From: David Aju Kanyara
On behalf of Ma’di youth and people of Ma’di, we the concerned community members both in the diaspora and in the homeland extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the barbaric attacks inflicted on civilian transportation on Juba-Nimule road which left 5 innocent lives dead and unknown numbers injured on early Thursday morning’s attack.
We condemn in the strongest terms possible this cowardly attack on unarmed civilians on our peaceful motherland; we decry the shedding of Civilian blood on our Soil.
We strongly reiterate here that we do not want senseless killings of innocent lives in our Ma’diland and we are tired of this murderous scheme into which our land has been thrown.
The last few weeks Moli region has witnessed the government forces intimidating and demanding to be supported with food items, and where they cannot get it, they take it by force or by plain thievery.
Farmers were looted dry of their cassavas and other farm products.
Several Eyewitnesses and survivors report it was the very same government forces stationed in Moli who attacked this bus.
We are astonished and angered to see an unprecedented actions by government soldiers in Moli and surrounding villages, to which the government soldiers were immediately deployed as a cover up of their evil deeds of ambushing the civilian bus leaving dead five people, two Somali nationals, two Ugandan nationals and one south Sudanese, while those who survived the attacked were looted flat from all their valuables and money.
Mr. SPLA Spokesperson, Philip Aguer, there are no Bandits in Ma’diland. There are only SPLA Soldiers who have maimed and taken the lives of our innocent civilians from the birth of South Sudan.
Does it surprise anyone that before even an investigations can be conducted the Speaker concluded it was Bandits that attacked the bus? Is this a design to attack our land and kill more again?
Why would Juba deploy such massive number of soldiers to intimidate and harass civilian populations in Moli instead of sending investigation team to probe the incident, to find out exactly what happened and to bring to book the soldiers who have abused their constitutional obligations to protect the civilian?
The massive deployment of the very criminal soldiers, who in the past killed the locals and never had good relations with the locals was meant to cover up the barbaric and cold blooded murder of the innocent passengers on Friendship bus company, we have also established the reason why early Thursday attack on civilian bus was conducted by the army.
The primary reason to execute the unprecedented attack was to justify that there is insecurity or insurgency in the area, hence the Juba led government would use the purported insecurities in the area in pretext to justify its policy of illegal land grab to establish an army barracks in the area.
As well, we have also learnt the area where the attack took place, the very spot was surveyed by the defense ministry to relocate its army barracks as part of the implementation of IGAD compromise peace agreement for Juba to be demilitarized within 90 days.
We were told by the people in the area, the land owners are opposed to the relocation program of the military in populated and farmland of the people, that they would rather give the government some land 15km away from main road.
This will also avoid constant security road blocks set by the army along the highway to intimidate the civilians and loot them as they did on Thursday bus attack.
But according to the report, the government has refused the offer, thus Thursday’s attack is simply an act of government soldiers to use the insecurity as pretext to establish its barracks in the area also meant to resettle more Dinka in the area, if the locals like it or not.
Second reason why the government attacked the civilian bus is again to make it look like as if there are presences of the rebels in the area, this way the army will legally justify its deployment to protect the illegal cattle owners who’re from Dinka tribe.
It is a well known facts that since more than a year ago the cattle keepers from Dinka tribe have been roaming in Moli with their cows devastating farmlands.
This is after the president issued ultimatum for all cattle and their owners to return to their respective places.
But, intentionally, the decree lacked implementation and there was no task force in placed to enforce the decrees though the President relocated some of his own cows from Central Equatoria state to Warrap, his home state.
The legitimate question that begs to be asked is why does the government want to escalate the insecurity in Ma’di land by attacking civilian transport system after it has signed the peace agreement with the rebels?
It is clear to most southerners that unfortunately this government has not ceased its hostility against its own population, and the bloodthirsty SPLA/army is not ready to end the senseless war in the country.
Therefore, we urge all the peace loving people of our nation to join us in condemning this barbaric act by Kiir’s government which escalates more unrest.
We also urged all the people of south Sudan to condemn in the strongest terms possible the killing of innocent people specially citizens of friendly nations to South Sudan.
There are procedures that need to be followed if the government needs land to relocate its army from Juba as part of the implementation of the peace agreement.
They should approach the legitimate landowners without intimidation or causing of insecurity as pretext to grab land.
We urge the communities of East African bloc in which south Sudan is about to become a full member, we urged the members of EAC to delay admission of south Sudan for killing Ugandan nationals on civilian bus.
We would like further inform IGAD and its partners of the violations of the peace agreement by the government and abuses of human rights on Ma’di Soil.
After Thursday attack by none other than the government forces, they now have deployed heavily and many youth and school children aged as young as 12 were randomly rounded up and subjected to harsh interrogation process including sleep deprivation and long standing and finger twisting mechanisms, all applied by the interrogators to make the youth to give false confessions.
This is an act of torture and other degrading inhuman treatments, prohibited by the Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from being Subjected to Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, adopted by the UN General Assembly on 9 December 1975.
The declaration’s article clearly stated that:
“For the purposes of this Convention, the term ‘torture’ means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. “
In conclusion, we urged the government of Mr. Kiir to respect human rights and abide by the international declaration of human rights, convention of prohibition of tortures and other degrading cruel inhuman punishments as declared on December 9-1975 Convention to prevent torture.
David Aju Kanyara.
Sign on behalf of the Ma’di community youth in Ma’di motherland.