Predicting South Sudan Future under Taban Deng and Pres. Kiir and problems to come


Perhaps, it may be important to begin this article with the quote from Margaret Thatcher, the former British Prime Minister and stateswoman who was once stated that, “power does not corrupt men, fools, however, if they get into a position of power, corrupt power.”

This is exactly what is going in South Sudan, which is the subject of this article.

I cannot say that those who are in power in South Sudan are fools but if they corrupt power as they are doing now then they fit to be described as such.

This article therefore attempts to predict what will happen in some time to come in South Sudan if South Sudan continues to be run by both Taban Deng and President Kiir Mayardit.

In particular, the way Taban Deng is dealing with and relating to the president of South Sudan leaves much to be desired. Taban’s dealing with the President now appears that he has ulterior motive and there is likelihood that it will be too late before South Sudanese discover that Taban has already taken power.

Taban is going to take power in three or so years to come because he is now busy to apply the principles found in the Book entitled 48 laws of power.

In that Book, Robert Greene and Joost Elffer discuss the principles one must follow if he or she is to get into power. Some of those principles are—
….first, Never outshine the master;
….second, always make those above you comfortably superior;
….third, when you show yourself to the world and display your talents, you naturally stir all kinds of resentment, envy…
….Fourth, never put too much trust in friends,
….fifth, learn how to use enemies;
….sixth, conceal your intentions;
….seventh, always say less than necessary; eighth, make other people come to you—use bait if necessary;
….ninth, win through your actions, never through argument;
….tenth, learn to keep people dependent on you;
….eleventh, use selective honesty and generosity to disarm your victim; etc”.

The above principles are the ones Taban Deng is using in South sudan in an attempt to get power. Taban is trying to make President Kiir as much comfortable superior as possible. This implies in practice Taban has to be snobbish, sheepish and submissive in serving the president.

In other words, Taban does not want to question anything or say anything that is contrary to his boss, the president’s views as he always pampers him with all kinds of words such as “my president”.

This is despite the fact that though Taban may know that things are not alright in South Sudan, he does not want to question anything or say anything that the president may not like because his mission is not to serve South Sudanese but to be closer to the president as much as possible with the hope that he will get power with time, which is shown by steps he took so far to come closer to power.

The first step for Taban to power was (as majority of South Sudanese know), was overthrowing Dr. Machar through crookec means in 2016 hence throwing the country into further turmoil.

Therefore Dr. Riek was the first big causality of Taban’s quest for power even though many fundamentalists in the SPLM have not yet understood and what the target of Taban Deng Gai is.

The ultimate target of Taban is to become the president of South Sudan whether by fair or crooked means. Hence, Taban is using all means available within his reach to get to power.

In fact, I have described SPLM supporters above as fundamentalists because they do not accommodate opposing views contrary to what they believe in and any person who holds contrary views is branded as a rebel. This provides cultural medium to the maneuvering techniques of Taban to power since he is an appropriate candidate for SPLM party that likes praises and flatters.

The above observation in relation to Taban does not take a person much time to make as any person who might have been keenly observing South Sudanese unfolding problems since 2013 to date would have discovered that Taban is at the centre of the entire crisis that befell the country.

For instance, the study of the root causes of the present war pins Taban down as he is a major player in the outbreak of the war.

The actions of Taban has shown that he has been planning how to get to power and in order to do that he has to find a way of passing his superiors such as Dr. Riek Machar. Thus, the first plan for him was how to get resources. He put that plan into action by misappropriating resources that were intended to reconstruct the Unity State after the civil war between South and North of Sudan.

Taban corrupted oil money besides two percentages (2%) (That was intended to build area where oil is drilled from) during his governorship and it is that money he used later in 2013 to fund the present war before he joined the government in 2016.

As the events have disclosed in the process, the intention of Taban of financing the war using the money he corrupted was not to fight for Dr. Riek but to instigate the war that would lead to Riek leaving the SPLM party to make a room for him as he considered Dr. Riek as an obstacle to him getting power.

This plan succeeded in 2016. This fulfils common view he holds that one of the people who deny him power is Riek, and if Riek were to get out of the way, he would become the president of South Sudan.

After having done away with Dr. Riek, Taban has been confirmed by the President of South Sudan as first Vice President while Dr. Riek Machar is wasting away under house arrest in South Africa. However, the beneficiary of Dr. Riek Machar and South Sudanese suffering is South African Government of which unconfirmed report points out that it is now receiving $ 450,000 monthly as a fee for keeping Dr. Riek under house arrest.

In fact, with Dr. Riek out of political scene and Taban at the centre of power, his next move is to consolidate power and if possible to become the president of South Sudan sooner or later. There is a real fear that Taban is likely to get power in South Sudan as long as Kiir is still the President of South Sudan for the following reasons—

First of all, Taban uses money and because of that he corrupts the system to get as much money as he can in order to use the money later to buy people to support him. For instance, since he was appointed a governor until 2013, the two percent (2%) of oil money that was supposed to be used for development in Unity State was never used for the development as it was intended.

