Category: Politics

How can South Sudan reconcile its bitter past when the present is even more worse than ever before?

BY: Justin Ambago Ramba, UK, JAN/18/2013, SSN;

National reconciliation and healing processes are undoubtedly vital for the reconstruction of an often damaged inter-communal bridges associated with prolonged civil wars as is the case with South Sudan. Inevitable as they are these concepts can only yield the intended results of consolidating an everlasting peace when and only when they are conducted under ideal political and socioeconomic circumstances and not when everything is chaotic as is the case today in the country.

It is vitally important to mention here that the ruling SPLM party has missed so many golden opportunities where it could have initiated this national reconciliation and healing process. One such opportunity was immediately following the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005 and another was immediately following the official declaration of the country’s independence from Sudan in 2011.

This brings us to the central question which is: “why has it taken the South Sudanese leadership all this long to realize the importance of reconciling its communities in order to hasten the healing process when they (SPLM leadership) know very well that it is they who traumatized their own civilians, and unfortunately still continue to do so in a fashion may be only second to the Khartoum ‘Jallaba’ regime?”!

Those who do not know why the SPLM leadership was insensitive to the citizens’ plights will now have the opportunity to get the right picture of how this leadership operates. Unfortunately we will have to accept one bitter fact for throughout the liberation war and all along the years that followed it, South Sudan has been plagued by large scales of inter-communal conflicts. This far no one is surprised when the top leadership came up with the idea to reconcile the country’s various communities who remain locked-up in inter-tribal conflicts, albeit very late and after some of the damages have become irreversible.

However it is considered as good politics to give any initiative the benefit of the doubt, but nonetheless to call for national reconciliation and healing process is one thing and to actually achieve and translate it into a livable reality is another. Furthermore judging by the many reactions from the grassroots, it is obvious that for all kinds of reasons many people across the country do not believe that the current leadership is any competent to achieve such a major national goal.

It doesn’t really call for any over-stressing that in South Sudan many people today including the country’s top politicians and senior government officials still harbor ill-feelings and bitter grudges against one another over negative policies, events and incidences which dominated the two decades of the liberation war.

It is in the background of such disturbing facts that people continue to have no faith in this half propaganda and half PR initiative on the so-called national reconciliation.

South Sudan’s political wobbliness is deeply rooted in the country’s ethnically driven politics, nepotism, and favoritism. Ironically all of these are not new to this part of the world as they have always been there even during the colonial rule and was in fact designed and promoted by the colonialists primarily to promote their policy of divide and rule.

However these three deadly vices [ethnically driven politics, nepotism, and favoritism] became the official way how the various government departments were manned and run from the very day South Sudan gained its first ever autonomy in 1972 following the Addis Ababa Agreement. It will suffice here to recall how by then the former Sudan’s Southern Region’s police force was practically dominated by one ethnic group.

It wasn’t too long before the what used to be known as the Regional Government of Southern Sudan was brought down on its knees by none other than these malpractices that went on to spread like wildfire all over the region. Undoubtedly it was these malpractices that invariably contributed to the dissolution of the Addis Ababa Agreement and together with it went the Regional Government under which these very vices were nurtured and promoted in the first place.

Once back in the bush, the South Sudanese leadership under the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement [SPLM] was vocal about the realization of a New Sudan that is free of all the three vices. However paradoxically as time went it became apparent that even this new leadership was in fact not only deep in, but was actually swimming comfortably in what it sets out to correct.

At this juncture it must be reiterated that almost All the different mutinies, counter-revolutions, disappearances, assassinations, targeted eliminations, court marshaling, the massacre of civilian populations – all were in fact motivated and driven by tribal and clan politics. This kind of revelation leaves no one with clean hands amongst all the combatants, from their top man to the last soldier in the bottom of the hierarchy.

Nonetheless, following the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement [CPA], the civilian population was temporarily made to believe that a true new dawn of peace and the rule of law have in fact finally arrived. However the sad events that immediately followed the beginning of the interim period gave the entire structure of governance in South Sudan its life time’s blow and shock, for the man who led the people throughout the war and finally signed the peace with Khartoum on their behalf had unfortunately died in a tragic plane crash.

Commander Dr. John Garang de Mabior’s untimely death did generate a lot of speculations and still continues to do so up to now. Many conspiracy theories came and went, yet the true story lies far away from everyone’s reach. At least that’s what we the down-trodden are left with.

Dr. John Garang de Mabior who never lived to witness the kind of government that was formed in Juba and the other ten state capitals of South Sudan indeed left behind him an organization that failed to lead by the ideals he had put on paper or even referred to in his many speeches that he delivered in the International Conferences or while addressing the men and women in arms who served under him or to the South Sudanese intelligentsia in the Diaspora.

Yet the question is: ‘Had he [John Garang de Mabior] lived, would South Sudan have now embraced democracy and pluralism?!! Had he lived would our politics by now have become non-tribal? Those who served under the man and have come to know him well will do to answer these questions.

From August 2005, it did not take too long before the SPLM led government in Juba fell back to the days of the Regional Government under the High Executive Council. All the deadly vices that destroyed the unity of the people of south Sudan under both Abel Alier and Joseph Lagu were soon brought back to life by the new SPLM leadership and their benefactors.

But this time around the new leadership decided to go an extra mile and added yet a new dimension of mega corruption and unprecedented financial mismanagement into the mix, a thing which can only be clearly explained by referring to it as ‘an open act of theft.’ From day one senior government officials and SPLM party loyalists immediately went on stealing spree.

This is evidently documented in the Auditor General’s Reports as well as the personal confession of the country’s president in which he declared that no less than $4 billion has so far been stolen from the public coffers at his watch.

As such drawing parallels from the above realities it can be concluded that the only positive thing which the people of South Sudan succeeded to do during the two decades of the liberation war was to militarily and diplomatically stand in the face of the enemy. This they did well, however there was and still is the negative side of the story since it can be seen that all the previous tribal differences were sharpened and made to thrive in the bush.

Worse still alien cultures like political intolerance, physical elimination of opponents and kleptocracy were all adopted as tools for running the liberation struggle.

As eloquently put by the editor-in-chief of the online southsudannation.com media outlet and I quote:

“Though Machar himself had publicly apologized for and taken complete responsibility for the alleged ‘war crimes’ he personally commissioned and committed against a particular community (Dinka-Bor), his main overriding worry currently is that his repentance and capitulation to Dinka-Bor community in general, and especially to the widow of Late Dr. John Garang in particular, has opened up a dangerous precedence.” The editorial said.

It also went on to add that: “Every community (tribe) now has the right to also demand some apology for similar war crimes egregiously inflicted on their people and furthermore, individuals or their relatives, who underwent illegal tortures, imprisonment and other human rights abuses by people now in positions of power during the liberation war, also have the right now to demand some forms of redress.”

Now let’s move to consider the state’s contributions in the general negativism that currently engulfs the country. It is an established fact that the government security and secret agents all across the country are out to eliminate anyone who doesn’t agree with the government or criticizes any of its countless sub-standard performances.

Opinion writers who toe the state line are tortured, harassed, intimidated or out rightly eliminated. How does the population reconcile with such behaviors and rotten attitudes?

Worse still is that how do we reconcile as a nation when we don’t even have a freedom of speech where we can freely express our discontents to make them known to the authorities?

How do we as nation reconcile with people who have stolen well over $4 billion from the public, an amount of money which could have been used to build roads, erect the much needed schools, hospitals and provide clean drinking water to our people?

Last but not least, how do we reconcile with a system of governance that resists democratic transformation in the country while it continues to display the worst type of hypocrisy by paying a lip service to pluralism and multiparty democracy?

In a hugely deformed society like South Sudan, national healing and reconciliation can only come about after a through political reform and the establishment of viable and functioning democratic institutions.

It isn’t about how many Desmond Tutus or Tony Bliars we invite to attend our conferences that can make us what we are not. As it cannot also be overemphasized that unless we change what is in us no any external power can do that for us.

Author: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba. Secretary General, United South Sudan Party (USSP): He can reached at: justinramba@aol.co.uk or justinramba@doctors.net.uk

Where is ‘Dinkocracy’ in the Constitution of South Sudan?

BY: Deng Mangok Ayuel, South Sudanese, JAN/10/2013, SSN;

I believe and I have to inform you that one tribalist in the country can transform 8 millions of men and women from different tribes to be tribalists. I beg my God and everyone who talks ill about Dinka to hear me because I am in peace with them and their writings. Jieng is not one man but large tribe with good and bad people. When talking about large tribe, it doesn’t mean that Dinka is the biggest in South Sudan neither do I mostly wanted to say that Jieng is targeted by some opinion writers.

I am not a tribal opinion writer, but what is Dinkacracy? Is it the Dinka man in power who’s politically, socially and mentally considered as whole Dinka?

The leadership of South Sudan seems to be hated by individuals who have wished to get hot coins in the government through windows but found themselves nowhere since 2005. That is why many of them have been writing about Dinka because of frustration in their souls. On the other hand, the leadership of South Sudan is supposed to be criticized in isolation of Dinka as there are Dinka members who are still crying for what to fry in the current leadership’s hands. In politics, everyone is regarded as member of party than tribe. Is Dinka a party?

I am not burning a fire or telling story to disappoint anyone but those who keep pointing fingers at Jieng instead of one person (Kiir) as their leader are naturally tribalists and politically confused. Kiir is an SPLM and the president of South Sudan but a Dinka in the village of his own payam in Bahr el-Ghazal. Besides, some of the Dinka opinion writers who may think that they are everything everywhere in South Sudan are kidding. South Sudan is for everyone! I am not in position to list the names of the people who had criticized the Jieng in the name of President Kiir.

