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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Dangerous Signs of a failed State (Part I)

I’m still very optimistic that South Sudan will not be like Somalia. However, there are many grave signs that South Sudan will find it difficult to move anywhere given the mindset of the two
opposing sides. There are basically no leaders on both sides but a bunch of self-serving opportunists; some of which are either making names for themselves or settling old scores.

Aleu Ayieny and Telar Ring Deng are hitting back at Pagam Amum for having advised President Kiir to have them dismissed from SPLM in 2008. We all know why Pagan is being targeted and only a dumb law brain would not put that into account. President Kiir is too naïve to see that Amum wouldn’t be convicted in a court of law in which real law and justice is practised. Who doesn’t remember what Aleu Ayieny told Pagan in 2008? Who doesn’t remember that Telar and Aleu blamed Pagan Amum for their dismissal?
People like Northern Bahr El Ghazal governor, Malong Awan, who is Kiir’s very close ally, hates Dr. Majak D’Agoot with passion. Malong and Bol Madut made a lot of noise to late Dr. John Garang de Mabior in the late 1990s to have Majak removed from Bahr el Ghazal as the area commander. With influence on Kiir now, it’s no brainer Majak is now being set up for death or political vilification. Only lawyers who’d want to shame the profession of Law in South Sudan would convict people like Majak and Amum.

We also know the well-documented dispute between President Kiir and Oyai Deng Ajak. Their enmity goes back to their years in Operation Jungle Storm (OJS) in the 90s when SPLA was almost finished by Omar El Beshir and the fundamentalist National Islamic Front (NIF). It’s no brainer Kiir, as the total man now in South Sudan, would want to show Oyai Deng Ajak that there’s a new boss in town. There’s no more Dr. John to help Oyai!
I don’t understand why President Kiir, a man praised by his peers in the SPLA and SPLM as a very humble man, doesn’t see that indicting the remaining four political prisoners is a dark spot on his political legacy. The president is trying to prove his accusers right. Yes, he’s just done and good job!

We live in a world of ‘proofs.’ The case against the four political detainees is dirty. It has so much hate mixed with it! It has a very bad history dogging it! Give it up Mr. President ku coxe baai piny! (safe the nation!)

Lies, lies, lies! Ateny Wek!
We all know that politics is about lying. Clever lying! However, there are lies that transcend that ream of livable lying. The presidential spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny, who doesn’t seem to know his real role, talks without checking his facts. He’s obsessed with the ‘failed coup attempt’ and ‘Riek Machar’ that he’s forgotten that he was hired to present the presidency and President Kiir in a respectable light. Ateny has succeeded in embarrassing the president. Bravo Ateny! You’ve presented President Kiir with remarkable buffoonery!  Why do these guys hate the president this much?

Every word coming out of Ateny’s mouth is a great embarrassment to the president of the republic of South Sudan. I urge Mr. Ateny to either research his facts before going to the media or resign. He’s a great embarrassment to the president; however, no one seems to care because Kiir’s allies are after destroying the president and his legacy! Wake up Mr. President! Yiin Riak! (You’re being destroyed by your close friends) Lo baai (go home!)

Lies! Lies! Lies! Moses Ruai Lat!
In the same light rebels’ spokesperson, Moses Ruai Lat, is another lies processing mind. Any town captured by rebels is left destroyed and the civil population left terrorized or killed. But Ruai minces no words in claiming the rebels don’t kill civilians. Who then kills civilians and destroys these towns? Bor, Bentiu, Malakal, Leer and Mayendit…all destroyed. Who actually destroyed these places if the rebels claim they didn’t? Is god destroying these places? Is some devilish ghost doing the job?

If the rebels know their forces are destroying towns and killing civilians, then why isn’t anyone being held accountable. The rebels are projecting themselves as a thuggish and murderous lot with no political agenda. It’s time the rebels started to act like people who say what they claim. Let’s see you protect civilians instead of terrorizing them. Let’s see the rebels hold accountable those who commit atrocities! Let’s see the rebels being serious about inter-tribal dialogue!
Mr. Lat is very articulate and I hope he’ll tell us how the rebels can reconcile being ‘pro-democracy’ and ‘pro-destruction’ at the same time!

Blame Game!
The government blames the rebels and the rebels blame the governments. While the guns are killing innocent civilians, the lies are killing the future of South Sudan and destroying any iota of hope for a possible end to this idiotic war.

The government is not able to protect Nuer in Juba. MPs are in the UN compounds and Nuer ministers sleep in fear. Yet the government is lying to us that it’s in full control. Everyone would be at home in Juba with no one in the UNMISS compound if we had a government.
The government claims they’ve arrested over 100 people who committed crimes against Nuer civilians in Juba! We need to know these faceless people and we need to know who commanded them to kill. Otherwise the government isn’t serious and Nuer people will not take the government seriously!

The Rebels have too committed atrocities of unspeakable magnitude but none of Riek’s supporters has ever called the media to address these issues! Ruai and Gatdet Dak should address the atrocities committed by Rebels in order for the public to know they are serious about ‘democratizing’ South Sudan. How can you blame the government if you are committing the same atrocities with mindless banditry and savagery? Stop being bandits or stop the ones among you who are committing atrocities! Show that you care! Show that you are not some puppets and mindless loud speakers!
I also urge President Kiir to get out of the compound and talk to the people. Let the lies stop. As you hide in your mansion in Juba, Aleu Ayieny, Telar Ring and Makuei Lueth are busy destroying your legacy! The world now sees you as a mindless, dictatorial president because of these people! Wake up or you’ll end up in prison! Free yourself from the likes of Telar!

One Ethnic Group as a fighting force
I have no any idea what Riek’s end game is. Riek had a genuine political case until he supported a rebellion. While I agreed with Riek and his colleagues in the SPLM’s Political Bureau that change and transparency was important, I don’t agree with the current rebellion regardless of what it’s being claimed to represent.

Civilians are being killed and Riek is not even showing any iota of remorse. I’ve never seen or heard a single press release sending a message of condolences to South Sudanese of all tribal and political stripes. How does Riek think he cares about South Sudanese? When does Riek think he’ll start being a national leader? A national leader doesn’t rely on one tribe! If you can’t convince other tribes to join you then give it up! You are destroying Nuer!
Riek should know that using a uni-tribal fighting force removes any veil of any fight for a national agenda. If other tribes aren’t supporting the rebellion then it’s time for a rethink of that step. Relying militarily on one ethnic group is to condemn the Nuer who support him to total annihilation, just like Riek said of John Garang’s tribe in 1991.

What’s Riek’s end game? He led his colleagues in the SPLM down by supporting a rebellion. He’s now seen that the released political detainees have refused to join his group in the peace talks. It’s time Riek stopped projecting Nuer people as a nationality prone to rebellion. It’s time Riek stopped using innocent young Nuer people for his political agenda. It’s high time Riek calls his own sons and daughters to come and fight alongside him and stop using poor Nuer sons and daughters for his selfish interests.
Stop! Stop killing young Nuer people! Who will develop Nuerland if you’re sending innocent Nuer to go and kill innocent civilians? Who’ll develop Nuerland if you are sending young Nuer sons and daughters to be slaughtered by paid Ugandan mercenaries?

If Riek cares about young Nuer sons and daughters then he should tell them to lay down arms and come to the negotiating table. The sooner Riek stops the bloodshed the better.
As much as I still remain optimistic, I’m afraid South Sudan risks being another Somalia!