Archive for the ‘Featured Articles’ Category

 The Application of Tribocratic Dispensation to the Hurting Stalemate of the South Sudanese’ Peace Talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

By PaanLuel Wël, Juba

In the life of every person there comes a point when he realizes that out of all the seemingly limitless possibilities of his youth he has in fact become one actuality. No longer is life a broad plain with forests and mountains beckoning all-around, but it becomes apparent that one’s journey across the meadows has indeed followed a regular path, that one can no longer go this way or that. The desire to reconcile an experience of freedom with a determined environment is the lament of poetry and the dilemma of philosophy.– Opening Sentence, Henry Kissinger’s Undergraduate Thesis, Harvard University, 1949.

Celebrating the Fruition of the CPA

Celebrating the Fruition of the CPA


March 6, 2015 (SSB) —  During the intra-SPLM/A reconciliation meeting in Rumbek, Lakes state, between Chairman John Garang and his deputy, Commander Salva Kiir Mayaardit following the 2004 Yei crisis, Garang told the gathering that the SPLM was entering a new era of democratic dispensation in which anyone dissatisfied with the way the party and/or the country would be governed will not have any excuse to resort to a military coup to make his or her point.

With his characteristic humor, Garang gave an example of Commander Riek Machar, saying that there would be “no need for coup d’état anymore, so for example my friend, Dr. Riek Machar, will not need to make a coup because he can form his own party if he is discontented with the SPLM.”[1]

Barely two years after the independence of the Republic of South Sudan, Riek Machar is back in the bush, accused of having instigated a failed military coup against the government of President Salva Kiir Mayaardit.

In his own words, according to Riek Machar, he is fighting for political reforms and democratic transformation in South Sudan, but according to the government, Riek Machar has eschewed democratic means in preference for a military force to remove a democratically and constitutionally elected government.

The government’s supporters insist that the government is legitimate and constitutional because the people of South Sudan gave it a resounding 98% of their votes, democratically electing it.

As explained in “Bullet or Ballot: Resolving the Burgeoning Conflict in South Sudan—Part One, Two and Three[2] and in “The Hurting Stalemate of South Sudan’s Peace Talks—Part One and Two[3], the conflict that erupted on December 15th, 2013, was triggered by a perilous power struggle within the ruling SPLM party.

At the commencement of the conflict, the government wanted nothing but the blood-dripping head of Riek Machar while the rebels, backed by the white army, were shouting, “Kiir must go”.

The civil war ensued with the repeated gain and loss of Bor, Bentiu, Malakal, and Nasir towns. The rebels’ momentum began to fizzle in mid 2014. Presently, the government controls all the major towns of South Sudan. Nonetheless, some of these cities are vulnerable to rebel attack.

The rebels can potentially retake Nasir and/or Bentiu and use them as their assembly points in preparation for the interim government. More likely, the rebels might use such strategic towns as their military bases throughout the interim period since they are campaigning for two separate but equal armies in Addis Ababa.

Whereas preliminary peace talks had began in earlier 2014, it was not until the stalemate on the military fronts that the warring factions began to appreciate the IGAD-led South Sudan peace talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The current military standoff has compelled the two warring parties to seek a political settlement of the crisis.

With the help of IGAD leaders, President Kiir and Riek Machar have, in principle, agreed to a power sharing deal under the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGONU), which would run for 30 months.

Nonetheless, the warring factions are yet to compromise on the leadership structure and the power sharing ratios for the interim government. Moreover, there is no agreement whatsoever on the thorny question of security arrangements (during the interim period) and integration of the rebel forces and their allied militias into the national army.

The rebels demand the position of the first vice president and separate armies during the 30-month interim period while the government rubbishes both ideas. Apparently, on the power-sharing ratio, both sides might grudgingly consent to the IGAD-proposed formula of 60% for the government, 30% for the rebels and 10% for other stakeholders such as the G-10 and other political parties.

In the third part of this article, I am going to apply the tribocratic dispensation to unravel the excruciating stalemate of the South Sudanese’ peace talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.


In part one of this article, I have argued that the most coherent and effective method to achieve an equitable, fair and just system of governance in South Sudan in particular and Africa in general is to adopt and institutionalize tribocracy.

As revealed in part two of this article, under a tribocratic system, South Sudan would be divided by four major tribes, namely the Dinka who are about 38.18% of South Sudan’s national population; the Equatorian who are around 31.82%; the Nuer who are approximately 19.33% and the Minority Group who are roughly 10.65%.

In a fair and just system of governance in which representatives of a particular ethnic group hold a number of government posts proportionate to the percentage of the total population that the particular ethnic group represents, the Dinka would take 38.18% of the national government, the Equatorian 31.82%, the Nuer 19.33% and the Minority Group 10.65%.

When this doctrine is applied to the political mindset of the South Sudanese people that habitual swings between “our” government versus “their” government, it portends a revolutionary impact. Were we to take the idea to its logical conclusion, it means that a tribocratic government is truly the government of the South Sudanese, by the South Sudanese and for the South Sudanese.

It is a government in which each and every ethnic community is fairly and justly represented. With each tribe holding a number of government positions proportionate to the percentage of the total population that the particular tribe in question represents, the government would be seen as “ours” by those to whom justice has been done by a tribocratic system that enshrines fair and equitable political representation across all ethnic groups comprising that particular country.

Under a tribocratic system, how would we contrive and apply a workable formula to the political gridlock in Addis Ababa?

Well, the first logical step is to realize that the rebellion is overwhelmingly Nuer while the Dinka occupy the state security apparatus. Secondly, the IGAD-led peace process is likely to shortchange the Equatorian and the Minority Group, both politically and militarily.

