Let’s conduct National Dialogue First before embarking on Peace Revitalization Process

Posted: October 28, 2017 by PaanLuel Wël in Acuil Malith Banggol, Books, Junub Sudan, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

By Cde. Acuil Malith Banggol, Juba, South Sudan

Role of Traditional Authority, by Acuil Malith

October 28, 2017 (SSB) — I am confident in the initiative and progress of National Dialogue. I wish it could go faster or it could attract everyone to demonstrate his or her Jenuubeen nationhood and leadership quality. National Dialogue is an excellent opportunity. To me, National Dialogue in its current state has timely come to enable the Peoples of South Sudan to own the past, now and future. South Sudanese, as the community with a desire to freedom, peace, and prosperity as came on June 12-13, 1947 Juba Conference by Traditional Authority Leaders called for oneness as Jenuubeen.

Father S. Ohure, compatriots and K. Kuanyin, compatriots felt the danger in 1955 and 1983 respectively. There was Anya-Nya and then SPLA to defend the General Will. Dr. John innovated the Solution Modalities and subsequently in Golden Plate granted to Jenuubeen a chance to vote in 2011 Referendum. Kiir, the Joshua, meandered to the Promised Land! Bashir saw the logic! Others vacillated and are fated to repeat. Cheers to Taban and Wani who shared the logic. HISTORY!

Dr. John Garang logically called for all Chiefs Conference during the liberation struggle. There was Chukudum Convention. There was Rumbek all SPLA Dialogue. President Kiir maintained the culture of dialogue leading to Bentieu All TALs Conference. President Kiir earlier allowed consultative Juba Dialogue that unified the armed groups as a continuation of South-South Dialogue. Whoever asks why National Dialogue now is not honest. The Church called: Let My People Choose! Prayer was BLESSED!

Yes! National Dialogue is now because of genuine and demonstrated transformational quality leadership of Kiir and SPLM being responsive to the objective realities following the 2013 recurrent failed peace agreements and nosedived balanced of forces that were ill imposed. Many agreements could be made but they may be limited to power-sharing through which the elites would try to step on the footsteps of colonizers to rule Jenuubeen.

For me I interpret the National Dialogue goals to mean the following:

To end all forms of conflict in South Sudan: to dialogue and have consensus on restitution, mutual recognition, rule of law, sustainable retirement support and sustainable DDR and adherence to article 37 of SSTC 2011…

To redefine and reestablish stronger unity in diversity: the system of governance, mutuality, collaborative existence, shared values, a routinized consultative forum for listening and harmonization…

To strengthen social contract between citizen and the nation-state: rights, dues and inclusivity and practical enforcement, preventive and punitive measure against exclusions…

To address the issue of unity in diversity: articles 33, 35, 36(4) and 166(6)(c) of SSTC 2011 and federation as mandated under ARCISS 2015 V article 1.1 on Supremacy of Peoples of South Sudan and 1.2 to articulate federation and affirmative action on gender and cultural inclusivity….

To agree on the mechanism of allocating and sharing national resources: Enforcement of article 36(4), article 37, article 166, 167, 168 and 179 of SSTC 2011 and adopting iSDG model for South Sudan and land should be for the Peoples not State land in the echo of Crown Land….

To settle historical and current disputes amongst the communities: Community-to-Community and National Dialogue continuum under TALs not under opportunist elites…

To set the stage for an integrated and inclusive national development strategy and economic recovery: adopt iSDG Model for South Sudan, land be valued in share capital to pay for the 33% national/local ownership mandated under Companies Act 2012 and skills development…

To agree on steps and measure to ensure free, fair and peaceful elections and post-transition in 2018: Build on ongoing Trio-Leadership, Rotational leadership within the three Greater Regions built around the ongoing apportioning of powers among nationalities and communities in federal states, Cultural Affirmative Action and Twin Federal Model, Routinized Consultative Forums that include COTAL, Gender and Culture Inclusivity Affirmative Action….

To agree on speedier and sustainable resettlement return of Internally displaced peoples and refugees from the diaspora to their homelands in South Sudan: iSDG, DDR, Sustainable Cash Grants Relief, Recovery, and Resettlement System, Microfinance, Health Insurance for all and Students Support Grant….

