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South Sudan’s Fundamental Problems: A New Year’s Perspective

By: Nguen Nyol. Critic and Advocate, DEC/29/2018, SSN;

I write this piece to help project a narrative of peace, stability and good citizenship. It’s my New Year GIFT to the nation I spent my childhood, my youth and now my prime life fighting for it to be a free nation from war but developed and prosperous.

It’s my hope that this article shall not be censored. It’s an uncensored opinion about peace, stability and war in a country that we all fought for, for over 192 years to be a nation among nations.

The point therein is to go beyond mediocrity and understand our country’s fundamental problems – South Sudan’s problems.

Many people have projected false narratives as our country’s fundamental problems. These false narratives are still being projected today to advance hell bent false agendas of misconstrued representation of facts. Therefore, this can’t be allowed!

Amateurs or not, many emerging political analysts, veteran politicians and educated men and women, made some attempts and identified leadership failure and corruption as our fundamental problems in South Sudan.a 

Through my observations, leadership failure and corruption are not our fundamental problems in this country. Leadership failure and corruption can’t be our fundamental problems that have killed half million people, sent 4 million South Sudanese to refugee camps in the neighboring countries and 2.3 million to IDPs in the last five years.

It’s my understanding that greed, insincerity, tribal mindset and faulty old-man-know-how mentality are our problems.

Leadership failure and corruption are misplaced labels, positioned to conceal the truth in the name of preventing the nation’s decay. These are wrong means to allow South Sudan to free itself from abyss and its man-made disasters.

That being said, these attempts are good for general characteristics of our consequential problems, but failed to capture the essence and gist of South Sudan’s fundamental problems.

At this juncture, it’s imperative to stress that the problems we have in this country aren’t the old Sudan’s problems, but the new South Sudan’s fundamental problems, which include greed, insincerity, tribal mindset and old wise man syndrome of faulty know how.

For your information, these days in South Sudan, old age does not equate to wisdom. It doesn’t any longer reflect real meaning of African proverb which says, “what an old man can see while sitting can seen by a young man while standing.”

After having returned to South Sudan for the implementation of the Revitalized Peace Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS), I have observed our people’s behaviors and actions with keen interest. Surprisingly, I was taken aback by the mediocrity – sheer idiocy and lust for money in our people.

Most of the problems of our old age folks, learned men and women, veteran politicians and political leaders of different political strips are indifference and succumbing to the reality of the day.

They are far removed from our country’s situational problems. Indeed, their actions and behaviors showcased a pathetic approach to nation building and a new political dispensation in this country.

As such, I came to terms with this sad reality that our people have lost focus. They deviated from managing our crises in order to make this country a viable state among nations.

These issues of greed, insincerity, tribal mindset and old wise man mentality, solely rooted on a faulty “know-how” have destroyed our social fabrics. As a matter of fact, these items are strategically deployed to enhance ill-conceived quest and accumulation of wealth and power.

While I familiarize myself with these realities, I am also mindful that few individuals might argue otherwise.

Settled for the fact that our fundamental problems are nothing but anchored on leadership failure, absence of law and order and rampant corruption, which I respectfully disagree.

However, I gave these positions marginal respect and precautionary understanding in the name of personal opinions.

An essence, this is the beauty of having a diverse political view, opinion and school of thoughts in a country that’s supposed to prosper and develop on a solid foundation, cemented by one people’s blood and sweat.

My fundamental disagreement in this regard is not to deny the fact that we have no leadership problems or law and order and rampant corruption challenges, but rather to point out that these are signs and symptoms of the biggest problems.

These biggest problems in this context are centered on products of greed, insincerity, tribal mindset and entitlement, which I correctly put as an old wise man syndrome. In my best judgment, these are South Sudan fundamental problems. They must be correctly identified, named and address amicably.

Greed

Surprisingly, everyone in South Sudan want to be insanely rich, insanely powerful, and overnight becomes supreme king of all bosses with unquestionably power and wealth but with zero deeds and little education or at times none.

This insane quest of richness and power grab out of thin air and in the midst of abject poverty took root, and few have succeeded.  As a result, it has emboldened and created leadership failure and corruption argument simply because our people have lost moral compass but set a stage for crooks to thrives and kill in earnest.

Our big men and women in position power, centre of power if you will, educated or not, are after uncontrolled search for richness and power without deeds involved. This is solely based on my observation for the last two months in Juba.

Our people are in desperate quest to be rich and wealthy for no good reasons and deeds. But simply because they were in the bush during the war liberation or were in Khartoum making their living in the name of those who were in the bush-fighting or that they are simply from a certain tribe(s). These are the sad realities we have in this country.

Another sad thing is, these issues aren’t rhetorics and politicking anymore. They are the gist of a nation’s dynamic and misplaced development ideals.

As a matter of fact, these people would kill in the name of getting rich and becoming powerful. They have done so even to the maximum and with lethal consequences against those whom they wrongly think have crossed their lines and would hinder their speeds of accumulating wealth and rise to fame.

As these crooks bulldoze their ways through to richness and fame, few learned men and women in this country who still possess some moral compass cowardly refused to say no even for the sake of illiterate innocent and voiceless majority in the village. We are doomed! This country is doomed if nothing changes.

For this reason, it’s fitting to state that there is no more logic and no more good ideals, old days, which sanctioned moral duty for nation’s prosperity and empowerment. Instead, an uncontrollable quest for wealth and fame leads but often patched up by fake lip service.

This is to say that our good old days of moral ideals and nationalism, which were often duty driven by national agendas have died and were buried six feet deep down with our forefathers.

Our people’s nationalism and patriotic zeal died without autopsy. Today’s politics and country national interest in South Sudan are driven by perpetual self interest and tribal agenda.

Almost everyone in South Sudan now is after money, wealth and fame. No political agenda for common man and woman on the street and the next generations.

Few individuals who have consolidated richness and power through faulty schemes are often showing off wealth and richness daily. Sadly for wealth, richness and power they did not sow or sweat for.

When one asked how they could have managed to acquire such a massive wealth in such a short time? Instead of answering the question, they often revert to tribal bigotry and even would want to chop off one’s neck for asking a question just to conceal their ill-gotten wealth.

This is a fact and applies to anyone irrespective of their tribes in this country. Everyone has been and can be a victim.

This is the saddest and paradoxical reality in our country. A country we all fought for with our sweat and blood in order for us to find everlasting peace and stability. It’s sad but true, that any assigned portfolio in South Sudan is deemed a project to gain instant wealth.

This is true across this country, which is the reason why I agreed with president Salva Kiir Mayardit of late. When he stated that all along, all supposed good comrades, men and women whom he has deployed and entrusted to lead in various portfolios in this country turned looters.

To my readers, this is the sadistic state of affairs our country is in. To make the matter was worse, few cadres can thump their chests in agreement but no action.

Vast majority of our people chose insincere route and mistook it for unshakable loyalty, which is wrong. Unshakable loyalty for nation’s prosperity and development isn’t about faulty sincerity but genuine honesty.

Insincerity

Most learned South Sudanese in position of power in South Sudan particularly are amazingly insincere to the core. There are particularly insincere on matters that required nothing but genuine honesty and frankness. The fact of the matter is, our political leadership has not been honest to us – the populace.

For instance, our people were kept in the dark even when South Sudan was becoming independent. We became a nation prematurely with no plans for development, good governance, prosperous and principled frameworks for stable nation.

