Archive for February 19, 2015

Breaking News: Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang Arrives in Juba Today

Posted: February 19, 2015 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Junub Sudan

lulruai

Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang, the former rebel military spokesperson who broke away from Riek Machar’s group yesterday on Wednesday, has arrived at Juba international airport today at 2.15pm.

He was received by top government officials led by chief of general staff, Gen. Malong Awan, among others.

Lul Ruai has accused Riek Machar of orchestrating a failed military coup in December 2013. He blamed Riek for dragging his feet on the ongoing peace talks in Addis Ababa.

Lul has formed his own party, South Sudan Resistance Movement/Army, the SSRM/A, which he said will directly and separately negotiate with the government with the goal to establishing a new state for the Greater Akobo area.

lul

Lul arrived today with David Yau Yau at Juba international airport.

The Enthronement of Kongor Diocese

Posted: February 19, 2015 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Contributing Writers, Featured Articles, History, Socio-Cultural

The Enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor

Revisiting the Role of the Church and the Purpose and Meaning of Christian Faith among the Jieeng Believers

By Abuna Nathaniel Athian Deng, Canada

Rt .Rev Bishop Thuc Agoth of Kongor Diocese together with two commissioner, twice East and Duk They where in Aliet Parish on first January 2015.

Rt. Rev Bishop Thuc Agoth of Kongor Diocese together with two commissioner, Twic East and Duk, in Aliet Parish on first January 2015.

Introduction

February 19, 2015 (SSB) —  A quest for answers amidst different life paradoxes and events results in tremendous shifts in how believers express their faith. Through the divine role of the Church, the Jieeng believers find the purpose and meaning of Christian faith and solace in God. Drawing significant examples from the enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor on February 1, 2015, this paper defines the name Kongor,which has been at the centre of complaint during the creation of the diocese, and describes the distinct roles of the Church among the Jieeng believers. The Church is both an institutional authority that gives moral and spiritual support, advocates for peace and unity, and stands up for the citizens against the marginalization and oppression and a divine entity through which God passes important messages that reveal His will among the believers.

What is in the Name Kongor?

As I explained in the first article, Unmasking the Assumptions and Misunderstanding about the Diocese of Kongor, nobody knows the circumstances that influenced Duk and Twic East politicians and civic leaders to name the new district Kongor in 1976. Similarly, nobody knows what factors prompted the campaigns to change the name Kongor to Bor North in 2004, then to Twic East and Duk counties in 2007. As a result of these changes, the name Kongor has been at the centre of complaint and controversy during the creation of the Diocese of Kongor. What then is in the name Kongor? This sections defines Kongor, its meaning and how it came about.

Mythological stories, particularly,the dispersion of Lith communities (Ayual, Adhiok, Abek, Kongor, Dachueek and Awulian) from Pakou (of Ajak Kur Ayuel), explain the meaning and origin of the name Kongor. After the dispersion from Patunduur, Lith communities settled in Pakou under the leadership of Ajak Kur Ayuel, while the two other Twic East sections of Ajuong and Pakeer communities migrated to their respective lands. After a long residence in Pakou, Lith members decided to move further in search of pastures and agricultural land. This was when Ajak Kur blessed and instructed one group, saying, “Kon Ngor”, meaning “Go First”, before other members would follow. The name of the first group to leave from Pakou, while Ajak Kur’s descendants remained in their present land, then became known as Kongor, meaning “Go First”.

There was no particular group that possessed or owned the name Kongor. In fact, few individuals such as Twic Ariem of Kuach section of Ajuong community, Ajak Kur of Paande Dabek section of Ayual community, and Ajak-Amot and Leek of Panwiir and Paleh sections of Kongor community, respectively, have been mentioned during the two phases of Twic dispersions from Patunduur and Pakou. The leader of Kongor group, the individuals that left Pakou, and how the name Kongor remained with the present Kongor community (Apioloc, Biödït and Padol) after the rest of Lith communities resettled to their respective places are unclear.

The ownership of the name Kongor is possibly synonymous with how the name Lith remained with Adhiok and Abek (the residents of Lith Payam). As aforementioned, Lith was initially a general name for Adhiok, Abek, Kongor, Ayual, Dachuek and Awulian communities. Currently, the name Lith has remained with Adhiok and Abek because Kongor and Nyuak (Ayual, Dachuek and Awulian) have formed their own separate identities or payams. There is likelihood that the name Lith will remain with one community between Adhiok and Abek.

From these mythological stories, the name Kongor was a common identity for the “Go First” Lith group that left Pakou during the immigration and settlement. In 1976, Kongor became a name for the new district (currently Twic East and Duk counties) that branched out of Bor. Twic and Duk leaders possibly based their choice of the name on the settlement stories. Because the Church embraced the names of the existing districts to name the dioceses, the Church authorities picked up the name Kongor for the area diocese that branched out from the Diocese of Bor. However, even after the enthronement, most Twic East members oppose the Kongor of Diocese with the excuse that the name Kongor belongs to one particular community in Twic East. It is undeniable that the name has remained with one community (Kongor) after the rest of Twic East communities acquired new identities. Does this mean the rest of Lith and Twic East communities should work hard for the demise of the name Kongor because they no longer identify with it?

A name is anything people choose to identify themselves. Once it is adapted, its original meaning changes whether to general or specific identity. That also applies to the name Kongor, and other Twic East communities that have left the name Kongor and their visitors and friends should be supportive because Kongor is keeping the joint legacy of Lith communities alive. They are partisans to this legacy, and nobody should wish they would have been there when the name Kongor came about, whether under the leadership of Ajak Kur Ayuel or Elijah Malok Aleeng.

The Significance of the Enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor

The enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor on February 1, 2015 stands out as a special social, religious, and cultural event among different groups and communities in Jonglei State, in particular, and South Sudan, in general. Around 10, 000 congregants, including the politicians and officials from different county, state and national governments, for example, the caretaker governor of Jonglei, John Koang Nyuon, and commissioners of Uror, Duk and Ayod counties, and church and community leaders, celebrated the day in Panyagoor. Some young men killed cattle (riong), a practice commonly done among the Jieeng when such important occasion approaches, to usher in the enthronement of the Diocese. Different community and church leaders and representatives and politicians from the state and federal governments gave moving speeches about peace and reconciliation among the communities in Jonglei. Muslims and Christians from different denominations and dioceses attended the enthronement and affirmed their moral and financial support to the Episcopalian congregation in the Diocese of Kongor.

The occasion also revealed the implications of lack of separation between the Church and the government and the subsequent reliance of the Church on the politicians and community leaders. For example, more politicians than clergypersons and congregational representatives gave administrative and political speeches. The interference of politicians in the Church affairs could make the Church misuse its institutional role. It should be noted that this proposition about the separation of duties does not discourage cooperation between the Church and the governments and communities at different levels. It recommends that the roles and responsibilities of the Church and the government should be distinguishable from, and non-manipulative on other. Generally, the enthronement has proven that religious activities can unite different groups.

