Op-ed to Maj. Gen. Matur Chut Dhuol. QUOTE: “People of good will, who are the vast majority, have the challenge to be open and honest, and to turn a deaf ear to the shrill cries of the irresponsible few on the lunatic fringe.” Martin Luther King, Jr., January 1967.
By Mabior Abraham, SOUTH SUDAN, JAN/22/2015, SSN;
I intend to address the following issues to Maj. General Matur Chut Dhuol, Governor of Lakes state. Gov., Lakes state crises are daring and need deep-soul searching by you and people there at home, aboard and other South Sudanese here in the country and across the globe.
I am reacting to your pessimistic remarks on Sunday 11th January 2015, when you were addressing ESC church congregation in relation to degenerating security situation of the state under your administration. You told your audience that “Lakes state insecurity is no longer to be controlled for you have had tried everything at your disposal including spear-masters, but nothing has improved or changed, however, it continues to deteriorate and worsened by day and hour. It is only God that will intervene, otherwise, let’s wait for the worse scenarios ahead!”
These remarks are a manifestation that you can no longer manage Lakes state affairs with this current falling insecurity. Why don’t you tender in your resignation letter to the President Kiir, so that he could decide of who can next try? One people (of Lakes State) have dripped enough bloodshed for no good reason over ten years now (Jan. 2005 – Jan. 2015).
For those who are not familiar with Lakes state crises, and problems; they did emerge immediately after the signing of the CPA in 2005. This is because during liberation period, a lot of fundamental problems have been buried, left unresolved or wrongly judged. And with signing of CPA, these issues were left unattended to. I have been following.
With many Governors appointed for, and removed from Lakes state by President Salva Kiir, because of the same problem of insecurity that none of them did indeed set a premier resolution process to dig out the root causes and move on to resolve them amicably, brute brutal force has been used as means to determine these insecurities, instead of trying head on fairly and for the common good of all.
Maj. Gen. Matur, your attempts in these crises resolution seem to be not honest, and instead you became the crueler to these crises, and being blamed cross the board as originator for some of these catastrophes when you were a commander of Rumbek County during the liberation era. You have used ruthless means in your attempts to stamp out these predicaments, for you did step on wrong groups or bad techniques, thinking these means would quell these insecurities, but instead, the situation has deteriorated so wickedly.
Gov. Matur Chut, you have perverted it when you have had done the following:
1. On appointment, people of Lakes state had great hopes that you would use unbiased approach as seasoned soldier of our liberation for the common good of all, but you allowed politicians to shift you to take side. Instead of using rule of law, as it is to resolve these increasing problems, you then dismembered Lakes state division commander, accusing him of your previous differences when you were soldiers in SPLA of Zalan battalion, and that you can’t work with him as long as you are the Governor of Lakes state. SPLA GHQrs Juba heeded to your demand, and kept the commander away from your state administration.
2. You too sidelined National Security Service men, and you did refuse to take their fundamental pieces of advice rather than asking them for assistance. Now, you have no work of national security as one key security apparatus in any national affairs resolution.
3. Police is nowhere in Lakes state. You are not paying them fairly nor equipped them, and at some point, their salaries are taken away. Why? They have no vehicles to attend to security needs at all time in counties or during emergencies. You did abuse them during parades, ill-treated others or threatened some of them for dismissal from service; thus, they are no longer out for truth or have no moral left for duty. Few of them are either sellers of ammunitions and guns to meet their family needs or are divided up behind their sections for support; hence these crises are fuelled to this unprecedented stage in Lakes.
4. You have not spared Judiciary with all its levels of Local Government. Where are the salaries of all Chiefs? You did instruct the Local Government ministry that chiefs’ salaries would only be derived from collection of fines they settle in their communities. Can chiefs have court spaces to fine communities’ wrongdoers when they are also targets of revenge killings?
