Humiliating loss: Did Machar blacken bright stars day against Mali?

Posted: June 6, 2016 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Columnists, Commentary, Contributing Writers, Manyang David Mayar, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

By Manyang David Mayar, Juba, South Sudan

riek machar at the Mali vs South Sudan game in Juba, June 2016

Dr. Riek Machar at the Mali vs South Sudan game in Juba, 4 June 2016

June 6, 2016 (SSB) —- On Saturday, First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar was delegated to open a football tournament between South Sudan’s bright stars and Mali at Juba National football Stadium. The most second powerful man in the country was accompanied by some other SPLM-IO top officials including his wife Angelina and Taban Deng.

There was a smell of military and power all around the ground. South Sudanese spectators and players were probably thrilled by the way high profiled leaders treated the game. But unfortunately, it turned out as if Machar presence and his IO team was a bad lack for bright stars and the nation as a whole.

First, it was the national anthem. Some minutes before the kick-off, the two teams had to pay allegiances to their respective countries by singing their national anthems. Visitors were allowed to do that first.

Mali’s national anthem sounded loudly in the stadium through big speakers as Malian players proudly held their chest singing along. As soon as Malians anthem faded off and a turn came for the South Sudan national anthem to fill the air, the generator went off. And all of a sudden, the stadium was all silent. A gloomy expression filled the stadium. But there was not time to bring the generator back to make the sound system work for the South Sudan national anthem.

So players had to mumbled the anthem by themselves in pitch while spectators where confused of what was going on. It looked like the nation was not ready for Riek Machar. But Machar ignored this and went up to the VIP balcony to watch over the match.

I was watching the match down stars in a 90 degree angle from where Mr. Machar was sitting upstairs. I could see the players in the field and also take a glance at Machar and his team of VIPs in the balcony. I could see Machar above and bright stars below. The picture I saw gave me an insight inside question: Will bright stars shine with Machar (black) overhead? Soon after, Mali scored against the home team some minutes before half-time whistle. The hope for bright to shine were further blackened with two more goals in the second half making the full-time result 0-3 in favour of Mali.

Not only did South Sudan left the field in pain, but I think the game simply added to several stressing times for SPLM-IO in Juba including the latest controversy over Machar’s visit to Emanuel Parish two weeks ago which has since spark hot debates.

Hmm! No true smile for Riek yet.

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.           

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