The enthronement is usually the last occasion in the creation of new dioceses, such as the Diocese of Kongor. The congregation and friends of the Diocese of Kongor celebrated the provincial approval or confirmation of the diocese in Bortown on November 30, 2013, the inauguration or official certification of the diocese in Juba on October 11, 2014, the consecration of the diocesan bishop in Juba on November 30, 2014, and the enthronement of the diocesan bishop in Panyagoor on February 1, 2015. These procedures—provincial approval, inauguration, consecration and enthronement—are officiated according to the requirements of the Episcopal Church of the South Sudan and Sudan. In some cases, the Archbishop of the Episcopal Church takes over the diocese and supervises the new bishops before giving them full institutional authority over the diocese and other responsibilities which are given during the enthronement.

The Institutional Authority Role of the Church

The above procedures give legitimacy to the parishes, bishops and clergy, authorizing them to coordinate some of the activities that meet the needs of the believers and citizens under the umbrella of the Church. For example, during the concurrent and recurrent civil wars and tribal conflicts in Sudan from 1955 to 2005, the institutional Church stayed with the believers and citizens through the bishops, clergy, teachers, catechists and other personnel. The Church was the only institution which remained intact in the villages and in the refugee and internally displaced camps. The clergy provided moral and spiritual support to the believers, appealed for relief assistance from donors, followed the flock into the country side or in exile, and worked tirelessly to meet the needs of the citizens affected by persecution, insecurity and displacement.
To achieve these goals, the Church formed alliances with the governments and national and international non-governmental organizations. For instance, Bishop Oliver Allison of the Episcopal Church of Sudan, Bishop Augustino Baroni of the Catholic Church and other Church leaders founded the Sudan Council of Churches (SCC) on 29th January 1965 to work for peace, national reconstruction, Christian unity and solidarity in the face of state persecution. The SCC, together with the All Africa Conference of Churches (AACC) and the World Council of Churches (WCC), became consulting partners during the 1972 Addis Ababa peace negotiations.

After the SCC was restricted from operating in Southern Sudan, Bishop Paride Taban of the Catholic Diocese of Torit and Bishop Nathaniel Garang Anyieth of the Episcopal Diocese of Bor created the New Sudan Council of Churches (NSCC) by 1989 to take care of the people in areas under the control of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A). In addition, the Sudanese Relief and Development Agency (SUDRA), the relief and development agency of the Province of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan, played a significant role in providing food, shelter, clothing, clean water, and health and education services to the displaced persons.

In 1986, the international non-governmental organizations, such as Oxfam, Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) and Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA), and national agencies, such as SUDRA, Sudan Aid and SCC, jointly formed the Combined Agencies Relief Team (CART) to coordinate relief assistance among the civilians in different war zones. The CART was under the supervision of the government through the Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Association/Commission (SRRA/C). In the SPLM/A controlled, or liberated, areas, the Church cooperated with the organizations such as the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) to form the Church Ecumenical Action in Sudan (CEAS) by February 1996. The founding bishops admitted SCC and NSCC as members of the CEAS governing bodies.

The Episcopal and Catholic Churches worked more closely to promote the peace and support the work of SCC and NSCC until the two organizations merged into one agency in May 2007. Generally, the institutional Church delivered basic social and humanitarian services and provided leadership and security in the absence of government in the rebel (SPLM/A) liberated areas and stood up against the hostile government in Khartoum. The Church mediated local and national conflicts, playing a decisive role in giving the voiceless a voice in the international arena. The South Sudanese of all faiths looked to the Church for leadership, and the Church gained tremendous credibility and moral authority to play a public role in the nation.

Despite these accomplishments, leadership challenges, both internal and external, usually interfere with the activities of the institutional Church. For example, under the leadership of Archbishop Elinana Ngalamu, the Episcopal Church experienced leadership crises that lasted for six years from 1987 to 1992. The crises ensued when Archbishop Ngalamu refused to retire after serving for 10 years and attaining the age of 70 in 1986, as required by the 1983 Constitution. Bishop Benjamin Wani Yugusuk, who was about to take over the archiepiscopacy, and Archbishop Ngalamu, who had refused to give up the archiepiscopacy, ended up running two parallel administrations, claiming legitimacy and ordaining their loyal bishops. The Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey intervened and resolved the dispute in 1992. After returning to relative peace, the Episcopal Church created thirteen more dioceses in 1992 to accommodate the newly consecrated bishops for Torit, Lainya, Rokon, Rejaf, Ibba, Ezo, Port Sudan, El Obeid, Lui, Cueibet, Yirol, Malakal and Renk. The dioceses increased from 11 in 1986 to 24 in 1992.

Apart from the 1987 leadership wrangles between the Archbishops Elinana Galamu and Benjamina Yugusuk, another leadership crisis erupted in the Episcopal Church in 2003 between Archbishop Joseph Marona and Bishop Gabriel Roric Jur. After Gabriel Roric was appointed a minister in Khartoum government, the Episcopal Church authorities requested him to resign from his church duties, as required by the Constitution for all clergy who join politics. In response, Bishop Gabriel Roric disobeyed both the Constitution and the archbishop, defected from the Episcopal Church, formed the Reformed Episcopal Church of the Sudan (RECS), declared himself an archbishop of his new denomination, and started the search for followers.

When Gabriel Roric came to Kenya on December 28, 2003, he attracted three senior clergy: Daniel Dau Deng, John Machar Thon and Philip Angony Chol, who had disagreed with Bishop Nathaniel Garang’s reluctance to approve Kongor Area as a full diocese. Gabriel Roric ordained the three clergy as bishops in his new Church at Thika Chapel on Tuesday, April 13, 2004. On the same day, Gabriel Roric ordained seven defected bishops: Wilson Garang Chan, John Machar Thon, James Yuot Chol, Philip Angony Chol, Jeremiah Ayiei Mayuen, Daniel Dau Deng, and Abraham Mayom Athian. The defected bishops later disagreed with Gabriel Roric and formed their own independent Anglican Church of South Sudan in 2004. The bishops in the Anglican Church of South Sudan disagreed among themselves again and the new denomination ended up having two archbishops, Abraham Mayom Athian and John Machar Thon.

