again says come to the moon.

Taban Abel Aguek works in Rumbek – South Sudan as a member of State Legislative Assembly. He can be reached at abelaguek79@gmail.com

The Regime can run as much as it could but never will it win the race of reality

By: Yien Lam, APR/08/2015, SSN;

Since the beginning of this man-made crises, the regime has tried everything that is possible to stay in power while invalidating the heinous crime that it has committed to our beloved country by killing its own people base on their ethnicity. This is the crime against humanity as it has been proven by the AU report.

As the matter of fact, the regime has been running back and forth by bluffing the world and using an ineffective organization known IGAD as the only one that could bring peace in south Sudan.

If one has the logical reason as I have, how can an organization whose member states has been the part of the ground war make the peace in the country? Be the judge!

Could that be possible if one clearly differentiate the human waste and the cow dung? This is blooey circumstance in my view on IGAD since the beginning of the peace negation and will never work as I prognosticated it earlier in the previous articles that I wrote. It is just as the business as usually.

As the reality, the regime uses the IGAD as the delaying tactics to buy time for its survival in order to mislead South Sudanese that the peace is going to materialize in the days that will never come to life.

But the truth of the matter is, one can buy people but not the truth. The regime can run as much as it wants, but will never win the race of authenticity as the western phrase goes “you can run as much as you can, but will never hide from your crime.”

This will be so with the regime of kiir in southsudan.The blood of the people that it’s premeditated killing will haunt the regime in the days to come if not months.

Moreover, the regime has not been using only IGAD as the tool to make peace in south Sudan. It went further to influence the AU commission of an inquiry headed by the former Nigeria president Olusegun Obasanjo by delaying the report that supposed to be released in February of 2014.

As the matter of fact, the regime argues that it will jeopardy the peace negotiation while in fact the peace negotiation has nowhere to go since then. It remains as it has been despite the report being delayed.

These are all the very tactics of the regime to the benefit of its survival. There will be no tangible solution in term of peace being achieved on the watch of this regime. It will remain as deadlocked as it has been because the argument that the regime always won is the intransigent argument.

This is always the argument of the persons to say at least who do not have capacity to resonate things. As the phrase goes in Nuer language, “if you chat with the girl that does not know how to deal with man, she can only say no and only no that matter to her and knows”. That girl will just repeat the word No for the period that she may be together with the particular man.

This is the same scenario with the regime that has no logical explanation as to why it does not agree to anything that could bring peace in the country.

In addition, this regime will do everything that it wants to do to stay in power but not what would make peace in south Sudan. It actually does not like the country to have peace because it will not subsist in peaceful south Sudan than what it is now.

It was not surprising to me when I heard on the news that the regime extended its years as well as the parliament’s to 2018 as the looming end of its term in July. I knew such a thing could happen because it’s all about Kiir’s. What he says is what works for the rogue regime.

In this scenario, when you look at this erroneous amendment that is not in south Sudan constitution as experts delineated, how would you really think about the peace as the regime always singing the song of it in their mouths not in their actions?

Would any of you believe in this regime to bring peace? Of course not in my view! It is really far when it comes to the reality. The regime does not favor the peace than the war in the country. This is so because it knows very well that the case of people that it killed with no apparent reason will indeed haunt them later. This is the reality and will remind as such for the years to come.

Nonetheless, it does not matter whether you’re the nerdish supporter of the regime or not. We are in it together. The matchless example of this is Gen. Bwogo Olieu who was staunched supporter of kiir and killed by regime’s.

To make myself clear to those who may be hanging around with ambivalence, this regime does not care whether you are with “them” or “us.” The aim is one. It is to kill every South Sudanese who appears to oppose it and demand his/her rights.

If you are there waiting for the donkey end of the month, well, you are on your own like Gen. Bwogo and expect worse to come in the days and months ahead. This is a truth that cannot be ignored by reasonable person.