Therefore, be informed that there is no anti-Dinka but ‘political tribalists’ in politics with Dinka man in power. God forbid, I am not fighting with myself or rioting by writing! Last week, someone wrote on my Facebook’s wall that ‘Dinkacracy is the government of Dinka by the Dinka and for the Dinka.’

Finally, I recognized this friend as a kid in mind. Why did he define Dinkacracy to me since I am not even working with the government of the Republic of South Sudan to be a Dinkacrat? Is it because I am a Dinka? I didn’t discuss anything connected to tribe with him before. Why are people so wild for nothing?

Wherever you go in this world, there are good and bad people in the society. In humble sense, I shouldn’t stop saying that many Equatorians are kokoratists and Nuer are tribalists if you call me ‘Dinka’ for Dinkacracy. Yes, I am a Dinka but Jieng should not be generalized when talking about one person or few people in Dinka. The Dinka you hate is the Dinka I may hate because of approaches, particularities and leadership styles.

I am not a tribalist but why are social characters mixed with politics in South Sudan? Never ever reflect social aspects of a tribe with political situation in the country – you will get infected with ‘politivirus’ before your Madicracy and Nueracracy because we are not in Rwanda. Our tribes can’t be mistaken. You and I can make mistakes.

The reason for writing this piece is to congratulate Mr. El Hag Paul for deserting his tribalistic ways of addressing affairs through what he calls Dinkacracy and SPLM Oyee. He wrote that he is not against Jieng. So what? Once I googled his pen’s name, it was amusing to find a man talking about Dinka like a movie actor in his writings. I do agree with him in many points in his writings but why should he keep wasting time writing about Jieng. Well, I don’t want him to fiddle while thinking that Rome is burning.

He (El Hag) believes that Jieng has been misleading and misbehaving since 1983. So, were you (EL Hag) in the bush during the civil war where millions of lives were lost? I can’t judge but I mentally guess that you are the Lost Boy of 1980s. In your writings, and in my own analysis, your Western mind of 1980s is the denial and hatred you have in soul. I guess you might be at early 40s to 50s or more in age as my political thermometer reads it.

Mr. El Hag is a real tribalist or kokoratist. According to him, and in his own words as I quoted, “those who do not give any feedback to Jieng about how they behave in power are their real enemies.” The behavior of Jieng in power, especially with abuse of power for 30 years now since 1983 is creating for them serious problems throughout the country, (January 5, 2013 (SSNA).

I realized that El Hag is not anti-Dinka but got something to say about Dinka to promote himself. However, his criticism is the part of a voice as South Sudanese if he has been doing it in plain ways of horsing the nature of what he has been addressing.

Still, he is confused. South Sudan as a country has constitution, the legislature and the cabinet. There are James Wani Igga from Bari, Dr. Riak Machar from Nuer and Pagan Amum from Chollo tribes. Where are Baricracy, Chollocracy and Nueracracy? He (El Hag) might have thoughts that tittle-tattle about Dinka through writing will charm his political football, give him a seat in his own village or make him an elephant in Juba, God knows!

In his reply to Kuir e Garang as I quoted, ‘therefore if I am being called a tribalist for stating the truth, so be it.’ The truth must be spelt out as it is. I do not have to forge friendship with the Jieng people based on burying the abuses and atrocities of the Jieng. Doing this would be tantamount to a lie and appeasement. Sorry I do not do either. I will tell it as it is.

The burden of addressing Jieng tribalism first and foremost is a Jieng problem (04 September 2012, SSNA). At this juncture, I would like to encourage him to hate few people and make friendship with many of them but hatred is bliss.

Surprisingly, in his article titled, ‘Is there anti-Dinka school of thought in South Sudan as claimed by Joseph Deng Garang?,’ he (El Hag) definitely disagreed with Joseph that Dr. John Garang de Mabior is not the father of nation because of being unionist. However, history will judge your thoughts and notations. Dr. Garang is the father of nation.

He (El Hag) ascertained that Mabior Garang de Mabior, the son of Dr. John believes that his father wanted unified country with all ethnic groups equal and an end to marginalization. But the SPLA has failed.

He (El Hag) also added that Mabior Garang de Mabior understands his father as unionist and that nobody can dispute it because Mr. Mabior knows his father than anyone else. So El Hag got it wrongly.

The son of the late Dr. Garang was only a son to his father and that Dr. John had people like Lual Diing Wol, James Wani and Salva Kiir who know him more than his son. If Mr. Mabior Garang de Mabior disputed that he knows his father more than anyone, there is an intention and why should it be? Believe me! If your judgment is based on what’s being said and other failed allegations on Dr. Garang, then let’s call a spade a spade.

I know Dr. Garang was unionist but he had a will for South Sudanese to choose their destiny. I know the whys and the wherefores of Dr. Garang as the father of nation. He (Dr.John) is the father of nation. All in all, El Hag Paul is really a heavyweight but not for writing about Jieng.

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

Nuer Community Worldwide calls for change in South Sudan

For Immediate Release
Nuer community in Canada, Europe, USA, South Sudan, Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda

January, 7, 2013, SSN;

One month after the assassination of South Sudan prominent writer Isaiah Abraham, the Nuer community in Canada, Europe, USA, South Sudan, Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda is appealing to all South Sudanese communities in Western World and South Sudan to unite to bring change in the country. Maj. Diing Chan Awuol (as he is known locally) was assassinated on December, 5th, 2012 by gunmen believed to be part of South Sudan military intelligence (MI). He was assassinated because he was campaigning for freedom, justice, equality, democracy and an end to rampant corruption.

The leadership of Nuer community held an extraordinary meeting on January, 5, 2013 to devise plans to bring to justice the true killers of Maj. Isaiah Abraham who died for the values the people of South Sudan took up arms to fight for in 1983. The Nuer community discovered that the “suspects” the regime in Juba claimed to have detained are not the real killers of Isaiah Abraham. The real assassins of Maj. Diing Chan Awuol are members of MI (Military Intelligence) who were ordered from above to silence him.

The “suspects” the government claimed to have arrested few days ago are innocent young men who do not read the newspapers let alone the articles of Isaiah Abraham. The people who assassinated him are the ones who warned him face to face to stop criticizing President Salva Kiir Mayardit on December, 1st, 2012.

After achieving independence in July, 2011, the people of South Sudan had hoped that there would be an increase of freedom, justice and equality for all. Most South Sudanese believed that the benefits of liberation from the yoke of Khartoum’s oppression should be an increase of freedom and justice for the individuals and the recognition of human dignity for all tribes and peoples of South Sudan.

However, what we are experiencing under the leadership of Lt. Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit is exactly the same treatment that led the people of South Sudan to fight against successive Khartoum regimes. Kiir’s regime has redefined the meaning of liberation and distorted the principles in which the people of South Sudan took up arms to die for.

The people of South Sudan who lost 2.5 million people in the course of the liberation struggle believe that real liberation, that is, the application of the principles of freedom, requires that people like Isaiah Abraham should exercise free speech and expression without fear of assassinations. The democracy that the people of South Sudan fought for is a liberation from despotism and totalitarianism because it has its own discipline that guards personal liberty and freedom of expression as much from mob rule as from police oppression.

The assassination of Maj. Diing Chan Awuol because he was exercising a right that was constitutionally guaranteed should be a wake-up call for South Sudan Youth to unite to bring change in the country. Of all the human values, freedom must be considered as the first because it bears the closest relation to the autonomy of the person. Without freedom, the other human values cannot be said to exist.

Maj. Diing Chan Awuol didn’t commit any crime to deserve being lynched by the Military Intelligence (MI). Even somebody who commits a crime cannot be assassinated without due legal process.

Lt. Gen. Kiir’s regime perverted the meaning of freedom in order to impose totalitarianism and ignorance in the country. Kiir and his henchmen say that “freedom consists not in doing what one wants to do, but in doing what is right.”

Four days before his assassination, members of President Kiir’s security guards warned Maj. Diing Chan Awuol to stop writing and any criticism against the regime. They explained that freedom of thought was only possible unless approved by President Salva Kiir and security organs.

The people of South Sudan must unite and liberate their country from assassins who perverted the meaning of freedom and the rule of law. The assassination of Maj. Diing Chan Awuol is an indication of the new totalitarian order that Lt. Gen. Kiir Mayardit wants to impose. However, the people of South Sudan must resist oppression by reminding themselves that without rule of law there is no guarantee of freedom, of justice, of dignity for the individual.

Maj. Diing Chan Awuol was a Nuer, a Dinka, a Bari, a Shilluk and etc… because the values he was promoting were the values each South Sudanese took up arms to fight for. The values of freedom and justice, dignity and equality are the principles of civilized people because they are the rules devised by men to preserve each other’s worth and to respect each other’s persons in their relations with one another. They are the absolute foundation of morality. They are the foundation of human rights, and of the duties which are their counterpart.

The people of South Sudan can be confident of the future only if they affirm, with clear-sighted awareness and unswerving determination, their human values and their social ends.

The South Sudan Youth, civil society organizations, religious leaders and community organizations in Western World need to unite to bring change in South Sudan. If youth in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen could liberate their countries from brutal despots, there is no question that the people of South Sudan who struggled against oppression for fifty years would end the totalitarian rule of Lt.

Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit. South Sudan has no future if people like Maj. Diing Chan Awuol are being assassinated for speaking their minds.

The basic premise of society is the worth of a human being as an individual distinct from, and autonomous of, other human beings, as well as social groups and institutions. The purpose of social order is the good of the individual, by development of his physical, his rational and his emotive capacities, by the exercise of his creativity, his desire for quality and his quest for perfection. These fundamental values shall never be denied or ignored for the interests of Salva Kiir and his henchmen or for the desires of the SPLM party to create a totalitarian state in South Sudan.

