Archive for the ‘Opinion Writers’ Category

“Tell people in power that something they tried didn’t work as expected” – Peter Ross. “A state without the means of some change is without the means of its conservation” – Edmund Burke.

By James Okuk, Ph.D., Juba, South Sudan

IGAD plus President Kiir, 25 July 2017

IGAD plus President Kiir, 25 July 2017

December 13, 2017 (SSB) — The above quotes are the essential secrets of success or failure of countries. This wisdom from Ross and Burke should guide the High-Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) and its outcome. The warring parties should seize the opportunity as the unavoidable last chance for sustainable peace. There is no room or patience left now for accommodating the unending senseless war any longer. The Revitalization of the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCSS) must change the tainted image that the country has acquired since 2013 crises to date. It should rescue South Sudan from its current situation of hopelessness and fragility. It must prevent the new country from premature disappearance into annals of history due to its trifling resistance to change for dignified happiness.

It is high time for South Sudan to be confronted truthfully to quickly regain the confidence of its lucky territory (644,329 km2) and the inherent abundance of virgin resources (oil, gas, gold, teak, mahogany, ebony, gum arabic, sweet water, tame and wild animals, proud and liberal people, etc..) located in the naturally blessed tropical savannah climate of agriculture. Article 1 (1)(2) of the Constitution of South Sudan has correctly defined it the sovereign Republic straddling Bahr el Ghazal, Equatoria and Upper Nile with boundaries of January 1, 1956, including Abyei Area of  the Nine Ngok Dinka Chiefdoms transferred from Bahr el Ghazal Province to Kordofan Province in 1905 and as defined by the Abyei International Arbitration Tribunal Award of July 2009. Article 1 (4) also provides for decentralized multiparty democracy and homeland for multi-ethnic, multi-cultural, multi-lingual, multi-religious and multi-racial people of South Sudan who should co-exist peacefully, including with their other African neighbors: Sudan (border of 2000 km) to the North, Ethiopia to the East, Kenya to the South East, Uganda to South, Democratic Republic of Congo to South West, and Central African Republic to North West. Egypt also claims to be a neighbor of South Sudan through links of history and Nile River.



By Wenne Madyt Dengs, Juba, South Sudan


Know thy enemy: The problem of South Sudan

December 13, 2017 (SSB) — Both violence and non-violence are all avenues of toppling a naughty regime based on international political context; although violence technique remains the quickest, but it is the most inopportune mechanism that leads to grievous damage to the State in which it’s set off within the short time like for the case of South Sudan where numerous people are reported killed, and half of the population fled the country.

From the onset of adverse internal revolts within the Republic of South Sudan, my special view is that there had been the great fissure in identifying weaknesses that could be used as tools of warfare to defeat the incumbent regime. One could have been wondering [like me] and asked the unanswered question on what prompted those who initiated their unsuccessful rebellions. Especially when a rebellion is started and its progress begins shrinking within the next few weeks.


By Hon Arop Madut Arop, Nairobi, Kenya

john garang in the bushDecember 12, 2017 (SSB) — As I was reading the last proof of my new book on the Ngok Dinka history, which is currently with the printers, somebody sent me a recorded voice message purportedly given by Uncle Bona Malwal in his recent press conference in Khartoum. In the voice message, it would appear that Uncle Bona Malwal was answering questions from journalists about a number of sensitive issues including a so-called Abyei Area controversy.

From Uncle Bona Malwal press statement, which I believed was staged to enable him to air some of his frustrations about a number of issues which had in not very distant past, led to his retiring from politics; Some facts beg the positive response from the concerned citizens of Ngok Dinka Region, which by accident of politics, has become known as Abyei area.

But as most of the issues discussed by Uncle Bona Malwal in his Khartoum conference were his own personal opinions, I will only comment on some of the important issues that struck me in the face. But before I discuss the issues raised by Uncle Bona Malwal, I would like to appeal to my great and resilient people of the Ngok Atungdiak not to react negatively and used abusive language in their response to Uncle Bona Malwal assertion that; Abyei area is a Sudanese for the following reasons.


