It is time for President Salva Kiir to Give up Power in South Sudan

Posted: May 23, 2017 by PaanLuel Wël in Columnists, Commentary, Contributing Writers, Deng Kur Deng, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

By Deng Kur Deng, Pennsylvania, USA

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May 23, 2017 (SSB) —- As far as how the future of South Sudan looks, there are few things to keep in mind among many South Sudanese —it is definitely looking dull, unpredictable. To many, life is worthless, and it is quite worrisome to many of us who love this country dearly. One thing is clear, which you deserve to know is that, President Kiir will never reconcile the people of South Sudan.

Deal with that fact by reflecting on what has been going on for years now. There isn’t much in the way of options left as the people of South Sudan have tried and initiated peace, but kept going back to war, tried collaboration after collaboration, and peace after peace with various groups, and nothing seems to come out of that.

Weak peace treaties were negotiated—some of which were finally and loosely signed. I had felt at some point that this peace was going to work, but it didn’t. Imagine, since the war started, many human rights watch dogs have estimated over 50,000 South Sudanese people have perished and it is continuing to add up as war continue to engulf many areas in the country. And for what?

I wouldn’t say the president is impervious to all those who have died and those who are suffering as the consequences of on going war because the president took arms to save lives of the people of South Sudan; but I have personally realized that the job is too heavy and people are too traumatized and have run out of trust to listen to the president; therefore, change is the one option left and it is unavoidable.

Many feel indifference to the suffering of soldiers and average citizens alike. This whole idea that soldiers are “trained to die” is not exactly what you think its. These many men dying are not made out of plastic but human flesh like everyone else. A soldier is a family member of someone else, so these many soldiers who are dying are not just soldiers but family members of our society.

In fact, those who have died and continue to fight the war since 2013 are generally and predominantly from Aweil area and in other areas within Bhar Ghazel and you know this. You wonder why are we fighting? Now, I am a supporter of General Salva Kiir Mayardit’s government and in fact I am an assigned ambassador of South Sudan doing what a proud citizen can do. However, I am personally sympathizing with families who are suffering and dying on a daily basis.

Think about this, the SPLA/IO and the government peace is now holding on barely to nothing compared to all things attempted. It is more difficult because these wars are now businesses of elites to get rich at the expense of the most vulnerable population. Tribes are rebelling against the government at a higher rate more than before. What is happening to us, seriously? It is obvious and quite convincing that the president has lost a grasp of things in the country whether militarily, economically, and socially as it has been indicated by hundreds of people that are dying every month.

Don’t get me wrong, the army is very strong, but that is not enough to say they have things under control. The problems of South Sudan have increased because there is no trust left as a notable threat is the circle who took advantage of the results of civil war, which is made up of those who were not part of the civil war and know nothing about life in the bush, so death after death, rebellion after rebellion and suffering after suffering become the results. This is not normal and the country can’t and will not progress in the middle of all this continuous chaos created by a few.

Now, given my position, I wouldn’t want to be mistaken for rebelling against the government or demonizing leaders, but just that I’m stating the facts. You can do your best by assigning me to what you feel fit—wait to denounce my words. You have every right to be resentful because you are entitled to it, but know that I am equally embittered too by what has affected us all and will continue beyond these very words. Allow me to stand and voice what I truly believe should happen to you and to your families.

However, you are bound to find out that those who have clearly failed the country are the reasons why the exiting of a president is a solution to our problems. The South Sudanese shouldn’t worry of who is getting the position of president, with that, I can honestly say, if the president decided to hand over power to someone within Bhar Ghazel, that it may create doubts in the country, but some of us who need a break from war, death, suffering, economic crisis, and famine need peace, revitalization of economy, and stability in the country don’t care about the region where the president comes from.

The people need a fresh start regardless of where the president is coming from or let me put it blatantly, hand over the leadership to a person of your choice whether in Bhar Ghazel. However, if the president is serious about the country and lasting peace, he should at least give a chance to Dr. Majak Agoot until 2018, the only person with plans, who is qualified, and suitable for the job. People are dying, the leadership doesn’t seem to be sympathetically moved by the array of problems facing us in the country such as death, famine, economic crisis, wars on various fronts, and many more.

Resignation of president is sincere way to look and reflect on things in the country. Let us be honest, the president can hold on to power as much as he wants, but he must also know that nothing will come out of his persistency besides more sorrow as we have witnessed in our families. This is a simple fact. You don’t hold on to power for the sake of being called president but you do so when people are happy. People are not happy.

For instance, a paper came out recently stating that everything is upset in South Sudan, even babies who are easily excitable by anything are not happy. Truth be told, babies are not eating anything and the environment they are exposed to is so violent, so how could anyone be happy in such an environment. Having a deep-seated perception of deception that people are happy and willing to live through unending excruciating pain is based on pretentious factors. Think about this for a minute, promises exhausted by the SPLM/A have been officially reneged and this hurt more than anything to those who have invested so much in the fight.

What is the way forward honestly in South Sudan? Many South Sudanese have wondered and asked question after question about the end of our problems. Those of us who have pledged loyalty to the leadership of the president are finding it incredibly excruciating to continue to support the him when he is not supporting the will of the people of South Sudan—to live peacefully. It is the just cause to accept the obligations of the people.

Events forthcoming could be exceedingly overwhelming given that many tribes are mobilizing to continue to wage a losing war. More often than not, death has become our culture as conscience has been long overshadowed. As we speak, the country is near collapse and the decision is in the hand of the president with many politicians in his administration. Time seems to be working against the will of the people; therefore, people’s trust is drastically disappearing, so it is our responsibility to remind General Salva Kiir, the man who fought in both wars is to restore human dignity in South Sudan by purely giving up power.

Now, we have our country, but we are doing more damage to ourselves beyond what the enemy did to us. As of right now, the current war is not relevant and many of the sound minded South Sudanese have denounced the war time and time again, but the war continues to drag on. Lives of many South Sudanese have no value and as such, human dignity deserves to be restored in the country.

One step toward stabilizing the country is with president to choose between himself and the people. It is with certainty and urgency which have the courage to ask President of South Sudan general Salva Kiir Mayardit to make a life time decision—a decision to faithfully transfer power to members of the SPLM. Comparatively speaking, I and many South Sudanese feel exhausted and drained mentally and emotionally by the direction of the country; therefore, the time is now for the president to ceremonially transfer position of presidency to the people or hand it to someone else.

Right now in the country, people speak of torque, which is a force needed for rotation and this whole recycling of individuals isn’t helping us shift gears. You have noticed that reshuffling after reshuffling, and minister after minister and and in the end, no progress in the country. People under the president are the supreme cause of our problems and the president should now invest in his honest replacement, this will serve him a legacy.

As many have noticed, President Kiir’s presidency is stained with blood through decisions made by individuals he placed trust in. The country run by those who are interested in running the country using substructures that only allow them to do more damage, especially in tribal elements. The time is now. Kiir Mayardit must exit the presidency.

This article was written by Denggak Kur Denggak aka Raanmangar. You can reach him at pananyangajak@gmail.com.

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.

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