Therefore, the Nuer community in Canada, Europe, USA, South Sudan, Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda calls upon Greater Bor Community, Greater Aweil Community, Greater Equatoria Community and Greater Luo Community to join hands together with Nuer to bring change in our country. The assassination of our brother Maj. Diing Chan Awuol must be the rallying point to launch a popular democratic uprising to rescue our country from dictators and assassins who hijacked the liberation struggle of our people.

Signed by,
1. Mr. Peter Chuol Tut
Spokesman of Nuer community in Europe
2. Mr. Gordon Buay
Spokesman of Nuer community in Canada, USA, South Sudan, Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda

Contact addresses:
Tel. (613)710-0777
Email: Nuercommunityworldwide@hotmail.com

South Sudan Intolerance: Cultural or Situation-inspired?

BY: KUIR E GARANG, CANADA, JAN/5/2013, SSN;

It’s no secret that South Sudan is heading towards socio-political cliff or is actually free-falling already. There’s bad news almost every day. However, 2012 will go down in our history as one of the worst years in Juba’s watch and rule. I will list a few of these memorable events!

However, this article tackles the general intolerance that some are taking for ethno-cultural and systemic order-of-the-day. I do believe that we need to look at ourselves as individuals to ensure that intolerance to criticism and existential prominence of others, don’t become acceptable norms in our society. I’ll leave that to the end.

First of all, we have rampant insecurity in Juba. The insecurity comes from both the national security agents and the average thugs on the streets. Who is the worst, I couldn’t tell you! The average robber is preventing people, who are supposed to be building the economy, from growing their businesses. The national security agents are preventing the average critic from giving the government an alternative way of looking at issues, or a mirror through which the leadership can pause and think: ‘Oh, maybe we should look at things differently.’

In the beginning of the year we had the issue of Panthou – a land that belongs to us – which was ill-handled by Juba; leading to widespread condemnation of South Sudanese leadership by world leaders including the United Nations. The question one is left to ask is: “How do you occupy or invade your own land?” The answer is: things are done in Juba without serious energetic consideration and effort before action.

Then we had the shutdown of oil production; leaving the leadership wondering as to the alternative avenues of cash flow. So far, Juba is still reeling from that shutdown because the decision, while it had some merits, was taken out of emotive frustration; not on economic sensibilities.

Then we had the senseless killing of the civilians, who are fighting relocation in Western Bhar El Ghazal. This is a result of leadership incompetence or other-opinion-intolerance. Leaders are supposed to convince; lead by practical examples, not force civilians.

A leader who forces people s/he rules is a failed leader. Part of being an excellent leader is to be a good and patient communicator, not an evil, murderous ‘forcer.’ If a leader says s/he is willing to fight civilians, such as president Kiir in his Wau’s speech, then that leader ceases to be their leader; he loses legitimacy. In a sensible world, a leader who is willing to pick up his gun against his own people is a mad man, not a leader!!

Besides, Governor Rizik Zachariah should have resigned if he cared about the people who elected him. The leader is the one who is supposed to be the humble one; the seeker of the solution. Force is not a solution but a failure of imagination and resolves.

And on December 5, we had the grotesque, incomprehensible and barbaric assassination of political commentator, Isaiah Abraham; a murder informed and instigated by our inability to tolerate criticism and social and political humility.

Finally, we had the shooting down of United Nations’ chopper and the death of the Russian crew on board.

Now, if one looks at the above listed incidences and suggest alternative methods leading to possible (and I say again, possible) solutions, then one is met by loads of frustrated and power-and-dollar-intoxicated hearts full of acrid intolerance.

Why is the government so intolerant to criticism? Why is there so much fear of opinionated people and hatred towards those who criticize the government? It isn’t that these people aren’t educated and are not used to consequences of people getting educated and afforded a voice and critical insight by intellectual exposure.

Some of these people are highly educated and know the value of getting corrected. Anyone who’d ever sat in a class knows that exams and papers have to be corrected in a manner one doesn’t always like. But one has to abide by the suggestions, give them due attention, or dismiss them with due sensitivity, if one is to improve grades and standards; in this case, governance.

This brings me to the question and the nature of intolerance in South Sudan. Some of us criticize the government as being intolerant to criticism; and we are justified in doing so. We are justified in criticizing the government for the government is hiding under the idea of being ‘young.’

The country might be young but the leadership’s brain power isn’t young. Has the war destroyed the innovative, creative and compassionate capacities of our leaders? If yes, then they shouldn’t be ruling! They should resign en masse.

However, late Steve Jobs once said that “someday, not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away.” And when the old is cleared away and different blood assumes the leadership, my main question would be: “would the new breed be different and if so then what precedents do we have now that’d point to a conducive and tolerant leadership of tomorrow?”

Is the intolerable intolerance in Juba only a character of the mentally diseased former freedom fighters, or is the intolerance culturally acquired? If the intolerance stems only from the former freedom fighters militarized mentality, that is, they find it hard to accept that that criticism is part and parcel of any democratic society, then we’ll be fine once these old bed sheets are changed.

However, if the intolerance is cultural, then we’ve got a problem.

What we have to do then is to look at ourselves and find ways to prevent this semi-cultural political malady from being a political reality for generations to come. But one would ask: ‘why would one think intolerance could be cultural?’ Maybe we should look at ourselves!

Are the leaders who didn’t join the liberation struggle more tolerant? Is the younger generation more tolerant? Is intolerance inherent in some tribal traditions and not others? Is pride being protected through destructive methods? You’ll tell me!

Personally, I don’t care where you come from but what you think and what you do. I don’t care whether you’re affiliated with SPLM-DC or SPLM or any other political party… or Bari, Nyangwara, Pajullo, Acholi, Madi, Jieng, Nuer… etc. How about you; do you? And if you think you don’t care, is that fact prominent in your life?

Unless we are sure that the culture of intolerance isn’t something that will continue to build up into the future, our country would be in jeopardy. We can’t blame the government if we would do the same should we be the power in Juba. Let’s shun practices we don’t like by not doing them. It’s pathetic to be critical of practices others do but do them all the same.

There are even prominent intellectuals in South Sudan, who harshly and unintelligibly criticize those who criticize leaders from their own tribe. If you defend a leader from your own tribe not on principle but on political and tribal allegiance and you expect others not to be tribalists, then you’re living in a fanciful cocoon. Intolerance to criticism is the same no matter who fancies it!

There’s a difference between valuable and constructive criticism and political and tribally-motivated dismissiveness that is not based on principles of moving forward and nation building.

Juba leadership is confused, lost and impervious to correction. Dr. Garang thought it was Khartoum that was ‘too deformed to be reformed’ but he’d be disappointed to realize that Juba is more so, or worse. Besides, the dear doctor wanted one country with two political systems, but now we have two countries, with more or less, one political system.

In Calgary, tribes conduct their parties separately. Even within the same tribes, different clans operate differently. You find Aweil, Jogrial, Tonj, Twi, Gajaak, Jagook, Bor and so forth, conducting their affairs separately. But these are the very same people who’d be vocal in saying that we need a united South Sudan! What a shame! Countries don’t unite through miracle. They’re united from the grassroots.

Let’s live by example. It might be them today, but it’s us tomorrow! Would we be different, if so, then how?

Kuir e Garang is a South Sudanese poet and author living in Canada. For contact, follow him on twitter: @kuirthiy or visit www.kuirthiy.info

Kiir’s withdrawal from borders: Does he really know the implications?

BY: Mulana D’Duot, USA, JAN/01/2013, SSN;

No one ever in the world would make his family to be affected by the disease that he knows how to prevent it. How come we allow our people to be affected by a sickness while we have the best medication that can stop it in a minute? This is sickening to the people of South Sudan when President Kiir made yet another blunder by telling us (citizens of South Sudan) that he’s ordering the withdrawal of our army from the borders. What a great mistake? Did the man forget that the Sudan Armed Forces, SAF, just attacked us last week?

“There are now 3,000 troops fully equipped moving towards the disputed areas. They are moving with heavy weapons and they started their activities with ground attack on areas which are deeply inside our territory. They have started this with the attack on Northern Bahr el Ghazal State and a raid of farmers in Renk County in Upper Nile State,” South Sudan information minister, Barnaba Marial said.

How come would the president, the man who’s charged with protecting us from such attacks would just ignominiously back down with such a defeat, saying: “We are temporarily withdrawing our forces from the immediate border areas. This will allow the demilitarized border zone to be operational. We hope that these arrangements will make sure that peace and stability is maintained along our common border,” in his New Year’s message.

Am I dreaming or did Mr. President really mean when he just said this? Did he just forget that the SAF will take advantage of this action?

He also added that “South Sudan has not given any of its land to Sudan,” adding that its leaders stood firm throughout the year to protect the fundamental interests of its nationals.

Is this true? How come would he say that since he knows that we are aware that the deal was not in the best interest of South Sudan that is why they reject? I am wondering how Mr. President always comes up with these crazy ideas.

Doesn’t he know SAF aim is to annex parts of South Sudan and to drill our oil fields? There might be something behind this move. Is our president being paid by the our enemies to make such useless moves?

We should really think about this because this is the second time for him telling us to withdraw, when he knows very well that our enemies are about to attack us. The first instance was Panthou (Heglig) incident when the SPLA defeated SAF in a defeat that will be remembered for life.

How does Mr. President come up with these ideas? I wish he could be sincere and honest to explain to South Sudanese how he will regain back those lands and the people we have lost to our enemies?