In the recent session concerning security arrangement during the forthcoming interim period, for example, the crescendo of heated debates that ensued between the two warring factions reached a level where each party was accusing the other of a “tribal tendency to control the army for narrow political interests.”[4]

In turn, Hon. Peter Bashir Bandi, a government deputy minister for foreign affairs who is an Equatorian, took sides and attacked the two warring parties, accusing “them of deliberate intent to make the army [a] monopoly of Nuer and Dinka.”[5]

Evidently, although the rebels would pretend to be fighting for freedom and democratic transformation—while the government would pretend to be protecting the legitimate and constitutional institutions—in South Sudan, it is crystal clear that this is far from the truth.

As pointed out by Hon. Bashir Bandi, the Dinka and the Nuer communities are taking the Equatorian and the Minority group for a ride in Addis Ababa. If this dangerous slight is not rectified in time, the Dinka and the Nuer could end up dominating both the political and the military posts of the transitional government.

Firstly, not only will this be grossly unjust to the underrepresented communities, but is likely to incentivize violent rebellion in the sense that one must rebel and kill in order to get his or her fair and just share of the national cake.

Secondly, there is no viable and effective formula to share the transitional government of national unity in a way that would allow each of the four political tribes its fair share of the national government. Under the current peace negotiations in Addis Ababa, the Nuer would still end up dominating the national army in the interim period just as before the December 15th conflict.

Given the ominous way Riek Machar bragged to the Americans in May 2013 that President Kiir should remember that 80% of the South Sudan national army is Nuer, another domination of the national army by one community in South Sudan would herald more trouble in the not-so distant future. It must be avoided by all means if peace and political stability are to reign, once more, in South Sudan.

Most importantly, any government of national unity that would result from the Addis Ababa peace talks would never be “our” government. The Equatorian and the Minority Group would trash it as a government of the “Dinka” and the “Nuer”.

Meanwhile, the Dinka and the Nuer will not perceive it as “their” government either; instead, they would be jostling for absolute control of the pillars of power, a dangerous game that could reignite the conflict.


First of all, for the Addis Ababa peace talks to be meaningful, they have to produce a fair and just government of the four tribes of South Sudan. Secondly, the fair and just government should be seen by all South Sudanese as “their” government, rather than a government of the Dinka, of the Nuer, of the Equatorian or of the Minority Group.

To put it differently, the proposed transitional government of national unity must be 38.18% Dinka, 31.82% Equatorian, 19.33% Nuer and 10.65% Minority Group, both politically and militarily.

What this means is that should the warring factions end up with the IGAD-proposed ratio of 60% for the government, 30% for the rebels and 10% for G-10, then out of the 60% share of the government, 38.18% of the 60% should be given to the Dinka, 31.82% of the 60% to the Equatorian, 19.33% of the 60% to the Nuer, and 10.65% of the 60% to the Minority Group.

In other word, from the 60% allocated to the government, the Dinka under President Salva Kiir would get 22.91%; the Equatorian under President Salva Kiir 19.09%, the Nuer under President Salva Kiir 11.60% and the Minority Group under President Salva Kiir 6.39% of the interim government.

Likewise, for the 30% share given to the rebels under Riek Machar, the Dinka would take 38.18% of the 30%, the Equatorian 31.82% of the 30%, the Nuer 19.33% of the 30%, and the Minority Group 10.65% of the 30%.

Thus, from the 30% allocated to the rebels, the Dinka allied to Riek Machar would be given 11.45%, the Equatorian allied to Riek Machar 9.55%, the Nuer allied to Riek Machar 5.80%, and the Minority Group allied to Riek Machar 3.20% of the transitional government.

The same logic applies to the 10% slated for the G-10. Of the 10%, 38.18% of it should go to the Dinka, 31.82% of it to the Equatorian, 19.33% of it to the Nuer, and 10.65% of it to the Minority Group.

This would translate to 3.82% of the Dinka with the G-10, 3.18% of the Equatorian with the G-10, 1.93% of the Nuer with the G-10, and 1.07% of the Minority Group with the G-10.

The resultant transitional government of national unity under tribocratic dispensation would be seen and taken as “our” government by all the communities of South Sudan because it would be a fair and just government in which every tribe is equitable represented at the “eating table”.

This is because the total share of the Dinka under President Kiir (22.91%) plus those allied to Riek Machar (11.45%) and those with the G-10 (3.82%) would simply add up to 38.18%, which is exactly the percentage share of the Dinka proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.

The total share of the Equatorian under President Kiir (19.09%) plus those allied to Riek Machar (9.55%) and those with the G-10 (3.18%) would simply add up to 31.82%, which is exactly the percentage share of the Equatorian proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.

The total share of the Nuer under President Kiir (11.60%) plus those allied to Riek Machar (5.80%) and those with the G-10 (1.93%) would simply add up to 19.33%, which is exactly the percentage share of the Nuer proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.

The total share of the Minority Group under President Kiir (6.39%) plus those allied to Riek Machar (3.20%) and those with the G-10 (1.07%) would simply add up to 10.65%, which is exactly the percentage share of the Minority Group proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.

The above application of the tribocratic dispensation to political sharing of power during the interim period is also relevant to the security arrangement during and after the interim period. In order to avoid the abuse of and fear for the national army, the interim armed forces should be divided up among the four tribes. 38.18% should be Dinka, 31.82% Equatorian, 19.33 Nuer and 10.65% Minority Group.

If the warring parties conclude that the formula for army integration would be 60% for the government, 40% for the rebels, then the Dinka soldiers under the government should have 38.18% of the 60%, which is 22.91% of the national army; Equatorian 31.82% of the 60%, which is 19.09%; Nuer 19.33% of the 60%, which is 11.60%, while the Minority Group get 10.65% of the 60%, which is 6.39%.