To put it bluntly, the instruments meant to ensure lasting peace and nation’s viability were not set forth.

Our records have revealed that machinery for nationhood with respect to institutions were left to chances. No prior preparations to prevent internal contradictions after independence.

Especially, internal contradictions such as tribal politic, greed and tribal hegemony which eventually cause civil war in 2013. Our country has no proactive plans then, after independence, and even now.

South Sudan then and currently is operating on the emergency basis, which is often based on tribal undertone. In a layman’s term, we react to events and expect miracles and positive outcomes when in fact failures are proven outcomes in such scenarios.

On a similar note, most of our political leaders and academia have outrightly lost sincerity, intellectualism and moral ideals of revealing nothing but truth about our nation’s decay and misdeeds that caused nation’s decay.

This is the sad state of affairs our country find itself in now and possibly for unforeseeable future if nothing change.

To that effect, few morally conscious political pundits and academia are sadly cowardly to hiding by opportunists and illiterate majority. Especially those who controlled our country’s political stage through gossip, intimidation and threat.

As a result, the nation is paralyzed. Nothing moves and no progress. Yet, up to this point in time, no one dares to tell the ugliest truth.

In the face of these gruesome mistakes, our people still meticulously expected things to change for better, when zero efforts, zero sincerity and zero accountability  prevail. This is the overall situation and behavior of our men and women in this big village, called Juba.

To be honest and for these things to change, and for South Sudan to be peaceful and stable, we must be honest to ourselves and correct our wrongs. We must be proactive; we must plan things ahead. And above all, we must accept the fact that our lack of sincerity is one of our country’s fundamental problems.

Tribal mindset

The question of tribal mindset is huge in South Sudan. To be specific, the Dinka and the Nuer are battling this out in an open. In the field of AK47 where thinking and power of the brain is limited. This is what caused the Juba Nuer massacre and the war of December 15th, 2013.

This tribal mindset is an issue and it’s one of our fundamental problems in South Sudan. To be precise, it’s more prevalent among and mostly pronounced by our elders, who are politicians and military leaders.

For example, these elderly politicians and military men and women have gone as far as labeling tribes with certain names. This is wrong, dangerous and it must be challenged and stopped in earnest.

These false narratives and narrow perceptions of tribes are concocted political realities with selfish end gains. By and large, such concocted political realities have tarnished South Sudan’s good image and reputations aboard.

South Sudan and South Sudanese aboard are nobody but no one business. If anything, we are considered failed state and savages of tall order. Our elders don’t see and hear things because they don’t venture out of  South Sudan. They think everything is good for South Sudan and its people aboard, which is quite the opposite.

It’s time to change course without forgetting that those who’ve committed heinous crimes against innocent South Sudanese, for the last five years of war, and in the pursuit of selfish end gains of wealth and fame, must be held to account on both sides.

Old wise-man syndrome

In South Sudan, old wise-man syndrome is an issue and real. Imagine, in South Sudan, 80 years old men and women are still politically active. They still consider themselves relevant, wise and are heading liquidative portfolios, yet, they cannot think or are physically able. They seem to forgot the fact that they have impaired abstract thinking and level consciousness due to old age.

Because of these impaired abstract thinking and level consciousness, in the line of duty, they nap, sip tea in hotel boardrooms with zero papers, play cards under trees, get married day-in and day- out, and more importantly glorify tribal politics as nation’s agenda.

Thus, as a good citizen, it’s my honest opinion that these veterans, these old men and women have done their part. The time is now for them to transition to glorifying retirement with good legacy intact.

Our elders can no longer pretend and claim to know better, and growing younger yearly without considering natural human’s biological clock kicking in.

It is time for our elders to lay back, take a back seat and allow our young, energetic and educated South Sudanese men and women to take the lead. To stop this nation’s decay, tribal conflict and war but allow development to reach a new height in South Sudan.

Our country is in crisis, and in times like these, we must not allow tribal mindset mentality. It’s a backward thinking and it’s no longer relevant. So much so, it’s an outdated – old age tribal strategy meant to pit tribes, brothers or sisters against each other. We are better than this; South Sudan is better than that considering our long walk to independence.

Thus I asked our elders men and women, to let go of old tribal thinking but pave ways for our young and energetic men and women to challenge themselves intellectually and politically on how to develop South Sudan.

How to mature South Sudan socially, economically and politically among other nations without a single drop of blood.

In closing, I must reinstate that our fundamental problems in this country are not leadership failure and corruption but greed, insincerity, tribal mindset and old wise-man syndrome crowned by faulty know-how.

It’s time to do way with these devious attitudes and correct ourselves for the betterment of this country. We got no time left for wheels spinning or merry-go-around.

Finally, I must remind our people that sincerity, cemented by law and order is key. No nation has thrived and reached a new height based on tribal mindset. So much so, there is nowhere in the world where old men and women died politicking with never-ending political brightness or un-diminishing talents. We are not an exception; South Sudan cannot be an exception.

This is my New Year GIFT to our nation and its people. Happy Holidays! Let’s embrace peace and stability as we celebrates Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2019.

  1. Nguen is a South Sudanese political analyst, commentator and advocate. He can be reached at jamesnguen@gmail.com

SS National Movement for Change: Calls on leaders to listen to our peoples’ suffering

SOUTH SUDAN NATIONAL MOVEMENT FOR CHANGE, FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
25 December 2018.

Contact: Daniel Zingifuaboro, Secretary of Information and Official Spokesperson of SSNMC;

Merry Christmas and thriving New Year 2019.
The South Sudan National Movement for Change (SSNMC) would like to wish all members, supporters, SSOA, R-ARCSS partners, IGAD Plus, AU, UN, Troika and the entire people of South Sudan a very merry Christmas and thriving New Year 2019. It is our hope that the people of South Sudan live in unity, peace, joy and love in 2019 and beyond.

“It is my hope that all of you are well and preparing to celebrate Christmas bearing in mind that the coming year will bring prosperity and lasting peace to all including those people in refugee and IDP camps”, said the Chairman of SSNMC, Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro.

The Chairman of SSNMC, Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro, urges all the people of South Sudan, supporters and well-wishers to pray for sustainable peace in South Sudan so that we return home to begin a new journey towards progress for all.

SSNMC’s resort to bring peace to South Sudan is unwavering. We have heard and witnessed the suffering of our people in South Sudan, in diaspora, especially in the refugees Camps.

We have witnessed the destruction of our beloved country. Our people are living in very degraded circumstances. Our behaviors have shamed us around the globe.

Our people have no shelter, food etc. Our economy is on the bridge of collapse. Our roads are closed and not passable. We have burnt our villages and towns to ashes. We have engaged in inhumane treatment such as rape and child abuse.

We lost respect for life and dignity of human being. We have destroyed our sense of nationalism and social cohesion. Our people are traumatized.

This is time to be honest to ourselves, to our people, to reconcile the people of South Sudan and move-on in unity, with joy, love and peace.

Therefore, SSNMC have resolved that the interest of the country and the people of South Sudan must come first. We have forsaken our individual interests.

We are determined to work with R-ARCSS partners, IGAD Plus, AU, UN, Troika and peace lovers/actors to implement R-ARCSS in letter and spirit.

We urge all R-ARCSS partners to do the same. SSNMC call upon all South Sudanese entities to give peace a chance. We call upon leaders of South Sudan to listen to the suffering voices of our people and do what is/are in the
interest of the country and the people of South Sudan.

