Thursday, August 25, 2016

South Sudan's Dr. Riek Machar Reportedly in Khartoum for "Medical Treatment"

Photo credit: gurtong.com
Following reports by the United Nations on August 17th that United Missions in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) has extracted South Sudan's opposition leader and former First Vice President, Riek Machar, from the South Sudan-Congolese border on humanitarian grounds, Sudanese authorities have now confirmed that Machar is Khartoum for medical treatment.

Given the volatile relations between Juba and Khartoum, it was therefore imperative for the Sudanese officials to inform Juba that their reception of Dr. Machar was purely on 'humanitarian grounds.' From the pictures being circulated on social media, it's now apparent that Machar is in a very bad  shape medically.

Dr. Machar fled Juba at the beginning of the July following the resumption of fighting between his body guards and the president's body guards. While it isn't clear what happened on July 8th, the two parties have been accusing one another of having started the fighting. Machar claims he fled Juba fearing for his life while the government claims Machar was plotting to either kill the president or stage a coup. None of both claims have been independently verified.

Soon after Machar left Juba, Taban Deng Gai, the then SPLM-IO chief negotiator, was selected by IO officials in Juba to replace Machar 'temporarily' as both the IO leader and the First Vice President (FVP) until he [Machar] returns to Juba. Given the fact that Taban has changed his rhetoric, it's not clear if Machar will ever be allowed to assume his position as the FVP.

In his new capacity as the FVP of South Sudan, Taban toured Kenya and Sudan and called for Machar to 'renounce violence' and return to South Sudan as an average South Sudanese and wait for elections in 2018.

Since the reports of Machar having been killed turned out to be untrue and Taban not likely to relinquish his position, it's not clear what will happen when Machar gets better.


ON CULTURAL IDENTITY & BELONGING

Dear Melbournians, the South Sudanese people to be precise. Do you think we have seen it all? Do you think we have seen that: I mean in the aftermath of yesteryears, in regard to our culture and the notions around identity and belonging? Do you think we have seen the true reaping of what we sowed years ago? Do you really think so? After all, did we really sow anything like seeds and that there’s something to be reaped? Did we really live it out well to be seen today?

I am sorry to have bothered you, my potential readers, with questions regarding our social, economic, and political location in our host society: Australia. I think we have not seen it all and as a whole: The idea that people are bound by certain values and beliefs of significance to them. This requires cooperation and role-specific obligations on the roles of every man and woman across a given people and their society.

TOLERANCE & INCLUSION


While it is possible for us to racially discriminate or judge people we know, the chances of judging people we know diminish significantly the more we know them. An easy example of the importance of understanding others is the attitude people develop when they want to harm others or when they want to deny them something valuable. Essentially, before you fight someone, you insult them. Insults are attempts at diminishing the value of people, an attempt at estranging them, as Toni Morrison argued in The Origin of Others. It is easy to discriminate against strangers or make others strangers or dehumanized in order to discriminate against them.

Transformational Leadership, Inclusive Institutions and Service Provision

Leadership, given what is happening now in South Sudan, and generally in Africa, fascinates me. And it fascinates me not in a good way but because of the sociopolitical and socioeconomic ills facing the African continent and most of the so-called 'Third World.' To me, South Sudan, now, is a classic case.

Rebellion by disaffected politico-military leaders and repression by the government of South Sudan in Juba have stunted institutional development and leadership growth. This has made service provision almost irrelevant as political survival has taken primacy and supremacy. CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

‘Black’ as an Identity Oversimplification and Mockery

Black as a universalized cultural identity of the African Person (AP)* is a residual effect of slave and colonial mentality; a racial/race paradigm. It is a malady I call, conservatively speaking, stuck-in-the-past syndrome of color constraints. Black could be an on-the-street ‘social identifier’ of race figures not a meaningful phenomenon of deep cultural identification on a universal scale.