However, you may goofily think I am politicizing it. But at the end you will see it as a mentioned Gen. In addition, I would like to add the phrase that was said by the Nuer prophet known as Ngundeng that goes like this, ” the problem is the pain only knows by one person.” This is true.

A lot of people do not know that the threat of this regime is real. I wrote an article about the incident like this in mid-October last year titled “To who might be Naïve if not nerd in this crises. “If you have enough time you can read it in Nyamile.com.

As the saying goes, indecisiveness is the disease of mind that in fact resulting in person losing all his/her potential. Don’t let yourself be a victim of your own decision as the Gen did.

Takes a decision based on the things that are going on in south Sudan right now. Are things good or bad in your view? Human being is created to use logic to digest things for his/her own survival. This problem was initially seen as the Nuer one.

This is exactly the policy of divided and rule that you heed not to follow. But in the days to come, it will no longer be the case. This will not be matter whether you are Murle, Bari, Dinka, shulluk, you name it. The regime will be relentless on whoever seems to argue with its loyalist. But it will not be able to win the race of reality.

Kiir may try to divide us but People of south Sudan will be victorious at the end days if not months to come and jointly sing the song of south Sudan Oyee.

Finally, Kiir regime can do anything to keep itself in power by running to IGAD, AU and extending its term to stay in power. But will never win the race of reality. People of south Sudan are smarter than the power. However, in this case, the truth will prevail and struggle continue until the regime eventually goes down to its knees and the victory is certain.

South Sudan Oyee

Opposition Oyee

Freedom Fighters Oyee

Bankrupt, failed, collapsed: Why Kiir & SPLM/A must promote ‘Kokora’/Federalism as solution

EDITORIAL ANALYSIS: APR/04/2015, SSN;

In spite of the worsening economic and security situations and the projected imminent collapse of an already failed nation, the South Sudan warlord president Kiir and his malign and sycophantic SPLM/A are unashamedly persisting to hold on the reins of power to the very end.

No wonder that when the exasperated leading French scholar, Gerard Prunier, a former adviser to president Kiir himself, decided to resign in 2012 from the job in Kiir’s Juba inept and corrupt government, he aptly described it (quote) as “a government of idiots….rotten to the core.”

Truly, indeed, this ‘Kiir’s government of idiots’ deliberately started a totally unnecessary tribalized war that is now estimated at a humongous cost of as much as “$28 billion dollars if it continues for five years.”

Furthermore, as ominously described by the World Bank recently and corroborated by his financial personnel, Kiir’s misruled South Sudan nation is facing “a dramatic contraction of its GDP (gross domestic product), massive depreciation of its currency and exponential rise in inflation.”

With a shrinking economy, the much-coveted dollars (foreign reserves) are now scarce and Kiir has resorted to massive printing of local currency (the South Sudanese pound) in a hopeless effort to avert the inevitable financial collapse of the nation now happening and the faltering confidence from the financial markets.

Already, the nation’s oil production has drastically plummeted and it’s revealed that Kiir barely gets less than ten US dollars per barrel, and now experts and even Kiir’s own petroleum minister has confirmed the oil refineries are crumbling at an alarming rate with the unlikelihood that the foreign oil companies would ever attempt any renovations.

This senseless civil war being persecuted mercilessly and murderously by Kiir and exacerbated by the 3-year unconstitutional extension of his tyranny plus the illegally expedited imposition of the so-called Security Bill, all these actions should seriously jerk our collective national conscience and as such, it’s time for South Sudanese to take some serious reflections on the perilous future of our already collapsed nation.

For a fact, Kiir is now functionally an avowed dictator who’s heading a typically tribalized and tribally-dominated government that’s wittingly energized by a closely-knitted circle of tribes-mates sworn to viciously protect this Jieng dynasty at all costs.

Indisputably, the preponderance of evidence from different sources have now proven that it was tyrant Kiir who, along with fellow tribesmen, carefully planned the December 15, 2013 genocide against the Nuer and other South Sudanese nationals by secretively recruiting, training and finally unleashing the infamous Jieng (Dinka)-only ‘Presidential Guards,’ aka “Tiger Battalion.”