Similarly, for the 40% assigned to the rebels, 38.18% of the 40% would be given to the Dinka, which amount to 15.27% of the rebels’ army; 31.82% of the 40% to the Equatorian, which is 12.73%; 19.33% of the 40% to the Nuer, which translate to 7.73%, and 10.65% of the 40% to the Minority Group which is 4.26%.

If we add up the percentage of the Dinka soldiers under the government (22.91%) to those allied to the rebels (15.27%), it would sum up to 38.18% of the national army, which is exactly the percentage share of the Dinka proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.

Equally, the sum total of the Equatorian soldiers in the interim national army would be 31.82%, the Nuer 19.33%, and the Minority Group 10.65%, all of which are exactly their percentage shares proportionate to the percentage of the total population of South Sudan.


Indeed, the application of a tribocratic dispensation to the hurting stalemate of the Addis Ababa peace talks would untangle the deadlock over power sharing ratios and security arrangements in the most logical and effective way possible.

However, the lingering question in the mind of the reader is: why would the warring factions—the government under President Kiir and the rebels under Riek Machar—embrace the tribocratic dispensation as the best way to solve the political deadlock and security impasse in Addis Ababa?

Let’s begin first with the armed rebel leader, Dr. Riek Machar: what is his main interest in the current conflict and what are his core challenges to achieving that particular goal?

Contrary to his public utterances that he is fighting for political reform and democratic transformation in South Sudan, Riek Machar’s short-term political interest is to get himself back into the government as the first vice president or prime minister of the Republic of South Sudan.

His long-term goal is to capitalize on his position within the interim government to endear himself to and gain more political support from all sections of the South Sudanese society in order to win the next presidential election at the end of the transitional government.

The main political challenge bedeviling Riek Machar, since the days of the 1991 Nasir Coup, is the tag of “Nuer leader”. The Nasir coup fell apart and Riek Machar had to surrender to Khartoum precisely because he failed to get political and military backing from other South Sudanese communities with the exception of the Nuer—his tribe.

In this current war, Riek Machar has only succeeded in mobilizing the Nuer nation. While there are some few Dinka and Equatorian and Minority Group within the rank and file of the rebel movement, the fact of the matter is that about 99.99% of the armed men fighting and dying on the rebel side are Nuer. More than 99% of the rebel leadership is Nuer, too.

Naturally, Riek Machar is a Nuer leader in charge of a Nuer movement fighting for the interest of the Nuer community in the Republic of South Sudan. Chances of a Nuer leader—riding on the wave of the white army and the Nuer political backing—actually winning the next presidential election are very slim, if not utterly impossible.

Therefore, the most logical favor that Riek Machar can do himself is to wean himself off the ideology of Nuerism. This is informed by the fact that if Riek Machar can’t take power by force when the Nuer, in his own bragging, were “80%” of the national army, then the military option is out of the question.

Given what happened on December 15th, it is inconceivable that there will ever be another day that the Nuer would be “80%” of the South Sudan national army.

Consequently, for Riek Machar, the only road leading to the presidency is the democratic means—of ballot rather than bullet. In highly tribalized nations like South Sudan, the size of the community of the aspiring leader does really matter.

Those from larger communities do have better prospects of winning the presidency relative to those from smaller ones.

Unlike his arch-rival President Kiir whose ethnic constituency constitutes about 40% of South Sudan national population, Riek Machar’s ethnic community amounts to around 20% of the national population.

Riek Machar, for that reason, needs more support from the Dinka, the Equatorian, and the Minority Group than Salva Kiir. That is to say, on the surface, Riek Machar has more reasons to embrace and advocate for the tribocratic dispensation as a power sharing mechanism in Addis Ababa than President Kiir.

Tribocracy will give Riek Machar a much-needed foothold within the political constituencies of the Dinka, the Equatorian and the Minority Group. Through tribocratic dispensation, Riek Machar can redeem himself—changing from being a Nuer leader leading a Nuer movement for Nuer interests to a South Sudanese leader leading the South Sudanese people for national interest.

His political base in the interim government would shift from its current predominantly Nuer army and Nuer political base to 38.18% Dinka, 31.82% Equatorian, 19.33% Nuer and 10.65% Minority Group. Once his core supporters are fairly distributed all over the Republic of South Sudan, Riek Machar will definitely have a better shot at the presidency than at any time in the living history of South Sudan.


How about President Salva Kiir: what is his overriding interest in the current conflict and what are his cores political and security challenges?

Contrary to his public declarations about the sanctity of a constitutional government, President Kiir short-term political interest is to lead the interim government while his long-term interest is to win the forthcoming presidential election at the end of the provisional period of 30 months.

However, his main challenge is how to prevent the Nuer from re-dominating both the government and the army in the forthcoming transitional government of national unity.

Before the dissolution of government in July 2013, the Nuer, who are around 19% of South Sudan national population, reportedly made up about 70% of the national army and were more than fairly represented in the government. The vice president was a Nuer, and so was the chief of general staffs, the minister for defense, and the minister for justice.

Of the three sectors of the South Sudanese national army, two were (and still are) headed by Nuer, and of the eight divisions of the national army, about half were occupied by Nuer. The number of Nuer ministers in the government was more than 19%, their proportionate percentage relative to the national population.

The main challenge confronting President Kiir now is twofold. Firstly, President Kiir will try to prevent the re-domination of the national army by the Nuer, a security scenario that the government believes contributed to the outbreak of the war in December 2013.