It was that money Taban used to finance the war since 2013 to 2015. Though he financed the war his intention was not to maintain the war in order to ensure he put Dr. Riek presidency but just to put Dr. Riek into deeper problems so that he has access to power easily which happened in 2016.

It is therefore hard to defeat a person like Taban in a country like South Sudan where poverty is high. The use of money and the weakness of the President make it likely that Taban will take power which will take the people of South Sudan by surprise.

Secondly, Taban has completely weakened the SPLM party as he is the real man behind the decision of the president of South Sudan to sack the members of the party and SPLA officers. Taban being a dealer, he has created a very strong network within the government as some of the ministers and advisors to the president are his friends.

These ministers and advisors are the ones who hold fate of all civil servants and army in South Sudan and whatever they have said is the law. Hence, whether the president likes it or not, whoever they have recommended to be removed or to be appointed can be removed or appointed as they wish.

It is in relation to the above we see General Malong and his associates being removed from power as a way of weakening Malong and by implication the president. This is because the approach of Taban in getting power is two-pronged: the first step is to weaken the government by smuggling in his right hand people who serve his interest.

The ultimate goal of Taban is to weaken the SPLM party that has been making it difficult for him to get power and instead to create the SPLM version that will work in his favour.

The plan of Taban is to isolate the president and other strong members of the SPLM so that he later does away with the president with ease. In actual sense, Taban is creating a SPLM party of dealers that will control the system not the country and then later use the system funded with the oil money to silence all the critics. At that point there will be no Dinka nor Nuer to support their leaders as it is the case now.

However, it is not that he will create a nation but he will create a super tribal body composed of different dealers from different tribes who will deal with their tribes either through fair or crook means hence weaken the spirit of tribalism as well as the spirit of nationalism.

Though this analysis (how Taban may get power) may be correct, the president of South Sudan and his supporters will never understand it or agree with it because they don’t accommodate different opposing views as they don’t like opposition or someone who tells them the truth; hence, they will rather be with Taban Deng who flatters them than someone who tells the truth.

Thirdly, as a strategy of remaining the First Vice President, Taban will never accept peace with Riek Machar or rebels as long as their coming back to Juba affects his position. Since he has all money it takes the whole South Sudan to have it, Taban will use as much money as possible to ensure that peace does not come.

It is because of the same reason the kidnapping of the members of the opposition is common in Kenya contrary to the international law. He might have bribed some elements in the Kenyan Government to help him achieve his unbridled desire for power by rooting the rebels out from Kenya.

Fourthly, Taban will never accept peace to prevail among civilians within South Sudan since some sort of peace will always be a threat to his position as citizens will be able to speak one voice and question his ability to be the First Vice President.

This is why he has been accused of leaving his national position and gets involved in the issues of tribal land back home between his tribe and Ruweng people.

And at the same time he and his friends inside the state house will always tell the president that things are going on well on the ground in different part of the country thus the president stays in J1 while lives of the citizens keep on deteriorating all the times due to rampant insecurity.

This strategy is to keep the president out of the reality and to keep citizens engaged in tribal war to ensure that he gets power with ease.

Fifthly, one of the reasons Taban is pushing for the reunification of the SPLM party is to ensure that he is confirmed in the position of the first Vice President. With the affirmation in that position, he will at any time become the next leader after the president or in case anything happens to the President he automatically take over.

Fortunately, FDs have understood this ploy and therefore not ready to risk, which explains the collapse of reunification deals many times.

Sixthly and finally, Taban Deng Gai is likely to take over power unless there is external intervention to oust him. This is because the president will not be able to control him given the fact that President Kiir does not analyze the movement of a person as long as that person does not show opposition to him.

After taking over power, the following are the problems as discussed below—
…..First of all, as soon as Taban takes over the power he will dismantle the SPLM part completely and move towards Khartoum by introducing the Arab style of governance. This is the system of governance where security apparatus protects the presidency not citizens, where the president is above the laws of the country while he or she is being protected by strong personal security sweet coated with national security title, consequently, the country will be highly insecure as citizens will be acting as informant on each other. All these will be intended by Taban to build power base for himself and his cohorts.

…..Secondly, Taban will run South Sudan like a king as he does not respect the law. His negative attitude towards the law was seen when Counsel Wani successfully challenged the decree of the president appointing ministers to East African Community Parliament.

At that time reacting to the news that the East African Court of Justice had nullified the Presidential decree, he was quoted to have said that the action of Wani was an embarrassment to the country and to the president because to him the action of the president is not supposed to be challenged in law.

This shows that Taban does not respect the law and if he becomes the president of South Sudan, the people will have to forget about the rule of law, which by implication means that corruption and bad governance in general will flourish under Taban Deng Gai.

