Is Corruption unbeatable in South Sudan?

BY: Dr. Lako Jada KWAJOK, NOV/19/2015, SSN;

Probably many of us would agree that a single word sometimes gives an impression about a person, an organisation or a government. For example, when you hear the name Al Capone, you think straight of a gangster who led organised crime in Chicago during the prohibition era despite the fact that it could be the name of a Catholic priest.

Likewise, the name Al Qaeda brings up the notion of terrorism without thinking it literally means “the base” in Arabic language.

In the same vein, there are few words that instantaneously spring into your mind whenever the government of South Sudan is mentioned. Among these words is corruption.

It has grown into a monster that is posing a real threat to the future of the country. It is widespread to the extent that it’s gradually being accepted as a fact of life.

Someone on this forum even tried to convince us that some degree of corruption is permissible!

Sadly this situation is gradually drifting to where corruption becomes an entitlement to anyone at a position of authority.

Paulino Wanawilla, the justice minister, said a couple of days ago, I quote: “I know in South Sudan corruption is not in one place, but it’s very sad when everybody is stealing.”

He went further to say, “I know there is corruption. I have evidences of people in this ministry [of justice] who are legal counselors and take bribes.”

The question is; if the minister has such evidences, why not indict and prosecute those corrupt officials? What is holding him back from performing his duties given the fact that he is the top member of the executive responsible for upholding the rule of law.

It is really unbecoming for someone in his position to say those words while he has the authority to get rid of those corrupt officials.

Instead of telling half the truth, the names of the corrupt officials should have been made public with accountability process put in place.

What the minister has done is similar to what president Kiir did 3 years ago when he wrote letters to 75 top officials who embezzled 4 billion US Dollars from government coffers.

President Kiir continues to refuse disclosing the names of the culprits. A wise man (Jeremy Bentham, the English philosopher) once said I quote, “Where there is no publicity [i.e full disclosure] there is no justice.”

Transparency is key to tackling the whole issue whether past or present because once the names are known, the culprits would have nowhere to hide.

Wanawilla’s statements are rather expressions of helplessness and resignation than a signal for imminent actions to curb the corruption.

The minister can be commended for admitting the existence of corruption under his watch. Some of his colleagues in the cabinet would be more defensive and deny what is known to everyone including the gatekeeper in the ministry.

However he has a tough choice to make between putting up with the situation with the risk of getting soiled on the way, or quitting his job if he cannot effect changes in his ministry.

South Sudan ranked number 171 out of 175 countries on the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) of the 2014 Transparency International (TI) report. Below South Sudan are Afghanistan, Sudan, North Korea and Somalia.

It means our country is among the most corrupt countries in the world. It is a pity that such a young country with the abundant resources it has, finds itself at the bottom of the world.

TI defines corruption as “The abuse of entrusted power for private gain which eventually hurts everyone who depends on the integrity of people in position of authority.”

Unfortunately complacency is prevalent in our society. It is so often that people say -this is government money, government vehicle or government property- the implication is that it does not matter if these items get mishandled because they belong to no particular individual.

The fact of the matter is that corruption hurts everyone including the corrupt officials though in different ways.

Hypothetically, the 4 billion dollars could have enabled the government to build for example highways connecting our major cities (Juba, Malakal and Wau) and numerous small towns and villages along the routes.

This would have led to stimulation of economic growth, facilitation of service delivery to the people and beefing up of security around the country.

It was never to be in South Sudan under the current regime. But the hardships emanating from lack of infrastructure are not confined to the rural people only, the corrupt officials would suffer in one way or the other.

One aspect of this is that many of them would not dare visiting their own villages. While they live happily in Juba, their villages are left in ruin and abandoned.

The question is how would they campaign in the coming elections?! Would it be by using surrogates while they stay away in Juba?!

As we are about to open a new chapter in our political process, namely the establishment of the transitional government of national unity (TGoNU ), a new approach should be the order of the day.

We cannot allow inaction against corruption to continue in the republic of South Sudan. It should be regarded as a matter of national security.

In countries like China, government officials who commit grand corruption are handed down the death penalty.

In my opinion a long jail sentence coupled with confiscation of assets would be the appropriate measure. There are things the TGoNU could do that would have an impact in fighting corruption.

A lean government is one of the things that could help limiting corruption both directly and indirectly.

In South Sudan when a minister is appointed, the whole of his extended family and sometimes his clan move in with him. I wonder whether it’s a phenomenon only limited to South sudan.

The result is, many people loitering under trees in Juba doing nothing yet being maintained indirectly by the government. Some are kept indefinitely in hotels in Juba at taxpayers’ expense.

It is a culture of dependence and laziness that some people shamelessly seem to enjoy.

When you add to these the cost of education and health care abroad for all members of the minister’s family, the figure would be quite staggering.

There is no way that the minister’s salary and allowances could cover the costs hence he resorts to corruption and embezzlement of public funds to meet his personal expenses.

It is important that the TGoNU avoids the policy of accommodation.

We have seen numerous appointments that lack merits and some with no specific job descriptions.