Bishop Peter Bol Arok led a second splinter group from the Diocese of Bor in 2005 after Daniel Dau, John Machar and Philip Agony had already defected in 2004. On April 13, 2004, Bishop Peter Bol Arok had declined the ordination and the call to join Gabriel Roric and his new denomination. Peter Bol could have defected with Daniel Dau and John Machar because the three shared the same concerns about the delay in promoting Kongor Area into a full diocese. However, Peter Bol hoped he had high chances to win the Kongor Area diocesan elections after his fierce competitor, Daniel Dau, defected from the Diocese of Bor. Daniel Dau and Peter Bol were the most senior clergy from Kongor Area (later changed to Twic East), who worked closely with Nathaniel Garang, and who were popular among the Kongor Area believers, both in the remote villages in Sudan and in displaced and refugee camps in Kenya and Uganda. Peter Bol eventually defected from the Episcopal Church, Diocese of Bor, on June 11, 2005 after Ezekiel Diing Ajang won the Kongor Area diocesan elections in 2004 and denied his challengers (Peter Garang Thieel Lual, Peter Bol Arok, Bartholomew Bol Deng, and Elijah Abuoi Arok) the responsibilities in the newly independent Kongor Area administration.

Nathaniel Bol Nyok led the third splinter group to Lutheran Church, away from the Diocese of Bor, after he lost the Bor diocesan election to Bishop Ruben Akurdit Ngong in 2011. Mark Atem Thuch led another defecting group after he lost the Twic East diocesan election to Ezekiel Diing in 2009. Mark Atem returned to the Episcopal Diocese of Twic East due to pressure from Twic East politicians, particularly his cousin Elijah Malok Aleeng who stood with him in 2005 after Peter Bol’s defection caused conflict among Nyuak communities. Since then, Mark Atem’s loyal group has remained in opposition against Bishop Ezekiel Diing in the Diocese of Twic East.

By December 28, 2005, there were many subdivisions within the Episcopal Church and among the defecting clergy members, leading to creation of four different denominations. These subdivisions include the Reformed Episcopal Church of Sudan (based in Khartoum with Gabriel Roric Jur as the archbishop), the Anglican Church of South Sudan (based in Rumbek with Abraham Mayom Athian as the presiding archbishop), the Anglican Church of Sudan (based in Bor with John Machar Thon as the presiding archbishop), the Anglican Church of Sudan (based in Wangulei with Peter Bol Arok as a presiding bishop for Twic East Area under the Anglican Church of Kenya) and the Episcopal Church of Sudan (based in Juba with Archbishop Daniel Deng Bul as the archbishop after the retirement and death of Archbishop Marona).

The cooperation among different groups during the enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor and the peaceful elections in the four elections of the dioceses of Athooc, Malek, Duk and Kongor signify some positive steps in the progress in the institutional Church. The leaders are learning better ideas about democratic leadership, and the believers and leaders are finally shunning the dictatorial tendencies that have crippled different African associations and governments.

The Divine Entity Role of the Church

The congregation of the Diocese of Kongor have had frustrating experiences in adopting the Christian faith. The first phase of Christianity in Kongor was thwarted with mysterious death of the first Christians, namely, the Equatorian Deacon (his name is not remembered) and three Kongor-born evangelists: Dau Deng Jurkuch, Diing Arok Kongor, and Kongor Duot Bior.

After Rev. Daniel Deng Atong (who had been ordained as a priest in 1941 and later as the first Sudanese assistant bishop in 1955) led the first evangelism to Kongor in the 1950s, he left the Equatorian Deacon among the Kongor believers in Pawel and returned to Juba. The deacon spent few days before he died a mysterious death: he did not spend a day after falling ill. The believers buried the deacon with much sorrow and Evangelist Dau Deng Jurkuch took over the leadership. Dau also died a mysterious death. After he went for fishing in Payai, his Anyang communal ancestral cattle camp, Dau was the first to step into the water then he remembered the people did not pray. He turned to the land, faced the people and while he was about to say a prayer, the hippo attacked him behind and cut his body into halves from the abdomen. Dau died in winter, around January, and Evangelist Diing Arok Kongor, who had assumed leadership of the Christians, also became sick and died in spring in the same year. In the fall, Evangelist Kongor Duot Bior, the last leader for Christians, died.

These sequential, mysterious deaths of their leaders frustrated the early Christians in Kongor, among whom there was a teaching—possibly a misinterpretation of the Christian teaching about resurrection—that the dead would resurrect with the new moon. The whole of Kongor community and the Christians waited for each of their Christian leaders, but none resurrected. As a result, many Christians in Kongor returned to the worship of Jieeng animist deities, such as Mayom, Akoi (Akoi-Maruur), Deng, Garang, and Abuk. None of the animist believers converted to Christianity until the third and subsequent phases of Christianity.

The second phase is characterised by the activities of the few Christians, such as Simon Thach Gaal, Tito Chuol Ayii, Nyoc Malang, Rebecca Lueth Wel, and Mary Achol Deng-Nuer. These Christians, most of whom were ordained as lay leaders in the 1970s, did not return to the worship of the animist deities because of their firm belief in God. They continued with their Christian activities, mostly at closed doors, until the third phase Christians joined them.

The third phase, which was pioneered by Nathaniel Garang Anyieth, started with evangelism from Khartoum to Duk-Padieet. After the Christians taught the Gospel in Duk, the elders proposed that they should not remain alone for fear that the evil spirits (jak) would finish them like the early Christians in Kongor. The evangelizing team then decided to leave one member in places where the elders and believers accepted their message and converted to Christianity.

Samuel Majok Deng remained in Duk-Padieet (Hol), Simon Majok Anyang remained in Duk-Payuel (Nyarweng), Joseph Akol Gak remained in Kongor, Simon Anyang and John Kelei Chiengkou remained in Bor, and Ezekiel Diing Ajang Malang and Hilary Garang Deng were sent to Bar el Ghazal in 1975. Christian women also took up greater responsibilities during this third phase. For example, Darukah Nyagaak hosted Majok Deng in Duk-Padieet and Sarah Achok Jok and Sarah Anoon Nuer hosted Akol Gak in Kongor. Tito Chuol Ayii, Rebecca Lueth Wel and Mary Achol Deng and other Christians in the second phase cooperated with the returning Christians. To support Christian activities, Bishop Benjamin Wani, the dean of the province, ordained Nathaniel Garang, and Bishop Kezekiah Barach Mabior ordained Ezekiel Diing, Hilary Garang, and Daniel Deng Bul and sent them back to Bar el Ghazal. After his consecration, Nathaniel Garang ordained other pastors, particularly, Samuel Majok Tuil, Mathayo Mabior Garang, Michael Ajang Mabior, Joseph Mabior Garang, and Simon Majok Anyang, and assigned them to different parishes in Bor, Twic East and Duk. It should be noted that although Christianity became preferable during the third phase in Kongor, fewer Jieeng believers converted to Christianity in the third phase than in other subsequent phases after 1991.

