Wide spread civil conflict may start from Malakal

BY: Yorwin Otor, SOUTH SUDAN, JUL/04/2013, SSN;

For those who are familiar with Malakal conflicts through 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2011 may now know some indicators might precipitate the next conflict that will start from Malakal and go on to engulf the whole South Sudan are currently strong. What remains is who will start this war. Some of these possible indicators that might lead to a civil conflict include the land grabbing by Dinka.

Akoka was a Payam of Baliet County before it was turned into a county by former Governor Gatluak Deng Garang. Akoka should have come out with its Payam borders. Instead now, this county is expanding its borders into Shilluk territory. Because of its lesser population, it does not have a member in the parliament.

The authorities of this area not leaving the Shilluk in peace in Fashoda and Makal Counties. They have become the source of insecurity. If they have sincere claim over Shilluk land, why can’t it be settled in a peaceful manner in a conference or dialogue?

Recently, the Commissioner of Akoka smashed the sign board of Makal County knowing the fact Makal and Akoka do not share any borders. Akoka Payam now county has borders with Melute, Longochuk and Baliet Counties respectively. Why are these borders not disputed? The commissioner was briefly suspended from duties but, re-instated by Governor Simon Kun Pouch upon his return from sick leave. The messages of congratulations for his instalment came from Nuer groups.

Recently, SPLM-DC applied for permission to celebrate their fourth anniversary for the formation of their party formation. The permission was denied by Deputy Governor in which SPLM-DC stepped down. In another event, Collo University Graduates Association asked for permission to conduct a conference for formation of the association in River Port Hall which was granted.

Rumours went around that the event was another SPLM-DC celebration and Dr. Lam Akol has sneaked into Malakal town to address the occasion. SPLA was put on alert to prevent Dr. Lam Akol entering into Malakal. Some prominent Shilluk houses have been searched at night but with failure. If DR. Lam is a fugitive who’s not allowed by SPLM with its armed wing SPLA to come to his home town Malakal, then this also applies to the entire South Sudan.

Why should people and especially SPLM members forbide Dr. Lam not being in Juba? The search for him in Malakal is an indication that his life is in danger. On the day of the conference, police was sent to disperse this conference, but the graduates stood firmed and gave the police their permit. But if the graduates were to resist and went roiting on the streets, what could have happened? The police could shot at them especially if they are Shilluk. The Nuer government is holistically targeting Shilluk even the Shilluk who die heart SPLM members.

Another episode occurred during the burial of Ustaz James Ogil at Apiew in Adhithang, a Shilluk village across River Sobat. This area was occupied by Akobo Nuer and Dinka during the 20 years civil war. SPLA disabled persons have settled in this village. The first batch of mourners that went to prepare for the burial were seriously beaten and were threatened to be shot. The burial took place the next day only after SPLA protection was provided miraculously from an unknown source.

The border conflict due to land grabbing by Dinka and bullying by the Nuer against the Shilluk has become a thorn in the flesh. No matter how much the Shilluk population is forced into cowardice by these terrifying events, one day pushing somebody against the wall might cause a reaction.

The response of Johnson Olony to the amnesty could ease the usual accusation against the Shilluk and SPLM-DC. But what remains to be seen will be the reaction of SPLA and government in Juba. Olony is currently in Juba, but, there are rumours that the President is refusing to meet with him. He will be in difficult situation if SPLA prevents him to let him come to join his forces in Lul Payam, Upper Nile State.

Akoka Dinka are eyeing Olony as a potential threat to their claim over Shilluk land on the east bank of the Nile. It is unlikely that Juba will respond to Olony positively. He is already in a lion’s den

Currently, indicators for potential danger that might probably ignite a civil war from Malakal are many. The above mentioned indicators are quite enough. It is a matter of time and it will happen. Let us keep our fingers crossed.

