Archive for the ‘Commentary’ Category


By Mabil Manyok Nhial, Gweru, Zimbabwe

Deng Akuei

Saturday, October 13, 2018 (PW) — As John Maxwell has it, it has always been my credo that leadership is nothing more than knowing the way, showing the way and leading the way. Harare Institute of Technology was thrown into a woven net of leadership showdown as four students locked their horns in a great duel contesting for SRC President, which is equivalent to guild president.

The morning Sun greeted Harare Institute of Technology (HIT) with blissful rays of glee and gaiety that the University vicinity got tranquilized. Everyone including inanimate beings seemed zealous and voracious in alacrity to cast their votes for the candidates of their choices as their volitions dictated. Among the contenders were three male students and one brave female namely; William Deng Akuei Nyuon, Makoni, Aaron and Remhunga.

From the onset of elections, Mr. Nyuon was exceedingly marathonic, in fact he ran at a breakneck speed which created a terrible gap between him and his contesters. He was more than 200 votes ahead of the second competitor. Voting ended after 5pm and William garnered 342 votes, Remhunga got 116, Aaron with 74 votes and Makoni 19 votes. Deng then became victorious. (more…)


By Kuir Mayen Kuir, Nairobi, Kenya

Governor Philip Aguer of Jonglei state

Governor Philip Aguer of Jonglei state

Saturday, October 13, 2018 (PW) — I raise a standing ovation to the governor of Jonglei state H.E Philip Aguer Panyang for his daily commitments to make jonglei state a haven of peace, unity and prosperity. Mr. Governor, your efforts and commitments to make our state better is recognizable. Meanwhile, the question of who is a good leader has been a bone of contention in the literate world. This is because of the diverse opinions of the civil population towards their various leaders.

As for me, a leader who is positive minded and stands for the solidarity of his people is the best. A leader who wears the shoes of his people at all times regardless of the situation always touches my conscience. A leader who has a vision to serve his people in the right manner always calls for my attention. These are my personal opinions about my governor and I am proud of him. I realized that the best motivation and support, which I can offer to Mr. Governor, is just to appreciate him more sincerely for he always stay on the forefront to unify our people. I felt I should say thank you governor now so that you do better tomorrow.

In the recent past we have got few individuals who decided to drop their manners and crave to disintegrate our prodigious society for the short terms gains. In my opinion these gentlemen and women who sought education in foreign countries and felt the urge to use it to break our ties, solidarity and communalism did not get it right. It was a purgatory move and it should be condemn with all the strongest terms possible. The soar of dirty songs and speeches towards the wrong age bracket was disgusting too .Our culture has got very strong protection for the aged. It was therefore indiscipline for a young man or a lady to come out clearly in derogatory language towards those whom we are supposed to get blessings from. (more…)


By Rev. Malong Bak Malong, Aweil, South Sudan

 img_1649-2

Thursday, October 11, 2018 (PW) — People (Nations) are likely to fall into imbroglio phenomenon when they fail to realize the true set of rights and obligations (that include loyalty) and the conditions those realize the true memorandum of understanding between the chosen (government) and the chooser (people) — and what qualifications anchoring the role of nominee in a form that must be satisfactory (responsibility). People must in the foremost, realize what they want, and how they wish it and when they want it.

And in this context, they (people) must get to harmonize their Opinions, and strongly stand for their common right and have a critical language (boldness and sound mind). But that can never happen except with an informed society—people with open mind, those can clearly see things with reasoning mind. Such people don’t beat the elephant’s shadow, rather they hit at the perpetrators’ heads!

Therefore, the only people who could quickly survive such imbroglio phages more easily are those who question the liability with thorough follow-ups on their set rules those governing them in absolute courage with clauses why? when? How? Which? And who? One of the wise man once said, “The best ways to hide a lie is between two truths”. To continue with that lesson of who is the government, I have tried all my best level to present you my points on who really is the true source of the government with legality censure and to compel.  (more…)


”It is not a sin if you point out the true, but the real and unforgivable sin is when you know the true and hide it inside you due to the fear of unknown gunman”.

