Response to the deplorable violence in Juba: South Sudanese Community in UK

Issued By: The South Sudanese Community in the UK

Date: 14 July 2016

We, the South Sudanese Community in the UK, condemn in the strongest possible terms, the deplorable and entirely avoidable violence that has occurred in Juba between 8th and 11th July 2016. The shooting and the shelling has been indiscriminate, with little regard for collateral damage, in what is our most populous city.

Thousands of families were forced to flee their homes in search of safety. Thousands more families spent desperate days and nights, without food and water. It is too early to know the full scale of civilian and military casualties, but we expect the number to be high. Widespread looting, by undisciplined gunmen, further compounds an already dire situation.

We welcome the cessation of hostilities declared by President Salva Kiir and First Vice President Dr Riek Machar.

The people of South Sudan are left with no confidence in the leadership of our country. The leadership of the transitional government of national unity (TGONU) has failed to deliver on its promise to bring peace to South Sudan. They have shown a lack of commitment in implementing the provisions of the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (ARCISS). They have squandered the nation’s wealth, building unwieldy and undisciplined military forces. They have demonstrated that their assertion of control over these forces is only pretence. Instead of tackling the deep economic crisis that has driven so many ordinary South Sudanese to hardship, the civilian and military leadership of the TGONU has chosen to prioritise militarism, brinkmanship and mutual recrimination.

Since 2005, the political leadership of the SPLM in South Sudan repeatedly demonstrated that they have no aptitude for governance. They must step aside and give others the opportunity to move the country away from a destructive militarism that is at the heart of our nation’s turmoil. We need a leadership that is committed to peace and prioritises reconstruction and development.

For South Sudanese

We urge our fellow South Sudanese to take bold action in the interests of peace, and to urgently:

Reject divisive rhetoric that only serves to push our communities apart, when we should be working to bringing ourselves together;
Consider new leadership for the country;
Recommit to the provisions and schedule of ARCISS, as our only credible path to a sustainable peace;
Demilitarise our nation’s capital, the state capitals, and all other municipalities;
Respect the role of Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) under the leadership of H.E. Festus Mogae.

For the International Community:

We thank the international community for their swift condemnation of the violence in Juba, and urge them to act decisively to prevent the collapse of the peace agreement. We welcome the United Nations Security Council decision, which requests the African Union member states send a regional peace-keeping force to South Sudan to protect civilians. We ask our peace partners to:

Follow through with the demand for a regional intervention brigade. We object to any foreign forces that are not mandated by the United Nations;

Impose an arms embargo on South Sudan;

Impose sanctions on individuals and entities who are obstructing the implementation of the peace agreement;

Provide humanitarian assistance to the needy who have been affected by the conflict.

We ask our peace partners to work with the people of South Sudan as we tackle the challenge of stabilising our nation, and support us to realise our aspiration of a peaceful, harmonious and progressive society.

SIGNED:

Federico Awi Vuni
Chair, Equatorian Community in the UK

Karlo Kwol Akol
Representative, Chollo (Shilluk) Community in the UK

Peter Gaere
Representative, Western Bahr El Ghazal (Fertit) Community in the UK

2 Comments

  1. Lol says:

    If we go by some words uttered by a senior government official before the agreement that when things are imposed on them we shall see Boka Haram in South Sudan, then we need to get worried. Some people have already began to behave like Boka holding guns everywhere and terrorizing the civil population. I am afraid the voices against the additional force for peace in the country will act negatively to destroy the country if this force is in so that it is counted on the intervening force in the way we had been seeing. That destruction was imposed on the citizens just to prove that two armies are not good in one country as stipulated in the ARCSS. The enemies of peace had put the whole agreement aside not knowing that there was a time frame and regulations to be followed as the two slowly get integrated. After the CPA over 5000 SPLA men were in Soba Khartoum wilt all their tanks and heavy weapons and nobody complained because their presence there conformed to certain conditions. But we always like to go outside the Rules and Agreements to get the types of the results the country now is facing. I am afraid the good faith the international community is now echoing will always be turned to negativity by the enemies of peace who prefer to promote divisions and tribalism to nationalism because Greedy individual are not happy when things are going to be put on the table for all. God save our country.

  2. Salim A.A says:

    Dear; Federico Awi Vuni
    Chair, Equatorian Community in the UK,
    Karlo Kwol Akol
    Representative, Chollo (Shilluk) Community in the UK and
    Peter Gaere
    Representative, Western Bahr El Ghazal (Fertit) Community in the UK
    You in UK and your communities in South Sudan must review historical co-existence of your communities with Dinka of which your new generations are trying to pilot test with stupidity. For you to live in peace with Dinka congresses you must not try to think that UN or foreign powers will write a non-democratic constitution for the People of South Sudan. If you want to live in peace in UK or home why did you not inform other communities in UK to join in your “Peace Ordeal Press”

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