Even those who were sacked from their ministerial or other top government positions do not leave the government for good. They get accommodated in other posts, mostly as advisors to the president or ambassadors without portfolios.

The events have shown that some of these ambassadors were used as “attack dogs” against the opposition. Others were allegedly used to commit murder and to do the dirty work for the government.

The policy of accommodation results in no new blood or ideas entering the government. At the end of the day we end up “recycling” the old corrupt officials who have got nothing new to offer for the betterment of the country.

Adoption of real federalism and empowerment of governors, state legislatures and institutions is the way forward.

This would remove any hurdles in the way of democratic governance and would uphold the rule of law.

Politicians would think twice before indulging in corruption because they would be closely scrutinised by their constituencies and would lose elections if they go astray.

It is unusual for a politician to embezzle funds that are allocated for say building a school in his area. It amounts to political suicide, however the same politician, who is inherently corrupt, would not hesitate to embezzle funds allocated for the same purpose but in another area.

There are people who are keen to develop their areas. They are not interested in getting employed in the government but want the government to get out of the way.

It is the insecurity caused by the SPLA and its allies that leads to hindrance of economic growth.

With the federal system, sons and daughters of the area would be the ones entrusted with maintenance of security and delivery of services to their local population. It is the recipe for stability and prosperity.

The majority of our citizens do not know how much our government is spending on our military. The following figures are extracted from the global military sizes and expenditures report for 2014:

**South Sudan: Total military size: 140, 000 Military expenditure(% GDP): 8.3

**Sudan: Military size: 211,100 Mil. expenditure(% GDP): 2.7
**Uganda: 46,800 Mil. expenditure (%GDP) 1.2
**Kenya: Mil. size: 29,120 Mil. size: 1.3
**Ethiopia: Mil. size: 138,000 Mil. expenditure(%GDP): 0.7
**Democratic Republic of Congo: 145,400 Mil. expenditure(%GDP): 1.4
**Central African Republic: Mil. size: 3,150 Mil. expenditure(%GDP): 0.5
**South Africa: Mil. size: 89,535 Mil. expenditure(%GDP): 1.1
**USA: M. size:2,226,635 %GDP: 3.5; **Russia: Size:2,821,255 %GDP:4.5
**UK: M. size:234,310 %GDP: 2.1; **China: M. size:6,927,000 %GDP:2.1

I must admit, the report was a big surprise to me. Here is South Sudan, the youngest nation on Earth, which has just risen from a long and protracted war, spending as percentage of GDP on the military more than the combined expenditure of USA, UK and China.

It is also more than the combined expenditure of the USA and Russia.

We are spending more than the superpowers. What is going on?! Is it really worthwhile doing so?

Is there any justification for this unbelievable expenditure or that huge army?

Look at the size of the Ugandan army (UPDF), it is 1/3 the size of SPLA. Yet the government had to seek the help of the UPDF to save it from collapse!

A big number does not always equate with a stronger army, it is the training and the firepower that matter most. Contemporary history has shown it clearly in the Arab-Israeli wars.

The SPLA is a leading source of corruption in the country. Arms deals are done without transparency and a lot of funds go into the pockets of the generals.

Salaries and allowances are being paid to people who do not exist or indeed dead. All these practices contribute to depletion of our national wealth. T

he SPLA or the would-be-South Sudan Army needs to be down-sized to 1/3 of its current size and more attention should be directed to training.

Professionalism should be introduced with eradication of the culture of looting, rape and brutality against civilians.

The brutal attacks against civilians in Unity state, Upper Nile state and the recent helicopter gunship offensive against unarmed civilians in Wonduruba, Mundri and Maridi areas, have changed civilians’ perception of the SPLA.

Right now if civilians in those areas are asked what is the number one threat to their lives, the answer would not be diseases, famine or environmental catastrophes, it will be without hesitation the SPLA.

Finally, we should all recognise that corruption has reached the worst possible stage and is edging towards irreversibility.

There is nothing that cannot be fixed in this world provided it’s humanly possible. However the first step to fixing all our problems is to have a responsible government in Juba.

Dr Lako Jada Kwajok


  1. Beek says:

    Corruption is not only SPLARMY,but it is about SPLM system itself. United Sudan Army and Police were very very corrupt and SPLM are worst and decline. They use their positions to steal even they don’t care about agreement between relatives or friends.I am speechless and i can’t say anything.Looted,but God is not fool. People should take care of future instead of spoiling their positions because of money.

    • Alier Gai says:

      Regardless of your negative approach to this subject, I am positively believed in the power of moral reasoning and that we are having a big issue to address in our country. political and economic reasoning is lacking on the ground in south Sudan; whether it is Kiir or someone else from the opposition party who should take charge as a president, nothing is going to change the status of such practices. However, change would take a new trend of effect when there is a well equipped academic person with moral intuited values coming along with him and leading us out of the current mess. Our country is missing international dealers in the economic evolutions and in the area of political organizations as well. We need well-versed individuals who are not Machar and kiir in order to exceed their village’s economy and politics those folks returned to in time of developments. Machar missed big opportunities while he is the only one with dead world class education. He is a poor organizer without international understandings of the market and politics. He is seeking power but not knowing how to retain it. Tribal politics with lack of reasoning will cause him a court trial for the crimes he committed. Kiir, in other hand, is spoiled by the milkers and nothing further is likely to happen. He will also have some questions to answer at a court stand. South Sudan is lacking practical leaders who have immense strengths to handle these facing challenges with maturity. Hope we find well equiped one after the peace.