Phone: +61 474 047 016, Email: si.ssnmc@gmail.com
####

The Party of Blood-Spillers: SPLM holds a retreat in Lobonok County (Central Equatoria)

BY: ELHAG Paul, South Sudan, DEC/17/2018, SSN;

SPLM/A, the party of blood-spillers is a stranger to retreats, conventions and conferences.  Since its inception it was built up to function as a politico-military machine on orders from the top.  From 1983 to 1991 no one dared to question what its leaders did.

I was informed at the time that, when members dissented they got sentenced to firing squad with appeals done after the sentence was carried out.  Terrifying stuff!  In short, the party of blood-spillers does not believe in due process and justice let alone democracy.  The words of its leaders are final and must prevail in their world.

So, any talk of retreat, conventions and conferences is something unheard of.  One had to be crazy to utter these words.

In 1991 the intense battle for the control of Ethiopia between the ruling Dirge (Ethiopian Communist Party) and the revolutionaries fighting alongside the Eritrean separatists influenced the political dynamics in the SPLM/A and the war in the Sudan.

Dissatisfied elements in the SPLM/A party of blood-spillers saw an opportunity to change the leadership of Dr John Garang De Mabior in order to institute structural and ideological reforms.

Thus Dr Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon, Dr Lam Akol Ajawin and Gordon Koang launched a coup on 28th August 1991 which failed, splitting the party into two movements: SPLM/A United and SPLM/A Torit factions.

The SPLM/A Torit faction of blood-spillers under Dr Garang was shaken to the core by the failed coup and for it to maintain support of the people it had to accept changes… therefore in 1994 it held its first ever convention in Chukudum, Eastern Equatoria to democratise and also accept the principle of self determination with federalism.

Since this convention, no further voluntary conventions of this kind were done because the leadership did not like them.

However, a second convention was held only as a result of the demands of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005, which mandated a general election in the Sudan prior to the referendum in South Sudan.

So in 2008, the party of the blood-spillers had no option but to hold a convention and as expected there was a split, but this time it was Dr Lam Akol who parted company with his colleagues in arms.

After a decade, Surprise! Surprise! SPLM/A the party of blood-spillers out of character and on its own volition holds a retreat in Lobonok county in Central Equatoria from 3rd  to 6th December 2018.

Wonders never cease – of all places President Salva Kiir chooses Lobonok to pontificate about SPLM/A’s liberation of South Sudan.  I will not delve into the possible reasons for this retreat being held in Lobonok together with the newly espoused colour red to represent the party.

In delivering his speech titled, ‘Retracing the footprints of our long liberation’ to the retreat of the faithful, President Kiir stated in clear terms that in order for them to achieve the aims of the revolution they planned it in four phases.

Out of these phases the most important phase for this article is phase three because it proves beyond doubt that what is taking place in South Sudan now was planned and executed according to script.  In short all the grave crimes going on now in the country are premeditated.

President Kiir accentuated that phase three of the liberation is the formation of the state and establishment of the nation being founded.

This stage, according to him, is the most challenging stage because they are all fighting and struggling to find their right places in the free Republic of South Sudan.

The political upheavals South Sudan is undergoing, in the belief of SPLM/A party of blood-spillers, are normal process of shaping and forming a great nation. Through this process they will get to know their allies, their friends, and their enemies alike with the regional and international structures.

They are also learning internally about the best ways they could manage politics and resources.  Going through this stage might take 15 or 20 years to get to phase four and the last of our liberation process. (https://paanluelwel.com/2018/12/06/president-kiirs-speech-at-the-splm-retreat-at-lobonok-south-sudan/)

The most important excerpt in President Kiir’s speech is: “we are all fighting and struggling to find our right places in the free Republic of South Sudan. The political upheavals we are undergoing are normal processes of shaping and forming a great nation.”

The key words here are: ‘fighting’ ‘struggling’ ‘shaping’ and ‘forming’.  Fighting and struggling obviously translate into a calculated engagement in violence to realise/achieve an aim.

Whereas, shaping and forming in political as well as sociological speak means that SPLM/A party of blood-spillers want to frame South Sudan ideologically, socially and economically in such a way as to suit the interest of the ruling group.

So in their calculation the best way to go around it is to wage war against the people in order to establish an ethnic state hegemony in South Sudan.

President Kiir at last has acknowledged that the ongoing ethnic cleansings, massacres of other ethnicities, mass rape, mass displacement etc are part of what he calls, “normal process of shaping and forming a great nation.”

To him or rather the SPLM/A party of blood-spillers, the loss of three quarters of a million lives through violence, destruction of the economy and depopulation of various regions is a price worth paying to establish an ethnic state.

In a nutshell, the African Union Commission Report into South Sudan is spot on by concluding that the ethnic cleansings are policies of the state.

Please see clauses 1135 and 1136 of the African Union Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan (http://www.peaceau.org/uploads/auciss.final.report.pdf)

Given that this plan was hatched back in 1983, it must be the work of the Dr John Garang the first leader of SPLM/A who was educated in the USA.  President Kiir and the JCE now are merely executors of the plan, dare I say, for the greater good of their ethnic group.

The ideas of domination and subjugation might have been learnt from educational institutions in America.  In the minds of SPLM/A strategists they want to create an ethnic state just as the white settlers have done in Canada, America, Australia, New Zealand etc.

These countries were constructed by “shaping” the state through the eye of the ‘White’ settlers.  Although this method of domination succeeded in the mentioned countries by extermination of the indigenous people (Indian tribes, Aborigines and other people), in South Africa and Zimbabwe it did not work because of the fierce resistance erected by the indigenous people.

This so called phase three is completely unnecessary.  The reason being South Sudan was created or rather formed on 9th July 2011 through the struggle of the people from 18th August 1955.

Therefore the “shaping” of the state of South Sudan should be to achieve a democratic state ruled through law and order under a robust constitution that safeguards and enables the various ethnicities in the country to live freely as equals. Not the nonsense of creating an ethnic state.

The SPLM/A party of blood-spillers should look to the constitutions of most professed democratic states and learn a lesson about the inclusion of its citizenry in the affairs of the state.  This is what is wanted in South Sudan – Democracy!! Not Dinkocracy.

The most surprising thing is that President Kiir and the SPLM/A party of blood-spillers have failed to see that their implementation of phase three, negates the struggles they sing about in phases one and two of the same plan.

The reason for this is because it simply allows for the emergence of the same conditions of marginalisation, peripheralisation, sectarianism and ethnicisation which blighted the Sudan causing the birth of South Sudan.

This contradiction tells us that the story of South Sudan’s liberation is not about true liberation but rather a problem of jealousy of the SPLM/A party of blood-spillers with the elites in the Sudan.

They hijacked the agenda of South Sudan’s wish to secede for them to shape the new state like the Riverian Arabs shaped the Sudan into an Islamic and Arab nation in defiance of the reality of the diverse people of that country.

The leaders of the party of blood-spillers envied the elites of the Sudan and wanted the same privileges which they felt was not available to them.

Now that they have curved for themselves these goodies in South Sudan the country should move ahead by adopting welfare programs as the final phase four.

What these blood-spillers of South Sudan do not see is that by recreating the same conditions of the Sudan in South Sudan will also recreate similar conflicts and instability as in the Sudan.

The Sudan has been at war with its self since its independence in 1956.  Equally South Sudan is now at war with itself for the last 5 years and it continues.

As President Kiir honestly put it: “Going through this stage might take 15 or 20 years to get to phase four and the last of our (their) liberation process.”