By Dut Kuot Akok, Aweil, South Sudan

federalism

Do Not Confuse a Camouflaged Call for Confederation for Call Federalism

Thursday, October 11, 2018 (PW) — The outset of the current endless war realistically by then was a competition over the control of the higher office (J1). All the ruling party cadres were eyeing the higher office comes 2015, the storm which started in the liberation council of the ruling party in December of 2013 was over who could be the party flag bearer if elections were to had taken place as scheduled in the interim constitution of the nascent state.

Their bodies’ languages and moods starting from the top hierarchy to former deputy, former secretary of the ruling party including the widow of the late hero were so fearsome with possible indicators of skirmish. Their inflammatory spirit of no reverse and compromise were unfortunate thus the symptoms of awaiting endless abyss were crystal to all of them.

Their competition over the control thereafter led to unforgettable and heartbreaking explosion of nascent state and subjected her unaware masses to untold suffering, destitution and destruction of theirs lives and properties since 2013 up to date. And without exaggeration, the problem of south Sudanese were centered around the throne dating back to 1960s when they were still guerilla with no political constituencies to fight over. (more…)


By Rev. Malong Bak Malong, Aweil, South Sudan

Garangonomic 

Thursday, October 11, 2018 (PW) — You know what, if we have become a Nation, we must critically learn to be mindful of every tit for tat agreements. Let’s always understand that once the time to amend is gone, then gone are its chances of change. By singing every day or repeating names of the same perpetrators Kiir-Riak, Kiir-Riak, Kiir-Riak or SPLM and SPLMIO will benefit us nothing at all! See the continuous rates of rapes, killings, displacements, and above all, the tendency in the hearts of these privileged politicians—they are still demanding us to remain loyal to their leadership. What does this call for?

Or how can we name it? Does it call for us to side with SPLM or SPLM-IO i.e. Kiir or Reik reps? Or should we comply with the FDs or South Sudan Oppositions Alliance? How does this tragedy depict itself from your own perceptive? In my own Opinions, I can see that this not tribe-to-tribe conflicts but it is a man-to-man positions struggle. Therefore, in this context, I can see that there is nothing wrong about us being from different tribes. No problem in being a Nuer, Dinka, Acholi, Bari, Baka, Zande or any of our South Sudanese tribes.

Now, I want to ask that how can we as people of one identity, supposed to react or behave on this dilemmas, (politically affiliated conflicts) seeing that we totally have given into lawlessness and have forgotten on how to answer to our long life struggle for freedom of autonomous right—the effort which was rewarded eventually by the achieved Country, the Republic of South Sudan. In my Opinions, it is change that is what you South Sudanese Citizens need. With Peace and its implementations, you are robbed of your assets by those big, big and huge budgetary demands for those positions hungry elites—who are coming to feast on your public assets again.

(more…)


By Benjamin Ring, Cape Town, South Africa

Kerbino Wol

Kerbino Wol

Tuesday, October 02, 2018 (PW) — The 27th of September, 2018, marks exactly five months since the detention of Kerbino Wol, a young South Sudanese entrepreneur, and philanthropist who was arrested in April and has been held without charges by the government authorities in Juba.

Kerbino is a CEO of KASS Security, one of the leading private security firms providing thousands of Jobs for South Sudanese at a time when the country’s economy is at the brink of collapsing. Many families depend on him.

He is also the Founder of Nile Foundation, a charity wing dedicated to giving back to the communities and youth empowerment through education, entrepreneurship, and sports. According to the organization’s website, more than one thousand South Sudanese youth have benefited in the past two years.

Wild rumors suggest that Kerbino was engaged in subversive activities against the Government, a pack of allegations include working with rebels and espionage spook for foreign governments, a narrative that has defeated public understanding. A well-informed person about Juba politics will not be surprised to hear such allegations. (more…)


Could we not managed to have kind of leaders among greater Bor community like Abel Alier and Dr. John Garang who could inspire people in both side of the divide and build unity that can propel the community toward prosperity?

