End the History of Negligent: The Crises in Twic East County warrants National Government intervention

BY: GABRIEL PAGER AJANG, NEBRASKA, USA, OCT/22/2013, SSN;

The current flood and tribal conflict in Jonglei and Warrap states warrant state and central government interventions. The government of South Sudan should and must accord its citizens full protection. Numerous attacks of civil populations have occurred and continued to occur in Jonglei State and there have been no government responses.

Arguably, more people die today in South Sudan than during the liberation Struggle. Have we learned anything from the previous tribal conflicts? It must be made clear the government of South Sudan can collapse if the international and internal pressures continue to mount significantly on the Kiir’s administration and especially if the tribal conflicts and merciless killings of innocent civilians continue.

Warning, the government will only survive if it discharges its core functions, and maintains law and order.

Flood disaster is a major concern. Although other parts of South Sudan are affected by the overflowing Nile waters, the the scale and magnitude of this disaster is yet to be known. Besides flood disaster in Twic East County and the current rampant insecurity is exacerbated by lawlessness and state of anarchy.

The flawed disarmament government policy has created loopholes and placed thousands of people in precarious environment. The government of South Sudan has struggled to annex effective violence-reduction techniques since the time the Referendum was conducted.

Now still, there is no clear policy from the government of protecting its citizens. We frequently mourned, cried and grieved with thin shreds of hope that the central state and local governments will create policies, and means of bringing criminals to justice, executing murderers to deter future criminals and most importantly reduction of violence by a few percentage points.

Apparently the government had no remedial and viable policy to curve killing and death of its citizens. The ensuing collapse of the central government force residents revert to local forms of conflict resolution; and escalate killings, child abduction and cattle raiding.

This country that emerged from the wreckage of war is so rogue (failed) that she does not remember Torit and BorTown, two shining cities that make all citizens of South Sudan proud. So what renders the government of South Sudan delusional or has it been confused by array of issues its faces?

I must reiterate that it is the responsibility of the government of South Sudan to ensure security of its citizens and put in place remedies of natural disaster and this means it must implement Emergency Preparedness Policy to reduce and remedy man-made and natural disasters.

The government must meet the perceived basic conditions and responsibilities of a sovereign government. Obviously, this government has lost its control of Jonglei state, and this may have worrying implication that the whole national government had lost its legitimacy in Jonglei.

The people of Twic East and people of Jonglei state are sick of hearing their loved ones killed or ruthlessly murdered. The constant killing of the innocent civilians is caused by the government’s inability to ensure safety of its citizens.

Common characteristics of a failing rogue nation are government ineffectiveness to practically control its citizen’s reckless behaviors and inability of government to control widespread criminality, insecurity and provide rule of law.

It is incomprehensible, and unimaginable to learn that over 3000 Murle youths armed to the teeth attacked Twic East County, raided cattle, burned villages and massacre hundreds of people in Ajuong Payam and Pakeer. The death toll stands at 150 and it continues to rise.

It is mind boggling, and deeply sad that this tragedy happened in country where the government claims an absolute sovereignty and good governance. If this killing was to occur in another country, some officials would have resigned from power and criminals would have been brought to justice but it happens in South Sudan, life will continue as usual.

Our beloved government had lost the meaning of life, its essence and destiny. It is heart breaking.

The flood disaster and mass killing orchestrated by Murle have severely impeded and destabilized life in East County. There could be potential outbreak of water borne diseases; unknown number of cattle could die, huge population is displaced, elders and children are threatened by the disaster, hundreds of homes have been destroyed by the flood and death toll continuing to rise.

The threat post by this crisis is immeasurable. This case study of flood disaster in Twic East County could potentially be applied to other counties situated in the Sudd region and affected by the flood. It is obvious that the state government’s emergency preparedness might be different from one county to other counties because the emergency preparedness largely depends on state and local resources that its set aside for the purpose of natural and man-made disasters.

It is worth noting that the South Sudan government emerged from ruins of wars, therefore its institutions are still structurally weak.

On the one hand, the president continues to load citizens with series of speeches, and many projects after projects are proposed and it is not absolutely clear whether all the promised programs are implemented. Now the disaster hits, the public is confused and no senior official knows where the disaster assistance will come from come.

Given these realities, it is imperative to develop a comprehensive national government program to curb tribal conflicts and disaster’s reductions. For how long will the government of South Sudan officials continue to appeal to None Government Organizations (NGOs)?

The government of south Sudan must define the strategic objectives. The strategic objectives that underpin our national critical and vulnerable areas and key asset for its protection effort, identifying and assuring the protection of those infrastructures and assets that we deem most critical to the livelihood of the people for instance, crops, cattle, and homes. The national government can ensure that the health, safety, economic and security of its citizens.

Both Current flood and Twic East attack on Ajuong and Pakeer Payams caught the county unprepared. The level of the Nile water is rising and continues to rise, while people that have moved to higher ground are killed by Murle Youth.

The Commissioner blamed flooding on the rising level of water from the River Nile and Hippopotamuses that destroyed regular Dikes at night while grazing on both sides of the dikes. The repercussion of flood calamity has affected the whole county.

The demographic at the highest risks are elders and the children. Just like any other counties in South Sudan, Twic East County was rebuilt from the ruins and the remnants of the 21 years of War. Hence, any outbreak of new diseases besides, water borne diseases could potentially exterminate the populations.

If the government of South Sudan does not act now, people of Twic East County could be decimated by the flood. This county is just like any other county in South Sudan, the Twic East County owed enormous debt to the government of South Sudan. A debt that either current government or next government will never pay back.

Yet this government is aware of the ongoing reported tribal conflict and catastrophe and never contributes a dime or soldier as part of a disaster relief.