The kidnapping of Isaiah Chol Aruei, Jacob Aleer Longar and Mading Akueth interrupted the excitement after the enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor and triggered stressful reactions among the Christians. The incident happened immediately after the enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor, a historical and religious occasion that had brought together different groups to exchange ideas about peace and reconciliation and commemorate a final stage to a long journey that Isaiah Chol had devoted much effort. Like Sarah Achok, Sarah Anoon, and Darukah Nyagaak, Isaiah Chol had opened his home to senior clergy, including Daniel Dau Deng, Nathaniel Garang Anyieth, and Ezekiel Diing Ajang, in Kenya and in the displaced camps. Isaiah Chol’s involvement in the Dioceses of Bor and Kongor, including partaking in writing the letter to the archbishop where he and other nine representatives declared Kongor as a diocese in 2009 and welcoming the senior clergy in the Diocese of Bor, was not political. It has been his passion and responsibility to serve as a member of the congregation.
Among the Christians who see the world as a stage where each event is a manifestation of the plans of Almighty God, the release of the three believers was both a learning process and an opportunity to assess their faith and appreciate the divine intervention from Almighty God who tirelessly fulfills His plan for His people at His convenience. It revealed a healing intervention whereby God had approved the enthronement by affirming His powers over the animist gods who had formerly interfered with the spread of Christianity in Kongor.Like the September 7, 1997 incident in Chueidoor (Kongor) where God intervened by lightning and thunderstorm and stopped the war between the Jieng and Nuer, the release of the three detainees was the last intervention in the celebration of the Diocese of Kongor. God’s manifestation prevail among the believers in the divine role of the Church: their release was the answer to the prayers and fasting among different Christian groups who turned to God and denounced other divine powers (jak).

Conclusion

The enthronement of the Diocese of Kongor elaborates the distinct roles of the Church and the purpose and meaning of Christian faith among the Jieeng believers. As an institutional authority, the Church, through the believers, bishops and clergy, gives moral and spiritual support, advocates for peace and unity, and stands up for the citizens against the marginalization and oppression. As a divine entity, the Church is a vessel through which God passes important messages that reveal His will among the believers.

Leadership wrangles, that is, lack of knowledge about democratic leadership, negatively impact how Christians express their faith among the Jieeng believers. The above leadership struggles and other manifestations of institutional role of the Church highlighted in the first article about the inauguration of the Diocese of Kongor on October 11, 2014 are distinct from the divine role of the Church where God uses mouthpieces and theophanies to pass important messages that reveal His will among the believers. The Church lives on because it is a divine entity.

The frustrating experiences of the congregation of the Diocese of Kongor confirm that human beings are helpless creatures entangled between invisible powers. The overall impacts of such helplessness include the shift in cultural, religious and social values, all contributing to the sustenance of Christian faith and other opportunities for the believers to make informed choices about their own spiritual needs. Such experiential self-knowledge is a miraculous encounter with God and the subsequent transition from animist worship to Christianity among the Jieeng believers, whom God has called through miracles that are congruent to the believers’ own lives and experiences. When I put the manifestations in the first phase of Christianity and other subsequent phases among the Christians, I come to a self-reflection that there is One True God who is drawing humanity to Himself from all walks of life and who is taking over from other animist deities and powers who compete with God for human attention. I only could not tell with surety when all human beings will completely come to God. It may be during our earthly time. It may be after our earthly time. It may be that we are already living with Him: the divine Church.

References

Ashworth, J. (2012, May 20). A reflection on the New Sudanese Countries and Churches. South Sudan: Comboni Missionaries South Sudan. Retrieved February 15, 2015.

Deng Mayen, N. A. (2015). Christian Faith among the Jieeng: the Shift in Values, the Stages of Faith, and the Cultural and Religious Experiences of Jieeng Believers in the Episcopal Diocese of Bor. Denver, Colorado: Outskirts Press, Inc.

Tombe, Rev. Enock. 2012. “The Episcopal Church of Sudan in the History of Divided Sudan.”Comboni Missionaries South Sudan.

The writer, Athian Deng Mayen, is the author of “Christian Faith among the Jieeng: the Shift in Values, the Stages of Faith, and the Cultural and Religious Experiences of Jieeng Believers in the Episcopal Diocese of Borpublished in 2015 by Outskirts Press, Inc.

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from

Who is Lul Ruai Koang?

Posted: February 19, 2015 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Featured Articles, Reports

Radio Tamazuj: Outspoken ‘general’ never led men in battle

INVESTIGATIVE REPORT (31 Jan. 2015)

One of Riek Machar’s most outspoken generals in support of the SPLA-IO war effort has no record of frontline command experience and became a “general” without ever having led men in battle, according to an investigation carried out by Radio Tamazuj.

Brigadier-General Lul Ruai Koang, who serves as Riek Machar’s military spokesman, has been a vocal proponent of the use of violent means to overthrow the government of Salva Kiir.

He has authored numerous statements on conflict events that later proved to be unreliable, announcing in April, for example, the capture of Renk — a city that still remains in government hands — and in July announcing falsely a “major internal revolt” in Yei area.

Last December, he claimed SPLA-IO was responsible for an attack on civilian vehicles on the Juba-Nimule road — a claim his own movement almost immediately retracted — and he warned of further violence in the relatively calm region, declaring, “It has exploded today in Equatoria.”

In another inflammatory statement in April he claimed that “300 Nuer civilians” were killed on orders of a Dinka general in Gerger in Upper Nile, adding, “pregnant women had their stomachs cut open” and fetuses killed during the alleged massacre — which was not elsewhere reported.

In the same month, amid widespread fear and rumour following actual documented massacres elsewhere in the country, Lul used regional terms euphemistically for Dinka- and Nuer-inhabited areas announcing the beginning of an “imminent bloodbath” and “escalation” between the two sides, “perfectly pitting Greater Bahr El Ghazal against Greater Upper Nile State.”

In a report in October, Lul claimed that 52 Nuer government soldiers were summarily executed by their own colleagues and their bodies dumped in the Sobat River. Though he said SPLA-IO troops recovered the bodies from the river and buried them, the rebel group never offered any further evidence of Lul’s claim, and the alleged atrocity was not mentioned again.

Also in October, Lul boasted that SPLA-IO troops killed a Ugandan woman with a civilian ID card at a place called Zinc, claiming she was a soldier, while publishing also a photo of the bloated body of a man in apparently civilian clothing saying he was a Ugandan soldier killed at Doleib Hill, an area far from the Ugandan army’s declared area of operations.

Lul claimed these as “undeniable proofs that Uganda had heavily deployed forces in all the ten states of the Republic of South Sudan and that it’s not only confined to the protection of vital installations in Juba, Bor and Gadiang as previously reported or thought.”

Kenya

Throughout 2014 as conflict raged in South Sudan, most if not all of Lul’s media statements and interviews were made from Ethiopia or Kenya, where Lul used to live.

Born in the Lou Nuer territory in Akobo in Jonglei State in approximately 1973, Lul traveled to Kenya as a refugee during the previous civil war and lived there for a long period of time at Kakuma refugee camp, according to a Nuer source from Akobo.