How would you call an acceptably obvious defeat a temporary withdrawal? I don’t really know how he does come up with these decisions of withdrawing our troops back. If there are some people telling him to do so then it’s time South Sudanese have to question these people because these ideas will keep hurting us financially and politically.

This man is failing us. He is quick in pleasing our enemies and they know his weakness very well. How come he is considering the withdrawal our troop from the border when our enemies are amazing their troops on the border? Doesn’t he know that their plans are to capture those areas?

The Mile 14 that was wrongly included in the buffer zone. What is the man smoking… I am wondering if anyone in South Sudan is still proud of Kiir at this time because he is failing us.

I don’t really think that Dr. John Garang would ever come up with such weak ideas if he was still alive and I also don’t know what would Isaiah Abraham say if he was still alive to hear your words, Mr. President.

In addition, I don’t really know if the SPLA Secretary General, Pagan Amum, has any knowledge. I am quite sure that he does not have any idea of what is going on. Sir, people are missing you and they are waiting to hear from you.

Where is the country going and where are these ideas leading us to? Why are young leaders being killed by our security forces, and how can the future be a future without you, leaders?

Please sir, come out, Mr. Kiir is leading us to backwards not forward. Withdrawing our troop from the Border is not what we want nor is it in the best interest of South Sudanese, it is total failure.

Gov. Kuol Manyang and Lt.Gen. Kuol Deng Kuol have miserably failed Jonglei State.

BY: Awumtiaidit, RSS, DEC/31/2012, SSN;

While Bor community is still regrouping to digest and embrace the bitter departure of Isaiah Abraham, who was allegedly gunned down by Kueth-piny’s loyalist, this community has again lost seven lives from Duk County to Murle scavengers on 30/12/2012.
Bor community citizens inside and outside must immediately arrest their differences and rescue Pan-Bor from being entirely displaced. We have a failed governor, a failed president and a failed disarmament chief who seemed to have no clue how to run South Sudan Nation, Jonglei State and successfully disarming civilians effectively.

I hope the trio must have known by now that being a combatant general in an army doesn’t necessarily mean the same as administering civilians. They are distinctive loyalties. Lt.Gen. Governor Kuol Manyang and Lt.Gen. Kuol Deng kuol, have miserably failed Jonglei State.

For my novice, it was March 2012 when the disastrous president by the name of Salva Kiir Kueth-piny, traditionally known as Mayardit, launched a disarmament campaign in Jonglei State when tribal conflict in this region reached its climax. The Dinka Bor and Lou Nuer were exhaustively disarmed leaving Murle tribe of Pibor heavily armed.

The tribes that are disarmed were left vulnerable to the Murle marauders. The first mistake the so-called Kueth-Piny did was putting in charge of disarmament the failed general whose citizenship is in crisis, Lt.Gen. Kuol Deng Kuol. Kuol Deng hailed from the disputed Abyei’s area of which the Republic of South Sudan and Republic of Sudan are scrambling upon a messy tracing back to his grandparents.

Without strategical stratagems in place, this oblivious officer flew into action disarming communities that are, and never were a major threat to Jonglei ecosystem of Dinka Bor and Lou Nuer. The two only go for revenge when Murle hit and run.

This job would have been given to a truly South Sudan general whose citizenship is free from ambiguity. I love my Ngok Dinka people but not this Kueth-Piny stalwart who seems happy to hear daily loss of life in Jonglei.

I doubt Kuol’s impartiality in bringing peace into this bleeding part of the region. A real and true soldier in charge of 15,000 troops meant to protect and disarm civilian, would have sat down and charted out clearly how to go about disarming all civilians in the region uniformly. 15,000 troops are hell lots of soldiers who could even disarm the whole South Sudan let alone Jonglei.

What lacks here are tactics and strategies to carry out the mission. Why are civilians still killing themselves in numbers as such? Why is it very hard to protect those that are disarmed? Why always waiting orders when Murle marauders attacked and took cattle before responding?

From reliable source, according the latest attack in Jalle Payam, Murle were within a reach and instead Kuol Deng ordered the pursuers to stop and get back while the assailants were about to surrender. The soldiers were asked to give their guns to Jalle youth so as to continue the chase but instead these youths were threatened to get shot if they failed to listen to retreat orders from Lt.Gen. Kuol Deng. I just believe Lt. General Kuol Deng is not for peace in Jonglei.

Bor community from Cuei-keer to Cuei-thon have lost lots of lives as the result of this unnecessary and un-uniform disarmament. From unknown reason, the disarmament was left in limbo, Murle was left untouched. If anything, then this was a nincompoop decision by Kuol Deng. He deserves denouncement for it.

On the other hand, Lt.Gen. Kuol Manyang Juuk, the Jonglei governor has just proven to be an unreliable governor of all times. He has failed his duties and he deserves to go and rest before many more lives are lost. The people he is governing have been butchering themselves under his watchful eyes and he can’t do anything about it.

First of all, Jalle community has been an epicentre. It is raided on number of occasions; countless herds of cattle were driven off while lots of unarmed and innocent civilians lives were lost.

Second, four gentlemen from Anyidi, Makuac and Kol-nyang Payams smuggled themselves into Murle’s territory and stole 68 herds of cattle. Murle owners followed the trail of cattle and reported their stolen cattle to the governor with imaginary and bloated numbers insinuating the stolen number cows to be up to 480 herds of cattle. Without wasting time to check any reference, and sourcing evidence, Kuol Manyang took the case head on, he exercised his sheer onus similar to his then guerrilla behaviors and ordered under threat the three Payams local chiefs to recollect the stolen cattle give them back forthwith.

My people including the previous Bor County commissioner tried to give the case a second hearing, and Kuol was just terribly arrogant and couldn’t listen to any other side of the story. These Payams were made to pay extra 412 herds of cattle, while exact number was 68 according to the cattle rustlers.

These cattle were sent to Pibor within a very short period of time. Equally, Jalle Payam byre was attacked and several thousands of cows were stolen to Pibor, report was given to Kuol Manyang to do the same, and as I write we are yet to hearing from this failed governor.

On a personal note, I am calling Bor community citizens from Cuei-keer to Cuei-thon wherever they are to come back to their own rescue. I heard our community was once ruled by Achiek Mabior and Ajang de Duot simultaneously, there was a reason for such conformity, and I guess one those reasons are such as this (external threat).

That previous unity has to be re-established again if Bor community should remain in its traditional setting. Politicians have let down this community terribly and we have to resort to our people outside to arm our youth as President Salva Kiir, Kuol Manyang and Kuol Deng converge to destroy us using the Murle.

I ask every Payam from Kol-nyang to Duk x2 has to recruit 200 strong youths from their localities that will be armed and deployed in the Payam to protect civilians’ properties. When this is done, we will let our people from outside especially in America, Canada, Australia, Uganda, Kenya and you name it, pay them their monthly dues.

Let this not be taken as a rebellion, this community has no history of betraying South Sudan cause. We are desperate, and desperate time asks for desperate measures, my people. SPLA soldiers we have here are not able to protect lives and retrieve our stolen cattle, let’s try something different.

You come home and you would be astonishingly shocked and sorry to see our community is clearly uprooted by the insecurity while we have 15,000 doves (SPLA) on the ground in Jonglei plus divisions of Bol Bol and Bol Koang. What are these troops are doing in Bortown if they can’t protect the disarm civilians is what you and I need to ask?

Personally, I believe the etiology of Jonglei insecurity is a setup ploy by the failed Juba government whose hypothesis is to engage Bor community so that it doesn’t keep an eye to the hobgoblin and dysfunctional government in Juba, and ignominiously Gov. Kuol Manyang is sightless to see this conspiracy by Kueth-Piny and his secluded gangs.

Get back our guns and we will protect ourselves.

Happy New Year 2013, my people.

This is Awumtiaidit, he is on awumtiaidit@ymail.com

The death of Isaiah Abraham marks beginning of second liberation

BY: Michael Thon Mangok, JUBA, DEC/31/2012, SSN;

The mysterious death of prolific writer, Isaiah Abraham Diing Chan Awuol, who was assassinated few weeks ago spurred up what would be seen as a second liberation in this country. His death sent heart-broken shock waves and hair raising experience with tough questions on whether South Sudan is really independent. The situation rudely made people to begin questioning the freedom, justice and liberty that were the core fundamental values of the long struggle. Such backslides normally turn and terminate the real goal for democracy in a country that had long suffered from lack of self-rule.

Well, the circumstances surrounding the death of Isaiah are not clear. But of course, few days later many Journalists and writers have found themselves locked up under the threat of intimidation; especially not to say or form opinions about his death proving the old English saying that, “Only the guilty one is afraid.”

This climate is not conducive particularly to those in the information business; doing what the public expects out of an independent media, where democracy and human rights are systematically intertwined. With our security trying to silence everyone does not constructively bring out the truth. The only approach would be allowing an independent commission or private investigators to prove the truth that might be satisfactory to the public.

During the funeral rites, people of south Sudan spoke clearly and their voices were the loudest. The immediate message was that they cannot tolerate any injustice done to them at this earlier time after such a long struggle to free themselves from the garrison of dictatorship. Isaiah’s daughter sent the crowd to tears when she read her eulogy to send off her beloved father, it demonstrated the practicality of a father who admiringly had the nation at heart; put the public interests first and considerably loved the truth through the display of his well thought writings.

Though many in this line including myself are facing security threats, the death of Isaiah is just an inspiration to the journalists and the writers to save the country from collapse. As journalists, the aim is to inform and report unquestionable information for public consumption. With such a tragic demise, journalists, writers and analysts should focus on matters of national importance that generates debate which fully creates awareness that can bring change in this country.