Characteristic of despots and without any moral compunction or constitutional restraint whatsoever, the illegitimate president Kiir has now incorporated his so-called ‘Presidential Guards’ into the national army not only to wreck more havoc on other citizens but also being engaged in this war to perpetuate the killing of more Nuer under his direct command.

Kiir’s shameful legacy exemplified and amplified by the gross crimes against humanity perpetuated by special tribal commanders in the tainted cloak of the SPLArmy perhaps equates in magnitude to Saddam Hussein’s or even Adolf Hitler’s.

Just imagine! What kind of nation is South Sudan today when the Army Chief of Staff, the Chief of National Security Service, the Head of the National Intelligence Service, the Chief of National Police, the Commander of National Prisons Service, the Chief of the Census Bureau, the chief of the Election Commission…etc..etc, all are the president’s own tribes-mates?

For a fact, this monstrosity known as the SPLM/A (including its entire leadership) wasn’t universally or popularly accepted or recognized by all citizens of South Sudan region as evidenced by the cornucopia of other militias that spuriously sprang up opposing it during the liberation war era.

Inevitably, with calculated reservations, many South Sudanese communities were only reconciled into joining and supporting this SPLM/A movement, after accepting the fact of its predominance during the bush war.

Also, the then prevailing military abuses commissioned and committed by this tribalized army and combined with the obvious “liberation war fatigue” among the people, Garang’s led SPLM/A emerged as the sole army despite committing numerous egregious crimes against humanity.

As a fact, Kiir’s SPLM/A leadership from the onset didn’t have the blueprint of the system of governance suited for the new nation, and since then, unfortunately, our nation under the SPLM/A, has been cruising blindly until it crashed against the rocks on December 15, 2013.

Looking back to 2005 when Kiir and the SPLM/A gangsters invaded ostensibly as ‘our own government’ in Juba, two outstanding issues that emerged were: the first was the “Mafiazation” of the twin SPLM/A dominant government and army and the second was the enforcement of a pervasive and contentious Dinka tribal hegemony in all facets of the government and the army.

Moreover, this new Kiir-led dominant SPLM party and its appendaged SPL/Army, unscrupulously manifested itself into a criminal kleptocratic organization from the top to the bottom, that’s from president Kiir himself and even to his then antagonistic vice-president Machar, down to the ministers and top army generals, they viciously set to loot the government.

Almost the entire appointments into top leadership positions were greedily filled by tribes’ mates who were completely inexperienced, unqualified, barely educated, but…so long as they have the recognized tribal marks …to enhance the mafiazation of the government.

Today, sadly for the nation, kleptocracy is the shining hallmark of the Kiir’s legacy across the entire nation, the top SPLM/A leadership quickly became sinfully rich while millions of citizens, including many relations of these top SPLM/A kleptocrats, shamefully wallow in abject depravity.

To the naivete, whilst the rapidly changing Juba skyline of multi-storied hotels and the V-8 SUV cars crisscrossing the pot-holed streets might seem like ‘some mirage of development,’ the naked reality is that South Sudan is retrogressing and sinking very rapidly so long as Kiir’s SPLM/A continues in power and the war remains unsolvable.

Most of those so-called investors and mafiasos jetting into Juba from all corners of the world are insidiously front-men or women for Kiir’s SPLM/A comrades, who use them to ‘invest’ their illicit monies stolen from our people.

Even though they look like and call themselves ‘comrades,’ in actuality, deep beneath this charade, they’re bitter rivals each one aiming to destroy and even kill one another due to lingering tribal or personal animosities.

This was what transpired exactly on December 15, 2013, ‘so-called comrades ruthlessly shooting, massacring, brutalizing, raping one another,’ we basically ceased to be a one-people, one-nation anymore.