He later attended Ruiru High School in Nairobi and graduated in 1999, according to his Facebook profile, then went on to attend the Kenya Institute of Management studying human resources management in the class of 2000.

For five years after completing his studies he worked in civilian roles with UN agencies in South Sudan, from 2003 to 2008. He told Radio Tamazuj that he worked for the UN Mine Action Service for two years, the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for two years, and the Resident Coordinator’s office for one year.

SPLA Administration

The circumstances under which Lul joined the SPLA are not entirely clear but multiple sources indicated that he first served in the SPLA ‘Red Army’ of child soldiers in the 1980s, left for a long time and then joined South Sudan’s peacetime military after the signing of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

According to a source at the SPLA headquarters, in the army general records there are no records of Lul Ruai being an officer from 1983 to 2005, the time of the war.

A Nuer political source from Lul’s home state Jonglei said that Lul joined the SPLA after the Comprehensive Peace Agreement as a junior officer. Another source said that Lul attended military training for officers at Malou and he was confirmed as a junior officer.

Lul Ruai himself acknowledged this in a later interview, saying he joined the army in 2008. He became an officer after training at Malou. He received further courses at Malou again in 2011 in the area of junior command staff.

Sources say that after his initial officers’ training, Lul worked in several administrative assignments including in the administration department at Magri along the Juba-Bor road and in the administration department in Western Equatoria.

According to Lul himself, he served in Division 2 from 2008 until 2012 in various roles including as head of administration in Brigade 9 in Kapoeta and also as an administrator at the Division 2 headquarters and as an adminstrator at Brigade 8 in Western Equatoria State.

“For the four years before I went for courses [in Ethiopia], I was an administrator in the army, I did military administration.”

Promotion to general

Sources provided conflicting information on whether Lul was promoted to the rank of brigadier-general by the South Sudanese army or by the rebel SPLA-IO, but the weight of evidence suggests it happened while he was still serving in the then-united SPLA prior to the 2013 split.

However, sources were unaware of why Lul was promoted and how. According to an SPLA source, Lul was sent to military college in Ethiopia at the rank of colonel, and only became a brigadier after defecting to the SPLA-IO in late 2013. This was also stated independently by a second Nuer political source, who said that Lul left Debre Zeit military college without graduating and defected at the rank of colonel.

On the other hand, by Lul’s own account, he became a general within just about two years of joining the army, saying he was promoted to the rank of brigadier-general in 2010. He said in 2013 he was sent along with another nine officers for studies in military science in Ethiopia, where he joined the rebel SPLA-IO after civil war erupted on 15 December 2013.

The SPLA source says nobody knows who promoted Lul to the rank of brigadier. An SPLM-IO source from Lul’s home area interviewed separately was was not able to name any postings in which Lul served as a field commander either before or after the December 2013 crisis.

“I am not sure where he worked as a field commander. I don’t know about the combats he fought as an SPLA officer,” he said.

Child soldiers, then and now

Sources pointed to Lul’s ‘Red Army’ involvement as a time when he may have gained military experience, though this would not have involved command experience. According to Lul’s own account, moreover, during most if not all of the time he spent in the Red Army he was still only a child. “I joined the army when I was about 13 to 14 years old,” Lul told Radio Tamazuj.

Specifically, Lul first was recruited by the Anyanya Two at Doleib Hill in 1987, the same year that many of the Anyanya Two joined the SPLA. In subsequent years, he was deployed with other child soldiers under several different commanders in various areas including for training in Ethiopia and near Juba during the Bright Star Campaign in 1991 and in Kapoeta town.

After the 1991 split and formation of the SPLA-Torit and SPLA-Nasser factions, Lul joined deserting forces under Wang Thiok Koriom on a march north from the Juba front. “We went to Liria, Torit and then Lofon, and from there we crossed the Tigling desert until we reached Waat area in October [1991],” Lul recalled.

Later he was released from his years of service as a child soldier by Riek Machar’s SPLA-Nasser faction and moved to Kenya for studies. He returned to Machar’s service more than two decades later, hailing a new war as another fight for freedom.


PAINFUL FACTS BEHIND ACHIEVING SUSTAINABLE PEACE AND COEXISTENCE IN SOUTH SUDAN

Dut-machine De Mabior, Nairobi, Kenya

February 19, 2015 (SSB) —  This is another topic that is very important for South Sudanese. We have been talking about how to clear the current political turmoil in our country without a clear picture of what we indeed need to do. We have not been clear to ourselves how we need to handle the crises to have the wanted peace in the country. We too have longed to coexist in our homeland yet we don’t know how to undertake the imperative topic that has dominated our social discussions.

My readership, we must accept some facts about how we found one another on this part of Earth. It wasn’t by anybody’s choice to be born a citizen of South Sudan. Neither was it my volition to have been born a member of the ethnic community that I belong to among the sixty-four tribes of the Great nation of South Sudan. After all, it’s true; we are only bound to choosing our opposite sex live partners but not our siblings. It’s up to the highest God to bring you a brother or a sister whom you are bound by the natural laws of socialism to love. This should be the case in our country. We did not choose to be brothers, we found one another there.

It’s important to let everyone know that our diversity is not our enmity but should be the source of our pride and indeed use it to withdraw our nationalism. How enjoyable would a national park be if every animal there is a baboon? Would this make any difference if the animals were all giraffes? To me, No! The different kind of animals that makes up the park makes tourism an entertaining practice. It therefore means that our greater numbers make us a proud nation all together. A leopard will be no more if you were to skin out all the black spots on it. Our diversity makes South Sudan an attractive nation just like a leopard with all its colours would look. Removing a people in our midst will course us dearly because we shall not have a nation thereafter.

We do not have an option in living with one another in this country. The people we were bound to choose whether to live with them were the Khartoumers. Oh! Yes; we made the decision to separate but do we have a choice whether to coexist with each other in South Sudan? I doubt! There is no a single day you will wake up and find that there is no Kachipo, Taposa, Jie, Shilluk, Moro, Kakua just to mention a few. It makes no sense when you have to pretend that one day you may inhabit South Sudan alone. It will never be no matter how much you may pretend to hate the rest. So I will rather recommend we as the nationals of this great nation begin to embrace one another because we are not parting ways. The earlier we unite the better so that we can achieve nation building.

It’s also wrong for those who have been blessed with numbers to infringe on the rights of others. The nation is incomplete without the ‘minority’. And therefore, we are equal stakeholders in South Sudan, the minority of us is as important as the majority of us. Besides, it’s not a slap or a stepping of the elephant that only kills. Even a mosquito bite kills. Yeah; this causes Malaria that results into death. So for as long as few members of our greater South Sudan are not satisfied, we shall never enjoy national pace and coexistence. Let’s realise that it is not by choice that we have to therefore respect the concerns of the minority because their cry will put our vision of national unity in jeopardy. This is not to say there will be no democracy; we must put our minds in the right way that guides us to enjoy democracy which is principled with respect for humanity, justice, leadership integrity and the rule of law. We shall have had then the rule of the majority through popular democracy and the wills of the minority catered for.