Yorwin Otor yorwinotor@gmail.com


  1. Akic A Lwaldeng says:

    Many thanks, you have written a remarkable article regarding Shilluk Land grabbing by so called Dinka. I believe that Shilluk community whether they are in Diaspora or within South Sudan, completely they have lost patience, it’s a matter of time, as you said in your article.
    However, those communities they know that very well that Chollo will never give up easier, but they are trying to use state machinery as tool to grab our land in Eastern Nile. However for those who cannot stand up now (Shilluk SPLM supporters) I don’t know what are they waiting for? These threats are for all Chollo tribe. It is not SPLM-DC, party as many have naive thinking and I believe that many Chollo, men and women from Diaspora are ready to come home at any time to defend their community and land if there is no solution from our Government in Juba and Malakal State. Again, thanks for that and God bless you.

    Akic A Lwaldeng

  2. Atar Bay says:

    Yorwin Otor, as you mentioned the shilluk planning for civil war in South Sudan and I code you, “Currently, indicators for potential danger that might probably ignite a civil war from Malakal are many,” for your information a result of war against Dinka and Nuer will be (falbaar).

  3. Abiel says:

    Shilluk, no peace in your hearts but one day you will be looking for it with a high price and would not find it.

  4. Joshua says:

    Hi Abiel and Atar,
    I thought you were grown ups and I’ve been proud of you as educated, intellectual youths of South Sudan, not wolves hiding, and consumed by hatred. If you read the writer, he only expressed his opinion which I strongly agree with, it doesn’t matter which part of South Sudan. if such issues of concern like what he mentioned are still happening in Malakal, then I don’t need to have a half brain like you to think that nothing will happen in the near future to create hatred between these communities that have lived together for generations. This will not benefit Chollo, Nuer, or Dinka, their own benefit is to work together to eliminate the wrong, and concentrate on building and maintaining their generational ties.

    I can only urge youths of Upper Nile that such senseless comment can only move weak and hopeless people. South Sudan will accommodate all Southern Sudanese. The main thing that people need to work towards now is to stand up as a nation against any thing that is not right. No Southern Sudanese should suffer from humiliation of his own brother or victimised by his brother. Put aside your tribes and work towards uniting yourselves and learn from the mistakes of the last decade.
    Nuer and Dinka and Chollo in Upper Nile are not single minded, the few that are inciting such things will not be left unpunished very soon.

    My prayer that we all start to think rationally before it is too late.

    • Atar Bay says:

      Stop your idiotic move; if you believe his point of view to push away other communities in Malakal by force, than what is your problem with my objection to such unintelligent plan. it’s my point of view too. How come you contradicted yourself by saying you agree with writer at the same time saying South Sudan will accommodate all South Sudanese.

      Tell your brothers to stop rising issue of Malakal ownership, this city was not established when Pagan Amum become (GS) of the SPLM it was there since Dinka settled in upper Nile many years ago. We never heard through the history about chollo in the easy bank of Sobit River, the only time was when their kingdom divided to two, we welcome them to settled in our land at easy bank but if our brothers in chollo assumed mistakenly they can take over other people rights because they are in power, advice them they are wrong and they will be sorry one day for this plan.

      The Dinka who own this land never asked Nuer or Chollo to leave Malakal because it’s a capitol city of our state, if you know Upper Nile very well you will find Chollo in many areas of Dinka and Nuer respectively living peacefully but that opposite on Chollo side because you can be murdered which is extensively known in their society that alone show who vave hidden hatred. There is a time for patience and time for anger; the Chollo community should know we are not happy with their attitude in Malakal.

      if they decide to join North Sudan as usual let them go but those who want peace they are welcome, we will take action against Chollo if they are not ready to stop their negative attitude to Dinka community in Malakal.

  5. Abiel says:

    Thanks, brother Joshua, for your comment. God bless you and will be forever with our tribes.

  6. Lino James says:

    Let’s think before we take any decision, our motherland will not be in peace if we still got minds of war and killing. you the youth of this nation shoud be the light in the darkness until by changing these bad leaders not to stand in their wicked side. you should avoid tribles and unite.

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