By Manyang David Mayar, Juba, South Sudan


The mysterious cross-shaped grass at Juba Teaching Hospital

December 12, 2017 (SSB) — Last week, Juba was shaken by the appearance of a green grass that grew in form of a Christian Cross at Juba Teaching Hospital. Eyewitnesses say, the grass wasn’t there the previous day but just appeared the following morning after one of the ladies saw a vision in her sleep.

In the following days, thousands of Juba residents poured into the hospital to witness for themselves. Upon seeing it, some bowed down to it and worshiped it as if they had seen Christ. Others willingly gave offertory in a carton box. And by a word of mouth the message of the Green Grass Cross spread quickly like wildfire to everybody. It rapidly dominated public talk in the streets of Juba and in public transport buses.

Many people agree that it was a miracle. But each person could only give his or her own interpretation of what the GGC miracle actually means. Other groups of people simply disagreed and refer it as false and misleading. As for me, I don’t know what exactly happened and how it happened. But I believe that God has a power of speaking to the people of South Sudan by the use of sign just like He (God) has done in the past in the stories of the Bible.


By Bravo Delta, Juba, South Sudan

RSS Flag

A young South Sudanese girl

December 12, 2017 (SSB) — Recently, South Sudanese have become aware of the Bona Malwal position that Abyei is not South Sudan. This is not new to Abyei people, since he made it clear to them in 2005 that Abyei will only become part of South Sudan “over his dead body”. The reason for him to take such position remains largely a mystery to the Abyei people, as well as to the South Sudanese.

Despite these constant attacks and hurtful statements launched by Bona Malwal, Abyei people will not be distracted. We see no point in fighting a meaningless war of words. However, since the South Sudanese people are the judges of Malwal’s claim, I would like to look at what makes Bona Malwal more of a South Sudanese than Abyei people.


By Longar Mathiec Wol, Juba, South Sudan


December 12, 2017 (SSB) — As the national dialogue kick off and the nation working toward unifying and stabilizing the peace thirsty nation through people to people consultation where people continue to give their views on how the current crisis in the country could be resolved once and for all. Personally, I think the efforts worth it; though the country still bleeding and the level of excruciation reached its climax still the peace loving South Sudanese believe peace is attainable even if it’s taking longer to come.

These peace lovers believe that all the sources should be exhausted no stone should be left unturned till the peace is achieved. The race toward saving South Sudan should be through multi-avenues efforts not only political means; but also social means through education as the alternative that could bring peace in the country.

However, as people trying to find the root cause of the conflict and how to address them. In some circumstances, people believe that one cause of the conflict is the ethnic isolation. This isolation happened when the people confined themselves only in the places where they were born and their ethnophobia and negative perception toward other ethnic continues to grow stronger and persist.


By Kuach Loch Garang Deng, Calgary, Canada

President Kiir with members of the JCE

President Kiir with members of the JCE

December 12, 2017 (SSB) — In Dinka culture, or other cultures which practice this tradition of taking a brother’s wife in case of death or infertility of brother, people should know its normal. It’s normal for one to socialize children born on his bed. When an infertile man sought a helping hand from his brother, then children or a child born in his bed is or are named by him. These kids are all socialized and taught or parented by the very same man who wedded their mother; paid dowry and called her his wife.

This man should be the legal father of these children and husband to this woman. Therefore, if these children become successful or fail in lives, no one should blame a smarten purse who only step up on the voluntary ground to procreate a family on his brother’s behalf when that custom is normally practiced in the said culture. As a result, a sole responsibility should be taken by a father for a good credit or failure as children grow up.


By Nhial Bol Aken, Juba, South Sudan

farm in Bor, Jonglei state

farm in Bor, Jonglei state

December 12, 2017 (SSB) — As one of the people who championed for the cause of our independence, I decided to initiate a new fight for the survival of the country we fought to achieve. There is a need to fight for the freedom from want meaning economic freedom and soon I will move to my home area in Biong area in the former Gogrial East County to advocate for this particular freedom first among my community and later on I will move to others.