So the liberation of South Sudan according to SPLM/A party of blood-spillers is incomplete without South Sudan being panel beaten into an ethnic state.  The job to shape it started in December 2013.

Indeed now there is a serious conflict and those struggling for the rights and survival of the people will continue as there are no options left other than to resist the ideologies of domination adopted by the regime of terror underpinned by their policies of reshaping South Sudan into an ethnic state.

President Kiir has categorically stated that the reshaping of South Sudan will take nearly quarter of a century.

So the recently signed Khartoum Peace Agreement under the auspices of IGAD is a ploy – to lull the opposition signatories before the big bang for the reshaping of South Sudan to move on.

This latest IGAD engineered Khartoum Peace Agreement is a fake peace forced on South Sudanese through violence by Khartoum, Kampala, Juba and IGAD.

It will not work and it will not translate into real peace.  Temporarily, it may do but ultimately it is bound to self-destruct.

To be fair to IGAD, the South Sudanese job hunters masquerading as opposition politicians in SSOA got carried away by the dangled carrots of positions in the proposed bloated transitional government in the agreement and they sold out to the regime.

Most unfortunately they let the people down and granted President Kiir legitimacy to continue abusive ruling.

If peace is to be attained in South Sudan, it is imperative that a new process of peace making is started with all the stakeholders in South Sudan included and the principle leaders of the party of blood-spillers specifically President Kiir and Dr Riek Machar excluded – these are the creators of chaos in the country full of delusions of ethnic supremacy.

Such a peace negotiation must be in a neutral place without any intimidation and threats with the participants allowed to negotiate in good faith without any conditions of time or unnecessary pressure from outsiders.

In the face of SPLM/A party of blood-spillers plans to ethnicise South Sudan, there needs to be a peaceful re-negotiation of the social contract.

Therefore, in any future negotiations the mediators should adopt the transcendent approach of peace making of professor John Galtung which emphasizes understanding of the core issues of the conflict, legitimacy anchored on legal instruments and human rights conventions.

((Please see Galtung’s method on Youtube video: ‘Breaking the cycle of violent conflict with Johan Galtung’)) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=16YiLqftppo)

Jamming the break, so far South Sudan has paid with three quarters of a million people dead; quarter of a million people politically quarantined in the United Nations Protection of Civilians Camps around the country; over three million people are displaced…. forced into refuge in the neighbouring countries; destruction of the economy and opening the country up to ethnic and foreign looters.

Is this acceptable to the Jieng people? The ball is in their court either to sincerely oppose President Kiir and the JCE and side with the people to say clearly ‘Not in our name’.

[Truth hurts but it is also liberating]

Elhag Paul

elhagpaul@aol.com

@elhgpaul

PDM not a Member of SSOA & Neither a signatory to R-ARCSS 2018

For Immediate release –                                                                                                     December 6th, 2018

In the course of this week, the media outlets have been inundated with a surge in statements issued by the compromised factions of the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA), triggered by the apparent fallout within their ranks.

PDM would like to inform the public, its supporters and sympathizers, that the Movement ceased to be a member of the compromised SSOA factions under leadership of Mr. Gabriel Changson before they signed the R-ARCSS on 12th September 2018. Moreover, PDM has not at any time become a signatory to the R-ARCSS nor joined in its implementation mechanisms.

PDM is hence surprised by the appearance of two new groups purporting to be PDM factions represented by Ms Josephine Lagu Yanga, in Mr. Changson’s faction of SSOA and Mr. Anas Richard Zanga in Gen Peter Gatdet’s faction of SSOA.

PDM would like to condemn the fraudulent use of PDM’s good name by both Ms Josephine Lagu Yanga and Mr. Anas Richard Zanga, the duo are not members of PDM and are not known to be registered members of PDM.

Ms Josephine Lagu Yanga was suspended and subsequently expelled from PDM before R-ARCSS was signed on 12th September 2018.

Mr. Anas Richard Zanga was never known to be a member of PDM.

The public should know that these individuals are fraudulent, masquerading as PDM factions, brought on as convenient substitutes by Mr. Gabriel Changson and Dr. Lam Akol, promising them with R-ARCSS government positions for their support to R-ARCSS of which PDM is not a signatory.

These factions are fraudulent, and the manner in which they were suddenly brought on to assume the name of PDM goes a long way to substantiate the fraudulent nature of the R-ARCSS 2018 and of the so-called SSOA leaders.

The office of the Special Envoy and IGAD mediators are to blame for making the R-ARCSS a flawed, unsustainable agreement in its current form.

PDM would like to distance itself and its name from association with fraudsters Mr. Anas Richard Zanga, and Ms Josephine Lagu Yanga whose PDM-P that she announced on Sudan Tribune a few months back appears to have suddenly vanished and fraudulently replaced as PDM by Mr. Gabriel Changson!

Dr. Hakim Dario,

Chair, People’s Democratic Movement (PDM)

South Sudan: Execution spree targets even children and threatens nursing mothers

FROM: Amnesty International, DEC/07/2018, SSN;

South Sudan has carried out more executions this year than it has done in any year since gaining independence in 2011, with a child among seven people known to have been executed so far in 2018, Amnesty International revealed today.

Amnesty International fears for the lives of another 135 people on death row, who have this year been rounded up from other prisons across the country to two prisons notorious for executions.

“It is extremely disturbing that the world’s youngest nation has embraced this outdated, inhuman practice and is executing people, even children, at a time when the rest of the world is abandoning this abhorrent punishment.” Joan Nyanyuki, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.

Amnesty International has established that at least 342 people are currently under the sentence of death in South Sudan, more than double the number recorded in 2011.

“The President of South Sudan must stop signing execution orders and end this obvious violation of the right to life.” Joan Nyanyuki, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.
Last year, South Sudanese authorities executed four people, two of whom were children at the time of the crimes for which they were convicted. The executions were a blatant violation of national and international laws, which strictly forbid the execution of anyone who was below the age of 18 at the time of their alleged crime.

This year Amnesty International interviewed a 16-year-old boy, who is languishing on death row at Juba Central Prison, after being convicted of murder. Waiting for his appeal to be considered by the court, he described the crime as an accident.

“Before the accident, I was in secondary school. I was a runner, a very good one and I was also a singer of gospel and earthly songs. […] My own aim was to study and do things that can help others. My hope is to be out and to continue with my school. 16-year old on sentenced to death.

He said he had told the judge that he was 15 during his trial.

The use of the death penalty against people who were children at the time of the crime is strictly prohibited under international human rights law and South Sudan’s 2011 Transitional Constitution. Article 37(a) of the Convention on the Rights of a Child, to which South Sudan is a party, stipulates that ‘neither capital punishment nor life imprisonment without possibility of release shall be imposed for offences committed by persons below 18 years of age’.

State-sanctioned killings

Since independence in 2011, South Sudanese courts have sentenced at least 140 people to death, and the authorities have executed at least 32 people.

This year’s spate of state-sanctioned killings seems to have been sparked by a directive by the Director-General of the National Prison Service of South Sudan on 26 April 2018.

In it, he ordered all death row prisoners held at county and state prisons to be moved to two of the country’s most notorious death chambers – Wau Central Prison and Juba Central Prison.

This year’s spate of state-sanctioned killings seems to have been sparked by a directive by the Director-General of the National Prison Service of South Sudan on 26 April 2018.