It’s unfortunate that we engage ourselves in the hatred that has plunged our country into what it is experiencing out of knowledge that we shall never part ways one find day. “Our diversity must be our strength and a uniting factor” we must also realise this far possibly that outdoing one another in the battle fields is just decreasing our population but the lasting solution lies on the negotiation tables. No matter how many years this war will continue, the solution will be found on the negotiation table.

Be on the standby for part 2

The author is a student of Electrical and Electronics Engineering in Kenyatta university; Nairobi Kenya.

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from

Why President Salva Kiir Mayardit Must Go

Posted: February 19, 2015 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Contributing Writers, Featured Articles, History

By Atem Kunjok, Canada
President Kiir on SSTV on December 16th, 2013, declaring that he had foiled an attempted coup by his former deputy, Riek Machar.

President Kiir on SSTV on December 16th, 2013, declaring that he had foiled an attempted coup by his former deputy, Riek Machar

February 19, 2015 (SSB) —  On November 8, 2014, I posted on my Face Book (FB) page this statement “Kiir Mayar Kuethpiny must go if the report of Sudantribune.com is true,”. The report questioned the retention of two separate armies in one country. This unfortunately generated some comments from relatives, friends, FB friends and some security personnel in the government of South Sudan. Most sent their concerns into my inbox, my email account and others phoned. Most of these concerns are about my safety.

As I spoke with some people from my home state, which happens to be the same state where President Kiir hails, people warned me not to go to South Sudan again. In my discussions I was saddened to hear some people labeling me a rebel supporting of former vice president Riek Macher.

I have been categorical and written and said numerous times and in various occasions that South Sudan neither belongs to President Kiir nor to former vice president Dr. Riek Machar. Writing this article will result into losing relatives and some friends, it may include threat to my life because I question the “Almighty Salva President Kiir Mayardit” and his relatives and friends.

I thank those who read the whole message whether they agreed with me or not. I respect their opinions regardless, and I expect that our blood relations or friendship should not hold my personal opinion hostage on national issues. I also thank those who are worried about my safety.

I hear you clearly but oppression of opinions, intimidation, and all sorts of death threats and/or actual killings did not deter South Sudanese people from expressing their disapproval of wrong-doings of various governments in Khartoum. Instead, South Sudanese became determined and fought for 38 years in total, which resulted into separation from the North.

Now, President Kiir and his group want to hold to power by bullets and so they sing a song of fair and free elections. These elections are going to be an endorsement of Presidency of Salva Kiir Mayardit by the group who treat his Presidency as Bridge Wealth to be shared among relatives and friends. Will President Salva Kiir go to Bor, Bentiu and Malakal and campaign there when he did not visit these people at the time of massacre in churches and health care centers?

I wish these elections were free and fair, I would have contested the Presidency of South Sudan and embarrassed President Salva Kiir with a 90% win but this will never happen because there will never be a free and fair elections under President Salva Kiir Mayadit.

However, questioning President Salva Kiir Mayardit’s mistakes amounts to questioning almighty god and the consequences include ban from going to South Sudan if one is lucky to be outside South Sudan. It seems these people want us to sing songs of praise when President Salva Kiir makes mistakes. It is like in the culture I grew up when lightning strikes any person, because it is assumed it is God’s act and people would praise God.

Some of us have known now that lightening is not God’s works but nature’s work. We believe that President Kiir is a human being who is capable of making mistakes and in fact he has committed a lot of them like any human being and worse, as authorized to lead the country to “Development, Prosperity and progress” the theme he ran for 2010.

To my Nuer friends who were surprised because of my objection to tribal commander-in-chiefs, yes, I also respect your opinions but I strongly believe this is a disaster in making. I cannot comprehend why most of you are so naïve to the extent that you cannot see the obvious. I have said this to many Nuer and Dinka relatives and friends alike, South Sudan has never and will never be ruled by the strength or might of a tribe – except by consensus.

Never will I support a rebel like Riek Machar whose mission is to destroy Dinka tribe because according him; this tribe is the obstacle to his leadership. Truth needs to be told. To my friend and security agent who asked me to study, I failed to understand the need for study here. Others jumped into conclusion blaming people in diaspora. Well, the people who started war in Juba on the 15th of December 2013 were not from diaspora but politicians and generals whose children and close relatives are all outside the country.

I had been to President Kiir’s house in Nairobi several times in 2000 and I witnessed how he lived. People who were in Nairobi at the time, are aware that low ranking officers of SPLM-A lived better lives than him, yet his determination to secure freedom for South Sudanese people was never shaken. Some wonder why I call President Kiir a Coward.

Let me be crystal clear, President Kiir has made sacrifices that are hard to imagine. Just to mention a few, Kiir abandoned his education and joined the first liberation movement at young age and fought for the country and the people of South Sudan. He understood the importance of liberation of his people and the country.

Instead of pursuing his studies and become Dr. Salva Kiir, he decided to put national interests above his personal interests. After the first agreement, he continued to serve his country as a military man to safeguard Addis Agreement. I am neither a historian nor a politician nonetheless; history of South Sudan must be fair.

President Kiir was one of the Anya Nya 1’s officers who worked underground to prepare conductive environment to launch another liberation movement and in the process became one of the founding members of SPLM-A, which fought various regimes in Khartoum for over two decades. President Kiir offered undivided loyalty to Dr. John Garang as Deputy Commander-in-Chief and deputy Chairman of SPLA-M. President Kiir rejected all calls to rebel against the cause of South Sudanese people, even when things did not go well.

In 2004, when he had disagreement with the chairman of the movement, Dr. Garang, President Kiir preferred reconciliation to forming his own SPLM-A like the disastrous August 28, 1991. There was lot of encouragement for him to break away from Garang who was seen as a dictator. President Kiir is called Joshua for a reason. It was under his wise leadership that South Sudan became an independent state.

However, President Kiir does not realize that he is doing the same thing he accused Dr. John Garang of – “dictatorship”. President Kiir issued a decree on July 23rd relieving Riek Macher from his position as vice president and now he wants to reward him with more powers after the death of thousands of South Sudanese. Kiir and Riek must be held accountable for the deaths of thousands of South Sudanese people. When he heard rumors in 2004 that Garang was going to replace him with Abraham Nhial Deng Nhial, he, President Salva Kiir was ready to fight for his position.

President Kiir knows Riek better than anyone else, what did he expect when he relieved him? Of course, war, now he wants to sacrifice all venerable Dinka people in greater Upper Nile, and by the way, my area borders Riek’s state Bentiu. Riek’s tribal militia has no rules of warfare, any Dinka, child, women, men elderly must be killed including people in places of worship or those dying in health care facilities.

