Constant search for answers: The Case of South Sudan Crises

By: Ibrahim Juma, South Sudan, MAR/28/2018, SSN;

It is an indisputable fact that the current crisis we are in, came from power hungry politicians who’d and still put their interests first rather than the national interest. Concerned citizens like me are left to wonder in relation to how and who will address the followings issues that have befallen our nation.

Political problems: Because of power hunger and lack of patience from Dr. Riek Machar, he triggered the 2013 crisis that lasted up to now.

Many people including me thought Dr. Riek would be the only hope for our nation given his education and experience, but through thorough observations, he isn’t fit to resolve South Sudanese problems.

He has failed to run the SPLM-IO properly, leave alone running the whole nation. He is currently running a rebellion whose objective is just to get power without telling the citizens what he’d do once he assumes power.

Several defects within SPM-IO are testimony to that effect.

Other rebels like Dr. Lam Akol and General Thomas Cirilo are also vision-less. This leaves us with no hope in these rebels as they’d be hopeless in resolving of Republic of South Sudan’s problems.

On the other hand, the government of President Kiir is a government of self-enrichment or self-service. Where on earth can someone who was accused of stealing money be appointed as Undersecretary?

What has his government done to the 75 top corrupt politicians? Or since inception, who has ever been prosecuted by the Anti–Corruption commission other than it being an institution for employment?

Furthermore, the government has gone ahead to adopt a system of provoking people to rebel, e.g. when Gen. Paul Malong was relieved and decided to go home, he was labelled as a rebel and soldiers were told to shoot him if he resisted arrest.

If it wasn’t because of former governor of Eastern lakes, Mr. Bor Philip, Gen. Paul Malong would’ve been harmed.

Recently, when Mr. Andrew Makur Thou fell ill, his son-in-law, Ambassador Telar Ring Deng went to take care of him in Khartoum, Mr. Ezekiel Lul (current minister of petroleum) quickly referred to Mr. Telar as “John Baptist” who went to Khartoum to prepare the ground for the arrival of Gen. Paul Malong.

Who told Mr. Ezekiel Lul that Telar has rebelled? Is it not provocation where those in power provoke others to rebel?

If Gen. Paul rebelled (God forbids), I won’t blame him but I’ll rather blame those who always labeled him as rebel.

So, the question is, what’ll the government get from series of rebellions? I’m forced to believe that they’re using war to continue looting the country’s resources under the pretext of war.

Similar to my final observation on rebels that relate to their incapability in resolving South Sudanese’s problems mentioned above, the current government is a nightmare to South Sudanese.

Thus nothing good will come from it except continuous corruption in all its institutions, nepotism, promotion of tribalism, consistent under-development as evidenced by lack of functioning road network countrywide that links Capital Juba to all the states.

Further, poor health system, lack of sound educational sector, more and more suffering of the poor as a result of the current economic hardships, and government actions that are making our nation a laughing stock in the eyes of international community among many others.

All the above are a result of lack of political will to put things right given that self-interest prevails on top of national interest.

Economic Issues : since there is inter-dependency between politics and how economy can be ran, one can’t deny that there is no way South Sudan’s economy can do well when those who are supposed to run things right are not doing their jobs right.

For instance, President Kiir appointed Othom Rago to be the bank governor in order to put the South Sudanese Economy right, but what he has forgotten is something relating to this saying, “when a cow chews its cud, baby cow calf is watching keenly.”

Mr. Othom can’t do anything right when he has been part of the team that allowed millions of Dollars to be taken away by politicians in Central Bank.

Central Bank, more specifically, has failed to perform its duties such as establishing sound banking system where commercial banks lends to general public, controls inflation and gives prudent advice to government in relation to any policy action…. etc.

Central Bank is supposed to work with Ministry of Finance and that of Petroleum in putting the nation right.

But in a country where there’s open corruption in those institutions, nothing good can happen.

You’re all aware of the famous 10% scenario in the ministry of Finance which I believe is still in existence up to date.