  2. Malouda says:

    Dr.Kwajok, this time you be come a nationalist not like your previous articles, yes, our government is not concern to its citizens, all its officials ministers and other top officials are working day and night for their own interests and the live example is that there is no any top government officials child study in our poor schools of villages or even in major towns here in South Sudan their children are getting education in abroad. The current conflict is caused by the SPLM not the SPLA as you mentioned, SPLA is a combined institution some of them are not with this dirty SPLM it is a matter of name which suppose to be change since our country got independence because we have nothing to do with the SPLA after we broke away from Sudan, but our leaders are too busy with their personal interests and that is way they failed not to reform the army. The only way to rid from corruption is to unite as south Sudanese citizens and elect someone who will address our concern.

  3. Peacemaker says:

    Dr Kwajok,

    Thanks for sharing this important piece of information. The hopes and aspirations of South Sudanese {corrupt dinkas plus the JCE and their allies excluded} are sheltered in the would-be TGNU that will be entrusted with oversight of the transitional period that precedes elections of 2018. If all goes well according to plan, the only way to ensure that the next elected Government comes from the choice of the people of South Sudan, is to deprive the SPLM Party turned Jieng Organization, from rigging those elections. This will happen by relinquishing that decayed organization to the corrupt elements and joining or founding new parties that would form alliance to bit the tribal and divisive SPLM. To achieve this smooth transition of power,The JMEC and the TGNU must ensure that the new integrated national army must comprise of educated youth who have at least obtained their primary education. These youngsters would then be given additional classes to enable them cope with requirements of training for them to become professional soldiers to replace the ethnic and tribal based guerrillas.

  4. Wurunyang says:

    So educative, pliz enlighten the masses

  5. BILL KUCH says:

    Dr. Lako Jada Kwajok,
    You know you have started right to the right direction, but on way, you merged to your usual way of rebellion. I could not blame you by the way you have discredited the SPLA soldiers because you never been one of them. So, you are right for the jeolousy!!! First of all, there would be no better changes coming with the formation of TGoNu because Riek Machar was one of those corrupted officials. And you are here supporting rebellion when you know very well that rebels are the sources of corruption as in facts rebellion has been the sources of some Nuers living. So, it is true that rebellious action are created for self promotion of gaining more ranks. And what do you call it if that would not be corruption? How could you be perfect when yourself is working for the rebels against others? Why is the killing in Mundri, Maridi, Unity, and Uppernile better than the rest to claim?

    • Gatdarwich says:

      Bill Kuch,

      Rebellion is not corruption unless if you are indirectly referring to the fact that Juba’s Regime is corrupt because it was formed, being by controlled, and managed by the former rebels-SPLA/SPLM.
      I completely understand your adamant dislike of Dr. Lako Jada’s noble attempt of discussing chronic corruption issues in Killer NyanKiir’s Ethnocracy government because thief never adores thief exposer/catcher.

    • Nyabeka Bongo says:

      Sometimes I wonder whether some of you read articles to get information or just read it with the mind bend to looking for a slide opportunity to deviate from reality? Dr. Lako just gave us an inside to what is happening here. I’ am wondering whether it is legitimate for someone who have been in SPLA to continue looting the country. remember SPLA without the masses of South Sudan, they are nothing, they are sons and daughters from our homes but on getting power they have started abusing it, even doing the very ill they claimed to have taken arms against. Or maybe The Late Muzee John Garang went down with all the wisdom and vision.

      SPLA is corrupt period. No mincing words, we want the ill to be corrected. If a small country can spend more than the superpower where is the wisdom here? and yet always soldiers meager salaries have not been paid on time. Where does the usual 40% budget threshold go for. We even don’t have the best weapon, I pity you awkward sympathizers

  6. False Millionaire says:

    I owe never to shorten to show appreciation to your great dispatch.
    But I am very surprised to see u suggesting that the,”TGNU”,wouldn’t be a corrupt one.
    Such assertion so unfortunately false deep into the sphere of an irresponsible judgment.
    Why drow such a conclusion when the compromise peace agreement is only a tool that unites the SPLM/A elites in the government as in the opposition to loot as they have allways done?