The project is seed breeding farm. One of the main resources to increase food production and timely availability and distribution of affordable viable seeds that are locally produced to cut down the expensive and imports. Farmers in my home area do not have easy access to seeds and the government has limited capacity to provide seeds. In view of the difficulty, farmers in the areas face difficulties to farm at the rain times of the raining season.

Proposing to establish a seed breeding research farm is the key to agriculture development. The farm is planned to produce sufficient quantities that will meet the demand for seeds in the area first.


By Hon Arop Madut Arop (MP), Nairobi, Kenya

RSS coat of ARMS

South Sudan’s coat of arms, in which the eagle symbolizes vision, strength, resilience and majesty, and the shield and spear the people’s resolve to protect the sovereignty of their republic and work hard to feed it.

December 10, 2017 (SSB) — Every year, South Sudan from all walks of life, mark December 5th anniversary as their Constitutional Day. This year they marked the 15th anniversary of the constitutional day, quietly at their respective homes and places of work. Importantly, as we strive to come to term with the agonies bred by the on-going senseless civil war and how to bring guns to dead silence and re-launch democratic institutions, it will be natural for the people of South Sudan to look back at their final glorious journey to statehood. Below is the first leg to statehood.

It all began soon after the conclusion of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, when the SPLM Chairman Dr John Garang de Mabior called upon the SPLM Liberation Council to form a technical committee, composed of a team of legal experts to put together a draft constitution that would be presented to the first Southern Sudan legislative assembly to endorse it as this would guide the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and the establishment of all government institutions.


By Dut Agostino Agei, Nairobi, Kenya

abyei pic

December 10, 2017 (SSB) — South Sudan that won independence from Sudan in 2011 was a news to everybody. This was because of the liberation struggle that took us more than several decades in the war. We are to remind ourselves that the independent South Sudan was also another independence of the SPLM/SPLA administrates areas. This was because of the strategy of the comprehensive peace agreements that gave South Sudanese their rights to be independent Country first and then liberated the administrates areas using public policies.

I was personally convinced by this protocol since the same CPA that signed South Sudan peace agreement was the same CPA that was going to negotiated the SPLM/SPLA administrates areas. This was promising in the sense of togetherness and also in the sense of cohesiveness of Southern Sudanese who were united during liberation time in the Sudan.

After the comprehensive peace agreements that addressed what the war was all about in Southern Sudan then the current situations in the Country never look likes the Country would in the future stand a chances to liberated the other SPLM/SPLA administrates areas that were together with South Sudanese during the liberation struggle and who were also in the comprehensive peace agreement with South Sudan after the independent South Sudan peace agreements. This was also seen in different bilateral relations between Sudan and South Sudan peace agreements.


By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan



December 10, 2017 (SSB) — Girls’ education goes beyond getting girls into school. It is also about ensuring that girls learn and feel safe while in school; complete all levels of education with the skills to effectively compete in the labor market; learn the socio-emotional and life skills necessary to navigate and adapt to a changing world; make decisions about their own lives; and contribute to their communities and the world.

Girls’ education is a strategic development priority. Better educated women tend to be healthier, participate more in the formal labor market, earn higher incomes and enable better health care and education for their children, should they choose to become mothers. All these factors combined can help lift households, communities, and nations out of poverty.

Every day, girls face barriers to education caused by poverty, cultural norms and practices, poor infrastructure, violence, and fragility. Girl Child Education is one of the safest routes that can navigate girls out of social problems.


By Daniel Juol Nhomngek, Kampala, Uganda



December 8, 2017 (SSB) — Before going into the discussion over how to create and maintain the rule of law in Gok State, it is imperative to acknowledge the fundamental roles played by different Gok people in being a constant voice of what should be done to achieve peace in Gok State. The first acknowledgment goes to our elder brother Tembany Matur Malek whose desires and actions are always for Gok State and Gok people. In fact, no amount of words that can be expressed to pay him back for his zeal and commitments to seeing Gok State a peaceful, united and prosperous state. In general, he has been a constant reminder of how to achieve peace in Gok State with the unwavering spirit.