Secondly, with most of the top Nuer politicians still on the side of the government, it would be a dizzying dilemma for President Kiir to satisfy his Nuer allies without creating a precarious situation where the Nuer dominate the transitional government politically.

In addition, President Kiir’s political and security dilemma is complicated by the fact that while the rebels are predominantly Nuer, there are still many Nuer soldiers and senior politicians on the side of the government.

First and foremost, the number of Nuer politicians coming into the transitional government plus those already on the side of the government would obviously mean that the Nuer would get more than their fair share of the transitional government.

The application of tribocracy would enable President Kiir to kill two birds with one stone—scale down Nuer political representation in the interim government without appearing to have betrayed his Nuer allies who have stood steadfastly on his side.

Unlike the Dinka and Equatorian and Minority Group on the side of Riek Machar, President Kiir’s allies have mobilized sufficient political and military manpower in the current conflict. Hardly any member of the Dinka, Equatorian and Minority Group are fighting and dying on the side of the rebels while thousands of Nuer, Equatorian and the Minority Group are fighting and dying on the side of the government.

The best thing one can say about those Dinka, Equatorian and Minority Group members supporting Riek Machar is that they are simply camping in foreign capital cities while the Nuer are the only ones fighting and dying in the war against the government.

In sharp contrast, about 25% of the government forces could still be Nuer, fighting and dying mostly in and around Bentiu, Nasir, Malakal and Renk. What this mean is that without the application of tribocratic dispensation, the Nuer soldiers (the rebels plus those who elected to remain on the side of the government) could still be more than 70% of the national army during and after the interim period.

Discernibly, President Kiir and his camp would feel threaten by that reality given the alleged failed military coup launched by Riek Machar on 15 December 2013. President Kiir has every legitimate reason to worry about the re-domination of the national army by the Nuer not least because of the ethnic dimension in the present civil war.

Indeed, in May 2013, Riek Machar ominously hinted at the possibility of violence and reportedly boasted to Akshaya Kumar, a Sudan and South Sudan policy analyst with the Enough Project in Washington DC, USA, that President Kiir “should know that the army is 80 percent Nuer.”[6]

One of the security guarantees that the IGAD-led peace talks in Addis Ababa should sufficiently address is a scenario whereby political leaders like Salva Kiir and Riek Machar resort to using the national army to advance their political ambitions.

The best—and the fairest—security guarantee is to divide the national army among the four major tribes—38.18% to the Dinka, 31.82% to the Equatorian, 19.33% to the Nuer and 10.65% to the Minority Group. For President Kiir, this will solve the security quandary about the re-domination of the army by the Nuer.

And while the question of the white army, Mathiang Anyoor and Dot-ku-Bany, plus other ethnic-based militias, has been a deal-breaker in Addis Ababa, under tribocratic dispensation, the question would be about the maximum number of soldiers in the national army that South Sudan can economically maintain, which would then be smoothly carved up according to the tribocratic ratios.

The main concern would be that none of the four major tribes should be allowed to exceed their respective percentage share of the national population according to the official results of the May 2009 Sudan fifth population and housing census.

Most importantly for President Kiir, who has been touted by the rebels as a Dinka president of a Dinka dominated government protected by state security apparatus run by Dinka men, the application of tribocratic dispensation will free him from creeping “Dinkocracy” in the Republic of South Sudan.

In readiness for the next presidential election at the expiration of the transitional government of national unity, President Kiir will have a well-entrenched political base among the Dinka, the Equatorian, the Nuer and the Minority Group.

Combined with the trappings of the incumbency, tribocracy will enable President Kiir to stride ahead of his political contenders such as Riek Machar, Pagan Amum and Madam Rebecca Nyandeng in the next presidential race.


Through tribocratic dispensation, the South Sudan people can amicably and satisfactorily unravel the frustrating logjam of the South Sudanese peace talks in Addis Ababa. Because tribocracy works like a machine, everything is predictable, and everything is preordained.

Certainly, tribocracy is the most equitable way to allocate power in a power sharing transitional government because each representative of the Dinka, the Equatorian, the Nuer and the Minority Group would hold a number of interim government posts—political and military ones—proportionate to the percentage of the total population that each of these particular four tribes represents in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Naturally, this would be a free and fair system of power sharing. Justice would be done because each political camp would be allocated its fair and rightful share in the transitional government of national unity as predetermined by their population size. No political group would feel unjustly marginalized in the political, economic and security aspects of the interim government.

Political stability would ensue; peace and national development would flourish and the evils of the tribalized war that have been battering South Sudan would be greatly blunted.

Holistically speaking, each of the four tribes would represent its fair and just share of the national government, politically and militarily. Hence, the question of Dinka domination, the threat of Nuer rebellion, the resurgence of Equatorian neo-kokora-ism, and the marginalization of Minority Group would be resolved, once and for all.

Surely, an interim government in which the Dinka represent 38.18%, Equatorian 31.82%, Nuer 19.33% and the Minority Group 10.65%—both politically and militarily—is truly a transitional government of national unity.


PaanLuel Wël is the Managing Editor of PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB). He can be reached through his Facebook page, Twitter account or email:


[1] “The Minutes of the Historical 2004 SPLM Meeting in Rumbek” in “The Genius of Dr. John Garang” edited by PaanLuel Wël (2013).

[2] Bullet or Ballot: Resolving the Burgeoning Conflict in South Sudan—Part 1, 2 and 3, by PaanLuel Wël (2014)

[3] The Hurting Stalemate of the South Sudan’s Peace Talks—Part 1 and 2, by PaanLuel Wël (2015)

[4] Heated Debate over Security Arrangement in Addis Ababa, 1 March 2015, on website.

[5] Heated Debate over Security Arrangement in Addis Ababa, 1 March 2015, on website.