    Speaking of corruption,I consider that it’s those of us in private sectors who can speak about it in sincere details.
    I prefer to give u a few examples to substantiate my point.
    Immediately after the signing of the CPA and before Nimulé became an important custom entery point,it was KAYA which was the booming RSS economic gateway.Business and investment being our profession,me and a group of friends decided to invest their in many commercial activities.But before begining we considered it imperative to obtain large land plots.To do this we were advised by truthworthy friends to consult influencial local elders/leaders who demanded us to build a school in KAYA 2 in return.But starting the brick part of the school,the elders/leaders concocted a way to exploit us demanding exaggerated amount of money in ways well unrelated to the investment projects of which we had intention to bring them on board to make a win win formula for us as for KAYA’s community.We finished building the brick walls of the school in KAYA 2 and is standing there today as a witness if u may care to go to see.But the elders disappeared with the money they tricked from us and we are bearing to live without the land plots from KAYA up to this very day.
    We have experiences of the likewise scenario in Juba.In unsurveyed areas like jebbel dinka and some parts of Godelé,certain salatin propose plots for sale.If u bought one,u would be promised a guaratee in the official legal land registration book when the final land survey is approved.But oh God no.The same salatein will harass u with such false stories as the government is diciding to resettle the IDPs in the area of your plot.We are showing them another place.But no we can’t work properly becose we are broke.No transports money.Our childern are going hungrey and their mothers are sick and need medical treatment.So help us to be able to help u.
    The eriterians who have taken the pain to invest in hotelery are so burdened by Juba town council authorities who know how to strike blows in the hotelery business weak points.The questions of hygiene and sewage and noise pollution are exaggerated and played to appear in the light of causes that would oblige the authorites to close down the concerned hotels if their managers refuse to pay the inspecting officials under the table.

    Observe the examples I have given and I hope u would agree that the evil named corruption has infected almost every citizen of our masses.Even well educated masses from diaspora who returned home have joined the ranks of corrupt elites and I only know one elder named Dr Sampson Wassara from Zandé land who is still standing clean as a dean of the university of Bahr el Ghazal.
    I believe it would be out of sheer good luck if we ever happened to have RSS leaders whom God have created each one of them with two hearts:one corrupt heart and one morally filt heart and they would be the most fit citizens to take power to steal and also have the good will to want to drive RSS to the moon.
    But that ofcourse will be very long coming!!!

    • info@southsudannation says:

      False Millionaire,
      Whilst I cry with one eye for your fruitless efforts and vulnerability in those failed Kaya endeavors, I sternly look at you with the other eye and wonder what kinds of investments were you people attempting to embark on.
      Undoubtedly, the Kaya chiefs-cum-elders apparently became rightfully suspicious of your ambitious plans to obtain those ‘large plots of land’ which doesn’t seem to correlate with your supposed and unnamed business or businesses. Why did you need large pieces of land for?
      The irony here is that the people you prayed for with two hearts, the corrupt and the moral, actually interacted with you without you knowing or realizing, in Kaya as well as in Gudele and in Mere lo Tor (so-called jebel Dinka).
      The tragedy is that South Sudan is an open country, bared completely naked, thanks to kiir and the SPLM/A, where for just a few dollars, one can buy any official, from Kiir himself, to the lowest of the scum in the Juba Town Council.
      I really cry for our nation and the generation still to come, including the younger generation that’s being so badly spoiled by their theiving fathers and mothers in the Kiir junta.
      May the good Lord give us more of the likes of my contemporaneous colleague, the sanitized Samson Wasaras as a redemption.

    • False Millionaire,

      Too bad you got outwitted by some rural people. However the locals are not fools, they know there are fake investors who are actually thieves and looters desperate to invest embezzled money by acquiring land and other assets. It is a way to legitimise the stolen money. It is a sort of money laundering within the borders. As the locals think they are dealing with thieves and looters, they may not feel obliged to honour any deals. Unfortunately in this sort of environment, genuine investors could get hurt.

      What drew my attention to your comment is what you called as ” jebbel dinka “. When was Mere Lo Tor name changed ? Who did it ? And why ?
      When the colonialists came to Africa, they re-named mountains, lakes and rivers to satisfy their egos and also for their convenience. For example Lake Victoria is known as Nam Lolwe in Luo, Nalubaale in Luganda and Nyanza in Kinyarwanda. John Hanning Speke, the British explorer named it after Queen Victoria claiming its discovery. But how can someone discover something which is already known by people and has names ?! The people who came to settle around Mere Lo Tor are the IDP’s. The locals welcomed them as fellow countrymen who endured hardships in their areas. Instead of being grateful for the hospitality, they caused insecurity and problems for the hosts.
      The question is why would they name a mountain that already has a name ? Does it mean they were the first to discover Mere Lo Tor despite the fact that the Bari people were living there since time immemorial ? It is even ridiculous that people who do not have mountains in their land, without shame try to name a mountain in other people’s land ! It is arrogance without limits. Are our presumed brothers and sisters following the footsteps of the colonialists ?

      False Millionaire, I know you are not the one who started this whole thing, but you have been accusing people on this forum, me included, of tribalism. Thus one would have expected you to call that mountain with its correct name and not to participate in a disgraceful attempt to impose a made-up name. This has shown that beneath the sugar-coated words that you tend to use, is a tribalist masquerading as a liberal-minded person. Around the world we have seen the original name Mumbai restored to Bombay in India after centuries and Harare restored to Salisbury in Zimbabwe. The attempt of name change is doomed to failure as the locals will never accept it. Mere Lo Tor will remain forever Mere Lo Tor which means in Bari Language The Red Mountain.

