By Eligo Dak Buoth, Nairobi, Kenya
December 21, 2016 (SSB) — On 19th December, President Salva Kiir made a clarion call for dialogue in Juba, and I welcome it. In fact they should begin the process now, if not now right now. Let them continue and move with speed to do what is desirable because time is not on our sides.
Largely, I was also gladdened that he has named many of his well-known Handlers and sympathizers in his intra-dialogue. Over 30 persons are party to this dialogue; the likes of Joseph Lagu, Abel Alier, Dr. Francis Mading Deng, Rachel Nyadak Paul and other political dinosaurs. Vast majority of these appointees may lack ambitions but they all have the abilities to advise their comrade Salva Kiir to act rationally with a view to reverse our country on the path to abyss, and rescue the nation on deathbed or comma.
I must say, it is an encouraging gesture. You would fondly recall at the onset, the rain started beating us when we stopped dialoguing; and each time we dialogue, we engaged unfaithfully and with ulterior motives. We have perfected the art of violating any agreement, instead we thrive in disagreements, violence and defiant to dialogue and democracy. If we grab and utilized this opportunity, you never know it could be the turning point; we could get on right track to the road of peace, unity and development.
No sound minded South Sudanese can object or rubbishes this noble initiative before the agenda are brought to the fore. I look at this latest move as stepping stone. I learned something from Jah Man Sir Siddy Ranks, reggae Artist. He said, ‘‘it is never too late for man to raise his way. The time that he woke up is the time that he should raise’’ it is the right thing at the right time. I hereby offer my blessing to this dialogue in earnest, and I say may it bear edible fruits?
You will concur; there are various forms of dialogues: one being intra-dialogue which normally occurs inside an individual alone. We do talk to ourselves isn’t? Over times, we talk to ourselves to do things right. It is your soul that serves as mediator and your common senses are the discussants. Whenever you experience personal noise, your intuitions compel you to sit aback, and act with sobriety and decorum. In any event, those who heed at their intuitions are destined to succeed. Before we approach other people for help in time of crisis, we are advised pro-bono to look inside ourselves not via mirror or other persons. If we embrace intra-dialogue we can easily get out of our comforts zones and act appropriately.
The other form of dialogue is inter-dialogue which normally involve two or more disputants. I can go on and on, but I just want to point out these two types of dialogues as an example.
In this case, President Kiir has initiated an intra-dialogue or intra- SPLM-IG dialogue. By the virtue of the people he named as steering committee and Patrons, we can undoubtedly say it is his own personal dialogue as opposed to national dialogue. In other words, it is not a national dialogue. It is not an inter-Combatants dialogue for he did not involve all parties to the conflict in South Sudan. So let him speak to himself and those surrounding him.
Most of these people he appointed via presidential decree are his employees or servants who served him during the war. Many of them do not represent even their family members let alone the country. However, to purport that it is national dialogue is hogwash. It cast doubts in our minds; and it’s an insult to the intelligent of South Sudanese and the world at large.
Though its intra-SPLM-IG dialogue I still applauded it. I believe it’s a rare opportunity to rise to the occasion rather than accusation. It is moment to realized their mistakes and seek honest apology from victims. In the pedagogy of the oppressed, Paulo Freire described dialogue as human phenomenon made possible by the word; and within the word we find two dimensions, reflection and actions. He added saying ‘‘dialogue cannot exist in absence of profound love for the people’’
We reject any attempt to renegotiate the peace agreement signed in Addis Ababa 17th 2015. All we yearned for is the swift implementation of the same. I expect their dialogue to revolve around four agenda only: 1. Exit strategy/transition 2. Formation of hybrid court 3. Cessation of hostilities. 4. Implementation of the Addis Ababa peace accord.
Should their dialogue fall within the above mentioned agenda, then it would be thumb-up deal. Thereafter, we can converge and form an authentic national dialogue comprising of all interested parties to brainstorm and discuss post conflict and Post President Salvo Kiir era with a view to pave the way forward.
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