[6] Unmade in the USA: The Inside Story of a Foreign-Policy Failure, by Ty McCormick who is an associate editor at Foreign Policy magazine in the USA, (March 2015)

Unity or Federalism (PDF)

By Mayak Aruei Deng, USA

March 4, 2015 (SSB) —  The beautiful history of the Republic of South Sudan that many martyrs have died for has been tainted at the last part of the long struggle. There is no crucial time than this, and all of you must come out of your hiding and share the pains with your country-persons. It had been a terrible year of senseless war, your dads are equally responsible for the ongoing conflict in the Republic of South Sudan.

This letter is directed to you because South Sudan has been run by your fathers, and any future moves that you will make will be scrutinized by South Sudanese, especially your educated age-mates who witnessed every bit of the conflict. I personally don’t know how many of you are out there, but you should be handful of you.

To the readers, this letter was written in both first person and third person tone because it is a letter and a message to children of Elites the South Sudanese. Just tune the wires and enjoy the glitches!

The fate of South Sudan is very uncertain, and all citizens are rambling to find a viable solution to the stalemate caused by tribal hatreds. At the forefront are warlords, and who have been known throughout the liberation struggle as key holders to peaceful and stable South Sudan. What does not adds up though is their disconnection with realities of the modern State.

In your independent capacity, all of you(readers and kids in question) are presumed to be politically conscious and should be reading South Sudanese’ minds around the clock. Getting to the bottom of all the unfortunate events in South Sudan require heavy weight political and social Machines to refuel for a day-long hard labor.

There is going to be time where you will recognize the importance of South Sudanese and their togetherness. The slaughtering of many innocents by the opposing armies has diminished our nation’s capacity to accelerate needed developments or heal the wounds. Any person of a sounds mind would be compelled to ask for forgiveness from the citizens, and for peace to take its course.

There comes the need for concerned citizens to let people think of individuals who can change the political landscape should they choose to be part of the equation. But, being wary of you is something legitimate, and well entertained by supporters on both sides of the political spectrum.

An African proverb/saying in Kiswahili goes as follows: “mtoto ya nyoka ni nyoka.” You may turn out to be like your dads, and we(South Sudanese) have rights to know you and be very ready for discomforts that you may cause.

Diverging from the pinpointing, some people will be asking this question: what does Kiir & Riek’s political rivalry and it subsequent arms race has to do with their children? Well, their children are grown up, and their fathers’ political Goldmines are their lifetime treasuries. So, they should be part of whatever is going on in the Republic of South Sudan. Had South Sudan been ruled responsibly by their dads, they would have slide into highest seats with little or no resistance from the general public.

And for that reason, South Sudanese want to see what they(kids) are capable of, especially in time like this when most citizens, flailed by the war are out of touch with nationalism. Their(kids in question) busy lives should not make them invisible from the general public views. Who told them that children of nation’s leaders are to be off political radars? Unfortunately, something is terribly wrong with children of elites in South Sudan or may be Africa in general.

For the most parts, some of those kids are busy with foreign born partners(exotic lovers), and Kiir and Riek’s children have been involved in that same episode. However, that is not the theme of this article, but it has to be touched because their political future centers around what they do now, and for sure records is very loud in that regard. But, let’s have mercy on them and try to have them on the good side of the nation’s history.

Next to the an unmarked graves of all martyrs, you(kids) are the light or should be the light of South Sudan. You know/should know very well that South Sudan was won after enormous sacrifices, and some children whose fathers perished fighting successive Khartoum based regimes have not be given the benefits their fathers died for.

Mind you, this is not an inherited throne, and should not ring in your minds as such. There are so many twists that take place in all corners of life, and some unnoticed events may carry huge political prices. I am still wondering what you make of your juniors(young boys across South Sudan) being made to fight unnecessary war? It is very true that your fathers have made lots of sacrifices, and in the name of the Republic of South Sudan minus the ruins they have inflicted on the new republic, and as of recent years.

Knowing you only through the incidents laid above(marrying foreign nationals and causing troubles at your families’ Mansions) raises some questions as how you would be regarded comes that time? If President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and President Barrack Obama of the United States of America are using social media to get their political messages across, then why not you? But hey, it is your choice, if you want to be hiding forever, then it’s your choice & you definitely owns it.

The major concern as we go through the many catastrophes caused by the two leaders(Kiir & Riek) is how to get citizens back on track. There is no doubt, everyone know that leaders comes and go, and their legacies, bad or good remains part of nations’ histories. And for sure, President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar are not exempted from the repetitive nature of the world’s politics.

In my mind are President Apollo Milton Obote and notorious President Idi Amin Dada of Uganda. They both reigned over Uganda, toppled themselves, and have been toppled forever. If you don’t catch up with your fellow South Sudanese, you will be looked/booked down as enemies of the State(South Sudan), and your families will be woes just like those historical/prominent families in neighboring Uganda. Do not let huge supports that your dads enjoyed across the nation galvanize your takes in the conflict.

As far as political maneuvers are concern, records revealed that there will be no stability under your fathers, and if you don’t speak up now, or do something that would distinguish you from your fathers, then the little they have done will be shattered after the war. You shouldn’t be hit hard, but your influences in nation like South Sudan is needed now, and you surely do need to get involve before the light goes off.

Believe it or not, President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar are about to sign a historic Peace Accord in South Sudan, but that would not solve, not even a single problem. Since the beginning of this week(first week of March, 2015), and as deadline is approaching, South Sudanese around the world are eagerly waiting to see outcome of the last round of peace talk. It should be noticed that level of mistrust is really very high, and that bitterness is likely to cause more unrests should the warring parties attempt to mishandle the remaining items of the Peace Agreement.