In the same line, I would also like to acknowledge and thank our elder sister Helen Philip Ater Dhal and all other Gok people in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, other parts of Europe, China East African countries and inside South Sudan for their concerns and role tilted towards achieving peace in Gok State. Without over-exaggerating the contributions of the Gok people mentioned above, it is my conclusion that their contributions have made Gok State what it is today. Without their help, the majority of our people would have died during the war, especially from the 2000s to 2005 and from 2013 to date.


By Emmanuel Ariech Deng, Wunkuel, South Sudan

Gogrial state

December 8, 2017 (SSB) — Most of the problems manufactured by men can equally be resolved by men if it is not a curse or taboo in human living. Any persistent conflict can be solved by God too. So let us be hopeful and agree that any other catastrophe engineered by men can get a solution if not by humans, then with the help of God or by nature.

There is no place on earth where the armed civilians can be stronger than the national army and government unless the perceived unwillingness or ignorance to stop the escalation of violence between fighting communities in South Sudan has a pointing finger of blame on individual or group conspiracies.

This idea of people are not the same is slowly entering into our rigid brains that even brothers/sisters of one woman-one man can be different in thinking and control measures when it comes to public concerns. Even the helter-skelter gubernatorial predecessor of Hon. Atem Atem has admitted and acknowledged that his tenure had insinuated a wider leadership vacuum and partisanism in the State.


By Nhial Bol Aken, Juba, South Sudan

National Dialogue, concept reflictions by Mading Deng

“In this polarized and polarizing conflict, perceptions can overshadow reality, and whatever the equation of the power structures, the Dinka are being seen as having replaced the Arabs as the rulers in an ethnically unjust system. As the various ethnic groups converge against what they perceive as Dinka domination, the Dinka in turn begin to perceive themselves as targeted and paradoxically as in imminent danger of a genocidal onslaught. They therefore strive to mobilize themselves in self-defense.” – Dr Francis Mading Deng – SOUTH SUDAN NATIONAL DIALOGUE; Conceptual Reflections page 43

December 7, 2017 (SSB) — When the fellow citizens walked to Dr. John Garang Mausoleum to celebrate the declaration of their independence in 2011, I was among them but soon after hearing some speeches from our leaders, I turned nervous and I concluded that we are destined to a fail state.

The speeches focused on the historical facts of the struggles, establishments of government, the formation of the commissions, the resources we have and desired to develop a newborn country. Little was said about the unity of our people, the unity of South Sudanese.

This made me believe that the people of South are not the real focus and will never be a focus since we repeatedly preached today creation of more states and not a desire to bring unity of the 64 tribes.


By Sunday de John, Juba, South Sudan

President Kiir's speeches after independence

Salva Kiir Mayaardit: The Joshua of South Sudan. Grab your copy at

December 7, 2017 (SSB) — Excuse me, let me state my point. Time and again I have been rebuked by voices stating at length why I must abandon supporting the government of the South Sudan and President Salva Kiir Mayardit then particular.

The voices referred to it as a failed government. A government devoid of substance. One that is owned by a section of the community. One that has rendered South Sudanese homeless, massively displacing them from their residents.

All these sound great, but those pronouncing them are much filthier than they claim purity. South Sudan was in fact messed up by the runaway criminals. Those that might have either uneasy political breakthrough, embezzled public resources, murdered somebody, the sacked from the government, irritated drug addicts, mere cajoled youngsters and of course few sound individuals whose reasons for joining the rebellion are not trivial.



Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol

The late Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol

December 7, 2017 (SSB) — It was a big joy when we were granted our independence on 9/7/2011. Everyone from South Sudan thought Bashir and his fellow Arabs were the problems. After the independence, I thought we were free from any form of violence. Little did I know that the problem lies with us South Sudanese, especially our leaders?

The war of SPLM/A that took over 20 years, claimed mostly the lives of soldiers. However, the current conflicts among South Sudanese, is taking away most the lives of innocent civilians.

