General Taban Deng Gai, the TGoNU and the Revitalization of the ARCSS

Posted: January 10, 2018 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Awuol Gabriel Arok, Junub Sudan, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan


Taban Deng Gai, First Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan

January 10, 2018 (SSB) — One’s name is worth applaud if the owner has proved to the audience that he/she holds what each and every one can see, feel and judge, General Taban as he is famously known has some exclusive personalities that makes him a point of interest to any political farmer.

General Taban before the independence of South Sudan was the Governor of Unity State, Bentiu; during his era as the Governor of Unity State, I personally as a student of batch 2007/2008 was one of the beneficiaries of water tanker that he donated to the University of Juba.

When things were much tougher on us as students, South Sudan, in general, was on the highest plate of happiness with many international grants, donations, investors’ claws of attention and various shares from the Government of National Unity in Khartoum.

But from the CPA settlement of benefits, only General Taban Deng Gai from his state oil share of 2% was able to glance all the way from Unity State to Juba and mirrored the grim conditions faced by the University students ranging from water, poor feeding, lack of accommodation and many more.

General Taban donated a fine and stunning water tanker to the University of Juba, till today that lofty and good-looking tanker clearly marked ‘‘Donated by the Governor of Unity State’’ is currently carrying General Taban Deng Gai heritage among the staff, former and current students of the University of Juba.

After the outbreak of 2013 conflict in Juba General Taban political ground was shaken and was tempted to join Dr. Riek Machar Teny second rebellion against the SPLM as a party.

But with honesty General Taban fussed the peace process out of muddy obstacles with his counterparts from the Government in Juba, Former Detainees and other Political Parties until it was signed by Dr. Riek Machar Teny on 17 August 2015 in Addis Ababa and later by President Salva Kiir Mayardit on August 26, 2015 in Juba and after 8 months of gridlock led to the formation of TGoNU;

Because of General Taban political mellowness he was sent by the IO as head of the advance team that came to Juba for peace test and arrangements which was perceived by some political doubters as suicidal mission of self-sacrifices, he came and was accorded warmest welcoming by the Government in Juba, and indeed that was when majority of South Sudanese glared at General Taban as a man who could put his schedules into an appropriate basket.

Transitional Government of National Unity was formed two days after the arrival of Dr. Riek Machar Teny in Juba on 28 April 2016

When the Transitional Government of National Unity was formed Taban was made the Minister of Mining; General Taban Deng Gai Ministerial position was seconded by many IO supporters as a fair gift in recognition of his central position in the jungle life of IO and his selfless offered as head of the IO advance team.

Hence breaking the chain of mistrust and political differences, though many voices were heard behind in protest of being undermined by his party chair Dr. Riek Machar Teny, General Taban Deng Gai never breaks that icy rumor blindly.

Few months later after the formation of TGoNU Dr. Riek Machar Teny left Juba after the July 2016 J1 fighting and according to (ARCISS) Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan the command of IO in the TGoNU plunge into General Taban immediate command and was appointed the First Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan.

After his appointment as the First Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan General Taban has affably been working with the Presidency and that has been attested by many South Sudanese, as the First Vice President of South Sudan he vowed to deliver services to the people of South Sudan by tightening hard the TGoNU’s robe of actions.

The Agreement on Conflict resolution in South Sudan was a compromise agreement and with such the Government in Juba has never shown a pointed horn of disobedience to the peace partners.

Because of General Taban unshaken position toward the implementation of ARCISS, TGoNU light of continuity was not extinguished and was it not for General Taban and some few IO leaders in Juba TGoNU would have gone long ago and the entire agreement would have been a dumped record, but due to General Taban mainstay on the doorstep of peace and reconciliation blankness on the agreement was immediately avoided.

Some may disapprove the legality through which General Taban switched to the country second highest chair, blatantly it was a typical action out of thinking packages, who among south Sudanese was still wishing for continuous fighting and the dissolution of the agreement after the night of J1 fieriest fighting? No one except some few dooms of destructions.

Was it not for national interest General Taban would have tiptoed out of Juba like others who have done so from the IO side, interestingly he was not second in the command of the IO such that he replace Dr. Riek Machar in the IO leadership.

He was IO chief negotiator during the peace negotiation and a Minister in the Transitional Government of National Unity, his appearance as the IO choice was because of regional balance as was the case in the Republic of South Sudan even before the December war, when Dr. Riek Machar was the Vice President, H.E. James Wani Igga was the Speaker and when Wani became Vice President Hon. Magok Rundial became the speaker.

H.E. the First Vice President Taban Deng Gai is politically and socially tracking in a rightful direction as observed during the numerous occasions he had been to within the country.

Since his appointments, he has been to many diplomatic missions abroad and in all those missions he had never demonstrated the slightest show of opposition within the TGoNU; meaning his duty is to ensure that the terms of the agreement are completed as agreed by the parties.

With such positive contributions, some voices are asking could H.E. the First Vice President General Taban Deng Gai be the central pillar of peace, reconciliation and forgiveness?

Awuol Gabriel Arok, a Writer and a Poet, has a Bachelor Degree in Social and Developmental Studies from the University of Juba, South Sudan, he is the author of the unpublished book ‘‘The Wisdom Horn’’ and an Initiator of ‘‘Your Tribe is My Tribe’’ and ‘‘Giving Heart Foundation’’ initiatives. He can be reached via his email Address:

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