Moving downward, charming devils from the deadwood was a superstitious practice that saved some lives, but no longer make sense to the educated masses. Just like other fragile States, politics in South Sudan is too fluid, and uncertain to some to extents. Back to the physical world, there is no reason to prick you too hard, but beware that your native land is in serious political and military crisis.

Of course, there are other elites kids in the country, and whose parents are instrumental in the wrecking of the country, and you lead the way. As a nation, we are searching for the right medicine to treat our beloved nation, severely wounded at the course of installing illegitimate democracy. Here is how you can/should be instrumental: connect with South Sudanese youths around the world, discuss the way forward, organize charities works for the displaced persons in South Sudan, raise money for the desperate South Sudan children and have a delegation visit those children on your behalf.

There are lots of gears shifting going on in South Sudan, and I just wish some of you should be part of the whole wobbling in a better way. Be informed that South Sudan is very different now, there are many educated folks who are politically informed, and if you don’t do something now, then things won’t be on your side.

Lastly, it doesn’t hurt or should never freeze balls for me to throw out some friendly advices, even though I don’t know who you are and what your future preferences are. I only learned about some of you when it was reported that Riek Machar’s son(Teny) got married to a Polish girl, Kiir Mayardit’s daughter (Adut) married to Ethiopian national, a drama that sent some vocal Reporters to jails temporarily, and for talking about the President’s daughter exotic love.

In the midst of the ongoing war, Kiir Mayardit’s son(Manut) reportedly threatened family members in Nairobi, Kenyan police was called in & was booked in, later released when the whole thing went viral on the social media.

Now, you have learned the little I know about you as a private citizen. Again, waiting until your fathers finished with the wrecking of the nation or whatever they are doing to the nation of South Sudan is a terrible political drawback, and somebody got to give you a hint before the River dry up. Whichever the case, South Sudan is your country, and all of you should embrace Peace under all circumstances.

Also, remember that every generation has its elites, and you may be elites of your generation or be locked out completely. If there are folks who read or scan the net on your behalf since money can do almost anything, then let them take all issues as national agendas, and not act as personal defenders/spy agents!

Overall, SOUTH SUDAN is now a battlefield where regional and international players just want to settle their differences. The Reserve(Oil and rare minerals) that we have beneath the blessed Land invites woes to engage themselves, and far away from their homelands. If this article reach you by any chance, then you ought to consider finding exit strategies for your dads. They have done more than enough damage to the nation of South Sudan, and they should leave politics as soon as situation allows.

There is nothing personal here because I don’t know you, but positions occupied by your families in South Sudan make people to think about you, and in your hiding places. The reason as to why you were paired in this article is because every problem has two sides, and it happens that your fathers are the opposing sides of the ongoing conflict in South Sudan. When Southern Sudanese, now South Sudanese took charge of their nation/portion of SUDAN, your dads hit a jackpot, and wasted time touring the world of wonders.

With that being said, nobody is charging you with any wrongdoing, but your political future rests on what your fathers have done. Therefore, your voices, especially in critical time is needed or nobody will listen to you in the near future. Enjoy yourselves to the fullest, but remember that South Sudan need everyone input, and you should not be left out.

Cheers ladies and gentlemen!

This letter was written by Mayak Deng Aruei, a doctoral student in Organizational Leadership: Organizational Development. He is the author of ‘Struggle Between Despair and Life: From Sudan Marshland Village, Child Soldiering, Refugee Camp and America.’ He can be reached at

By Deu Lueth Ader, South Sudan

Born-to-Rule Mentality: President Kiir and his former Vice President, Riek Machar, in their reigning days

Born-to-Rule Mentality: President Kiir and his former Vice President, Riek Machar, in their reigning days

March 4, 2015 (SSB) —  A long awaited peace deal which was scheduled to be finalized on the fifth of March 2015 has been jeopardized by the adamant position of the parties.

The issue of separate armies during the Interim Period has become a contentious point upon the resumption of peace talks between the warring parties in Addis Ababa something which dashed hopes which were enthusiastically high among the people.

The successive series of talks in the Sudan then inherited bad illusions in our politicians, the art of Negotiation is either not been taught or intentionally ignored by the negotiators who are representing the parties. For the peace settlement to come, a conducive atmosphere must be created by the parties for the sake of peace, the success of every negotiation is to show a steadfast commitment for peace, Negotiation is a win-win game and to be a part of win-win game it requires from both sides to open a room for compromise, both parties must put concessions in order to expedite peace process.

The issue of separate army during the proposed Transitional Period becomes a stumbling-block before IGAD and it is totally fallacy; peace would not be achieved by IGAD alone if the warring parties are not committed to bring about peace in the country, the international efforts to end the war now began to regress and may resort at the end of the day to imposition of sanctions.

Dear readers and analysts what is the logic behind the bars in regard to the rebels’ demand for separate army during the Interim Period? The reunification of the SPLM factions initiated by the CCM in Arusha Tanzania has been welcomed by all SPLM factions. Is the SPLM/A not one face of the same coin, if the factions agreed to reunify the party then why not army which is the same SPLA whether in-opposition or in-government?

I suspected something to have infected the rebels’ leaders; their demand is retrospective, they thought to have experienced series of agreements in the Sudan then being dishonored due to amalgamation of the Anya-Nya 1 into National Army and the consequences followed by after amalgamation process. To this trepidation, the rebel’s leadership thinks that they should have their own army to secure the implementation of the Agreement.

But the Issue of Anya-nya1 and what is stipulated in the CPA are totally different with the current peace process; Any-nya1 was fighting under the name “South Sudan Liberation Movement/Army” (SSLM) with the objectives related to secularism which were contrary to the system of governance in Sudan by then. However; it made the SSLM deserved to be granted an autonomous with the amalgamation of the Any-nya1 personnel.