As the public eagerly prepare to usher in the New Year 2013, there is a lot of pending issues on the agenda for the national debate which demands for the practical journalists to compose much attention and fulfill their principle role of informing the public.

One of the issues will be the SPLM convention; the party will be put to test on whether the vision to lead the country is as good as it is now on the paper. People will ask where the model of taking town to the people is. Perhaps, they will too ask whether the system of governance is centralization or decentralization.

In the process, people of south Sudan would be stunned by the way SPLM party have become. They would ask if the movement still sticks to its values. The party they knew as the most disciplined guerrilla party in the world where the law took its course and corruption unheard of has now become the den of thieves.

Another importance debate journalists will focus on is the constitution review process, the great road to the new permanent constitution looks bleak now, the review commission mandate elapsed and the government looks relaxed with no sign of commitment to ensure that the country practically implements the permanent constitution before elections in 2015. The current constitution seemingly looks to be designed to fit certain political and ideological class not the interest of the people of this country.

This troublesome indicator suddenly puts doubt and questions the legitimacy of the current government. The elections that were held in 2010 were meant for the interim period and the mandate given by the people ended on 9th July 2011. This contradicts those who speaks on behalf of the government that this is an elected government. Let’s be straightforward; by whom?

Endlessly, the census might also take the centre stage; no country in the world has ever developed by making planning based on imagination without knowing the statistical population. One of the challenges right now is that the government gives the same grant to Ten States irrespective of their populations and this is a true source of financial inequality.

Every state contains its known population that might be greater or lesser compared to other states. Calculatingly, it is out of order for anyone to think that whatever you give to western Bhar el ghazel with three counties can produce the same developmental results in Jonglei State for example?

My crystal ball predicts that certain individuals are planning to let go of the vital census and permanent constitution which means there will be no elections in 2015. If this exercise is postponed and a permanent constitution process derailed, the current government will continue with unquestionable mandate from themselves to the year of their choice. To this, their answer is simply austerity measures as if this is the only country in the world facing the toughest austerity.

Their intention would be to explain it to the public how the country has lost 98% of the revenue from the oil which has negatively paralyzed largely the economy. But to predict it right, this is an irresistible weakness of the country’s leadership with poor planning coupled with weak policy formulations and implementation strategies.

Are they so ignorant about history? Ghana and Ivory Coast economies collapsed in 1960s and 70s respectively because of dependency on one commodity.

Accordingly, the expected debates might deliver a conclusion which leaves the country at the road junction. As an option those in the driving seat will have a choice to make, either to drown the country by their abortive clinging on to power, corruption, tribal politics characterized by “we-fought syndrome” and bureaucracy; or to press a forward button by practicing equality, rule of law, meritocracy, liberty and freedom for all. These constructive fundamentals are outlined in the constitution that needs to be approved, without it the truth is being obscured.

Like Wadah Khanfar, former director of Al-Jazeera, said, “in the media we shoulder a mission, which journalists should remain aware of as they perform. This mission is about serving the public interest without bias for one particular opinion or party or current or ideology.”

Isaiah Abraham’s death should not make the defenders of such a noble mission drop their vigor. It only should cement our commitment to the truth that liberation success has not been fully achieved. There is need for a political will from all individuals to actively defend the people’s right to useful information, deliver a devastating blow that will make impunity a foreign culture in South Sudan.

Michael Thon is a journalist and political analyst based in Juba. He hosts a talk show ‘Wake up Juba’ with Radio Bakhita.
Kochadit@gmail.com

Kiir: Burning National Flag in Wau isn’t a crime, it’s freedom of speech!

BY: Mulana D’Duot, USA, DEC/28/2012, SSN;

Lately, Mr. President has missed a penalty kick that he could have scored easily. Kiir bitterly ordered his security personnel to hunt down the suspects behind the burning of the national flag in Wau and to bring them to justice for burning a piece of cloth painted with colors that we supposedly like (our national flag).

But, Mr. President, which is more important, the arrest of Isaiah Abraham’s killers and of those who stole billions of dollars, that should be brought instantly to justice?

We must, however, remind him that he’s totally failed to bring people who have stolen billions of dollars to justice, people who’re killing people in Juba (including the assassination of Isaiah Abraham), and killings all over South Sudan; and he has miserably failed to defeat a man who suffering from cancer in Khartoum (President El Bashir), and inexcusably failed to deliver the needed political or economic development to the people of South Sudan, only to name a few.

Unfortunately, this man is clearly sick in mind. He is also out of touch!

Can someone seriously tell him that burning of the National Flags falls under the freedom of speech? How can you can go so hard like crying that, “these people must be hunted down and be brought to book because what they have done cannot be compromised. They are not against Rizik [Zachariah Hassan] as governor; they are not against me as the president. They are against this country. Burning national flag, which is our symbol, is unacceptable.”

But, for your information, Mr. President, if I may remind you, what about the lives of innocent people who are being killed or those 75 people whom you have sent them letters for stealing billions of dollars?

All we know till now is that none of these individuals, neither those killing people nor those who have stolen billions of dollars have ever been brought to justice, yesterday, today or tomorrow.

Mr. President, if you really care, you should primarily focus on a meaningful and good governance much more better than what you are doing today.

Whenever you made such a blunder, you compelled Isaiah Abraham to say something that he sincerely thought that South Sudanese should all know.

Even if he is no longer alive among us today, there are, for your information, many more ‘Isaiah’s’ today than they were before he was killed.

They are ready to write and to criticize you whenever you make unthinkable moves.

Finally, our people need smart leaders and hard working individuals, not a gang of thieves and killers.

Voices of Concern: A Position Paper on the Assassination of Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol

To: The President of the Republic of South Sudan
General Salva Kiir Mayardit

From: Greater Bor Community USA,
Greater Bor Community, Canada
C/O Governmental Affairs Committee

Date: December 21, 2012

Re: Voices of Concern: A Position Paper on the Assassination of Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol;

Dear Mr. President,
SHOCKED by the recent senseless cold blooded assassination of Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol and by the massacre of peaceful demonstrators in the City of Wau as well as by the killings and harassment of journalists, human rights activists, innocent citizens and foreigners;
DISCOURAGED by the deteriorating security situation in rural communities of our “free” homeland of South Sudan without an end in sight;
MINDFUL of the sacred promise we have to our martyrs like Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol who continue to give the ultimate sacrifice to show the importance of holding one’s government accountable for its own failings;
RECALLING the original founding principles and timeless creed of the SPLM/A to commit itself to guaranteeing freedom of expression including criticizing one’s own government;
BELIEVING that in an independent South Sudan, every South Sudanese deserves freedom of expression without fear of retaliatory measures including cold blooded murder;
COGNIZANT of the fact that few elements within the national security apparatus are substantially suspected to have murdered Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol and are creating havoc among the fearful citizenry in the Capitol of Juba;
RECOGNIZING the indispensable role all South Sudanese need to play as stewards of our society; and
PROUD of our Community of Greater Bor which prides itself of an all-encompassing human virtue of self-restraint “Kon Madang” when reacting to tragedies;
We hereby resolve to send you, Mr. President, an unambiguous message with clear and unmistakable demands.

I. Introduction
Mr. President, in the midst of unbearable tragedies and difficulties, we the people of South Sudan remained firm in our pursuit of peace, equality and justice for all. The brutality of the last 21 years of conflict in Sudan bears tragic evidences of an immeasurable destructive war. Our long for justice and equality was spontaneously confirmed by our Nation unanimous endorsement of C.P.A, and your unwavering commitment to lead our nation through a well-executed south Sudan Referendum in 2011.
Despite your successful guidance and vision in leading our nation through Referendum and Independence, the people of South Sudan and of Greater Bor by and large believe that you have knowingly abandoned the nation’s founding principles of freedom, justice, equality and prosperity. Mr. President, your government is currently at its worst state of affairs, evidenced by rampant corruption, violence, oppression, mistreatment of citizens, poor delivery of services to our people, and worse of all, bad governance across the board. Thus, the assassination of Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol cast a final verdict for a deteriorating security situation in South Sudan. Major Isaiah Diing was brutally murdered on December 5th, 2012, an act we unequivocally condemn. We also condemn the killings and harassment of other citizens of this country as well as foreigners who are peacefully residing in the Republic of South Sudan. Sadly, the tragic assassination of Major Diing is undeserved, unwarranted and certainly should not go unpunished. The perpetrators of this intolerable heinous crime against humanity should quickly be brought to justice. Major Diing was a man of great accomplishments; among them he was an SPLA/SPLM decorated war hero, and a patriotic man who has given the Republic of South Sudan all his dues.
Guided by the principles of a religiously devoted mother, Rev. Rebecca Nyalueth Wel Akau, and a fiercely admired chief from Kongor, the family of Chief Chan Awuol is amongst the very first families to suffer from the painful grief by losing three of their sons during the liberation for the country they so dearly love. His mother is a devoted pastor who prayed hard for the freedom of South Sudan and peace amongst all South Sudanese people. In fact, on the day of her son’s assassination, she was on a mission to Rumbek to pray for peace in Lakes State when she had to be rushed back to Juba for the news of her son’s death. Several written articles showed that Diing received several threats from unknown telephone numbers before his death. He knew that he was being threatened because of his criticism of the government for its failures. He also understood that he had a responsibility as a citizen to criticize government policies that would take the nation in a wrong direction. His death in the hands of his own people is a national tragedy!