It will be the end of Dinka neighboring Riek’s state, so instead of Dinka massacre again, it is better that Kiir goes and someone fight Riek’s ideology to destroy Dinka for his Nuer kingdom led by him. President is ready and willing to sacrifice everything and anything to stay in power.

I called Kiir a coward because tribalism, nepotism and corruption flourished in his government and he never dared to hold his ministers accountable. Instead, in 2012, he took the law of the country into his own hands and began to beg 75 people who stole 4 Billion US dollars to return some of those funds to the country.

Where in the world would a president of a country ask thieves to return stolen funds to the country? Worse, he created a secret account for the funds to be secretly returned. Yes, that is true.

Nowadays, even the leaders of religious institutions are paid or intimidated to get rid of anyone under their authorities seen to speak out against the government. Close relatives and friends treat Kiir Mayardit’s presidency as dowry or bride wealth to be shared among relatives and friends.

As elected president by all tribes including Nuer, Kiir did not condemn the killings of innocent Nuer people in Juba in a timely manner. Kiir failed to visit the victims in Bor, Makalal, and Bentiu, the very people who voted him into presidency. Kiir is now running to every country in East Africa trying to sign peace deal with Riek Macher.

I thought Wani Igga was a vice-president but it seems President Kiir does not see it that way and that is why the tribal militias are calling for removal of vice president’s position. If there is a person to negotiate with Riek, it must be Vice President Wani. When President was deputy chairperson of the SPLM-A, he led negotiating team in 2002 and signed some protocols of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Is this something to do with the tribal might? God save South Sudan!

My problem is that Kiir has now abandoned the cause he spent most of his life fighting for and resorted to rewriting the constitution of the country with Riek Macher. As I stated in my previous post, South Sudan neither belongs to Kiir nor to Riek Macher. These two men led the country for good 8 years with rampant tribalism, corruptions, nepotism and lack of services delivery.

It is time for South Sudanese people to rise up and have a new leadership that must be accountable to the people. Enough is enough. President Kiir, the problem are not the people who point out mistakes in your government, but those who put people in sacks and shoot people with impunity.

Let your security organs stop harassing people. You are president of South Sudanese people not few individuals close to you.

I end here with the quotation from President Salva Kiir December 1, 20014 in Rumbek during their reconciliation meeting with Dr. John Garang:

“I must warn the Chairman that Nimeiri was made to be unpopular by his security organs. Those who are misleading you and giving you false security information about others will suffer with you together or leave with you… Mr. Chairman, you have talked about people eating the boat while we are in the middle of the river. Let me add this; the issue is not eating the boat in the middle of the river. The issue is that there are a few who have already crossed to the other side of the river and when the remaining ones asked them to bring the boat, they refused to return the boat. This is the problem”.

This was President Kiir, deputy chairman by then speaking in Rumbek in 2004.

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. 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 Apioth Mayom Apioth, USA

Independence day celebration in Juba, South Sudan

Independence day celebration in Juba, South Sudan

February 19, 2015 (SSB) —  The recent outburst by Governor Bakosoro of Western Equatoria State in which he labelled Dinka people as a community that is always swarmed by trouble wherever they ventureis a concern to many in a nation that is still reeling in a political malaise.

The Dinkas, since the second Sudanese civil war that took off in the 1980’s, began to resettle the Greater Equatoria area after fleeing their homes in the Greater Upper Nile and Greater Bahr el Ghazal regions, and from that time onward, most of them have made the Greater Equatoria region their home.

During the war of liberation era, they specifically preferred the Greater Equatoria region because it was closer to Kenya and Uganda, where the humanitarian relief agencies had a greater accessibility to provide them foods and other basic necessities for survival.

And up to this very day, the Greater Equatoria region is still the place to be in that the East African economic giants of Uganda and Kenya haven’t moved elsewhere; they are still the preferred destinations to do business and where you send your children for a top-notch education. South Sudan imports most of its food commodities from Uganda. So the Dinkas want to be close to where the action is.

In your own “me” time and your mind happen to be wondering about, and just in a nick of time, you start to wonder “why” out of all people of South Sudan, why does the Dinkas love to stay here and not somewhere else? Can they be up to something we don’t know? Perhaps we don’t really have to think too much about why the Dinkas shouldn’t be living in the Greater Equatoria region at all; in fact, what we rather ought to do is to welcome them and see where this melting pot of friction will take us to.

Chances could be that, the Dinkas were brought to the Greater Equatoria by fate. Maybe the Dinkas came to the three Equatorias so that the people of this land could understand them better and this could also be a better opportunity to start on building something completely new. This could be the start of fusing communal alliances into new stronger coalitions, where we are many in diversity, but one in unity.

Since Salva Kiir took over after the passing of Dr. John Garang, many diverse array of tribes have been calling for an end to the Dinka domination in the government, and their calling has not gone unnoticed. Things could have been a lot worse had the Dinkas stayed in their home states rather than here in the three Equatorias.

Because that way, we can all tackle our problems head on and quickly arrive at solutions for a better South Sudan, where we earnestly yearn to create a conducive environment of abundant for all to benefit.

Perhaps what we should start on working on is to start to practice the culture of tolerance. We all came from somewhere, and for whatever reason, we happened to be living at the same place at the same time. All our cultures are vastly different and beautifully unique in their own ways. In the midst of this melting pot of friction, no one wants to give up her sovereignty of her cultural background in that we all want to be represented at any given time or place.

None of us wants to waste an iota of her time arguing about our differences, we all want to pull our lives together one way or another. Every culture in South Sudan is equally valid; let’s start on refraining ourselves from bloating out the inner stereotypical conditionings of our ethnic backgrounds.

Those inner urgings are the attitudes that offend the members of other tribal ethnic backgrounds. In Social Sciences, we are taught that cultures are human-made; and there is no nagging behemoth dispute to that, and more importantly, what we can at least slightly agree with, is that culture is one of the few societal phenomenal values that every individual in the world inherits.

It is not a private inheritance like a house you may inherit from your parents or close relatives; it is something that you get to encounter from the time you starting bipedaling from infancy onwards. Culture contains all the past wisdom and other ancient sacred heritage of all the generations that have since past, and it doesn’t stop from there: you and I, are a continuation of that sequential process.

Any given culture is not something you can easily spit out like a bitter food bite; it may be the only thing that the person in question has always known as part of his/her world.

The time is ripe to start looking at ourselves differently; we may have different ethnic backgrounds, but those differences do not have to create a wedge between us.

We don’t really have to agree on everything; we really have to forbear each other’s differences, and at that, we have to realize that those unparalleled differences stand for something important to the culturally differing figure you are dealing with.