For the case of SPLM/A it was somehow alike to the former Anya-nya1 style but due to some lessons learnt in regard to the Addis Ababa Accord abrogation, some Modifications were added for the success of the Movement. SPLM/A was fighting under the pretext to liberate the whole Sudan but the intrigue was a quest for Secession of South Sudan which has been materialized on the 9th July 2011.

The author has to elucidate such an experiences in order for rebel leadership to find itself in which angle does it fall, the issue of separate army is an immature demand specially for a Movement believed to have been composed with predominantly one tribe. So the demand must commensurate the status quo; is South Sudan indeed in need of two armies in such fragile situation?

Rebel’s leadership must rationally think such that a robust out let is engendered, good-and-free will ought to be offered, a war which is being waged is a brotherly war which needs open minded for the sake of suffering civil population.

So you should relinquish your position of separate army should you yearn for a real peace that will end the war instead of emasculating the regional and international efforts, the author is urging both rebels and Government to sideline the grudges of being mocked by X or Z and usher the way forward.

The delay tactic such that war continues would be to the detrimental of the social fabric. You need not to embed in something which may jeopardize the peace process otherwise the suffering of the whole nation would be counted on you.

The ideas expressed in this article are author’s position and are nothing to do with political dimensions, and he can be reached at, 0914527127    


The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from.

By Garang Atem Ayiik, Juba

South Sudan's coat of arms, in which the eagle symbolizes vision, strength, resilience and majesty, and the shield and spear the people’s resolve to protect the sovereignty of their republic and work hard to feed it.

South Sudan’s coat of arms, in which the eagle symbolizes vision, strength, resilience and majesty, and the shield and spear the people’s resolve to protect the sovereignty of their republic and work hard to feed it.

March 4, 2015 (SSB) —Today, 3 March 2015, as hope hangs in peace talks in Addis-Ababa between warring SPLMs to put South Sudan back on peace trajectory, International Growth Center sponsored a 2 hours lecture in Crown hotel by Prof. Barbara from Columbia University.

The lecture centered on challenges facing South Sudan Public Service since independent in July 2011; provides comparative experiences of other countries; and suggested possible policy options base on public service realities and context of South Sudan.

The seminar was timely in the sense that it provided participants opportunity to reflect on the past, present and future. It was a period of reflection and in fact, time for despair and hopelessness, though chair Dr. Luka tried to restore hope by zooming in pieces of achievements in public service, the conclusion was that professionalizing public services is another mountain to climb.

As always, some participants tried to justify lack competency and services delivery with old phrase of ‘young nation’ and we have to crawl first. The reason why South Sudan will never grow old or crawl from Public Service performance can be view from three-perspectives.

First, the system is crowded with retarded Arabic oriented employees, and with English language as medium of communication after independence, ability of these employees to learn and deliver has been disable.

Secondly, many officers incivil service were deployed from army with little emphasis on their educational background, experience and ability to perform in Public Services. With possible background in liberation or integration from other armed groups, provided this group with comparative advantage to occupy mid and high level positions within Public Services their qualifications and experiences notwithstanding.

Thirdly, employment recruitment process has not been transparent. Access to employment opportunities are based on what Chinua Achebe called ‘whom you know not what you know’. This further, together with poor incentives prevent entrance of many young graduates that would blend the already existing rot in public service.

In 2011, I did a quick check of 33 graduates from my former University and not more than 5 were working for the government. Illustrating either government has closed its employment doors or it employment was not attractive.

Attempt has been made to do some reforms within public services, but from the seminar, it seem there were/are resistance from within. Obviously, the above early retarded-comers will not give way easily. Whether it is e-payroll, without right ability to put in place controls, management can over-run as accountants will like to call.

At some point, participants noted that reform program that was being headed by Madam Awut hit a wall when it was met with internal resistance. What is visible in public service is a system occupy by retarded, incompetent and any attempt to reforms will be resisted.

More worrying were numbers shown by Prof Barbara showing large spending in security with minimum non-revenue income. To put these numbers in context, Peter Biar, South Sudanese economist said oil as finite resource is projected to deplete in 2017. If oil get depleted, where will South Sudan finance its public sector he asked?

With this background in mind, it seem South Sudan is trapped in bloated, and ineffective public service. How will South Sudan gets out of this mess? From it early experience, negotiation ongoing in Addis-Ababa will not improve public service capacity. If anything, ability of public service will be compromise further, as new additional army come in, additional funding will be required. This will stretch resources’ envelop further.

In economic, human capital is crucial factor of production. Current peace negotiations might provide peace but will it enhance public service capacity? In this regards, there is need to look at problems in public services with more concern, care and where necessary pressure.

To bring peace and ignore public service is to cordons mismanagement

• There is need to have a structured negotiation on reforming public service. This negotiation must seek to professionalize South Sudan public services. What if stakeholders discuss and agree on key reforms within public services?

• Young South Sudanese must be given professional space in public service. Today, there are many young South Sudanese running the show in private sector. Why not retrench the retarded, and ineffective and replace them with young South Sudanese professional. If it is lack of money, can we get money from the budget or through other incentives mechanisms?

• As suggested by Peter Biar in the seminar, can South Sudan have two extremes?We can agreed to have an effective public service and ineffective army. In other words, transfer all unproductive civil servants to the army and professionalized the public services. It is harsh position but a call to do something with state of public service.

• South Sudan needs to create a link between research institutions, Universities and policy makers. Working in isolation, diminish synergy. Solution better be made in Juba and that is why preference treatment should be given to South Sudanese including those in diaspora.