    • Bol says:

      F M,
      Sorry to read this story. It reveals many points, among them: The self-proclaimed moralists are in the thick of it, be that privately as shown by your story or publicly as proven by their behaviour in the government office. Secondly, fighting corruption means zero tolerance to all sorts of it….. Why are some here working so hard to put the blame on you {the victim) if they are really are sincere in fighting it? ……..The gist of the matter is that our messiahs are not less evil as they try to deceive others, but they only don’t have access!

  7. Gatdarwich says:

    Corruption will not and shall not be eradicated under the demonocracy and ethnocracy government of The Incompetent, power-hungry-greedy, and traitorous, Killer NyanKiir. South Sudan’s national resources are being controlled and managed by natural born thieves—treacherous and insatiafiable greedy Jiengs! It’s absolutely impossible for a thief to hold another thief accountable for the crime of theft period. The only viable solution for the eradication of corruptions in South Sudan is to totally dissolve, cremate, and throw in a dumpster the current government, and install new one-national and people oriented government period

  8. Gatdarwich says:

    Killer NyanKiir didn’t and shall never punished the 75 alleged theives of $4 billion. Minister Paulino, will not and shall never hold accountable the thieves in his ministry, simply because both Killer NyanKiir and Paulino, are theives, and the ultimate beneficiaries of their subordinates’ corruption practices. Indisputable fact.
    What a nation !

  9. martin.L says:

    Evil corruption! It is not a secret, Kirr and his cohort are not interested in curbing it. To them, corruption is a good thing!

  10. Mafai says:

    We shall make the thieves kiss their ass one day. For most politicians in the government now knows that they are not coming back come next election.

  11. Akwot says:

    Dr: Lako ,
    thanks for your wisely pieces that you had contribute to solve the chronic disease eroded South Sudan since 2005.
    what do you expect if the president he is the most corrupt senior.
    what do you expect if the president he doesn’t differentiate between the party as an organization and his house affairs.
    what do you expect if the president he was operations commander of all carnage that happened in Juba, bor, Malakal and Bentiue targeting house to house and door to door specific ethnic groups.
    what do you expect if the president is surrounded by vampires, hooligans, cannibals and unscrupulous ministers and military leaders who accidentally found themselves in the position they never dreamt, and presided by the most idiotic and moronic president in the world.

  12. alex says:

    Hi all
    I am not supporting corruption neither denying there isn’t corruption in S.Sudan but to rank our country to be corrupt than Nigeria, Custrico, Kenya, Uganda, Congo, Brazil, Nyammer, Pakistan, Russia, Uzbekistan, Syria, Iraq , tekizastan, Bangaledish and
    Yemen is international conspiracy of Transparency International. So for a doctor to put such information on a net domain without questioning its creditability is a shame to S.Sudan intellectuals. The question now is, can we really have intellectuals who can be a think tank?
    Secondly, for a doctor to lair that SPLA is killing un armed civilians in Nimule, wunduruba, Maridi, Mundiri and in Unity State indicate a doctor without a sense. Who are the people who claim to have captured Pageri, Mundiri in Sudan tribune? Its time we need to talk the reality of the war not war politics and propaganda. Thirdly, i am even surprised of S . Sudanese talking of looting of resources. Which resources if we are not even able to develop our agriculture. The only resource that provides revenue is the oil and the forest industry. There are people who have stolen massively but not all civil workers are corrupt. Fourthly, without proper evidence to prove our case even if the government go to a court it will not win. We have seen how the former Splm secretary general Mr Amam won the cases when he was accused of embezzlement. The only people who could help us to bring those individuals who have stolen are the countries where all these stolen money are kept but they are also part of games. How can you accept a stolen money to be kept in your country if you are not a thief.

  13. onyi says:

    The write govt has to bein in form a govt that must fighting it that is co.eruptions so diat citizens loosen corruption appetites

  14. jok lual says:

    let them because they are tiry in war before

  15. Francis Mangok Angeir says:

    Dr. Lako,

    Thank for your article regarding the issues that facing our country, but I do not agree with you one civilians vs soldiers. Civilians have to know themselves they are civilians without guns in their hand otherwise I cannot blames the soldiers who carry attack on them. Civilians are targeting the soldiers they need to surrenders their guns and stay as civilians in the country there is no country with two armies.

    Corruption in South Sudan is the biggest issues and I truly agree with you. Always, the bad leadership has held the country back. Our leaders have to put their country first than their interested, but I do not want to generalizes my statement there are many leaders are trying to make the change.