II. We cite a few incidences of worsening security situation and crackdowns on freedom of expression
In the wake of Isaiah Ding’s assassination, there is an acute need of concern for your attention to address issues that are affecting our new country, issues that may very well derail our fragile and infant democracy. Since our independence, there have been mounting evidences of brutality by security forces and rampant ethnic violence that has elevated alarm to an unquestionable high level of fear. However the government in Juba under your direction fails to do anything as a matter of resolving our most serious issues namely: insecurity, freedom of expression and human rights violations. The fact that these incidents, stated below, are carried out by security forces show someone in the administration has either approved the executions of these actions with your knowledge, or you have lost control of your administration.

Mr. President, our bottom line is a complete accountability. We ask you to hold those who carry out these heinous acts to account for their actions so that others who are inclined to follow their suits are deterred. We are focusing on the big picture. And here, we only highlight a number of selected key incidents to capture the gravity of the situation now in the Republic of South Sudan.
1. Since independence, about 2,400 people have died due to ethnic violence mostly from Jonglei State, according to Al Jazeera. We appreciate your administration’s bold step in launching disarmament in Jonglei early this year. However, it is not enough as cattle rustling, child kidnapping and killing of innocent civilians are still continuing as witnessed recently in Alian village in Bor County. A major problem is that South Sudan’s security forces do not intervene when elements of one tribe attack another. For examples, militias from Pibor have on numerous occasions raided and killed people in villages in Bor area while the SPLA in Bor Town never intervened to protect the civilians. Last year, about 8000 armed Lou Nuer attacked Pibor but the SPLA did not intervene. Before that, Lou Nuer areas had been attacked by Murle Militias but the SPLA did not intervene to protect the innocent civilians. The fact that 8000 Lou Nuer youth went to Pibor for revenge was due to the failure by your government to protect the people and have monopoly over the use of force in apprehending criminals;
2. Another one of the most damming brutality of security forces came just three days after the assassination of Major Isaiah. Security force shot and killed about 11 innocent people while peacefully protesting on December 8, 2012 in Wau. Their crimes were nothing less of raising their voices and matching on street in demand of something in the practice of freedom to protest as a citizens of South Sudan, the very idea to which you fought for your entire life;
3. In 2009 alone, about 2,500 people were killed, and more than 350,000 were displaced by inter-tribal conflicts, according to small arms survey report released in October 2012;
4. The recent abduction and torture to near death of human rights activist, Deng Athuai, for protesting against corruption by asking for the firing of 75 current and former government officials responsible for stolen $4 billion;
5. Regular mysterious killings in Juba (it will not do justice to even give any specific example because this happens regularly). In the week in which Late Isaiah was assassinated, Miraya FM had reported 50 people were murdered in Juba under various circumstances. This means the security forces are either responsible or they do not protect the people;
6. Mading Ngor Akec Kuai was harassed and thrown out of national parliament and had been receiving threats from the national security for hosting dissenting voices on his radio talk show and he has now left the country to protect his life;
7. Mabior Garang de Mabior has been assaulted by members who identified to be from the security forces and has been threatened on numerous occasions for his political activism (freedom includes freedom to exercise political right and right to freedom of expression);
8. Professor Jok Madut Jok, of Loyola Marymount University (Los Angeles), on leave, was tortured by security forces last year. Many people believe he was targeted because of his critical views of the government in the media, especially his interviews with Al Jazeera TV;
9. Dr. James Okuk was arrested, detained and tortured on accusation of writing articles critical of your government;
10. Wiyual Manytap has disappeared without trace;
11. Mayol Kuch Duoi was tortured to death by the SPLA soldiers (many sources believe the soldiers were jealous of his US citizenship or the anti-diaspora sentiments played a role in Mayol’s death because the SPLA soldiers started torturing him after his identity documents showed him as a US citizen);
12. John Akuach Jook, a law graduate from Makerere University was killed in a mysterious car accident and the killers have not been brought to book. Akuach was a vocal critic of the government and many people believed he lost his life because of that;
13. Dengdit Ayok, a columnist and Ngor Arol Garang, Editor in Chief of the Destiny Newspaper were arrested, tortured, detained and their paper was suspended by the South Sudan National Security on charges of publishing an article which criticized you for allowing your daughter to be married to an Ethiopian. We agree with you that any South Sudanese is entitled to marry whoever he/she loves but the use of state authority to stifle freedom of expression puts the very freedom we fought for into jeopardy and those columnists shouldn’t have been dragged to Security Station for questioning and detention without you immediately intervening to save them from being tortured in jail. And neither should their newspaper have been suspended;
14. Richard Mogga, managing editor of the New Times Newspaper, was briefly detained on January 13, 2012 by security forces for allegedly writing an article that questioned security organ knowledge of the South Sudan cabinet;
15. Badru Mulumba, a news reporter with the New Times, was arrested on January 18, 2012 and briefly detained for writing an article that allegedly defamed Nunu Jema, Minister of Housing and Physical Infrastructure;
16. Three Citizen Newspaper Journalists were arrested in January 2012 by police officers and beaten and detained and released after five hours. What is so alarming is how the security forces start treating people guilty and begin torturing people even before they are proven guilty. Didn’t we fight to achieve rule of law and to achieve freedom from torture?;
17. Citizen Newspaper Editor, Nhial Bol, has been warned on several occasions about what not to write about and what not to publish. This is a Khartoum-style media censorship and should stop;
18. SPLA Military Intelligence beat up the Leader of Opposition in Parliament, Onyati Adigo, during South Sudan’s Independence Day Celebration for “hanging posters without permission” and a senior security official told newspaper editor, Nhial Bol, not to write about the incident. If your security forces are so ashamed of the incident being read by the public, why do they commit such an illegal act in the first place? Hanging posters is part of freedom of expression. Why should anyone ask for permission from security to post an information material? This is Khartoum governance style which we fought against;
19. Security officers beat a driver from the Citizen Newspaper and raided the paper’s office after the Editor, Nhial Bol, wrote details about how police had not received their salaries for three months;
20. Manyang Mayom, a Rumbek based journalist, has been detained by police three times on various occasions. What is mind-boggling is how these incidents of freedom of press happen so often and the culprits are not warned by the top authority not to repeat or apprehend;
21. Nasir Fazol, a Citizen Newspaper reporter, was detained in September 2012 by security and later released without charges, according to South Sudanese media and the Committee to Protect Journalists;
22. 35 Eritrean citizens have been killed in Juba, according to Deputy Chairperson of Eritrean Community quoted by the Sudd Institute;
23. As of the end of September 2012, about 15 Kenyans have been killed in South Sudan within duration of one year, according to Kenyan Assistant Foreign Affairs Minister. This included Ms. Tabitha Musangi, a teacher at John Garang International School, who was shot dead for not stopping for the lowering of the South Sudan National Flag. This is a shameful act, why would someone take away a human life just for not stopping for the lowering of a national flag?;
24. And several Ugandans and Ethiopians have also been murdered in Juba.
These are disturbing incidences but they do not account for unreported cases since we just listed those that are out in the public domain. Mr. President, the best question to ask you is what have you done to ensure that these things never happen again? Of course, nothing! Another question is will your government change the course if we do not fight for the reform? No, especially now in the wake of assassination of Major Diing Chan Awuol in which your administration has shown a lukewarm response. The only way your administration will change the course is not to shut up but loudly demand a meaningful reform now rather than later. Our nation is taking a wrong direction and we, the governed, must rescue it!

III. We know your failed governance is a South Sudanese problem
We the South Sudanese, as one people, must understand that the above mentioned incidents are cases of individuals who stood up to the most powerful for the sake of all South Sudanese to have a nation that is worthy of their sacrifices. They are as well cases of citizens being killed in their villages and in Juba with your government doing little to protect them. They are cases of individual journalists and civil rights activists who are doing their parts to ensure South Sudan is on the right track. We aspire to raise our nation up to a more perfect union where freedom of expression on all sorts of issues important to our nation are respected and valued. We aspire for a nation in which the citizens can independently express their views including sometimes using incendiary words without fear of overreach by the State. For example President Bush, Prime Minister Tony Blair and many others were called idiots, yet they had successful administrations. Why not you too, President Kiir, because this is what it means to lead a democratic nation in which freedom of expression is cherished and protected?
We want to say no to borrowed bad governance styles from Khartoum, Nairobi and Kampala. Please, import only the good stuffs! We are seeing a nation in which enough material resources have been looted and innocent lives have been taken away without your administration holding those responsible accountable for their actions. Once accountability and freedom of expression are prohibited, your administration and its inner circle will live in a bubble and group-think and you will only be told what you want to hear instead of what you ought to hear and that is a national problem for all South Sudanese.
We are taking a stand now rather than later for the sake of freedom from your autocratic rule. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH: with rampant innocent killings, a red line has been clearly crossed and the people of South Sudan are setting a zero tolerance on your autocratic rule and failed policies of your administration.

IV. We believe elements within the security apparatus are key suspects for Major Diing’s assassination. The politics of intimidation rooted in the philosophical attitude to silence political opponent or critics, is not a secret practice by your security personnel. As we look at this case of deteriorating security situation in South Sudan, we have to look at no other entity but security personnel of your administration as the suspects of killings and harassment of innocent civilians, South Sudanese and foreigners alike. Incidents prior to the assassination of late Diing make us to believe some elements within your security forces are major suspects. It is worth noting that Major Diing wrote several opinion articles which criticized you including an opinion piece critical of your administration’s foreign policy decisions particularly on the Malwal Dinkas’ 14 miles land corridor conceded as a demilitarized zone although it has never ever been contested by the North before because it is Malwal Dinkas’ Land right inside South Sudan. The piece was well liked by South Sudanese across the board but hated by your Morons, Mr. President Kiir!