In May, 98 death row prisoners were transferred from Kuajok, Tonj, Rumbek and Aweil state prisons in Bahr el Ghazal region, in the north-western part of the country, to Wau Central Prison.

Another 37 death row prisoners, including at least one child and a breastfeeding mother, were also transferred from prisons in the Equatoria region in the south of the country to Juba Central Prison.

Thirty-four people were moved from Torit State Prison in September 2018 and three from Kapoeta State Prison in November 2018 to Juba.

“The South Sudanese government must immediately establish an official moratorium on executions, commute all death sentences to prison terms and abolish the death penalty altogether.” Joan Nyanyuki, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.

The transfer of 135 death row prisoners to prisons in Juba and Wau where all executions have taken place so far is deeply alarming.

The South Sudanese government must immediately establish an official moratorium on executions, commute all death sentences to prison terms and abolish the death penalty altogether, said Joan Nyanyuki.

“Any attempt to execute a breastfeeding woman would contravene South Sudanese law and international human rights law and standards.”

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases without exception regardless of the nature of the crime, the characteristics of the offender, or the method used by the state to execute the prisoner.

The death penalty – the premeditated and cold-blooded killing of a human being by the state in the name of justice – is the most fundamental denial of human rights.

It violates the right to life as proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.

 Background

In South Sudan, the Penal Code provides for the use of the death penalty for murder; bearing false witness resulting in an innocent person’s execution or for fabricating such evidence or using as true evidence known to be false; terrorism (or banditry, insurgency or sabotage) resulting in death; aggravated drug trafficking; and treason.

Hanging is the method of execution provided for in the Code of Criminal Procedure. Before a person sentenced to death can be executed, the Supreme Court and the President must confirm the death sentence. END

First Legal Case against Kiir’s Government for Gang Rape & Sexual Slavery Lodged.

DEC/06/2018, SSN;

The Legal Action Worldwide (LAW) has lodged the first case against the government of South Sudan led by President Salva Kiir for sexual violence against 30 South Sudanese women and girls by members of the South Sudan army, currently known as the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) and formerly the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and the Presidential Guards.

The complaint outlines brutal sexual violence, including sexual slavery, sexual torture, rape and gang rape against women and girls during attacks on their villages and whilst they fled the violence from June 2016 to September 2017.

The case has been lodged at the UN Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in Geneva.

The 30 women and girls represented by LAW include ‘K2,’ who was subjected to mass rape with her three sisters and a family friend in front of each other in their kitchen. She was 12 years old at the time.

Muding, 42 years old, was gang raped by SPLA soldiers whilst another soldier blew a whistle indicating when the perpetrators should finish.

Joanna’s nine years old daughter was beaten outside while she was raped inside in her home.

Scovia, a 27-year-old mother of four, was gang raped by five Government soldiers. Whilst she was being gang raped, two of her children disappeared. She has not seen them since.

And Viola, 29 years old, who was tied to a tree, tortured and gang raped by Government soldiers in an army camp.

“The conflict in South Sudan has been ongoing for five years and during this time, tens of thousands of young girls and women have been subjected to horrific sexual violence by Government security forces.

To date almost no one has been held accountable. We have to ask ourselves: Why are we not doing more to protect them?” asked Antonia Mulvey, Executive Director of LAW.

“This is a landmark case which is the first step on a long road to justice for all women and girls in South Sudan.”

Rape has been used as weapon of war against the civilian population and until today, there has not been a case against the Government for its actions.

The women and girls that LAW represents are so frightened of reprisals from their Government and its agents that they have fled their own country and are now living as refugees.

Due to serious concerns for their safety, LAW has requested that the UN Committee protect their full identities during the consideration of their case.

About Legal Action Worldwide (LAW): LAW is a unique non-profit network and think tank of human rights lawyers who provide creative legal assistance to individuals and communities who have suffered human rights violations and abuses in fragile and conflict-affected areas.

LAW works in Africa, Middle East and South Asia and predominantly focuses on addressing sexual violence through legal intervention.

In Bangladesh, LAW co-represents 400 Rohingya women and girls in their victims’ submission before the ICC.

WOMEN, PEACE & SECURITY

LAW will shortly begin an exciting new project that seeks to ensure the UN Security Council Women, Peace & Security Agenda, (UNSC Resolution 1325) is fully incorporated into South Sudan’s peace process and that women and girls, including survivors of conflict-related sexual violence, can effectively participate.

LAW and its consortium partners will empower South Sudanese women to engage with transitional justice mechanisms, and to reduce impunity for conflict-related sexual and gender based violence (SGBV). This will be done through a comprehensive approach.

On 19 May 2016, LAW held an expert panel on accountability for sexual gender based violence (SGBV) in South Sudan to launch the report along with the South Sudan Law Society and Amnesty International. Panellists included: David Deng, (South Sudan Law Society), Ferdinand Von Habsburg-Lothringen, (Committee for National Healing, Peace and Reconciliation), Elizabeth Deng, (Amnesty International) and Alicia Luedke, (Justice Africa). LAW’s Executive Director Antonia Mulvey moderated the panel discussion, which highlighted several ways forward for increasing accountability in South Sudan. 

Martyr Isaiah Abraham in the 6th Anniversary of his Death Fights the Juba Regime of Terror.

BY: ELHAG Paul, South Sudan, DEC/04/2018, SSN;

It’s 6 years since Isaiah Abraham was attacked in his own house in the dead of the night by members of the intelligence team of the Tiger battalion directly under the control of President Salva Kiir Mayardit.  Isaiah was shot in the head in cold blood in his own compound.  Isaiah’s sin was to speak the truth about President Kiir.

In one of his last articles, ‘South Sudanese skepticism on security deal with Sudan is real’ published on 19th October 2012 by South Sudan News agency, Isaiah vociferously lamented the sorrowful leadership of President Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar for failing to protect the territory of South Sudan from the encroachment of the Arabs in Sudan.

Isaiah wrote, “President is to blame squarely on our lands being occupied by the Arabs and now he has gone further to sign away Mile 14. His statement that he will not cede an inch of land to North comes too late, too little.  We are not buying this belated chest-thumping statement from a man we all know his frequent promises.  We know him better.”

Isaiah, in voicing the concerns of the people, paid with his life.  In his criticism of President Kiir, Isaiah spoke as a true son of South Sudan.

Though he was a Jieng, an SPLM/A die-hard member and an officer of the SPLA with the rank of  ‘Major,’ he took his duties to South Sudan seriously.

This principled stand made him to contradict his allegiance to the SPLM/A.  He certainly was in a dilemma to chose between standing up for South Sudan or remain firmly loyal to SPLM/A.

To his credit, he chose the former and dared to speak the truth to protect South Sudan.

Did his patriotic stand constitute treason to cost his life?  No! Isaiah as a human being and a citizen of South Sudan has the right to express his views as in the international instruments South Sudan has signed to and also as coded in the interim constitution of South Sudan.

Now even if Isaiah was wrong, why wasn’t he accorded/offered the right to defend himself  in a proper court of law?

The answer is simple, were Isaiah to be howled to court to answer for the contents of his articles, he’d no doubt win in any fair court of law.  This might put President Kiir and his regime in a bad place, possibly with hemorrhaging support of the people.

So the easiest way was for Isaiah to be brutally silenced for the truth to be buried and also for his murder to act as a warning to other writers.

Now, has the silencing of Isaiah worked? You the reader can guess for yourself.  It’s sad that the people of South Sudan didn’t make a deafening noise to call for proper investigation and accountability.