By Michael Mading Akueth, Nairobi, Kenya

Abel Alier and Atem Yaak Atem

Hon. Abel Alier and Atem Yaak Atem in Nairobi, Kenya, 2005, at the signing of the CPA

Thursday, September 06, 2018 (PW) — The greater Bor community whom their sons and daughters had turned up in big numbers during the beginning of the war of liberation 1983 is currently fighting to maintain its cohesiveness. The military scientists always advised every society and its leadership about imminent consequences of arm conflict. We have observed that conflict have forced us to seek refuge in most parts of the globe which has made it hard to continue with our ancestors’ unity. The people are in constant conflict using abusive messages on social media with each other which have forced me to think about our future.

When a community is in constant conflict with itself it remind us about the theory of evolution by natural selection through which nature is seen to be at war with itself and the weak nature is obvious the next meal of the stronger one. The theory of evolution by natural selection is a theory about the mechanism by which evolution occurred in the past, and is still occurring now. Could this be the case in greater Bor community?

Are the community members who belief to be strong striving to eliminate the weak among them by using this theory? Or what else could be the basis of these massive hatred campaigns which we are witnessing all over the world among greater Bor community? Greater Bor community had achieved many things in the history of our country with great dedication to the cause of freedom and pursuit of happiness for all. (more…)


By Madol Chien Achieny, Juba, South Sudan

telar1

Telar Ring Deng, later South Sudan President Salva Kiir’s nominee to become the new justice minister, 21 June 2014

Friday, August 24, 2018 (PW) — Before I could rush in listing the names of the architects of two wings of Atuot who need to tear the community apart, it is important to bring my readership to light of what has ensued over the last months. On 1st Jan 2018, Atuot Youth in Juba convened in Millennium Hotel to form an organization that would have been called ‘’Atuot Youth Association-AYA’’ for purposes of unity and social organization.

That noble idea was hijacked, politicized and used against an intact community to incite their ignorance to maneuver political ambitions by Juba politicians. Atuot, time immemorial, was a union of 6 Jieng subsections of Apeek, Rorkech, Jilek, Kuek, Luac and Akot, the order is random. Geographically, they live in the western part of Yirol.

The whole idea was taken out of context to divert the purpose as contentions of whether Atuot is a subsection of a bigger Jieng or not and whether Apeek is a subsection of Atuot or not were created by two prominent Atuot politicians and picked by few hired naïve youth to give their political calculation popularity. The idea was to divide the bigger tent (Atuot) into smaller sections that could be accommodated by the politics of sectarianism that is practiced in Juba so as they remain relevant to the policy of tribal representation in national cabinet. (more…)


“JONGLEI MERRY-GO-ROUND OF POLITICAL GAMBLES THROUGH ETHNIC ASSIMILATION SUPERIORITY SYNDROME: FROM NYARWENGIZATION THROUGH KONGORIZATION TO BORIZATION.”

By Jacob Jokmagai Dengadiit, Juba, South Sudan

 old map of jonglei counties

(1) INTRODUCTION

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 (PW) — I recently wrote an article entitled, ‘WHERE IS THIS OLD MAN CALLED BOR?’ I was addressing the name that has been taken as our daily topic of discussion while in real sense, we have issues of concern like poverty, insecurity, lack of infrastructure, poor healthcare, and lack of jobs topping the list of our daily utopian needs.

I was marveled later by some of the comments I received under my article. I saw that this problem is more of an ethnic identity crisis. I remembered the disagreements between #Team_Magot and #Team_Gongic_Lualmawut back in Juba during the wrestling tournament in the middle of this year. I also recalled the ditching songs between Bor and Twi especially. I still see them going live on the same matter. I see a push and a pull between the name ‘Bor’ and ‘Jonglei.’