Here are some of the evidences why we think your security personnel are the suspects and as someone in charge, you should arrest them:
* Major Diing received death threats from individuals at the national security with warning to him to stop or face elimination;
* He was shown his printed articles by the security personnel and warned to stop writings against the president or he would be eliminated;
* After these warning from your security forces, a few days later, Major Diing was shot dead. The public, including this committee, think that this is not a mere coincidence.
South Sudanese have also seen you as someone who has increasingly become intolerant to the freedom of expression. Not arresting those suspects would make South Sudanese believe you have a hand in the incidents of suppression of freedom of expression because of your reaction or lack of action. For example, during the demonstration against Mile 14, you appeared in public and geared your anger at the returning diaspora with a hate speech making the case that the demonstrators against 14 mile land concession were returning members of South Sudanese diaspora instigating lawlessness in South Sudan. Mr. President, how dare are you to insult the intellect of all protesting South Sudanese who never set foot on foreign lands? Don’t you think that they get it when their land is being conceded to the North inch by inch? How about the returning South Sudanese diaspora’s right to protest South Sudanese government’s incompetence to negotiating favorable terms for the South Sudanese? Are they only South Sudanese when they protest against Khartoum in foreign capitals? Major Diing’s assassination was a tragedy that shook the whole world but what was the reaction from your administration? A lukewarm and crocodile tears to say the least!

There were cases of weird reactions by your administration’s officials and by you, Mr. President, that raise a question as to whether or not the administration might be more knowledgeable of Major Diing’s killers; for example:
1. The Minister of Information, Marial Benjamin Bil, confirmed and we paraphrased here that there was 70 percent chance that Major Diing’s unfortunate pointblank fatal shooting was an assassination. How and Why? Well, Mr. Minister, you have to make elaboration more on the assassination thing because it appears as if you could say more right there about the culprits of this unfortunate assassination of Major Diing Chan Awuol, one of the most outspoken administration’s critics. Are we pointing fingers at Minister Bil? Of course not, but 70 percent is a heck of a probability that someone must be closer to being sure about such an eventuality;
2. The Minister of Interior confirmed that it was due to the inexperience of the police officers that this incident happened. But Minister, can you tell South Sudanese under whose authority are these police officers? What have you done in the recent past to reverse the lawlessness and senseless killings in Juba and other major towns across the Republic of South Sudan? The responsibility to keep law and order rests squarely on no other person but you;
3. Then we had this example, Mr. President, where you were coolly telling the police force to the effect that “This is what I have been telling you…” Telling them to do what? And now that they have not been listening to you in order to keep law and order, what happens next? Mr. President, don’t you know that nobody else has power if your security personnel are made all powerful to override everybody? It is now clear that your security forces are focusing on silencing South Sudanese than confronting David Yauyau and other security threats facing South Sudan;
4. Then, Mr. President, you who should have called the press conference and not only condemn this senseless assassination but also promise to commit yourself to bringing those who committed this heinous crime to book had to be chased down by the media to make comments on the incident. But to add a salt to the injury, Mr. President, you never showed up at Major Diing’s funeral a few days ago. The question we ask is why didn’t you come to Major Diing’s funeral, Mr. President? You had nothing to be afraid of, otherwise your absence raised eyebrows. We don’t kill; if we do, Bashir couldn’t have come to the funeral of Dr. Garang and left safely last time, remember! What we would have liked to see is you coming and explaining to the nation what has just happened; that is all! Really, so, what picture do you think your absence showed to the United States ambassador? We had the same observation during Jonglei ethnic violence last year when Johnson of the United Nations had to be the one to visit the area and you neither showed up nor said a word!
What a catastrophic leadership! Mind you, in the state of panic and hopelessness in a nation, it is the president of the republic that has to appear and show courage and comfort to the whole nation — not the other way around. Just look at your video screen to see President Obama shading tears at his press appearance following the senseless massacre of little children in an elementary school in the State of Connecticut, USA. Why didn’t you show up for heaven’s sake, Mr. President?
Your incompetence reminds us of 1991 Gilo River debacle following the relocation of South Sudanese out of Ethiopian border when lots of South Sudanese and Nubians drowned and you had to be rushed to the other side of Gilo River to escape being captured by the advancing Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Forces.
The takeaway from those few examples regarding the assassination of Major Diing is we have a reason to believe he was assassinated by security personnel close to your inner circle, Mr. President. It is either you have lost control over the security personnel or they are committing these crimes with your full backing. The only way South Sudanese could be convinced otherwise is if you actually bring these individuals to justice for your inner circle cabals know who these culprits are, period.

V. We believe concentrated power in the presidency stifles checks and balances.
One has to question our strong indictment of the president’s inner circle wondering if we are being balanced and sensible. But what else could we say especially if the power to govern the nations rests with the president and his inner circle? Mr. President, nobody else shares the responsibility with you and your security apparatus.

In our November 2011 position paper on cabinet appointments, here is what we concluded as far as the balance of power was concerned, “There is no question, the three branches of the South Sudan government: the legislature, executive, and judiciary are not independent from each other as the executive seems to have veto powers over all the decisions to the detriment of the other two branches.”

We then recommended that “The constitution needs to set up a system of checks and balances to help ensure that no one branch can be more powerful than the other. Each branch has powers that it can wield to keep the other branches in check. If the system of checks and balances were in place, the executive would have arranged to have all the president’s cabinet and judicial appointees scrutinized and confirmed by the legislature.”

Unfortunately, our recommendations fell on deaf ears and we are making a further conclusion that in the days when government’s critics such as Major Diing are cold-bloodily murdered with impunity, the power now rests with your inner circle cabals and security personnel, Mr. President. We now can categorically say that the assassination of Major Diing is a tip of a bigger iceberg. It is a wake up call to all South Sudanese; what happened to him is an indication of a fate for every South Sudanese who walks in Isaiah’s shoes. It is an indication of a turning point in South Sudanese history from a true democracy that so much blood has been spilled to a one man’s timeless dictatorship.
Mr. President, this is the beginning of the implementation of the plans that you put in place when you formed your first cabinet a year ago and aggregated power within your circle and championed a constitution that gives you absolute powers to be able to commit blunders of this nature and still get away without accountability. It is a first sign that billions of dollars spent in South Sudan every year are being used to build a system that is dangerous to humanity and the world over. We have to ask you to change course and lead as people’s president — Not as your inner circle cabals’ and security personnel’s president!

VI. We ask you to change course now rather than later.
You have and will have a very hard time convincing the people of South Sudan that you are the man we knew during the liberation struggle. The Commander Kiir we knew was calm, patient, laid back and loathed vengeance. Your personality during struggling years made people forget your colossal strategic and tactical errors such as River Gilo’s tragedy we already alluded to.

But President Kiir we know today is clearly different in terms of personality and governance! Mr. President, you seem to have been spoiled by money and lust for unquestionable powers. As we stated up front, we are unmistakably asking you to commit yourself to correct the ills and wrongs that have been done to South Sudanese on your watch if you are serious about reestablishing your credibility and reassuring the wronged and victimized South Sudanese.

Mr. President, we reiterate, the following must happen in order to rescue this hopeless and anarchic state of affairs in South Sudan:
1. Establishment of a rigorous system and culture of accountability that ensure those who commit crimes are brought to book and those who abuse power and fail in their duties are fired;
1.2. Establishment of an independent tribunal to work with the FBI to investigate the motive behind the assassination of Isaiah Abraham and apprehension of culprits as well as delivery of justice. We ask for a maximum cooperation and restraint from interfering with the investigation;
2.3. Establishment of an independent committee composed of South Sudanese known for impartiality, sound judgment and level of expertise to investigate the Wau Massacre and restore peace;
3.4. Suspension and prosecution of those suspected to be responsible for the disappearance of 4 billion US dollars;
4.5. Removal of chiefs of internal and external security branches (Akol Khor Kuch and Thomas Duoth as well as Brig. Gen. Mou Thiik (Internal Security) and Brig. Paul Nang Majok External Security)). Why? These individuals are responsible for all the intelligence and failure gaps as well as deteriorating security in our major towns and troubled states such as Juba, Wau, Lakes, and Jonglei respectively. The case of Isaiah Abraham is one among many failures or stark involvement of death/hit squads affiliated to these institutions;
5.6. Immediate removals of Police IGP Acuil Tito Madut and CID chief and replacements with credible individuals vetted by the parliament of the Republic of South Sudan;
6.7. Dismissal of those in the presidential protection unit and replacement with fresh members and leadership team;
7.8. Urgent reform of the security sector – especially the armed forces and notorious Military Intelligence. This will include enforcement of accountability on the security forces. For examples, officers who take law into their hands such as torturing and beating people should be fired and punished in accordance with the law to deter others;
8.9. Immediate passage of media and access to information bill including protection of freedom of expression with illegalization of media monitoring and censorship by the national security;
9.10. Establishment of a clear road map on nation-building and peace and reconciliation in the country in order to foster unity and national cohesion;
10.11. Clear definition of division of powers between executive, judiciary and legislature as well as between states and the federal government. This will promote checks and balances and will promote efficiency in services delivery and security;
11.12. Reshuffling to accommodate for power sharing within the cabinet and the re-examination of the constitution to balance the powers of the government branches;
12.13. Enacting of a law to combat child abduction, cattle rustling and tribal killings. The law should declare any armed tribal elements who engage in child abduction and cattle rustling and killing as criminals who should pay the harshest punishment possible;
13.14. Protection of civilian population in Jonglei State by the SPLA forces by preventing attacks or fighting those who attack civilians regardless of where those attackers are from;
14.15. And passing a law defining the role of national security and what constitute a threat to national security, of which freedom of expression is not one of them.