At the time there was a talk of the American Federal Bureau of Investigation joining their counterparts in Juba to investigate the murder.  Unfortunately nothing happened or materialized and the story died without the public realizing it has been swept under the carpet.

The murder of Isaiah mirrors the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi Arabia’s journalist and a critic of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman widely known as MBS.

Khashoggi, according to reports (Aljazeera), was lured by security agents of Saudi Arabia to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, where he was brutally murdered with his body dismembered.

Unlike in the case of Isaiah, Khashoggi has the Turkish state on his side pursuing justice for him.  Will Khashoggi get justice?

This remains to be seen as the case has become a highly complex diplomatic game internationally in nature drawing in arguments about business dealings and regional politics.

On the other hand, will Isaiah get justice? I’d like to believe that he’ll because the South Sudanese are committed to bringing President Kiir, the Jieng Council of Elders and the entire SPLM/A leadership to the book.

It may not happen now but it’ll certainly be in the future.  Ultimately Isaiah’s case will have to be handled by any of the courts to be set up in South Sudan.

All the horrific crimes against humanity committed by the SPLM/A leadership must be addressed if South Sudan is to see peace and prosperity.

Since the murder of Isaiah, a total of 9 journalists have been murdered by the Juba regime.  These are: Adam Juma of Raja Radio, Randa George of Raja Radio, Dalia Marko of Raja Radio, Boutros Martin of South Sudan TV, Musa Mohammad of South Sudan Radio Wau, Pew James Raeth of Radio Tamazuj, Peter Julius Moi of South Sudan Corporation weekly, and John Gatluak Manguest of the Radio Community Interview South Sudan.

The murder of these talented young professionals simply because they’re doing their jobs – telling truth isn’t only a horrendous crime but it’s also the destruction of valued human resources South Sudan desperately needs for its development.

The targeting of journalists is the rejection of truth by the privileged dictators who’re enjoying resources of their countries without providing any basic services to the people.

That privilege is derived from the current reigning ideology of neo-liberalism whose values don’t cherish human rights and humanity.  Neo-liberal economic values strictly promote markets, profits and growth.

Human life has a price which seems to be categorized by the standing of each individual in their society.  People from lower strata of society may be expendable.

So in South Sudan journalism hasn’t yet developed to be a profession to be reckoned with.  Without adequate support of the masses journalists will continue to pay with their lives.  Therefore, they’re expendable.

Perhaps President Trump of USA was right when he described the world as a dangerous place in reference to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

How does the ‘West’ see this behavior by Juba regime and other dictators?  In principle, the ‘west’ condemns and announces it cares, but in reality they may not support the suffering people to free themselves from the tyranny of the dictators.

What is important for the ‘west’ is pursuance of business in line with the reigning economic ideology.  So long as they can make profit from these dictators they don’t care what the dictators do to their people.

Indeed, this is now a ‘dangerous world.’  In terms of the abuses in South Sudan by the SPLM/A, it appears that the ugly dragon called racism plays a big role.

Culturally, racism has been inculcated into the minds of people in the West through false scientific teachings and derogatory story telling using the media to the extent that the English language itself subtly has become a purveyor in the continuity of racist discrimination against people of color.

Slavery in the last couple of centuries has helped to cement the belief that the “other” are inferior and unequal to White people.

Eric Williams in his book, ‘Capitalism and slavery’ shines the light on how capitalism dehumanized people of color to justify their commodification for the ‘west’ to make profit and grow their economies.

Black life does not matter whether a single life or tens of thousands of lives.  So South Sudanese shouldn’t expect much that they’ll be supported by the international community.

The songs of we (west) care about the people of South Sudan doesn’t add up.  The way forward is D.I.Y, do it for yourself and rely on yourselves.  Raise your own funds, and do your own thing to prove your sovereignty.

This is precisely what Isaiah was talking about when he said “What is this argument that if the President signs it, the document, it can’t be challenged (?).

Who is this god in South Sudan that when he does something it can’t be reversed?  Whether Kiir or Garang signed it, people are more supreme.  They can redo what has been botched for the good of all.”

Here Isaiah is telling the people that they can do whatever they want that is in their interest to restore their dignity.  It is a matter of determination, conviction and organisation.

Paradoxically, on this 6th anniversary of Isaiah’s silencing, the same President Kiir, Dr Riek Machar and the compromised SSOA have connived with IGAD and the international community to distribute the resources of South Sudan among themselves under an ersatz agreement known as Khartoum Peace Agreement (KPA) of 12th September 2018.

For those who don’t understand the impact of this sell-out agreement, please read the full article of Isaiah.  The agreement is about the negligent management of the abused people of South Sudan (willfully murdered, raped and displaced) and its resources.

The KPA has all the ingredients that led to the collapse of Agreement on Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (ARCSS) of August 2015 which blew up in July 2016.  So it is highly likely that this fake peace would take the country back to square one in the nearest future without any change to the people – the suffering just continues and the looting of resources of South Sudan goes on unabated.

Think about it, the displacement of people in areas with natural resources is not by accident.  It’s deliberately designed to enable the exploiters of the people’s natural resources to continue looting without any obstacles or alarms being raised.

What does this mean?  One thing is clear: the South Sudanese through President Kiir, Dr Riek Machar, compromised SSOA and IGAD, are being killed and destroyed for their resources to be stolen.

In a sense, The Sentry to a certain extent states the truth when it argues that the problem of South Sudan is grounded in Kleptocracy.  But there’s more to this than meets the eye.

Please see, ‘Kenyan court halts South Sudan’s ‘gold rush’ by Brian Wasuna of Daily Nation. (https://mobile.nation.co.ke/news/Kenya-South-Sudan-gold-rush/1950946-4868608-125mmwl/index.html)

Isaiah sought to enlighten the masses 6 years ago and he paid with his life.  His sacrifice was not for nothing.  What he said then is still the reality of today with the fake KPA.

South Sudan land is being stolen, South Sudan mineral resources are being carted out to Khartoum and Uganda to maintain the ethnic regime in Juba.  South Sudanese people are being massively displaced, murdered, raped and sent into refuge without anybody caring.

Please see, ‘How European and Chinese arms diverted to South fuelled its civil war’ by Robbie Gramer. (https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/11/29/how-eu-and-chinese-arms-diverted-to-south-sudan-fueled-its-civil-war-small-arms-warfare-east-africa-conflict-china-weapons-exports-humanitarian-crisis-juba-peace-deal-salva-kiir/)

Welcome to the world of neo-liberal economics.  President Kiir and Dr Machar can freely sell and abuse the people with impunity because they hijacked state power in Juba. Thus they can buy IGAD and the international community to do what they want in terms of promoting their ethnic ideologies.

These failed leaders murdered Isaiah.  In death Isaiah continues to fight the failed leaders of South Sudan and this is what he is telling you the people now which is relevant to the current situation:

“My people have suffered under president Kiir and his heartless clique (IO, FDs and compromised SSOA), I have no kind words against these people.  The demonstration we made as people of South Sudan on Monday, not as Northern Bahr El Ghazal people, will go down in history as the beginning of things to come. 

Mr President is not apologetic and this is worrying.  The people of this country deserve a leader that respects their views.  We’ve never had problems with him since he accidentally ascended to power in 2005, because the situation dictated that people exercise patience.  For the past eight years we have learned bitterly that Mr Kiir is the problem and should be removed.  He has failed us in many fronts, and on this matter of land he must not be forgiven.”