• Establish a culture of performance base management. If everyone has job description, there is no reason why every employee cannot be held accountable for his duties. It is outdated to promote on age and years of services instead of content and delivery. South Sudan should know the world.

• There is need to improve the role of oversight institutions to reduce patronage, nepotism and bribery within public sector.

Garang Atem Ayiik is an independent economic commentator on South Sudan economic policy. He can be reached at


The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from.

By Michael Mading Akueth, Juba


March 3, 2015 (SSB) —  The citizens of Republic of South Sudan are consciously waiting for the two principals President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar to bring peace to the country.

There is a high assumption that if the two principals compromised and reach the peace agreement the country will be peaceful and life will return to normal which I think it is not absolutely true because the IGAD led peace process is not inclusive and fail to understand the dynamics of South Sudan conflict.

It is based on the assumption that SPLM in government and SPLM-IO are the only two actors in this conflict and if the two parties reach an agreement then the rest will surely follow and the country will be peaceful.

This is a myth, the government is not only formed by the SPLM; there others parties inside which are not being consulted much on the peace process which I think have an interest too. What will be their fate after peace agreement?

The mediators have not taken time to properly study the dynamics of the current conflicts and truly define the term peace which they tirelessly want to bring to South Sudan.

They should ask themselves several questions before they drafted peace agreement proposals; what type of peace do we want to bring to south Sudan? Who are other actors that we should include in the process? Do all the parties feel well represented in this peace talks?

In the ancient times historical literatures, the term ‘peace’ originates from the Anglo-French pes, and the Old French pais, meaning “peace, reconciliation, silence, agreement” But, Pes itself comes from the Latin pax, meaning “peace, compact, agreement, treaty of peace, tranquility, absence of hostility, harmony.”

Although ‘peace’ is the usual translation, it is an incomplete one, because ‘shalom,’ which is also cognate with the Arabic Salaam, has multiple other meanings in addition to peace, including justice, good health, safety, well-being, prosperity, equity, security, good fortune, and friendliness.

At a personal level, peaceful behaviors are kind, considerate, respectful, just, and tolerant of others’ beliefs and behaviors — tending to manifest goodwill.

In the view of the above definitions, which peace are we waiting? The communities are more divided than ever before and the hatred level is growing every day. Will there be harmony after peace agreement among the communities? What about the issues of justice for the victims? Will there be good security, prosperity, equity and reconciliation? Only God knows the best answers.

The political parties are divided and disintegrated into small unit which are only begging the two principals to remember them in their kingdoms.

With this huge pressure of sanctions on the South Sudanese leaders; I’m afraid, they will compromise and sign peace deal against their will which will not benefit any citizen in this country. This peace agreement will be done on the rush and fear of sanctions and it will definitely fail to meet minimum standard of sustainable peace.

IGADs and friends of South Sudan will leave South Sudan divided and disintegrated more than before because they did not diagnosed and prescribed good solutions for peace agreement. The country will miss another great opportunity to define honorable peace that could lay solid foundation for this nation.


The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from.

By Michael Mabior Mading

rssin mess

March 3, 2015 (SSB) —  Was the independent of South Sudan co-incident, the best option or choice for the people? No, I personally doubted, because they way each and every one behaves currently in this country, dose not shown any sign of those who were prepare to receive a new born country. I thought, the independent was a co-incident, nobody was ready for it, otherwise people would have not behaved the way they are now.

In many cultures in South Sudan, when expecting to receive a visitor, there is a manner you conduct yourself and even the way things are done in that family, so that the visitors do not see the  weakness that existed in that family.

For the case of our new nation, it become contrary to South Sudanese and African cultural way of doing things.  People behaving in a way which shown that, South Sudanese people were not ready to receive the new nation, something’s our great grandfathers struggles to get for more than 100 years, but in vain.

We, this generation in South Sudan after getting our independent in 2011, I thought and I said, we are a blessed generation by achieving independent of our country, after our forefathers long period of time of struggles, but couldn’t make it.

When seeing things going this way after independent, I began asking myself, is this independent we were fighting for? Could it be a curse or blessing? But I did not have any answer up to now, because South Sudan seems to be like falling apart, because the future of this country is not clear after the December 2013 failed coup attempt.

I personally came convinced, and am even more convinced every day I see things going in different direction that, if something is not done to resolve the current crisis, then South Sudan will tear apart.

Did anybody learnt from our Hero Late Dr, John Garang about problem solving Technic? Was there no good learner among those and currently leaders who were in the busy? I thought Garang taught many of them on problem solving Technic and if there is none, then the chances of losing this nation are very high.

Given the current crisis and how it is being handled, I came to realized the reason why many people cried a lot when late Dr, John Garang died in Helicopter crash. Many people lost hope after Garang death that, there will be no what is so called South Sudan again, because many people had a belief that he was the only visionary person who can bring a total peace and freedom to this nation. And I am strongly agreed with those who had those beliefs.

Though, he did not brought the peace to the country alone, I came to believed that, if it was not him, there could have not been what is so called South Sudan today.

After his death, I came to believed that, Garang was the only one who was having eye to see among the leaders during the struggle, and to improve it, you can see what is currently happening in this country.

Whether you judge me wrong or rights, the truths must be said, the independent though we all celebrated in 2011 with happiness and proud to have achieved our mission, there are those among our currently leaders who were not ready and prepared to receive the new nation. In short, there is a prove that, majority of South Sudan people voted for separation unknowingly without knowing what it mean to have an independent state.

To conclude my point, I wanted to ask all the readers, was independent of South Sudan a co-incident or best choice from the people of South Sudan?

you can reach the author: Mabior Mading <>


The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from.