Because of the above reasons, I recoiled back into my world of thoughts and I was like, “Ureka! History will settle this matter once and for all.” I went into research only to discover the one and only thing that many of my friends have been always bothering me about. “Jokmagai, please write a book.” That is one of the constant words I hear when I talk to some of my relatives and friends. To my friends I discovered that I can really write a book.

My research was on the names; ‘Dinka Bor, Bor Asili and The Dinka of Jonglei.’ I had promised to write an article and published it here as a point of debate and discussion. The title of my research was: “JONGLEI MERRY-GO-ROUND OF POLITICAL GAMBLES THROUGH ETHNIC ASSIMILATION SUPERIORITY SYNDROME: FROM NYARWENGIZATION THROUGH KONGORIZATION TO BORIZATION.” As I was doing that research, I addressed the issue at hand and when I later finished, I discovered that I had already written 44 pages. The ideas were still jumping in from the creative side of the brain and I was like, “Let me write a book on this then.” Look! Already 44 pages in about a week!

(more…)


After violent conflicts, in what ways are apology and forgiveness difficult, but necessary, in furthering reconciliation?

By Manyang Mador Koch, Melbourne, Australia

tribalism

Bentiu, UNMISS Camp

Monday, August 20, 2018 (PW) — Discussing apology and forgiveness in a post violent conflict can be difficult if not impossible in most cases, it doesn’t work at all. However, there are needs for apology and forgiveness, which will advance reconciliation in any given society.

This essay will explore the implications surrounding apology and forgiveness and how difficult they are to achieve after violent conflicts on a societal scale. This means it will examine the role of ethnicity in political system by choosing Rwanda as case study. The paper will also consider the political establishment and the implications surrounding the Rwandan genocide in 1994.

Therefore, the definition of ethnicity which can be refers to an outdate terminologies such as the tribalism; cleansing conflict and even sub-clan were commonly used in the 1950-1960s during the Cold War (CW) period.[1] It is also significant to paraphrase colonial history and its connection to the Rwandan genocide of the 1994. The historical connection between Hutu and Tutsi, that this paper will technically consider the role of ethnicity in political context in Rwanda. (more…)


By Apioth Mayom Apioth, North Dakota, USA

Peter Biar Ajak is a South Sudanese PhD student of politics and world affairs at Cambridge University in the UK; he was detained by agents of the national security at Juba International Airport on his way to Aweil for the celebration of Red Army Day.

Peter Biar Ajak is a South Sudanese PhD student of politics and world affairs at Cambridge University in the UK; he was detained by agents of the national security at Juba International Airport on his way to Aweil for the celebration of Red Army Day.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018 (PW) —– When a government has everything going well for her; it shouldn’t worry about criticism. Criticism is a toothless biting mouth whose venom become obsolete when the said government/institution is feeding her subjects with euphoric and joyous things to celebrate for their dear lives. The more a government does well for her subjects, the less criticism the government faces in the long run.

Even if there is a throw of criticism here and there, and the political sentiment in the nation is ripe with prosperity and happiness, then any sort of criticism thrown at the government shouldn’t matter, would it? I ask the government and the leading security agencies to release Peter Biar Ajak from the jaws of injustice labeled against him. We have to start a brand new era of respecting the views of other people that may be different from us!!! The time is ripe to embark on that journey now!!!

No matter how brilliant and bright Peter Biar Ajak is in charting a brand new path for our people to be the sole custodians of their rights and freedoms; it is hard to see how his efforts are going to translate into real substantial results. Salva Kiir is beginning to open up to work with different political organizations, but we are not so certain about how things are going to span out in the long run. (more…)


By Gabriel Kucdit Kachuol, Nairobi, Kenya

founders of the splm

Commemorating the 33rd Anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Revolutionary Movement—the SPLM/SPLA

Founders of Anyanya one

Founders of Anyanya one – Father Saturnino Lohure (Patron), Joseph Oudho (President) and William Deng Nhial (Secretary General)

Tuesday, July 31, 2018 (PW) — Today is our martyrs’ day! I believe it’s a day to commemorate and also reflect on what, why, how,….questions entailing how far we have come as a nation to the stature we are in today – for better or for worse. It starts with “who am I” that South Sudan question bothers me?