Corruption in the ministry of Petroleum has been exposed too by the latest Sentry report published in this month.

The Central bank has a joined the corrupt politicians and companies that hold huge checks issued by Ministry of Finance and Economic planning by facilitating their payment rather than having keen eyes to detect any fraud.

So there is no hope in those institutions unless very serious reforms are made.

Our economy is now characterized by high unemployment, high inflation rates, high capital outflows e.g. our country send lots of money to neighboring countries to pay for education, health, rental charges, purchase of houses, vehicles, banking of looted money overseas, dependency on imports rather than developing “import substitution strategy that later leads to “export of surplus output.”

Depreciation of South Sudanese pounds against foreign currencies notably USD, Euro among other currencies, lack of government parastatals that in return generate government revenue and create employment, diversion of funds by politicians who have opportunity to steal public resources.

Because we have self-enriching politicians, nothing good can be achieved economically since these current politicians define the operations of the above institutions.

Social problems: our social fabric is now characterized by high bride price which is preventing many youth from marrying, high prostitution resulting from this economic hardships where for the first time a South Sudanese lady can be found selling herself for money.

Adulterous acts – where married ladies are unfaithful to their husbands simply because she might get paid by her spare tire to augment what her husband gives her daily.

Flourishing of crime rates in Juba and various areas simply because youth cannot meet the high cost of living.

Cattle rustling among communities with intention of getting what one can use as bride price, cultural erosion exemplified by emergency of South Sudanese pornographic films. (See hot in Juba website)

This emanated from the lengthy war where children born in refugees camps don’t have south Sudanese values at heart, unemployment where many youth spend whole day playing cards, sitting at tea places simply because they have no papers to compete for the few jobs in NGOs sector.

Others are unemployed simply because they are Arabic literate which is contrary to English as official language in South Sudan.

More importantly because the number of jobs available are not equal to job seekers and depopulation of South Sudan due to current war and revenge killings.

Because of these social problems, there is increase in number of fake churches that promise success, that means our spiritual being is at stake.

In summary, after reading to the end, my question to you is, who will address all the above problems and restore our nation to pre-war period (2008-2011), since the savior is not yet known to us citizens as shown by the above observations?

The writer is South Sudanese Economist.

6 Comments

  1. Thon Nyabeb says:

    Thanks you Ibrahim for the question. I know, you have one target, you are indirectly asking Salva Kiir to give you money, plus that you completely lost hope. Let me tell you Juma, the only leader and statesman who will save South Sudan from disintegration is Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon. History: “Study of the past events and the present”. Revisit it or trust.

    • info@southsudannation says:

      Thon Nyabeb,
      If you ever revisited history of your Riek Machar, you’ll easily and correctly arrive at the conclusion that your Machar Teny Dhurgon was, is and will always be a ‘disaster’ that had, has and will always lead to the instability and death of more Nuer fellow-tribesmen and tribeswomen.
      History, past, present and future, has indisputably and correctly ever proven the same conclusion.
      In addition to his personal problems and other God-sent problems now afflicting and hampering him, your demi-god, Machar, needs to silently step aside and pass the so-called ‘leadership’ that was supposedly passed unto him by Ngundeng to someone else among the Naath.
      You see, Taban Gai, was supposedly the inheritor of this ‘leadership’ but being a bastardized Arab-Nuer, surely Ngundeng will be greatly offended if Taban was ever the successor-to-have-been.
      Please, get a true replacement and let Machar go live in peace somewhere in Ivory Coast or Morocco for his remaining time after his horrific leadership since 1991 that has probably caused the deaths of a MILLION Nuers and thousands of others.
      Go enjoy and retire with your $$$$ billions in peace, Macher.
      Editor

    • ibrahim Juma says:

