Archive for May 16, 2019


By John Deng Diar Diing, Mombasa, Kenya

Thursday, May 16, 2019 (PW) —– When my dad, who was then residing part-time in our Court Centre, Pawel (Kongor Centre) came that particular evening to tell my grandmother that a war had broken out in Mading (Bor) between South Sudanese soldiers and the Arabs and that there was a mass exodus of students, soldiers and civil servants from Bor. I thought it was an intermittent event that was going to come to a quick halt. These students and soldiers formed the first Battalions of Jamus, 105 and Tiger.

When he came back five days later to inform us that the leaders of the soldiers were around and that Arabs were chasing them, I thought it was just a government chasing criminals. But then he talked of this balded plump and stoic man who was the leader of the soldiers. He called and advised them to look after the population and went on to inform them that a war that needed human and materials support had just begun. They should therefore be ready to mobilize human and material resources for the cause.

It was when my dad came back a month later to tell us that all the teachers and students had followed soldiers and their leaders to the East, and that all the schools were closed when I realized that something serious was going on because uncle Daniel Ajith Garang Bior and nephew Bior-bedru were not going to continue with their schooling which I enjoyed seeing them doing.

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President Salva Kiir addressing the nation in Juba, 15 May 2019: Speech of H.E President of the Republic on the occasion of the May 16th Celebration – 2019

Dear Compatriots,

Thursday, May 16, 2019 (PW) — Today marks 36 years since the founding of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement. On this historic occasion, I want to congratulate the people of South Sudan in general and the men and women of the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF) and the SPLM in particular.

As we commemorate this important national day, it is important that we pay respect to our fallen heroes and the heroines.

More especially, we are eternally indebted to the memory of our late leader, Dr. John Garang de Mabior, Cde Kerubino Kuanyin Bol, Cde William Nyuon Bany, Joseph Oduho and all the fallen founding members of our great movement.

Compatriots,

In commemorating the founding of the SSPDF/M this year, I have a simple message:

I want to remind my comrades in the SPLM and those in various opposition groups that the vision for which we offered our lives is now realized; we have a country, we have set up a government, and we are fully in control of our destiny.

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