I identify myself as concerned South Sudan citizen akin to one of the ten (10) anecdotal blind men sent to feel and describe the “elephant.” They all gave variant but, more or less, an accurate description of the gargantuan animal depending on the part each one of them touched. (more…)


By Peter Wek Mabioordit, Juba, South Sudan

once-upon-a-time-we-were-united

Sunday, July 15, 2018 (PW) — Many people fall into leadership positions either by choice or chance. Unfortunately, not all of them are guaranteed to succeed in their work. Actually, it takes knowledge, integrity and grit to expertly guide any group towards its goals.

The notion that some people were born to lead is entirely wrong. While there are certainly some individuals born with desirous leadership qualities like charm, charisma and the ability to inspire loyalty, key leadership traits like patriotism and perseverance are actually learned things.

Moreover, the leadership qualities that one is capable of learning rather than those which are inherently possessed tend to be the most valuable when determining the likelihood of success. As an aspiring leader, the following are some of the desired leadership traits that you must possess before embarking on any major endeavors; (more…)


By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan

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Thursday, July 05, 2018 (PW) —The evolution and vanishing of flashy attacking animal locally named Nyan ne juan in Bor land during the 1980s still remained a mystery.

As the saying goes there is time for everything; in the middle of 1980s after the Bor mutiny and few years before the children were sent to Ethiopia for their grooming into the Liberation movement came a mysterious dwarfed and swift attacking creature nick named Nyan ne juan by the locals.

Nyan ne juan in its simplest form to English mean a girl wearing an underwear, the dwarf creature was known for its flashy attacking style mostly on young children, it targeted bodily parts such as the eyes, ears and mouths. (more…)


By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan

peace-for-south-sudan

Wednesday, July 04, 2018 (PW) — Peace will not come to South Sudan on its two or four walking legs; it will appear when South Sudanese expose and disown individual feelings that go against positivity.

According to the former president of the United States of America President Barack Obama peace is just not about politics. It’s about attitudes; about a sense of empathy; about breaking down the divisions that we create for ourselves in our own minds and our own hearts that don’t exist in any objective reality, but that we carry with us generation after generation.

The peace we seek in the world begins in human hearts. And it finds its glorious expression when we look beyond any differences in religion or tribe, and rejoice in the beauty of every soul. (more…)


One is always known for what he does, a prolific peek on Magot Khot; the latest and fieriest South Sudan Wrestler.

By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan

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Thursday, June 28, 2018 (PW) — Simba-Khordit known by his family name as Magot Khot Ajak hails from Abiong section of Ajuong community of Twic East in Jonglei State.

He is at his youthful age of 30 and has so far been christened as the fieriest attacker in the wrestling history of South Sudan. Blessed with corporeal fitness and lion jerking style, Magot-Simba-Khordit as he is popularly known has so far wrestled down or drew with all the challengers that he had a match with. (more…)


By Atem Yaak Atem, Sydney, Australia

Abel Alier and Atem Yaak Atem

Hon. Abel Alier and Atem Yaak Atem in Nairobi, Kenya, 2005, at the signing of the CPA

Wednesday, 20 June 2018 (PW) — Over the weekend I took part in a video discussion on the education of South Sudanese girls to be at a par with boys. During my talk, the moderator asked me to throw some light on why the current generation- young men and girls- tend to show overt interest in politics. As the scope of the talk limited me to matters pertaining to education, and not politics, my answer was deliberately inadequate. This piece is an attempt to provide an overview of what I left out in the conversation.

‘Because politicians are famous’

While we were exploring the skills and careers formal education should confer on students, specifically to be gainfully employed as well as good citizens, I was presented with the question relating to the fact that many young South Sudanese show an undisguised interest in politics. “Is it because politicians are famous?”