  16. False Millionaire says:

    Dr Kwajok,
    I thank u for enlightening me about the true name of the mountain in question.
    I am not a conquerer in any way to name other people’s lands with names fitting my wishes.To this context,be assured that I will retain the lesson.
    But I hope it won’t bother u to know that I was surprised to hear the name jebel dinka for the first time.My sense of curiousity compelled me to ask friends to explain to me how the name came about.The answer was that there were tragic KOKORA circumstances of which equatorians captured dinka citizens,took them to the place at night and murdered them there.The same scenario of the events was repeated by the sudanese government security forces during the civil war under chairman John de Mabior.It’s said that it were equatorian bari citizens who gave the name to indicate it as a place where dinka citizens were murdered.from there on,non bari speakers found it easy to pronounce the place as jebel dinka and I was brought on board to call it as such becouse I didn’t know it’s real name.

    To get back to the failed business investment projects in KAYA,the editor has responded to my dispatch in a way that doesn’t really show any sense of professionalism from his part giving his experiences of the long life behind him and the weight of his great level of education that forces many people me included to see him as a constructive big brother to count on if given an opportunity to reflect on such issues as the projects in my story.But it’s needless to dwell so much at this point.

    The truth is,at the begining of 2006,the CPA had just been signed.The SPLM/A was half way to town from the jungle.There was not yet any oil money available to be stollen.It was workers in the private sectors like us who were economically well off.I hope u would believe me if I tell u that I was among citizens who used to help certain needy fellow countrymen in the SPLM/A.
    Being business enterpreneurs and given a window of opportunity,it was more than reasonable to want to invest in our country.In those days,it were stragers holding businesses in KAYA from fuel station,hotelery and auto spare parts just to mention a few.If u are a kwa kwa from KAYA,it would be better to inform yourself what have the foreigners whom were given land plots for businesses done for your home town in return.
    Please bear to take me seriously.Me and my friends are very happy to have built a school for u in KAYA 2 with money we made by sweat.Stop being caried away by the uncealed sense of jealousy in u.We aren’t thieves or dishonest masses who had intention to go to commit acts of sorcery in your homeland.
    Time will prove to u that we aren’t less than angels.U may be very lucky in your long life to ever see people begining to show u practical acts of good will before u could proof to them why they should do so.
    Now go complet the school.It’s only the roof that is left.
    Good luck!!!

    • info@southsudannation says:

      False Millionaire,
      You’ve totally misunderstood my input on your unfortunate financial debacle in Kaya but facts can’t be disputed.
      When SPLM/A captured and liberated those places, particularly the entry points like Kaya, Nimule and Nadipal, it suddenly appeared that those same SPLM/A ‘liberators’ forcefully re-possessed most of the business properties because most of them had hitherto been owned and built by Jellaba/Arab/Northerners.
      Suddenly, money or capital, suddenly appeared from nowhere and the same SPLM/A commanders and intelligence officers and powerfully-connected SPLM/A members repossessed these businesses and became active businessmen. These liberators-turned-businessmen/women engaged either solely or in collaboration with Ugandans, Kenyans, Somalis and even the same jellaba enemies, in most lucrative black and white-markets, importing fuel, food, even military necessities into these liberated places.
      Of course, everybody benefited, the SPLM/A and those connected business people.
      As a consequence, the greed and appetite for land obsession became a big factor. I was in Nairobi in 90’s and at that time already small millionaires were evolving in the businesses with the SPLM/A and Aid agencies, dealing mostly with and within the liberated areas.
      In the same period, marginalized and deprived communities, especially the Equatorian so-called liberated areas became a new “Eldorado” for those top generals and friends of Dr. Garang, Kiir and top generals.
      This was the time second-in-command, General Salva kiir had grabbed land and houses up to now in Yei to resettle his numerous wives and family.
      Lucrative contracts were then corruptly being given by SPLM/A to these friends, supporters and families to transport medicines, food and other things to these liberated areas.
      Unfortunately, that was the genesis of the massive corruption that would be manifested in Juba in 2005 started. The first GOSS finance minister was chief of SPLM/A office in Nairobi then and the greed to loot was planted.
      As many of those Equatorians in these liberated areas just silently watched, these newly minted SPLM/A-connected millionaires relentlessly and sometimes intimidatingly grabbed lands and other properties.
      Of course, there was also money from the Diaspora involved.
      In conclusion, fearing the so-called ‘gold rush,’ these Equatorian border communities not surprisingly developed the same appetite of greed, dishonesty and interest-maximization, that included cheating. That is what might have happened to you, I may conjecture here, False Millionaire.
      I just wanted to give some justification for your misfortune. Seriously, I never meant to laugh at your misfortune but just wanted to shed some small light why the Lugbara or whoever in Kaya cheated you in spite of your seemingly sincere benevolence of building that school structure for them.
      Advisedly, albeit belatedly, you can still complete the school and rent it to a Ugandan to run.

    • False Millionaire,

      Your explanation is unbelievable. You do realise that Equatoria and the rest of South Sudan was under the supreme rule of Khartoum despite Kokora. All security organs was under the Mundukuru government hence it’s a big lie that the Equatorians were capturing and killing the Dinka people. There was a limited fight between members of the Mundari tribe and some Dinka people in Juba, the other Equatorians did not participate in it. Few lives were lost on both sides but it was a tribal feud unrelated to Kokora. It was not something that you are unfamiliar with because tribal feuds are hitherto commonplace in your area.