Who can dispute this truism?  Isaiah Abraham, rest in peace and God bless.

[Truth hurts but it is also liberating]

Elhag Paul

elhagpaul@aol.com

@elhagpaul

Will Khartoum peace agreement bring reform or maintain Kiir’s tyranny?

By: Duop Chak Wuol, South Sudan, DEC/04/2018, SSN;

Known for operating with a vicious precision, his trademark is ruthlessness, and how he maneuvers his political rivals is irrefutably effective. Salva Kiir, the man in question, is a formidable tyrant with a bag full of cruel leadership practices.

The Khartoum’s peace agreement is one of those political blessings that a calculating dictator like Kiir could easily exploit to further his oppressive techniques.

This is an attempt to show that the Khartoum-brokered deal could end the civil war; however, there are plausible reasons to believe that the pact could merely end up preserving the current tyrannical system, empowering Kiir to further strengthen his grip on power.

It is worth acknowledging that the only best way for South Sudan to move forward would be for peace to return to the country. I assume nearly all South Sudanese are tired of war and ready for peace.

However, there are many contentious issues that, if not properly addressed, will turn the agreement into a pro-Kiir deal, rendering him the ability to continue ruling with impunity.

These issues include hybrid court, legislative, security arrangements, and constitutional amendment body.

All four of these issues are important, but the most important issues that require critical scrutiny are the constitutional amendments committee and future national legislative body.

So, let us dig deeper into the constitutional amendment committee, including the impending role of the proposed legislative assembly.

To refresh your memory, it is good to remember that real political reforms in any established society are done legislatively. This is what South Sudanese expect from the Khartoum’s peace agreement.

Regrettably, a careful analysis of the pact reveals that it would be nearly impossible for the armed opposition and other opposition parties to advance their democratic reforms through parliamentary processes because their anticipated Members of Parliament (MPs) will be outnumbered by MPs representing the incumbent government.

The reality is that opposition MPs will not pass any reform bill Kiir deems as a threat to his presidency. In a logical sense, the incumbent MPs will represent 60.4% while opposition MPs will have 39.6% in the proposed parliament.

Khartoum’s peace agreement stipulates that the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) will have 550 Members of Parliament (MPs).

The deal gives the incumbent TGoNU 332 MPs, whereas the SPLM-IO and other opposition parties will have 218 MPs.

This is not my opinion—it is a mathematical fact. Those who agree with this approach should consult with their consciences.

Precisely, the parliamentary maneuvering is all about the number — the majority to be precise, and back-door deal makings.

Given the nature of the legislative game, Kiir clearly would not allow some of his MPs to be bribed by the opposition leaders, let alone the fact that he will still indirectly be in control of the nation’s financial system.

There are some people within the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition (SPLM-IO) and other opposition parties who care more about making any peace deal with Kiir’s regime so that they can be part of the proposed future Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU).

These people are desperate—shockingly desperate—and eager to exchange their supposedly reformed political doctrines with positions.

One thing is clear: their desperation is logically irrelevant, because they seem to be focusing more on what they want rather than what the people want.

What the people of South Sudan want is an utter political reform in the country. In the case of constitutional reform, Kiir is clearly not into it.

For instance, the Committee formed to amend the constitution should have been given mandates to amend the current anti-democratic constitution before the proposed TGoNU is formed.

Kiir cunningly frustrated the process in September by claiming in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, that the constitution would only be amended four months after the transitional government is formed.

One wonders where on the planet earth the leaders of the SPLM-IO and other parties would have been deceived by this self-serving strategy.

There is no guarantee Kiir will honor his promise. Remember, Kiir knows what he is doing: 16 weeks is enough time for him to fully implement or reject the agreement.

What is ironic about the constitutional amendment process is that Salva Kiir is sure about his true intention while opposition leaders seem to rely on Kiir’s four-month time frame.

In other words, the leaders of the SPLM-IO and other parties appear to have learned no lesson, let alone the July 2016 Juba one (J1) incident.

Given all these political missteps, one can easily conclude that all opposition parties have either given up their political doctrines in favor of reuniting all ranks of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) party and then resume business-as-usual or are clueless about what they are dealing with.

This assertion seems absurd, but the way opposition leaders embraced Kiir’s notion of revising the constitution four months after the formation of the future government explains it otherwise.

Yes, peace is good, but emotion should not blindfold national leaders who, for five years, vowed to transform South Sudan’s political system.

Under the current constitution, Salva Kiir wields an absolute power. For instance, Kiir can dismiss any government official, including the elected ones.

Kiir’s power does not stop at the national level. The constitution simply made him an unchallenged leader. The man can even dissolve both the national and states parliaments as he wishes.

His powers do not end here. Kiir can also remove state governors and parliamentarians at any time of his choosing. He can do all these through a presidential decree because that is what is written in the current constitution.

Salva Kiir is addicted to these broad powers vested in him by the very constitution he orchestrated.

For the opposition leaders to assume that Kiir, for some mysterious reasons, will allow full amendment of the constitution is a mere joke.

Given all these facts, it’d be irrational for any reasonable person to think that Kiir will allow the constitutional amendment committee to remove the tyrannical powers he has been exercising for nearly eight years.

There is no doubt the five-year civil war has caused so much suffering. The recent estimate released in September 2018 by the United Kingdom-based London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine of at least 382,000 dead shows that the conflict has killed a lot of people, most of whom had nothing to do with the political madness that began in early 2013.

This is the reality any sensible person would not deny. The number speaks for itself. Most of the 382,000 people who lost their lives died because of a political insanity perpetuated by Kiir in December 2013.

History and publicly available data show that most dictators tend to have hard times transitioning into a democratic process.

It is true that some tyrants change, but it would not be a surprise if Salva Kiir happened to be in the category of autocrats who changed their leadership mindsets after their people demanded democratic reforms.

Beware though that it is nearly impossible for a documented dictator who ruled for many years to abandon his or her dictatorial mentality.

It is to be recalled that Kiir was loved by most South Sudanese when he took over the helm of the SPLM soon after the accidental death of late Dr. John Garang in July 2005. This does not mean he is a better leader.

The logic behind this rather reprehensible assumption was that he was the first deputy to Dr. Garang. At that time some people thought Kiir’s personality fit within the meaning of leadership quality.

What many people did not know at the time he was elected as the leader of the SPLM is that Kiir already had a fearsome persona.

It is to be recalled that Kiir captivated this merciless character when he was the head of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) military intelligence.

Consequently, Salva Kiir’s destructive leadership has its roots from the mid-1980’s to the early 1990’s.

The current constitution is indisputably dictatorial. The best way to transform South Sudan’s political system from dictatorship to a democratic process is by completely amending the existing constitution and replacing all autocratic constitutional provisions with democratic ones.

This is the right time to do it, especially when a national constitutional amendment committee was established in the pact.

Kiir’s constitution deserves to be thrown into the Red Sea—in fact, it deserves to be given to the master of hell, if any.

The SPLM-IO and other political groups must seize this opportunity to scrap all the statutory provisions that made Kiir a legal tyrant.

The people of South Sudan did not fight against Khartoum’s regime only to face the same despotic leadership practices that were once imposed on them.

If Kiir is serious about peace, then he must allow the constitution to be completely altered.

The only reasonable way to reform South Sudan’s political environment is by changing the current constitution. The people of South Sudan do not deserve to be ruled through decrees.

The current political leaders must differentiate their selfish goals from what the South Sudanese want.