It isn’t a national secret that practically and factually, every SPLM/A member from Kiir himself down to all the other ‘comrades’ have plenty of blood of innocent patriots they killed personally, or abetted, commissioned and sanctioned these murders, just as each one of them is practically a thief…thanks to the pervasiveness of the mafiazation and kleptocracy of their government.

South Sudan is unfortunately sinking down under because much of the oil wealth has and still is being callously stolen or being recycled among themselves into a patronage system; they capriciously reward those SPLM/A members personally loyal to Kiir.

In practical sense, every top official, be it vice president, ministers, governors….down the SPLM hierarchy, is potentially under severe likelihood of blackmail by Kiir himself or his close inner tribal circle.

For instance, millions of the SPLA soldiers and tribal militias’ salaries are first paid to the commanding SPLA generals instead of these salaries are paid directly to the soldiers, as is normal practice everywhere. Each general takes a big cut and the soldiers get peanuts!

Same practice within the ministries, embassies, co-operations and all government-affiliated agencies. The minister or ambassador or head just with absolute impunity takes all or most of the money allocated for his office. No accountability ever, but just a silence of approval.

No country being run by criminalized mafiaso leadership such as the Juba/SPLM/A government can survive, let alone sustain peaceful coexistence between themselves and the people for long.

Unscrupulously, Kiir’s SPLM/A government has severely mortgaged our nation to foreign money lenders such as the Gulf Arabs and international Mafia consortia, generations of South Sudanese will be seriously indebted to these money lenders.

The solution: In the light of the reality that any peace reached and any formulation of government agreed on that includes Kiir and Machar, or between their haplessly degenerate political protegees, e.g. Dinka/Nuer monopoly, that accord will never survive for long before another catastrophe recurred.

In their latest condemnation of the SPLM so-called leaders, the Catholic Bishops meeting in Juba lately, called this “war is being all about power and not being about the good of the South Sudanese people.”

South Sudan, unfortunately, remains an asphyxiated nation that is run by decrepit generals who have nothing with governing a country but only assiduously protecting their own interests by pillaging public resources and enriching themselves.

In summation, it’s time truly nationalistic South Sudanese citizens and the international community seriously embark on new, workable and consensually acceptable modalities for the resolution to the crises, specifically and basically governance issues.

Let’s try the Swiss-style of Federalism, by creating nation-states, for instance, whereby each state has majority control of all governance issues within its particular suzerainty, that’s complete ‘federal status.’

What is urgently and seriously needed is a newer and up-dated form of true federalism that will surely and equitably enhance our progress and cohesion separately as a people sharing a common past and perhaps a common but yet undefined and uncharted future.

That system, tried briefly in South Sudan in 1983 as ‘Kokora,’ or scientifically also christianed as ‘Federal system.’ In our current particularity, this would mean the current states (more can be consensually created, like upgrading the so-called Greater Pibor Administrative Area GPAA, into a federal state by itself) could by their own choices choose to become separate or voluntarily combine with another or others to become federal states.

We just have to look at former Yugoslavia or the once formidable Union of Soviet Socialistic Republic aka USSR, all have broken up into separate nations because of the rejection by others of domination, hegemony and misrule in the then so-called ‘united’ republics.

In USSR, the Russians people were utterly incompatible to the Tajiks, Uzebiks or even the Armenians; same in former Yugoslavia where the Bosnians, the Slavs and the Serbs were antagonistically dissimilar.

Sadly, today, the popular retired Bishop Paride Taban has seriously spoken out about the unmistakable incompatibility of the Dinka cow/IDPs pastoral invasion of his own agrarian Madi people who have visibly become marginalized in their own ancestral land.

This, like other similar scenarios happening among the Bari-speakers or others, where an aggressive and belligerent policy of ethnic domination is being enforced to the disadvantage of others could never exist in truly federated system.

In 1983, the then ‘Kokora,’ which incidentally was popularly promoted and accepted not only by Equatorians but even by many from Upper Nile and Bahr el Ghazel citizens, was unfortunately controversial due to the then evolving politico-military situation in the form of the SPLM/A war.