As a hypothesis, it could be one of several answers to what is undeniably an obvious attraction: not by youth alone but also by a large segment of the society of South Sudan; nearly everyone loves to talk politics and hopes to become a full time “professional” politician one day. (more…)


By Majok Arol Dhieu, Juba, South Sudan

Riek Machar arrival in Addis Ababa, 20 June 2018.jpg

Riek Machar arrival in Addis Ababa, 20 June 2018

Wednesday, 20 June 2018 (PW) — Whoever relaxes reading will disarm himself academically and land himself in a passive position. For those who refused to be cowed into alcoholic’s friendship, your knowledge hasn’t yet evaporated but with lapse of time, should you sip one cup of an alcopop made from dried yeast, you will risk frittering the knowledge away. Help yourself!

A magician without sick people brought before him for some days would slaughter a chicken in conjuring people so that problem befalls them, and then he would benefit in solving those problems. This’s the same case with IGAD in solving South Sudan problems.

The decaying classes and the labouring masses are tired of peace process being repeatedly postponed. What is wrong with this compromise peace and its revitalization forum whereas other peace deals have been hastily signed as if bees were chasing the signatories out of hall?

(more…)


Another tedious search for peace: What the South Sudanese leaders should learnt from regional and international handshakes

By Longar Mathiec Wol, Juba, South Sudan

Raila and Riek

Former Kenyan PM, Raila Odinga, meeting South Sudanese opposition leader, Riek Machar, in South Africa, in the lead up to the face to face meeting in Khartoum between President Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 (PW) — As the negotiation teams expected to resume another phase of negotiation in Addis Ababa, IGAD led peace mediation after face meeting schedule in Khartoum between President Salva Kiir Mayardit and Dr. Riek Machar Teny, if that initiative succeed; till then, the suffering masses will have to continue to patiently wait for the peace they have been yearning for a little longer. It has been painful experience and set back since Junubeen world turned a part in 2013.  Since then, the struggle to restore peace and stability rage on, the despair seems to overcome hope. Many people see the strategies deployed by the mediation organization, country and the opposition to be defective; people felt led down, the suffering continues.

In the view of the people of South Sudan, peace is the only way forward, and for the peace to come the politicians at this time are expected to sacrifice. They are expected to at least do right things. People have suffered enough. The analyses have it that, the country failed to achieve lasting peace because our leaders put their personal interest above all interests. The real peace will never come till when the leaders stop demanding for positions, instead of diagnosing the real root causes of this tragic civil war that led million to displacement camps in East Africa. (more…)


A socioeconomic perspective: High Bride Price is the main driver of rampant conflicts in the Lakes region in particular and South Sudan in general

By Makur Garang Apadieer, Juba, South Sudan

The Wedding of Amer Mayen Dhieu and Makwei Mabioor Deng, 14 October 2017

The Wedding of Amer Mayen Dhieu and Makwei Mabioor Deng, 14 October 2017

  1. Synopsis

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 (PW) — This article focuses mainly on the bride price, its history, benefits and consequences. The main theme of writing this article is to highlight both advantages and disadvantages and how the interrelation of both positive and negative aspects of the high bride price can be harnessed by creating and institutionalizing the guidelines that can regulate the conduct of marriage to meet the interests of the bride and family, the groom and family and the bride and groom respectively.

The article follows a specified sequence or outline which includes definition, introduction and history of bride wealth, merits of bride wealth, and evidence of practice and consequences of high bride price, existing control mechanisms, coping mechanisms and demerits of bride price and proposed policy option for addressing current and prospective negative consequences emanating from high bride price.

The work draws examples mainly from pastoral ethnic communities within South Sudan. Citations from earlier work on same topic have also made. The article is an attempt to advocate and bring to the platform the most pressing issue of our time for collective resolution by multiple stakeholders: government, community, CSOs, NGOs and UN agencies. (more…)