      In 1992 the Bashir’s government rounded up the Equatorian intellectuals, civil servants, military officers, police officers, prisons and wildlife officers. All were executed without trials. It included few Dinka officers from the Sudan Armed Forces. Most notable was the execution of late Andrew Tombe. His case gained international publicity because he was a worker with USAID. Tombe was accused of communicating with the SPLA and passing over intelligence information. The rest of the Equatorians were accused of plotting an uprising and working as a fifth column for the SPLA within Juba city. In particular the Bari people were targetted and they carried the brunt of government wrath. El Zubair Mohamed Saleh, Bashir’s deputy at that time declared that the problem in Juba was orchestrated by the Bari tribe and they have dealt with it meaning the execution of the victims.

      To believe your story, one will have to believe that the Mundukuru executioners divided the victims into two groups with Equatorians taken to undisclosed place and executed there while the Dinka victims were taken to Mere Lo Tor to meet their fate. But why would they do that if the whole thing could be done in one place ?!

      On the other hand if the Mundukuru executioners killed all the victims and buried them in one place then a question would arise, Why would the Bari people, discard their name and call Mere Lo Tor ” jebbel dinka ” with the full knowledge that their sons were buried underneath the mountain ?! The lies are heaping up but the truth remains unshakable. There was no such thing as ” jebbel dinka ” before the arrival of the IDP’s.

      As for the school, the locals seemed to have concluded that they don’t need it. Therefore I would advise you to go and build schools in your area. From the look of things, your people are in desperate need for schools than those locals.

  17. David Lokosang says:

    Dr Lako I think those who live on corruption are not shame to defend it because it is there in their genes.
    They are lazy to the extend that their women are the one cultivating the little they have and building the huts they sleep in. Some of them since were born, live on humanitarian aids. If one becomes a minister or high ranking government officials, the whole village move to his house eating free of charge get health services free of charge, every thing is free at the expenses of government money which is supposed to be for development. To the Muslims, killing of innocent people and non Muslims is halal and to some of our brothers, corruption is halal. If you are a minister and you don’t accommodate people in your home regardless how many are they and you don’t feed them, you become a bad guy.
    How do we tackle corruption if the president himself is corrupt. He issued many zero tolerance and no body has been charged with corruption instead those corrupt officials are rewarded with better positions to loot more.
    Mayen Wol who served as chief administrator and Yel Luol who served as executive secretary in the office of the president were dismissed in 2013 when millions of dollars was stolen at the president office, what happen they were reinstated back to their position by the president. Read Sudan tribune 22/11/2015.
    Recently a security officer in the office of the president by name Agou has been arrested on allegations that he and the chief administrator, executive director and an accountant have forged several documents bearing the president ‘s signature to secure financial approval from the Central Bank. The money was said to be for security project. Also you can read on Sudan tribune dated 22/11/2015. To my surprised, no charges were laid against them and the lawyer of the security officer demand for his release. According to a source from the president office, there is a ground work to convince the president so that the corrupt officials can be release because the case is very complex. It may involve big fish. If not the case is known to the authority of a neighbouring country, those officials would not have been arrested in the first place. According to my own source, the money was deposited to one of Kenya Commercial Bank and when the Kenya authority found out, president Kenyata sent a letter with a special envoy to president Kiir to know what is going on in his back yard.
    To tackle corruption, needs some one with a vision of nation building who can set a system of accountability and monitor its implementation. Imagine President Kiir in his resent state address and I quote ” There are people under big umbrella in Juba selling hard currency. These people are the one sacking our nation”. The president without sham, pretended as he does not know where the money come from and who are those people selling the money.
    To me it is a disgrace to the people of South Sudan. Every body knows the Chairman of Reserve Bank is a native from president’s area, also the minister of finance is from Baher El Ghazal and those who are selling the hard currency are his relatives therefore he should not pretend. What he said is only meant for public consumption.
    So instead of defending corruption, let us all agree that is a bad practices that should be dis courage rather than condoning it.

    • Dear Lokosang,

      What you have posted shows how some people regard public funds as their own when they are given a position of authority. This is why real federalism needs to be implemented. If the people of some states want to continue with the current corrupt system, well, let them go ahead. Others would not like to be bogged down by people who are lazy and do not want to progress.

  18. False Millionaire says:

    It’s a great pleasure to see an elder like u standing tall to make sincere clarifications as u have just done it.
    To debate about corruption is an ecellent subject.But due to the circumstances of which bad government has set our masses against each other,the majority of us are too tempted to put any one who talks about economic and investment as having something in common with the corrupt elites,the true actors who are responsible for the failure of RSS.
    Your assertion of,”money from diaspora”,is the key phrase of distinction.Oil and water do not mix however an earthly witch doctor may dare to try them.So let those in the SPLM/A and the citizens who have lost their moral values shoulder the blame for corrupt behaviours and be able to bear up what ever consequences that may befall them at the end.