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. 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 GAI DENG BIAR, NAIROBI, KENYA

February 19, 2015 (SSB) —  Kingmaker is a term that refers to a person or group that has great influence in a political succession, without being a viable candidate. Brig Lul Ruai may use avenues such as political, monetary, religious, and military means to influence the succession of Riek Machar who had in the past two decades used Lou Nuer to achieve his unsuccessful political ambition.

If Brig Lul is a king, than he must be prepare for huge and heavy responsibilities a head of him because some of the well known politicians in Lou Nuer would never sit back and watch him ascending to power in Lou Nuer, the case of David Yauyau have correlation with the defection of Brig Lul.

David Yau yau fought the government and signed peace that awarded him with the gubernatorial seat of the so call Greater Pibor Administrative Area/GPAA which angered Murle politicians who are currently formulating strategies to put David yau yau’s leadership to test.

Brig Lul’s broke away from prophet of doom movement make sense to many analysts as Riek Machar political activities back by barrel of guns are always implemented by Lou Nuer which had caused severe suffering and destruction of the Lou Nuer economic activities. Brig Lul’s declaration to lead South Sudan Resistance Movement/Army is a wake up of Lou Nuer which had been under the bondage of Bentiu for years of unsuccessful power takeover as it end in turbulent once initiated.

South Sudanese are every time left with no answers as to why Bentiu son and especially Riek Machar who was early in 90s nick named by late John Garang as military condom and prophet of doom after he failed to topple Garang and his family, a family that is currently strong supporter of the man who once time, an enemy to the head of their family.

Brig Lul, would now change the Lou Nuer politics which in many years had been ruined by Bentiu son, the consequences of Bentiu politic on Lou Nuer never go down well on Economic activities as most of the militia wars carried out within the territory of Lou Nuer used to be funded with livestock which is the main livelihood of the people of Lou, Socially Lou Nuer had been affected because most people who died in the battle for the achievement of Bentiu ambition to ascend to power through the efforts of lou nuer, this had led to the rise of single parenthood and orphanage

The son has been born to Lou Nuer who will shape their deteriorating image in the map of the South Sudan, any outsider would think, Lou Nuer does not have the prominent leaders who can direct the nasty youths to the community direction, but to most of insiders, the reckless behavior of the youths is attributed to high level of illiteracy.

John Luk Jok has failed to mobilize youths to achieve his ambition and now it is trial and error for the defected General to protect his community from being used to achieve Bentiu’s ambitions.

Author is an incoming financial analyst and can be reached at gabrielbiar39@gmail.com and Facebook Gai Deng

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from

Lou Nuer Community in the Diaspora Denounce Lul Ruai Koang’s Decision

Posted: February 19, 2015 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Press Release

The Leadership of Lou Nuer Community in Diaspora denounced and rejected Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang’s baseless allegation that Lou Nuer community had formed new movement.

For Immediate Release

Leadership of Lou Nuer Community in Canada and United States of America

February 18, 2015

page 1

page 1

page 2

page 2

February 19, 2015 (SSB) — The leaders of Lou Nuer community in Canada and United States of America had called Extraordinary Emergency Meeting (EEM) on Wednesday, February 18, 2015 to discuss the baseless allegation made by our son, Brig. Gen Lul Ruai Koang who recently defected to killer Salva Kiir. Brig. Gen. Lul has been known for his outspoken as an Opposition Forces Spokesman. Hence, his defection to President Salva Kiir Mayardit had nothing to do with the Lou Nuer community affairs.

We, the Lou Nuer community in Diasporas and the Lou Nuer Community in Bieh State made consultation with our current Commissioners and our newly appointed Military Governor, Col. Koang Kerjiok from the ground and we denied Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang’s claim of forming a new movement. An opportunist person like Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang will not be allowed to use our Lou Nuer community name as his for his own personal interest.

We, the Lou Nuer community at large had read the statement that was sent by Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang to many different media outlets that Lou Nuer had formed new movement. That statement was not true. We did not agree with Brig. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang to form a new movement. We would like to inform the general public that Lou Nuer community would NEVER EVER betray the Nuer community interest globally. Lou Nuer community is still part and parcel of the SPLM-IO led by the Commander-in Chief Charismatic and Visionary Leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon.

We Lou Nuer community are Pro White Army, Pro Freedom Fighters, Pro SPLM-IO and we will never give a consent to an opportunist who wants to use our community name for his/her personal interest period!

We want to reiterate that our position is clear; we stand for the victims until Salva Kirr is no longer in South Sudan. We therefore, stand with the victims until the dysfunctional government of Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit, which is run by tribal bigots and Neanderthals who would never take a lead to contain the situation to the satisfaction of all tribes of South Sudan.

Our resolution is clearly outlined in the below statement:

The Lou Nuer community in USA and Canada, together with the Lou Nuer Commissioners in the Holy Land, Bieh State and our Gov. Col. Koang Kerjiok and the entire Lou Nuer Community in the Diaspora, support the Nuer victims who were massacred in Juba on December 15, 2013. We stand with the White Army to protect our communities from Salva Kiir whose goal is to wipe out the Nuer people and other minority groups on the map of South Sudan.

We would also like to inform the people of South Sudan that we, the Lou Nuer community in Diaspora and the entire Lou Nuer community stand firm with Dr. Riek Machar who is calling for the Federal Government System, which is needed by all South Sudanese people

In conclusion, the Lou Nuer in United State of America and Canada who led the deliberation stand firm behind Dr. Riek Machar and will continue our support to White Army, which is exercising its duty to protect our communities from the murderers like Salva Kiir and child abductors. There is no real government in South Sudan and we will only follow the direction by Dr. Riek Machar Teny.

Therefore, the Lou Nuer community in Diaspora will continue supporting the Opposition Forces and the White Army that are exercising the duty to protect our communities until a functional government is found in South Sudan under the Leadership of Dr. Riek Machar Teny.

For contact:

1. Gai Lul – Lou Nuer Leader –Canada
2. Phone: 226-246- 6782
3. Samuel Majok Ruea – Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Chairman-USA
4. Phone: 402-637-1550

5. Pal Kueth Puoch-Akobo County Leader- USA
6. Hoth Gai Wang- Akobo County Leader -Ontario Canada
7. Gordon Deng Lam-Lou Nuer member Ontario Canada
8. Gatluke Reat-Lou Nuer Member- Canada
9. Thomas Tut Kunai – Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Member- Canada
10. Peter Kueth Chol – Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Advisor- Canada
11. Stephen Yak Reath – Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Advisor-USA
12. Peter Puoch Biel Thong- Lou Nuer Emergency Committee General Secretary -USA
13. Stephen Gatluak Biel – Lou Nuer member- USA
14. Rev. Peter Koang Gatluak – Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Advisor-Canada
15. Gatdin Diew – Lou Nuer Nyirol, Ontario Canada
16. Paul Puok Bany- Lou Nuer Emergency Committee Member- Canada

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 paanluel2011@gmail.com. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from