Stopping the war is a good thing, but ending it should not be viewed as a reform demanded by the people of South Sudan.

The tyranny is alive and well and there is no South Sudanese who is still interested in preserving the current ruthless political system.

The constitution is the host of Kiir’s tyrannical tendency — this host must be thrown into the Nile River if the people of South Sudan want their nation to flourish.

The constitutional amendment committee must be allowed unconditional powers to bury this Uganda-borrowed constitution into Kampala’s tomb.

Enough of Salva Kiir’s one-man constitution!

The author is the editor-in-chief of the South Sudan News Agency. He can be reached at duop282@gmail.com.

National People’s Movement (NPM): Political Declaration of Another New South Sudanese Party

NOV/27/2018, SSN, Public statement;

The achievement of independence by South Sudan in 2011 was an important milestone in the country’s history. This proud win came about following a protracted struggle that lasted more than half a century, with brief interval of relative peace.

Millions of lives were lost and some of the citizens driven out to seek refuge in neighboring countries and beyond. Families were broken and most traditional communities lost their major means of livelihood such as livestock and agricultural production.

Another companion of war was the spread of trauma, a situation whose magnitude and extent has remained largely unrecognised, but is one of the country’s major social problems that has to be squarely addressed by both the national government and friends within the international community.

CLICK LINK BELOW HERE TO READ THE PARTY’S MANIFESTO: 

Following the attainment of the hard won independence, jubilation by the South Sudanese turned out a passing mood when members of the ruling elite within the party of the liberation, the SPLM, in their rivalry over power and its spoils, resorted to resolve their difference through violent means.

The country was driven a civil war before it could celebrate its third independence anniversary.
• The SPLM has been made to fail to transform from the liberation movement into a ruling party with a clear programs for governing the country, including laying down a foundation for democratic governance and the rule of law even within the party itself. Democracy within the party itself was being shunned, resulting in what can be termed as “democrophobia.”

• While some of the leaders constantly shouted at the rooftop that they were liberators, their actions told a different story: they abandoned nation-building and embarked on a brazenly parochial couldn’t desist from their past embedded hatred among themselves and remained suspicious of each other and operating in groups of loyalty mostly on tribal lines, which impacted the delivery and coordination of work to serve the people, instead, each
concentrated on self-gain rendering ineffective and dysfunctional governance.

• Rampant corruption, which has become an entrenched culture in South Sudan’s ruling elites with complete impunity.

• The SPLA has been turned into a militia with personal and tribal allegiances. Lack of military code of conduct whereby a national army is free of politics and against the law to be affiliated to any political groupings.

• Unwillingness to form stronger institutions to govern the country with separate powers and independence.

• Nation reduced to Stone Age conditions without services; no power, clean water, proper schools, roads and hospitals.

• Collapsed economy with increased poverty. Employees, including the army, spend months without being paid their wages.

• Unprincipled foreign policy with no clear direction nor vision.

• Causing unnecessary war leading to death of hundreds of thousands and massive displacement internally and externally. Division among our people has escalated to unprecedented levels due to sowing of hatred by the elite and exercising the policy of divide and rule.

• Insecurity by creating a state of terror, guns everywhere and rampant killings by what has become to be known as “unknown gunmen” has become the daily occurrence.

• The country on the verge of collapse of either disintegration or placed under UN trusteeship and both are unacceptable.

• Tribalism and nepotism has become dominant in all aspects of our lives including employment opportunities.

Incomplete freedom: The longstanding struggle that was waged by generation after generation was not only for the
geographical independence and freedom from the Sudan, but was also for better lives of our people economically, socially and culturally as well as being free.

The lives have become more miserable even worse than the time of with Sudan; with wide spread poverty, disease and insecurity.

Therefore, came the necessity for another peoples driven revolution in order to complete the freedom of our people from the current ailments mentioned above. A revolution for good governance and to change the livelihood of our people and put South Sudan first, regardless of tribe, region, race or gender which are essential ingredients of building a cohesive and stronger nation.

We call all peace loving people and patriots in our country to support this movement for accountability, justice and peace. To build a nation that is proud of itself and inclusive of all segments of all the citizens without any kind of discrimination.

Long live the struggle of the People of South Sudan; Yes, time has come.

Thank you, Signed: On behalf of the Executive:

Dr. Matur Gorjok Gak, Chairman,
National People’s Movement (NPM)
Former Chairman,
SPLM Chapter, NSW, Australia
Date: 24th, Nov 2018
Contacts:
Email: maturberkuei@yahoo.com.au

CLICK BELOW HERE TO READ THE PARTY’S MANIFESTO: 

https://s4-montreal.accountservergroup.com:2096/cpsess0439896453/3rdparty/roundcube/?_task=mail&_action=get&_mbox=INBOX&_uid=106199&_part=3&_frame=1&_extwin=1  

South Sudan, the Way to Economic Growth

BY: Dominic UKELO, South Sudanese, NOV/22/2018, SSN;

Today, more countries are experiencing violent conflicts than in the last 30 years and as stated in Robert Ricigliano’s book, “Making Peace Last,” 25 percent of peace agreements relapse into violence within five years, and these failures significantly increase the likelihood of these conflicts becoming more violent, leading to the economic distress.

In the Republic of South Sudan, economic prospects remain bleak due to the unresolved political, social, and economic fragility. The civil conflict has resulted in serious humanitarian and social crises and diverted resources from development needs.

The critical question facing the countries newly emerged from conflicts, such as South Sudan, is how to achieve a sustainable peace and therefore the economic growth.

It is in this context that the international community has been attempting to turn its attention toward the goal of sustaining peace, in order for the economy to grow.

However, a recent report reads that sustaining peace remains critically under-recognized, under-prioritized and under-resourced globally.

After the World War II, in an attempt to achieve an economic growth in the Western Europe, the United States of America initiated the Security operation to bring a sustainable stability, implemented by NATO, together with European Recovery Program ERP known as Marshall Plan.

The $13.2 billion the United States dedicated by then to the Plan from 1948 to 1952 would be worth a substantial $135 billion in today’s money.

Compare to Afghanistan and Iraq, through 2017, the United States of America spent enormous sum of total $208 billion, in today’s dollars, on the both countries. This is over 50 percent more than the totality of Marshall Aid, in today’s dollars.

Yet the United States has tragically failed to bring about a sustainable peace, therefore, has little to show in term of economic growth in both Afghanistan and Iraq.

There are many differences in the circumstances then and now, but there are two bear particular notices that we can summarized from Western Europe and the two counties, Afghanistan and Iraq.

The first is the presence of a capable, largely a political bureaucratic infrastructure, willing and able to carry out coherent reconstruction and reform programs, in the Marshall countries.

The second, more important, is the presence of far greater internal and external security in the Marshall countries. The two above notice were critical in order to achieve economic growth in the Western European countries

Unlikely in the Afghanistan and Iraq, governments have faced vastly less favorable circumstances than those of the Marshall countries.

They never achieved full sustainable peace, in order for their economy to develop. Instead, they have corrupt politicians and have been under constant war from armed domestic and foreign opponents, such as the Taliban and ISIS.

In short, the foundation that enabled American economic statecraft to be so successful in postwar Europe is lacking in the cases of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Given the insatiable desire to create new Marshall Plans around the globe, it is important to recognize that physical security and political will are prerequisite for economic growth in any country, such as the Republic of South Sudan.

Dominic Ukelo

22 November 2018