Those who have died within 6 years of independence are likely more than those who died within 21 years of SPLM/A civil war. Was our independence a blessing or a curse?

By David Matiop Gai, Juba, South Sudan

HIV-AIDS prevention: Thank to PrEP and PEP, you can protect yourself and love ones from HIV/AIDS

Thank to PrEP and PEP, you can protect yourself and love ones from HIV/AIDS

December 7, 2017 (SSB) — In commemoration of HIV/AIDS World Day on the 5th of December 2017 in South Sudan, HIV/AIDS is a great challenge to life and had the highest threat to the entire population in South Sudan, Africa and in the world at large. Why is HIV/AIDS everybody business? Is it a question which needs integrative knowledge that will address the prevention of epidemic among the youths of South Sudan? Let‘s understand it here.

The HIV/AIDS is not yet much known to civil population especially at the grass root levels because if you know something, you may know it to the best of your knowledge and more details about the disease may be some people know little about it.


The Amazing Story of three brothers: Peter Makuach Manyuat, Jackson Ngong Manyuat and Gabriel Makuach Manyuat

By Peter Makuach Manyuat, Juba, South Sudan

Malek secondary school

Form four candidates in Malek secondary school [photo] by Jongkuch Jo Jongkuch, June 2016

December 7, 2017 (SSB) — Children in their early teenage years often discuss how their future would pan out to be and what kind of profession each one would want to follow. My above-mentioned brothers and I one time had a similar kind of discussion.

I started the discussion myself by revealing that I would want to be a doctor if things go the way I would want them to be. Gabriel Makuach, my stepbrother, followed with his wish saying that all he dreamt of was to be an Engineer.

Ngong’s turn came and said he also wanted to be a doctor. Then, I was in primary eight and the brothers were in primary 3 still. We carried the results of our discussion to our father, Manyuat Ayii Ngong. All he advised was that he wished each one of us to work to the fulfillment of our dreams.


By Apioth Mayom Apioth, USA

pagan and john garang

Commander Pagan Amum Okiech, with Chairman Dr. John Garang and Commander Yasir Said Arman, Rumbek Senior, 2003

December 6, 2017 (SSB) — By the looks of things, Kiir Mayardit has no intention of steering the nation into the daylight. He has been the leading figure in the South Sudanese politics for twelve unimpressive years. He has become “Mr. Let’s wait and sees how this problem is going to take care of itself.” His loves of the leadership has blinded his conscientious self. In ancient Africa, Kings, or chiefs wielded enormous power and with this juggernaut of power came novelty. In most cases, they were principally wealthy and gave away their wealth to the downtrodden populace.

For this, Kiir Mayar is trying to emulate how the traditional leaders had an open door policy and being all ears to the countless number of people all at one go. He just sits there on his presumed throne and families of all kinds come to demand whatever they long for their livelihoods. Even before his ascendancy to the upper echelon of the South Sudanese politics, his laid-back approach to everything cost many soldiers to lose their lives during our days in the bush. The first task of a leader is to be an initiator. The first to take the first step out. Salva Kiir sleeps on his duties.

An influential leader cultivates trust. How does trust come about? He/she is a selfless being that goes out of her comfort zone to make sure the lives of all individuals are secure from harm. Once the people are secure from danger, then what comes next is trust and a willingness for the general populace to heed his call for commandeering. Trust is garnered through three hard-earned steps.


By Pal Chol Nyan, Juba, South Sudan


South Sudan must be weaned off war

December 6, 2017 (SSB) — This war must stop forthwith. This is what we have been calling for but it has been being ignored by the beneficiaries. The people of South Sudan need permanent home-made peace but not an imported or imposed one; for stability and sustainable development. They are traumatized and tired of war.

They have tasted a big dose of the bitterness of the escalating war; it is manifest in their attitudes and conduct characterized by violence; pride, rudeness, and unkindness. They lost their properties. They are made homeless. Many lives have been lost in the hands of armed men without accountability.

Are we not ashamed of our own actions; seeing our people languishing under squalid conditions in the camps? They have no enough food and water; no medical care and other basic amenities.