The flood had claimed the lives of 600 people and Murle has killed over 150 people. This nerve racking crises can naturally warrant’s government interventions.

However, the history of South Sudanese tribes indicated that they protect their people, honor and respect the death of their love ones. I urge our government to anchor the government on the traditional values and norms, where the death of one person would trigger government concern. The government must do whatever it can to protect, prevent and mitigate issues and crises that its citizens face.

I urge members of Twic East community in the United States who have been conducting series of meetings to continue in their fund raising efforts for disaster relief and I also appeal to the donors, friends, and our own members to contribute funds toward the victims of Murle Youth attack in Ajuong and Pakeer Payams and flood disaster efforts in Twic East Count, Jonglei State, and South Sudan.

The author teaches political and History at Career college, former Nebraska legislative assistance and passionate advocate of responsive government that observes rules of law, and guarantees citizens protection; as an important principle of democratic government. Besides, he is specialized in Public administration and policy.

By Gabrial Pager Ajang
He can be reached at ajangassociates@gmail.com

6 Comments

  1. Elijah Samuel says:

    Gabriel,
    Kirr should have mercy on our country and step down immediately! He has failed every region in our country, He has a-meshed all power under him, he fires governors, He intimidates the National Parliament into submissions, He orders security forces to arrest anyone in any state as it is in Nimule, even across international borders, But yet here he sits with folded arms while innocent fellow countrymen and women and children die left and right. Kirr has lost it.
    What has not happened under his governance is establishment of rule of laws, governance by checks and balances and granting local authority ability to governance rather than all coming form Juba.

    Gabriel, Kirr and his fellow Elites from your region have their relatives and cows hiding in Madiland and parts of equatoria who are peace loving but also now turned into turmoil. So long as this is the case, they have little worry about the insecurity in that part of our country, they do not have their skins on the ground!

    The only thing South Sudan needs desperately is security, And security shall remain elusive if traditional boundaries are not protected, violated and invaded. So long as Dinka Bor under Kirr, continue to invade every single corner of the entire country! Every single tribe in South Sudan have ancestral land, Sharing and coexistence comes as a result of relationship building, No imposed!

  2. anok maketh says:

    Gabriel Ajang,
    I like how you put it in the title, negligent or marginalization is the core crisis of Jonglei in particular & other relevant states, Since 2005, no real efforts put toward development in Jonglei, example is Juba-Bor road is worst of all roads in S.Sudan, even though Bor town is one of the closest town to Juba about 200km, its population and its size, Government shown no interest on fixing that road at all.
    Same to lakes & unity states, no real development, citizens are either dying of starvation or cold blood carnage like what happened now in Twic East county, if you ask why? no one is there to answer that question, when flood displaced thousands of families in Upper Nile state, N. Bhar el Ghazel, unity state, Jonglei and some payams in Equatoria, disaster alarm was quiet until it reached Warrap weeks after, president Kiir himself decided to call an emergency meeting the same night, then he ordered humanitarian assistance to be dispatched the next morning, including team of Dr.s & nurses.

    But when tragedies happened some where else, it always followed by a complete silence, no reaction, not even a condemnation on behave of the Government issue, what does that say?
    I will leave that question to any concerned citizen of S. Sudan to determine, do we really have a Government in S.Sudan? It is still legitimate to continue its term? it might be high time for every community to put law on their own hands in order to safeguard itself .

    • Elijah Samuel says:

      Maketh,
      to answer your question, NO WE DO NOT HAVE A GOVERNMENT! We have a Tyranny, We have a war lord coalition! A true government gets its power from the constitution and the constitution gets its power from the will of the people! So a government is of the people by the people if it upholds the will of the people. You will know a despot dictator when what the President says is more important than and public outcry means nothing, at that junction that particular government does not deserve to live.
      Kirr has become the only figure in the country that is untouchable! He removes governors, Removes VP at will (which is his right except for the timing) threatens MPs etc He is the only person safe in Juba, It should be women and Children and the citizens! DOWN WITH THIS GOVERNMENT OF WARLORDS!
      Lastly, now we must not take the law into our hands else we become like Somalia. All we need is to respect the rule of law and ancestral boundaries! No imposition of any single tribe on others, let coexistence be the result of confidence building, and confidence building comes after people are assured that they will not be subjugated like the Arabs did and people will not loose their ancestral lands! This is the core which must not be and can not be ignored if we are to have peace in the country!

  3. Mankien town says:

    Hi. Gabriel thanks you a lot
    this Kirr Government is big disease, for our case in unity state we forget a thing concerning government intervention because since 2007 unity as lowland region a big flood destroy larger numbers of farmlands but no assistant was given by the government despite the oil money from said state of unity, the government always intervene in warrap, i can remember last year there was hunger that killed many returnees in warrap then central government intervened immediately. this year again many states called for help but only warrap problem is understandable.
    but the question is is the president a warrap president? then if so he supposed not to use the resource from other states to develop warrap, this is already a liked information by many analysis.

  4. Ohi,de says:

    What is really sad is the continuous abduction of women and children. We do not have government in south sudan, brother

  5. Lual Gach says:

    Gabriel Pager is self contradictory and confused lost boy. These lost boys whom most of them came from Bor community should blame themselves for being staunchest supporters of Salva Kiir’s dictatorial government. Gabriel Pager becomes angry and irritated when trouble reaches his doorsteps. He wrote article when Isaiah Abraham was assassinated and demanded resignation of president Kiir, but when Kiir dissolved the government this year including dismissal of his long serving vice president, Gabriel Pager came out swinging in support of president Kiir and promised that he would help him govern the country.

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