Then, in retrospect, the much detested Abel Alier’s Dinka-dominated Arab-North puppet regime in Juba, which itself actually precipitated the mass call for ‘Kokora,’ was rightly perceived by others, not only the Equatorians, as dictatorial, tribal and abusive of their human rights.

The situation today in the independent South Sudan nation is the exact replica of 1983 Abel Alier’s Dinka hegemony but this time, Kiir has surpassed Alier in the commission and persecution of gross abuses of human rights, murders, looting and egregious crimes.

Anyway, the centrality of the argument in the way of the resolution of our current crises lies in South Sudanese changing the modality of governance in this erroneously so-called “one-nation, one-people” country.

History abounds with successful examples of ‘Balkanization’ of once so-called great nations, Yugoslavia and Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) are incontestable examples and even tiny Switzerland has a workable modality of federalism, these can be modalities that we can wisely and timely emulate in our bleeding South Sudan.

The current predicament the country as is unfolding, irrevocably proves that we were never a homogeneous nation at any one time, we’re basically an aggregation of tribes that were emotionally united by our combined historical rejection of and resilience against decades of Arab North Sudanese domination abetted by past British imperial interests in the Arab world.

Arguably, in spite of so-called African-ness or geography, the Azande or Moru in Western Equatoria have almost no cultural or linguistic commonalities with the Dinka, Nuer or Shilluk (Chollo), just as the Tajiks and Turkmens didn’t have much with the Russians in the now broken-up former USSR ‘superpower.’

Furthermore, why should the Dinka, for example, just boisterously dream that they can impose their detested Jieng ‘imperialism’ on the Kakwas or Madi or Moru, for that matter, just as the Russians Czars imperialists failed to do so over Tajiks and Turkmens?

As an example, it took centuries for the English, the Irish and the Scots to finally come to live peacefully in one country now called Britain, same for others like France, Germany… etc…etc.

Tragically, that modality of ‘Federalism’ we experimented with before didn’t survive to maturity because, one, the so-called leaders of South Sudan inside the emerging Khartoum Islamic caliphate became puppets, or two, those who rushed to join John Garang’s SPLM/A in the bush became sworn anti-Kokora propagandists, a psychological obsession that persisted till today.

Unfortunately for our nation and the predicament we are in, what we have in the domineering SPLM mis-ruling dynasty in Juba are severely post-traumatized and stressed (PTSD) generals who’re irreparably and irreversibly metamorphosed into devils who’re sworn to Satan himself to take the whole nation down the path of ruin and stagnation.

They say ‘if men were angels, no government would be necessary,’ and likewise, ‘if angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls would be necessary.’ END

Why South Sudanese shouldn’t trust the Obasanjo Report on South Sudan Crisis?

BY: Taban Abel Aguek, RUMBEK, MAR/30/2015, SSN;

Is it out of love or mockery that Africa appears to care too much about South Sudan? From the first day the conflict erupted in South Sudan, Africa has been suggesting possible remedies to the crisis in the country.

Apart from hosting peace talks in Addis Ababa, the African Union (AU) also promptly formed a five member commission of inquiry to “investigate the human rights violations and other abuses committed during the armed conflict in South Sudan and make recommendations on the best ways and means to ensure accountability, reconciliation and healing among all South Sudanese communities.”

The commission of inquiry is composed of prominent and respected individuals with exceptional skills and experience. The Chairperson of the Inquiry Commission is composed of former President of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo, other members include Lady Justice Sophia Akuffo who is the Justice of the Supreme Court of Ghana, Prof. Mahmood Mamdani of Makerere University (Uganda), Bineta Diop who is AU Chairperson’s envoy for Women, Peace and Security, AU Special Envoy for Women, Peace and Security and Prof. Pacifique Manirakiza who is a commissioner at the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights in Banjul, the Gambia.

No doubt, this is a team of well placed African leaders that equally possess huge experience and tested competence.