5. You closed state assembly indefinitely. With legislature shut and MPs at disarray, who will formulate laws that could be used to apprehend culprits, investigate and sentence them to whatsoever form of punishment? MPs are representatives of their constituents, who will talk to them if not they – MPS?
6. Commissioners of all Counties do not have any single power (or soldiers) to use without your restrict orders. Are you not everything for the state?
Can you be the chief, the soldier (SPLA, National Security, Police), Judge, and MP. Are you not everything for the state? You have become the solitary and absolute power-wielding boss, you and you alone! WHY?
Did we liberation this country collectively and to be ruled by one man with ex-conclusion of others? Is this not the same tyranny that we took up arms to fight against and, which led to our country seceding because the centralized system in Khartoum couldn’t be changed! Remember, oppression has no color and no specific group, other than – that person who believes in one-man state!
One man can’t do all of these even if Jesus Christ comes back!
Without these institutions to be part of your state leadership such as SPLA State Commander, National Security Chief, Judges, communities’ chiefs, who have run away for their lives), and MPs. You have become the sole player. Can anything better come from Lakes state, other than death each day, because the cattle youths have the power of arm?
I am very afraid your excellency, that if this situation can not change within two months, many rural schools would be closed because of this insecurity, and which has started since June 2014 that many villages have been deserted with many reports I am reading each day gearing to this end. People have forsaken their villages because of this anxiety and have already thronged Rumbek town.
Your Excellency, as your niece’s son, I have much stake in people of Lakes state and their welfare, thus, I have decided to take this step and path (put in writing) to walk you through of these crises are unfolding under your state administration. I hope, by highlighting these troubles is my wise choice rather keeping to myself, and talk away on phone with those that I know there, for I won’t hesitate to talk my mind when Lakes state are being ill-talked here and in Juba. I would rather express them to you as Governor of the state; instead of sending my condolences to all those who have lost their loved-ones in this unnecessary crises.
When Gony heartless youths raped women and girls of Thuyic in August 2014 immediately after the murder of your brother, Paramount Chief Aparer Chut, there have been no culprits apprehended to this day. This act (rape) has already spread to other counties, and most specifically to Rumbek Center County. For no action has been taken, against Athoi members of Gony! Are you not covering up the sins of your section-men? Let justice begins from home if you think you are a leader for Lakes.
Rape is a capital crime punishable by death in most countries of our today’s world! You have condoned it General as even it isn’t an act of intent with a lot of suffering to those innocent women and girls! Is it a recipe for more troubles in Athoi and Lakes state if not attend to. General?
General, there are over five hundred (500) prisoners in Rumbek Correctional Prison alone. What about those in Cueibet, Yirol and throughout the counties and have not been tried. WHY?
One more important element that led this unprecedented destruction of both lives and property has been your abusive talks and arrogance that sow you many enemies than friends. Can this attitude get stopped?
My piece of advise:
Your excellency, if you can make peace between your communities of Athoi (Gony and Thuyic), that you won’t be surprised other communities of three counties of Rumbek will make peace as well, once Athoi’s sections are seen walking together, eating together, and marrying their sons and daughters as one people. Just like when your late father, Chief Chut Dhuol Mathiang, whose time Athoi community was a symbol of peace, and all sections of Athoi called him their chief.
Your community of Athoi, are the drivers of all, whether bad or good, and that everything happening in Lakes state, has compliment from them and would end once they say yes or no. Are your people not the troublemakers of Lakes state and other communities of Agaar in particular? Get them make peace!
God save Lakes state and South Sudan! Let peace prevail once again in this part of my country – South Sudan, and forgive the sins of my maternal uncles in four counties of Rumbek and Cueibet! The crises are too much to bear.
The author is a concern South Sudanese national from Jonglei state. I grew up in Rumbek – Barpakeny during our liberation period, and have stayed there since 1993 — 2009. My mother comes from Lakes state, and in particular from Rumbek East County. I am reachable on firstname.lastname@example.org / Tel: 0977070806