Press Release, FEB/28/2017;
The Equatorian community in the UK congratulates Lt. General Thomas Cirillo Swaka for his courageous decision to leave the evil and illegal government of President Kiir. The evidence that you provided supports the view all of us share that President Kiir is creating a Nazi-like state in South Sudan, with Dinka as a superior tribe over the rest of the tribes of South Sudan. The international community need to realise the gravity of this fact. He needs to be stopped before he and his cohort can achieve this evil ambition and cause further damage to the people of South Sudan.
We also congratulate all those who have resigned their respective offices in the Government of President Kiir, and the army (the SPLA) for realising that their presence in the system was contributing to perpetuating the demise of the people.
We urge all those still serving the present Government and helping it to advance the evil policies against the people of South Sudan to seriously examine their own conscience and take the necessary decisions.
The current Government of South Sudan headed by President Kiir is an illegitimate one. In addition, its actions are contrary to peace-building, which is characterised by mass human rights abuses, mass civilian displacements and refugees, starvation, and forced occupation on land belonging to other tribes.
In his address to South Sudan National Legislative Assembly on 21st February 2017, President Kiir asserted that his National Dialogue was “South Sudan owned and led process and so our supporters should stand behind the steering committee and secretariat”.
We urge the international community to withdraw their support from the Government of South Sudan. The government is pursuing a non-inclusive national dialogue, by design and intention that is unlikely to bring peace to the country but contrary, if allowed to progress in its current format, it is likely to prolong the suffering of the people of South Sudan. The reasons why Kiir’s National Dialogue is doomed and unlikely to bring total peace across South Sudanese are:
1. Mass resignations from the Government. This suggests there is no freedom of expression and dissatisfaction with the policies of the President, and no confidence in the present Government from across South Sudanese people.
2. There are reports of confiscation of passports of some Government officials belonging to non-Dinka tribes who are suspected to resign or leave the country in order to prevent them from doing so. The government is therefore a repressive regime.
3. Pursuit of war against opposition and freedom fighters. In his speech to the Parliament in Juba on 21st February 2017, President Kiir confirmed that: “The Government will pursue peace through the national dialogue and take extreme measure to neutralise anti-peace elements anywhere.” If he means peace, he should talk with his enemies.
4. Unlawful abductions and detentions of fellow South Sudanese that has extended to foreign countries. Examples include the abductions and detentions of Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Ezbon Idri in Kenya in which the Government of South Sudan is suspected.
In conclusion, we urge the international community to withdraw their support from the current Government in South Sudan, as it is no longer legitimate nor does it represent the people of South Sudan following the collapse of the peace agreement in July 2016. The international community must seek a way of establishing a legitimate government in South Sudan that respects and safeguards its people rather than seek to exterminate certain ethnic groups and opposition forces as a way of achieving peace.
For contact: Mr. Federico Awi Vuni; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Note to the editors and readers:
Equatoria was one of the 3 colonial provinces of Southern Sudan lying at the southern end of the present Republic of South Sudan, bordering 5 countries namely Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, DR Congo, and Central African Republic. It is roughly one third of the country geographically and in terms of population and hosts the national capital Juba.
It is inhabited by various ethnic groups many of who share similar cultures, values and history of peaceful co-existence and are collectively known as Equatorians. Until July 2016, when the latest outbreak of war occurred, Equatoria was a beacon of peace in South Sudan.