BY: John Adoor Deng, Australia, AUG/11/2014, SSN;
South Sudan is archeologically believed to be mineral rich country in the world and in Africa in particular. It has enormous potential for oil, gold mines, animals and a fertile land, capable of satisfying needs for local consumption and exports. The country borders many countries which in a practical sense, gives South Sudan credible opportunities for trades and business operations.
With this realization, economists referred to South Sudan as an African food basket. The question then becomes when is South Sudan going to be an African food basket? Is this economic prophecy fulfil- able in South Sudan?
Indeed, one would hold an ambivalent position in this regards. We had the opportunity to demonstrate and portray this rich endeavor both to the world and to our own good -selves. However, the ruling elites failed at the very genesis of the making of our country. For example, they could not even manage to fairly distribute the ready-made resource (oil money).
Disgracefully, the amount of $20 billion since 2005-2013 ended in few pockets while the innocent heroes and war victims, languish in poverty. The country (South Sudan) as I write this piece; lacks medical facilities, roads, clean water, electricity and poor agriculture, etc. The nation is rated low as failed and one among the most corrupts countries in the world.
This brings me to my subject title, a mad rich man is never respected or taken serious. This is true of South Sudan‘s current situation. Observably, the country is now engaged in a needless war within herself. Each day the two unfortunate warring factions slaughter each other, destroy little individuals infrastructure buildings, kill and displaced innocents civilians caught on both sides of the conflicts.
In my view, these obnoxious actions qualified the present South Sudanese influential leaders, who in one way or the other, architected the current situation as mad men and women.
Stupidly, they are proud about the oil and other resources that they could not even manage to make good use of in terms of equitable distribution and infrastructural development. The oil in South Sudan instead of being regarded as a blessing from God to us, it is humanly now turned into a curse resource.
During the civil war between the North Sudan and Southern Sudan, we used to refer to then oil as blood oil. I remember the protest we did in Kenya so that Kenyans stops doing business with Sudan with oil.
Today, our oil is becoming a curse resource; it’s only benefited few bellies and secondly the oil now is being used to fuel this needless war. Both factions are selling future barrels of oil through agreements with unscrupulous companies.
This is robbing the next generations of South Sudan, who will live only to pay debts and have nothing to benefit from the oil. The present leaders have scared off friends and goodwill allies of South Sudan. As nobody respect a rich madman, so is South Sudan to the world.
The Author is John Adoor Deng, BA, BTH, MPRL, MPPP_current and Director of South Sudan Foundation (SSSF). He is reachable by emailing email@example.com