    There is nothing that hasn’t come to pass on earth.God sent the floods to punish man kind but Noah survived to repuplate the earth.Slavery came and devastated Africa but now every one walks free under the sun.The two world wars inflicted heavy human loses and destruction in europe and Asia but those places are more populated today than they ever were before under best conditions of prosperity.
    In a million corrupt human beings,one can never find a justification to say that there isn’t one among them who is moral-hearted.
    Things have gone too wrong in RSS.But those in diaspora who toil hard day and night to raise money centime by centime and still have the courage to choose to take it home for good causes are innocent.
    What’s really your feeling if I tell you that Manut Bol died poor after making so much money in the NBA?
    Helping countrymen in the SPLM/A ranks among other causes were the very reasons that brought him down.
    But does that make of him a corrupt person?
    In the view of such context in the debate about corruption,in good times as in bad times,it’s best to stick to the camp of those in diaspora as symbolized by late Manut Bol.
    Me and my friends have the habit of being viwed as big brothers to those who are our juniors and as young brothers to those who are our seniors like Dr Samson Wassara.We are at our best conscience within such sphere of existence.
    KAYA is part of RSS and we are RSS citizens.It’s a good charity to have built a school there.We will be honored if it could serve the needs of the community there one day.So it’s needless to take your advise to complete it and hand it over to a ugandan to run it as a private enterprise to compensate for what we have lost to the dishonest elders’ corrupt conducts.

    Thank u for giving me attention sir!!!

  19. False Millionaire says:

    Dr Kwajok,
    Let’s keep to the level of grown up adults.
    When was the last time u went to KAYA?
    At the time we were planning the failed projects,there was only a pastor of shilluk ethnic group who was running a school which provided good quality education in KAYA and was over crowded and overwhelmed as a result.
    But giving the events of the circumstances of insecurity in RSS,I doubt if the school is still functioning today.
    U will end up inviting many people to think of u as a madman to make such an irresponsible assertion as,”the locals concluded that they don’t need the school”.
    Really,if u couldn’t stick to debates with conviction,it’s wise never to write articles.

    • False Millionaire,

      Remember the debate was about ” jebbel dinka ” and your big lie that the Bari people were the ones who coined the name. You only invited me to comment on the school when you said sarcastically ” Now go complete the school. It’s only the roof that is left.” You should be honest in quoting people’s words and not omit part of a sentence. What I said is ” As for the school, the locals seemed to have concluded that they don’t need it.” Not the way you put it ” the locals concluded that they don’t need the school.” There is some difference in the meaning. I have shown to the forum the fallacy of your claims and was expecting a reasonable response. But instead you avoided the main issue and chose to talk about an unfinished school which is unrelated to the subject of debate. Now who is the one not sticking to the debate? Clearly you have been cornered by the truth and left with nothing to save face except talking about your uncompleted school.

  20. False Millionaire says:

    Dr Kwajok,
    I shouldn’t blame u.
    U are a disconnected elder who seem to have abandoned south sudan since the days of the civil war and sought a refuge in an earthly safe heaven named UK
    U can refute the theory of dinka citizens murdered in the place forcing the locals to name it jebel dinka becouse u are already up to the neck in a tribal struggle against dinka masses in a desperate effort to justify the rampage.
    But human life is history and history is characterized and shaped by the events that make it.
    How so long ago have the IDP’s settled in the place in question and what is very special about it to deserve the name in question that other places around Juba in which IDP’s have allso settled don’t have?

    Please be wise not to burn your candles in the desert for no reason becouse if,”jebel dinka”,isn’t the official name,then the correct name will prevail to stay at the end.
    As such,under normal human rational circumstances,the debate is settled.
    But it’s up to u to turn around and come up with another cause of a fit as usual.

  21. jok lual says:

    Dr lako that name Jebbel is not a Baria language it is arabic so Dinka named is won placec call Jebbel Dinka we have right to do that

  22. survior says:

    while every single South Sudanese is against corruption. the sad truth is; to most “corruption” is seen as something that is done by the others. As such, we are willing to accept or turn a blind eye to the fact that our uncle in the government is as corrupt as the rest of them. Thus, even if the corruption commission had the mandate to try and arrest corrupt government officials. We the ordinary citizens would be the first scream foul when our dear uncle is implicated for corruption. Screaming Wallai they are against us, Mr. X was our only guys in the government. it is unacceptable that they are targeting our guys. Now faced with an angry mob threatening rebellion; the authorities would be left with no choice but to exonerate the crook. Thus, when the crook comes back, he now acts with more impunity and the government authorities would look the other ways. prompting others to follow suite.
    The point is, while the government has terribly failed us, with regards to corruption. we as ordinary citizens also need to examine ourselves for the role we play. without realizing it, we are aiding and abating corruption.
    For we do not realize the kind of power we hold, or the simple fact that we have plenty of able leaders among us. our dear uncles aren’t the only choices we have. we can out perform them. in the matters of governance and the deliverance of services. we just need to wake up from this deep slumber! Accountability starts with us holding our dear uncles in check, by not coming to their rescue when they embezzle public funds!

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