To further national healing, social cohesion, mutuality, peaceful coexistence, and reconciliation: Traditional Arbitration, Restitution and Compensation and forgiveness, share a commonality of being safe, peaceful and prosperous when others enjoy the same….

Compared to other nation states in Africa with similar multi-nationalities and multicultural setting, South Sudan enjoys unique historical mile stones where the roles of TALs positively contribute towards configuration of a South Sudanese nationhood as Jenuubeen, with sets of expectations, roles, fairness, commonality and collaborative existence within unity in diversity.

This is demonstrated by the 98.83% unanimous voting for the independence of South Sudan in 2011. This could largely be attributed to the initiative by President Kiir wise call and meeting with TALs in Bentieu 2009. Earlier on, to revitalize the essence of oneness and solidarity behind the liberation movement; Dr. John saw logic in calling for a national consultative forum for TALs in New Kush Heimann.

Though the British Colonization robbed the TALs, during the June 1947 Juba Conference, documentation indicates the oneness and desire for collaborative existence as Jenuubeen. TALs called for independence and a referendum. That is I went to the bush under SPLA to fight and again now opted to do my Masters on roles of Traditional Authority Leaders.

See the link: http://africaworldbooks.com/roles-of-traditional-authority-leaders-by-acuil-malith-banggol.html

It is logical that women and youth amongst other categories could call for their own National Dialogue if they are not satisfied with the shrewd of apportioning by the National Dialogue Steering Committee. Armed groups should be facilitated to have a common stand. But see what self-destruction they are landing on now. Are they addicted to killing? Where peaceful to them?

I do not agree with those who, for understandable reasons, might have been confused or surrendered to the political whims, military and other developments that have ensued. The argument that the political peace agreements have to be implemented before engaging in National Dialogue is not logical and demonstrate imprudence and myopic views by those calling so. Though these agreements could be defined as necessary, they are addressing the limited interest of the warring parties.

The warring parties have vested interests like their supporters locally, regionally and internationally. These interests should be incorporated but there is no way that South Sudan as a pride nation of Jenuubeen should be a hostage of politicians. I am included. Jenuub should not be a hostage to armed groups.  Instead, the opportunity of National Dialogue should give a yardstick or standards upon which political parties should vie to take over the administration of South Sudan to deliver.

Armed groups may fight for what could be convincingly legitimate to fight for. I myself fought in SPLA. Others should tell us why they are fighting within the sealing of what defines us as Jenuubeen. This could only be defined through the General Will of National Dialogue.

South Sudan was once, before, under Miri and colonization then Khartoum and now under SPLM led government. Others would want to take over. But that is not all of us as Jenuubeen. These attempts to usurp the General Will by interested socio-political or military entities should not be allowed to outshine the Peoples’ Power and General Will. The Jenuubeen General Will could only come with National Dialogue.

It might take some time and different forms and contents but the ultimate is the General Will and not special interest that is expected to seek Peoples’ sovereignty through elections. Those who are addicted to fighting should feel ashamed. They could suggest their views through the National Dialogue, which shall give chance for the General Will.

If their desires are not met then they could legitimately resume fighting to protect the General Will and not for the power struggle or power sharing as it looks now. Honest and sober minds should go beyond their current self-destructive killings and explore the chance to tell Jenuubeen what they would want to see as a general good through National Dialogue.

Each of us should donate or volunteer like me to add a value or more to National Dialogue. The correct question should be: What am I contributing to enhancing National Dialogue to achieve its declared goals? Do not obstruct! Add your voice to National Dialogue! Be a Jenuubi!

National Dialogue Goals shall surely be delivered to you again in Golden Plate like the historical chance that was given by SPLM to you to vote in 2011 Referendum! Sit and relax and enjoy the fruits sacrificed by those who gave it all!

Acuil Malith Banggol is the author of “The Roles of Traditional Authority Leaders in South Sudan” and can be reached via his email: Acuil Malith Banggol <rumbek_star@yahoo.co.uk>

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, city and the country you are writing from.

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