Mr. President, once these changes are effected, South Sudanese and the world over may give your administration a second look and there is always a period of redemption. Your legacy which is what should be your most important focus may be redeemed. But it is up to you to choose to make those changes on the timeline provided. This is the final and last chance we give you and your administration before we bring the issue to the international stage. And it will be your foreign policy nightmare. Mr. President, if nothing changes in the foreseeable future, we have the recourse to wage a diplomatic campaign against your administration and it will take different forms noted in the following section of the paper.

VII. We will resort to peaceful recourse if you do not change course
Mr. President, we say we have the recourse to campaign for changes within your administration because we know where you stand on the international stage. You are very close to isolating yourself already. It is now a known fact that the sour relationship between you and our important allies in the west is an indication of your failures in governance across the board. Mr. President, you need to be reminded that gone are the days when, you and other government officials were greeted with flowers when you come to the West. Those days will be over until you change the course of directions of our country. You will be greeted with voices, signs and all sorts of expressions through peaceful protests that will make you so uncomfortable. So, you have two choices, change or don’t and our peaceful protests against you begin immediately. Mr. President, if you do not change the course within a foreseeable future, we will no doubt resort to the following measures, among other peaceful options:

1. We will start to demonstrate in Washington D.C. and New York City and other western centers of power against the dictatorial system of government put in place by you in the Republic of South Sudan;
2. We will begin to talk with our Congressional delegations from our own states and write our petitions to the entire Congress, White House, and the United Nations asking them to put pressure on you to change the course of governance in the Republic of South Sudan;
3. As alluded to earlier, we will protest at any of your public gatherings should you come on your official visits to the Western Capitols;
4. We will begin to consult our lawyers to think about an ICC option for suspects responsible for assassinating innocent South Sudanese including Major Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol;
5. And Egyptian and Tunisian like protests and demonstrations will be options to consider as well.

We will not rest until you change the way you and your security personnel are running the country today. It is a cause larger than ourselves and we, South Sudanese, are entitled to call for another revolution. Why not? Even the Egyptians that brought down the regime of Hosni Mubarak are now back on Tahrir Square asking for Mohammed Morsi to step down because his dictatorial signals weren’t apparent when they went to election booths this year to elect him the President of the Republic of Egypt!

VIII. Concluding summary
We conclude our position paper with message to all South Sudanese. Dear South Sudanese, we need to reflect on what we told the disaffected South Sudanese Youths in our November, 2011 position. We told our Youths that “[B]e reminded that you are the conscience and stewards of this very young nation. Our fervent plea to you is this: Let us be the generation that saves South Sudan from the wrath of tribalism, where leaders and communities, large and small, are constantly set against one another. A nation does not belong to those in power. Let us not wait for all leaders to come and empower us to help our people and communities. Start wherever you are to help children and the elderly in whatever small way you can. Such a small measure inspires hope. Plus, you know it takes sustained activism to bring about social change. If the entire youth fraternity works in our communities by sharing all the ideas for increasing opportunities and reducing poverty, our nation and the way of life can surely change.”

Given what we have seen so far since the formation of the government of the independence of the Republic of South Sudan when we had to make a stand on cabinet appointments, we were right then and we are still right today because things have even gotten worse than when we wrote our position paper. We now modify our position to argue that not only the Youths but also all South Sudanese must work hard to force the administration to reform and make meaningful changes within its ranks and files as laid out in the above demands.

Dear South Sudanese, what we now face is a clear demonstration of complete autocracy that knows no tribes or clans. It is our problem all of us as South Sudanese and it is us who will force the government to make meaningful reforms. It is not our desire to cause the disintegration of the little progress that has been made since CPA but common sense tells people of South Sudan that it is better to fight this corrupt government now rather than later when it takes roots and becomes stronger and harder to fight. That is why we are going to work with you, the peace and democracy loving people of South Sudan and the world, to make sure that this government changes for the better or get out of the way to give the people of South Sudan a long overdue prosperity. We will have to establish a solidarity networks for democracy among ourselves as people of South Sudan around the world and work tirelessly to empower the grassroots citizenry and will never stop working until democracy reigns in the Republic of South Sudan.

PREPARED AND SIGNED BY:
Governmental Affairs Committee
1. Akol Aguek Ngong, Chair; USA; akolngong.aguek@gmail.com
2. Agok Deng Agok, Member; Canada; agokarok@yahoo.com
3. Pager Ajang Kur, Member; USA; ajangassociates@gmail.com
4. Agok Manyang Agok, Member; USA; jimalfa@hotmail.com
5. Ayuel Leek Deng, Member; USA; ayuelleek559@hotmail.com
6. Anok Makech Diing, Member, Canada
Advisory Board to Governmental Affairs Committee
1. Nhial Tiitmamer, Advisor; Canada; nhialtiitmamer@gmail.com
2. David Dau Acuoth, Advisor; USA; davidacuoth@yahoo.com

REVIEWED AND CONFIRMED BY:

Executive and Oversight Committee
1. Abraham Deng Lueth, President GBC-USA, brhmlueth@gmail.com
2. Chiengkuach Mabil Majok, Vice President, GBC-USA, chiengki@gmail.com
3. James Maluak Malou, General Secretary, GBC-USA, jmaluakmalou@hotmail.com
4. Francis Chagai Bol, Chairman of Bor Community, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Board of Trustees
Reuben Guguei Panchol, Chairperson of the Board of Directors, Reubenpanchol@hotmail.com

Committee of county Presidents
1. Mabior Achiek Chaw, President, Bor County
2. Kuol Anyieth Kuol, President, Twic East County
3. Yol Goch, President, Duk County

What does independence mean for the people of South Sudan?

BY: Akech Marol Nun, RSS, Juba, DEC/18/2012, SSN;

South Sudan attained her independence last year on the 9th of July 2011 through the referendum process which granted South Sudanese peoples a diligent right and golden chance to determines their fate through the ballot box in which the 98 % of South Sudanese peoples overwhelmingly voted in the favor of independent Country of their own which championed the birth of the newest nation in the Africa.

The author is hereby featuring this article opinion with the aim of questioning the population of South Sudan whether the just attained independence means anything to them. Moreover, there are numerous questions to be answered by South Sudanese people who voluntarily cast their votes for the separation of South Sudan from the then republic of Sudan plus the forgotten 2.5 million people who died for the course of liberation.

The simple answer is that all of the efforts being put forward by the peoples of South Sudan to achieve independent nation of their own ended up as a nonentity. So independence means nothing to the local population of South Sudan, it was good when the Arabs were the ones mistreating black South Sudan than the current unexpected U-turn whereby a small linage hold the entire power of oppression within the country whereby everybody suffers from!

The peoples of South Sudan has been in mysterious suffering from the then Sudan which was owned by the Northern Sudanese who defined it and ruled it at their will, the suffering was incurred in many forms, for example, lack of political and democratic freedom, oppression of freedom of speech, regional and economical imbalance, Arabization and tribalism plus divide-and-rule politics of Khartoum and the list is long.

Today the Sudan peoples liberation movement (SPLM) which is the major and leading political figure in the country is making the opposite by killing its own cadres like the assassination of brilliant opinion writer, late ISAIAH ABRAHAM, the fingers are pointing and still pointing at government because nobody else is responsible for that death of the late writer.

By the way, the government of South Sudan has been taken over by the region whereby the plan for duos and elimination of the people who hail from the other regions. Is this the meaning of being independent?

The question to be answered by whoever believes that the independence of South Sudan has the full meaning is why did we take up arms against the Arabs rule since 1955 up to independence in 2011?

Whatever atrocities being committed today by the SPLM own government plus its small regional lineages were the same practices done to South Sudanese by the Khartoum Arab government. These atrocities are being done to the citizens of South Sudan by the so-called government. I personally doubt whether the independence is being enjoyed in South Sudan.

In fact, the so-called independence of South Sudan is nothing and a nonentity to its citizens who’d voluntarily voted for it. If government cannot offer security protection to its citizens, why do we proudly call the failed tribal rule and ethnic ideological country an independent nation?

The eight million population of South Sudan voted for Separation to enjoy the fruits of independence, citizens of South Sudan need to be fully protected from militias, night robbers, tribal fighters, and the unforgettable the national security which is responsible for the killing the citizens.

South Sudanese should have a country which offers a free environment whereby the citizens can express their views without being threatened or killed. Therefore there is no meaning for South Sudan being called an independent country.

This country is not totally independent because it has a mafia-type practice of criminality which is fostered by regional interests than patriotism.

Where is the freedom of expression in South Sudan if Journalists and writers are killed? Where is the right of being a citizen? Does Mr President with his regional advisers and tribes-mates work for the second separation of this country into three more countries or for the disunity of this great nation?

The country where president is advised by his own regional peoples, state, tribe and clan, what do you think they can advise him about? Simply he can be advised about killing and elimination of the peoples who hail from the other regions or tribes; about nepotism, corruption and discrimination.

If children, orphans, widows and war-wounded are dying due to starvation and also in the hands of the national security and militias, what does independence mean to us the people of South Sudan?

If the blind government of the stupid majority can kill nationalists, the strong SPLM party cadres who act as the die-hearted of SPLM/A, then what does independence mean?

The daily deaths of South Sudanese people are the result of the national government being vision-less and taken in by the stupid and narrow angles of the region or tribe.

However, it could be viewed as the national property of all South Sudanese without being ruled with the internal intention of tribes.

South Sudan can accommodates all its citizens without fear and favor.

In conclusion, government should act separately as the peoples ruler without the regional or tribal influence, it could serve the protection of citizens from the external and internal attacks, and it can reflect the positive meaningful independence of South Sudan.

(The views expressed in this column belong to the writer and the author can be reaches for comment at akech.marol@yahoo.com)