SPLM-SPLA: Sweet and bitter memories of the war of liberation

Posted: July 21, 2018 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Featured Articles, History, Junub Sudan

Memories shared are archived, not in big state buildings, but in our memories. It is for this very purpose that I occasionally flashback. In living memory of my comrades in arm, Dheiu Ajach (Guojum) and Chol Makuei Mabior (R.I.P)

By Mawut Mabior Chol, Juba, South Sudan

Saturday, July 21, 2018 (PW) — Dhieu Ajach, nicknamed Guojum because of his bowed legs and arms. Very balanced, tough and fierce looking, is from Jieng de Apadang. Wickedly funny, but somewhat rebellious and subtly humane, he was a very complicated guy to deal with.

Initially, I treated him like any other member of squad, but that one day almost ended in exchange of fire. I had to devised a new approach to avoid the confrontation. Physically I couldn’t much him, but importantly, we were armed and in a war zone. I had to know him and he became one my best friends.

One bad thing about him was his addiction to tobacco. He could get up under a volley of bullets to go and borrow a smoke from someone whether farther away was not his problem.He could light up a smoke at night whilst we laid in ambush of an enemy – whether the enemy was in vicinity or not wasn’t his concern. Guojum was assistant to Rocket Propel Grenade (RPG) gunner. The gunner was Ngong Kuol Mayom from Gwalla, Bor county.

Chol Makuei Mabior (R.I.P) from Awulian, Padiang. He was mounted Toyota driver. Young, handsome and fearless.

We evacuated Mogiri after fall of Ngalngala and came to Parakathika. An outpost between Ngalngala and Liriya. Our taskforce was one led by Elijah Biar Kuol Ayuen and taskforce 4 was led by Mac Gai Kok. Taskforce 4 arrived before us and was ordered to go to ambush and we came at night to Parakathika.

In the morning, the enemy, deceived by their victory the day before, started moving towards the ambush. Our sentinel on Ngalngala hills communicated that to our headquarters and we were ordered to reinforced taskforce 4. We just started running from Parakathika towards Ngalngala.

Before we reached the ambush, the bombardment had already started. We lost two soldiers to that bombardment. Reaching the ambush, the shootout has already started. The shooting was at very close range.we could see them, but we were ordered to take flank position.

I happened to be on the lead. Not because of seniority or prowess, but by mere bad luck. The second one on the line was late Thon Malaak Anyang ( from Abuodit and one of my best friends) followed by Tong Manyuon (from Jak, Pagumbiir). Towards the end of trenches was a ditch full of tall dry grass. We were to cross that ditch.

Coming close to it, I saw dry grass falling as if it was being mowed, but only to realised the enemy’s machine gun was doing it. There was no way around it. Biar Kuol was directing those still coming. I knew we were not going to make it to the other side of the ditch and we were ordered not to shot yet.

Then came a toyota pick up mounted with fourteen. The driver drove directly into enemy’s fire and we never heard the sound of that machine gun again that day. That fearless driver was Chol Makuei Mabior. He saved the whole taskforce one.

When we took flank position, the enemy retreated a few minutes later. I was saddened when Dut Deng Dut broke the news of Chol passing on to me in Lodwar High school(Kenya). It was a very bad news for me. Made by the way he died – he took his own life.

Four days later, we attacked Ngalngala and Ngong Kuol Mayom got wounded. Guojum was in charge of RPG. We were almost decimated by enemy’s 12 – machine gun. It was in a trench near a mango tree and gunner was a well trained enemy’s soldier.

He could only shower us when we were shooting heavily to camouflaged the sound of his gun. When we saw the machine gun, we called Guojum and he took him out.

There are few soldiers that survived battles by pure lack, but many survived because of others prowess and selflessness. I am one of this last group. Till now, I don’t know whether Dhieu Ajach is alive or dead.

Wherever you are Guojum, in heaven or on earth, I say thank you for being a unique and brave soldier. To Chol Makuei Mabior, I will always remember you for putting your life and lives of others in a harm way to save unknown soldiers.

The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made is the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël Media (PW) website. If you want to submit an opinion article, commentary or news analysis, please email it to paanluel2011@gmail.com. PaanLuel Wël Media (PW) website do reserve the right to edit or reject material before publication. Please include your full name, a short biography, email address, city and the country you are writing from.

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