This is the preface to the second edition of “South Sudan: The State we aspire to” by Dr. Peter Adwok Nyaba, sent to us for publication by Keji-Keji Mayomism from Melbourne, Australia
July 24, 2016 (SSB) — “It was on 8 August 2005. We were leaving the burial ground – now renamed Dr. John Garang Memorial Grounds – immediately after the burial of Dr Garang’s remains. A senior member of the SPLM Leadership Council (name withheld), in a very exhausted voice, said to me “Garang was a very lucky man.” I tried to extract the meaning of these words but the man could not reply. This left me bewildered.
“How can one be lucky in death?” I thought to myself. Perhaps what my colleague meant was that Garang had not lived to watch the edifice (SPLM/A) he constructed come tumbling down like a house of cards. The sudden and tragic death of Dr Garang disorganised and disoriented the SPLM leaders. The SPLM leadership started to show cracks in its ranks even as they were still making the funeral arrangements.
Dr Garang died before achieving complete reconciliation with Gen. Salva Kiir following the fallout that was the Yei crisis. The conference fudged the matter. The two leaders acted tactically, marking time until the disaster struck. The drivers of the Yei crisis remained active, and with the death of Dr Garang, they took centre stage of the SPLM and the government of Southern Sudan. The realignment of forces inside the SPLM triggered internal contradictions.