      Dear Mr. Thon ,

      The aim of writing this article is to awake up those who have potential of saving this nation. I did not intend to beg money from Kiir, nor do i intend to do so in the near future. I am a concerned citizen who is not happy with how thing are being done. as you might have read in my article, Dr. Riek is not a Savior for this nation.Historically , he is not a good leader, i refer you to a book titled” politics of Liberation by Dr. Adwok Nyaba” , after reading that , compare how he has been managing SPLM-IO, you will definitely agree with me that, he can not be the best man to salvage our nation from this mess. they say ” if you can not be trusted with small things , then you not be trusted with bigger things” . The eight years he spent as vice president showed that he has nothing to offer , he should have performed by then. In short , i am not a supporter of current government nor do i support Dr. Riek . I would rather support new faces like suzan Jambo or any other person that can come up with a vision that will transform our nation into great nation once it is implemented regardless of who he/she is or where he/she came from period.

  2. Our social fabric as South Sudanese is greatly compromised, the current economic meltdown has created irreparable damage to our values. the indicators u highlighted in your article are clear signs that things are getting out of hand and quick solution can be found because the leaders are taking advantage of this chaotic predicament in order to loot more and stash their loots in foreign lands.

    Many ill practices and cultures appeared to many South Sudanese specifically women beacuse things are getting hard each day….. the proliferation of the prostitution has emerged as a coping mechanism to carter for their daily meal for the family.

    The question of who can address the current crisis is something that has defeated everyone including you the author., basically, our politicians are not politically matured to swallow their differences. the semi illiterate army generals, job seekers and opportunists(disgruntled politicians) are part and parcel of the continuation of this war, their inconsistency has immensely contributed to the realization of peace. ethnic based movements and emergence of many oppositions are making it more volatile, difficult and impossible to achieve lasting peace as many voices(opposition members) among them are aiming for different interests. If oppositions are to unite and fight as one entity with one objective, final peace will be attained. But if they continue making unnecessary demands and confronting one another( both oppositions) it will be a nightmare to talk of peace. lets hope for the peace. we need to put our acts together in order to say enough is enough.

    • ibrahim Juma says:

      Dear Nhial,

      I have motivated to write this peace of article by real suffering that our nation is undergoing and that i am witnessing daily in Juba , as i write , it is for the first time in History to find South Sudanese girl selling herself for money. The bad thing that we have is, our politician do not compromise their differences and safe the nation – because girls are potential mothers of this nation. Since there is a possibility of another round of talks that is scheduled, we should wait for the so called politicians , they might come back with peace . otherwise , this country needs serious reforms in Health , roads’ network, agricultural system , judiciary system in sense of persecuting the corrupt individuals regardless of their position and applying rule of law. The government too need to establish parastatals ( government owned projects that established with aim of making profits e.g mangala sugar plantation , Yirol sim sim factory , expansion of Aweil rice Scheme , Nzara cotton plantation , establishment of Sorghum plantation in Renk , area between Raat and Pachala is good for sim-sim scheme etc.) in other words , government should come up with projects that creates employment and ensure food security so that prices of food stuff can go down. by employing people , the social issues will not affect our girls since she will be employed or her husband will be working in well paid job .

      • ibrahim Juma says:

        Dear Nhial,

        I have been motivated to write this peace of article by real suffering that our nation is undergoing and that i am witnessing daily in Juba , as i write , it is for the first time in History to find South Sudanese girl selling herself for money. The bad thing that we have is, our politicians do not compromise their differences and safe the nation – they have forgotten that girls are mothers of this nation. Since there is a possibility of another round of talks that is scheduled, we should wait for the so called politicians , they might come back with peace . otherwise , this country needs serious reforms in Health , roads’ network, agricultural system , judiciary system in sense of persecuting the corrupt individuals regardless of their position by applying rule of law. The government too need to establish parastatals ( government owned projects that are established with aim of making profits e.g mangala sugar plantation , Yirol sim sim factory , expansion of Aweil rice Scheme , Nzara cotton plantation , establishment of Sorghum plantation in Renk , area between Raat and Pachala is good for sim-sim scheme etc.) in other words , government should come up with projects that creates employment and ensure food security for the nation so that prices of food stuff can go down. By employing people , the social issues will not affect every one including our girls since she will be employed or her husband will be working in a well paying job .

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