Now, one wonders why a series of very dirty wars were allowed to rage on in Sudan long before the separation of South Sudan the former O.A.U couldn’t take such a step. Until today, another bad war is raging on in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains and Darfur region and the AU instead of investigating crimes committed – genocide included – chooses to protect the main perpetrators of the crimes and conflicts in Sudan.

No investigative team of inquiry has been set for Sudan. And President Beshir stays insulated from the ICC by the AU. So, there are two AU’s: one that investigates crimes in South Sudan and the other one that shields Beshir from going to the court in the Hague.

But maybe for the AU loves South Sudan so much, there can be nothing else anyone can say than to appreciate such a concern.

The report of this Commission of Inquiry has not yet been made public. But there had only been a leaked report purported to have been prepared by AU. The ‘leaked’ report almost caused an outrage and misunderstanding both in the Government and the opposition camps. Not because it carried such weird and witty recommendations like the axing of both the President and the rebel leader Dr. Machar in the formation of a transitional government, but it also looks shallow, unprofessional and lacking content to match the jurisdictions and standards of a veritable inquiry.

The AU, in person of Chairperson Dr. Nkosazana Dlamina-Zuma, has already disowned the report. That has helped a bit fix the mess.

Regardless of the fact presented by the AU in delaying the report – for fear that it may obstruct peace process in Addis Ababa – the US, the EU and so many other affiliate NGOs, still call for publication of the official report.

That makes it quite perplexing how the same agencies and organizations that call for a speedy peace process also adamantly demand for the release of the AU Commission of Inquiry report when we all know that it could delay peace.

As seen in the leaked report, any document that carries coined stories and discrepancies may likely bang the door closed on the Addis Ababa talks.

The leaked report of the Commission of Inquiry, since it now lacks any official backing and rightful authenticity, can be assumed a bluff. But the question remains: can the current team of experts investigating into the country’s crisis produce an honest, credible and unbiased report? And can this commission be fair enough in their findings and recommendations?

Methinks No!

With due respect to each and every member of the Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan crisis with regards to ‘human rights violations, atrocities and so much more, not many South Sudanese believe that this commission of inquiry is one that they should trust to carefully and honestly analyze the crisis, make proper findings and suggest the right recommendations on the conflict in South Sudan.

This is not because we may suspect the competence of the team. Neither do we think they can be manipulated by some interest groups with stakes in the war in the country.

We all know who President Olusegun Obasanjo is. He is a well respected African statesman who made a name in the making of both modern and the old Nigeria. He handed over power peacefully in 1979 after he lost elections to Shehu Shagari.

In 1976, he ascended to power by the privilege of death as President Murtala Mohammed, who he deputized, died in assassination. But he could not hold onto power during the election. Nigeria, through him, saw a peaceful transfer of power.

That he handed over power peacefully made him a darling of the West, particularly the US, Germany and Britain. But just like Dr. Riek Machar he attempted coup in 1995. The coup failed and he was not as fortunate as Riek Machar who miraculously found his way out of Juba simply to embark on a rebellion in a matter of days.

Obasanjo was arrested, tried and jailed for life. The West, because they were the architects of his failed coup, pressurized for his release. Due to that pressure his sentence was reduced to 15 years.

By a complete twist of fate, he was again a beneficiary of death as his arch enemy Gen. Sani Abacha died of an illness in 1998. A year later Obasanjo contested elections and won comfortably. Like an American President who served two complete terms he led Nigeria for eight straight years.

That Obansanjo is a believer of coups is not the point of concern. Rather, the issue – and relevance to the case of South Sudan – is his concept of reforms. Nigeria, in so many aspects, does not resemble South Sudan. So, Obasnajo’s reforms for Nigeria cannot marry up with the South Sudan reforms.

Still one asks himself if everything has worked well for Nigeria. President Obasanjo’s homeland, just like South Sudan, is until today deep in crisis. It has for a long time been engaged in a series of insurgencies and is still held knee-deep in one of the worst corruption in Africa.