…..Thirdly, disunity and unknown gunmen will be common in South Sudan. All these will result into South Sudanese rising against the President Taban and he will die like Gadafi or if not removed he will finally die in power leaving South Sudan in more crisis than now.

In summary, the above discussed predictions and problems will happen in South Sudan unless the citizens of South Sudan realize earlier that Taban is not a reformist but dealer that will use the state for his own benefits to their detriment and the only way to save South Sudan is not to allow him become president of South Sudan. END

The Author is a lawyer by profession; he graduated with honors in law from Makerere University, School of Law. He participated in various workshops and training in community law and community mobilization in awareness of their constitutional rights in Uganda.

He is the member of Public Interest Law Clinic (PILAC) and NETPIL (Network of Public Interest Lawyers) at Makerere University; he is currently doing research with NETPIL on private prosecution; he is trained in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR); he participated in writing Street Law Handbook on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in Uganda.

He can be reached through or +256784806333.


  1. Dear: The Author Mr.Joul Daniel Nhomngek

    The so called Vice President,Mr.Taban Deng Gai,he,himself,he is not a legitimate Vice President of the government of South Sudan Republic.He is illegitimate Vice President.He has no political constitutional power at all! Both Vice Presidents,him and James Wani Igga,they have been on handpicked up by His Excellency President Salva Kirr to serving in HIS BEST INTERESTS because after all,they are not a he goats because they are just Sheep altogether! because they are easy to herding on them!They are there in power simply because President Salva Kirr,is still power!

    If Kirr,is gone,they will be gone too with him back to private life as ordinary citizens of the South Sudan Republic! None of them of them will never become a Political Constitutional President.Trust me! Do not worry for a s o called Vice President Taban Deng Gai! He will never and ever to become a ruler of the South Sudan Republic government.His profile is full of scandals! His records is not looking fine at all! Thanks! Happy New Year 2018!

    Sincere Uniting The Nation!



  2. Eastern says:

    Dear Daniel,

    What a brilliant piece! The Kiir-Taban alliance will forever keep South Sudan in bubbles. Those born today in refugee camps should get prepared to come of age and marry out there. Another group not happy with the alliance attacked a suburb of Juba last night. With the alliance in place, expect more rebellions, defections and counter defections ad nauseam.

  3. Dear:Eastern

    For you,that another group that not happy with the alliance attacked suburb of Juba last night because the group is getting nervese and shocking because the group would like people in the South to continue to suffer in the hands of President Salva Kirr Administration and his vice presidents Vice President Taban Deng Gai,and Vice President Mr.James Wani Igga because they would thought the current crisis,would never come closer to the capital in Juba in the bush in the civil war because they would like overjoy the bloods of the fellow citizens who are now suffering at home atUN Protection Camps and in abroad in the refugees centers in neighboring countries such as Sudan Republic, Democratic Republic Of Congo,Uganda,Ethiopia,Kenya,and the rest of the continents in the world! We need a peace in the country!There is no good causes for the war in the South Sudan government in the Republic!The war is absolutely senseless! We need Political Democracy without any single tribe in the South Sudan government in the Rebpulic in the country in the country to appear TOO ARROGANT from other tribes simply because in the name of Liberation of the South Sudan Independence from The Sudanese people in the society in the mainstream! But the South,was not entirely liberated in military militarily! But,the Late Dr.John Garang De Mabior,have used his POLITICAL SKILLS to win the Sudan government in central in north in Khartoum in the regime of National Islamic Front(NIF) under the faction of His Excellence President Omer El Hassan El Beshir known as National Congress Party(NCP) Otherwise,without his strategies in the peace,the Southerners whould not have gotten THE SELF RULE Government at all at this point!
    Take care! Back to you in the forum to the members

    Sincere Uniting People!



    • deng hanbol says:

      Chief Abiko Tangwo, your attitude toward Saltan Kiir Mayar has definitely changed. Please come and join us in struggle against the tribal government in Juba.

  4. Betterhumankind says:

    Dear All,

    I am surprised with behaviour of the Leaders of South Sudan who shamelessly leading people to nowhere or hell which was not hopped before 2011 by the people of South Sudan.

    Kiir’s government together with Jieng Council Elders (Dinka) have tortured enough and still by encouraging more rebellions in the country just simply because their ideology of burn to rule and not burn to be ruled by committee in South Sudan. Now you are ruling and why killing innocent people of South Sudan. Shame on you.

  5. Gatdarwich says:

    Your kingdom is already falling apart in your own hands. Don’t blame it on others. Taban is a patriot and none tribalist man who will never betray his superior as you’re desperately speculating without a shred of evidence. J1 battle was planned and executed by Malong to kill both Dr. Riek and President Kiir so that he, Malong can be the president after killing Kiir and Dr. Riek. Taban has no hand in it.

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