The Boko Haram poses a big threat to Nigeria the way Riek’s rebels are to South Sudan. That begs the question: has Obasanjo put right his home country to even dare look into issues of other countries?

There is a belief that Obasanjo holds experience and valid solutions to Africa’s problems as he is taken to be a symbol of reform and democracy. Yet, Africa has moved much more than Obasanjo. It seems Africa is still being driven by personality cult.

Much as we hail President Obasanjo’s huge experience, there is a question of his age. It is my personal feeling that Uncle Obasanjo has not very much energy left in him. The Obasanjo of 1998 cannot be the Obasanjo of 2015. He can easily be outwitted and asked to sign a blind cheque for South Sudan.

The commission of inquiry on South Sudan crisis can be manipulated under his watchful eyes by those that hold very dangerous views on South Sudan. And that might be the greatest fear of South Sudanese.

One such fear is the inclusion of Prof. Mahmood Mamdani of Uganda in the same commission of inquiry. Like Obasanjo, Prof Mahmood Mamdani possesses an intellectual power but that cannot stop us from interrogating his inclusion into this important commission. This is because Prof. Mahmood has a long held view that Dr. Riek, South Sudan’s rebel leader, is a reformist.

At the Annual Retreat of the National Resistance Army (NRM) at Kyankwanzi on February 11th, 2014, which was later published by the New Vision of Uganda on 16th Feb, 2014, Prof Mahmood Mamdani delivered a lecture on South Sudan conflict titled “No power sharing without political reform.”

In the lecture, the well endowed Professor gave his analysis on the genesis of South Sudan crisis, its ripple effects and the way forward.

In some instances he made his views clear on Riek being a reformist – how he arrived at that only God knows – but there was never clear inclination anyone would easily put him in since he appeared spread all over and pointing the issues of the ethnicity between the Dinka and the Nuer.

True to his writing, the British heightened ethnicity in South Sudan. But he equally has his own views and one dangerous thing among them is his criticism of the independence of South Sudan.

Prof. Mahmood made it clear that he was against the independence of South Sudan. He said, “The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) signed in 2005 turned out to be a shoddy affair, rushed by those in a hurry to birth an independent South. The people of South Sudan are just beginning to pay the price for that haste.”

Poignant to the feeling of South Sudanese, Prof. Mahmood believes that South Sudan is a “child of the war on terror.” That explicitly means that South Sudan statehood was driven not from our own struggle but born out of the war on terror. There has been no abuse like this on the history of struggle of South Sudan.

In short, Prof Mahmud Mamdani is one guy that has long formed an opinion about South Sudan. He made his position clear that he is inclined to support Dr. Riek’s reforms. He continues to blame what he termed as ‘rushed’ independence of South Sudan.’

Therefore, there can be no reason he could have been appointed into the team of inquiry on the crisis of South Sudan. According to global criteria on choosing an inquiry team should not have been a member of the team of inquiry for south Sudan. It is like sending a sensitive case of a sheep to a wolf.

Looking already at the leaked ‘fake’ report of the commission of inquiry, one wonders if you don’t see the hands of Prof. Mahmud Mamdani. While Mzee Obasanjo leads by his good name, the dirt may continue to be done by the enemies of South Sudan.

Prof. Mahmud has also been fighting against the term limits of President Museveni of Uganda. His inclusion in the committee of inquiry on South Sudan crisis only helps him find another podium from which he could fight Museveni away from home.

So there goes the story of the AU Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan! South Sudanese have to waste not their time in laying hope on this commission. They should expect a bad report that is based on manipulations under the supervision of a helpless old man.

South Sudanese shall forever continue to give their respect to President Obasanjo as one of the living fathers of the modern Africa. But that people will agree with the report of an important inquiry committee may only come as a surprise.

Taban Abel Aguek is an MP in Lakes State Legislative Assembly – Rumbek. He can be reached at abelaguek79@gmail.com