Let’s cut to the chase: Political and constitutional blunders of President Kiir.
“As south African said, God must surely be crazy. We thought He ended our punishment when Dr. John made it through and brought us the CPA, wele! A slavery only to be continued”
By Kuach Tutkuay,
June 13, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — Although many political scientists found it hard to come up with a universally acceptable definition of politics due to its complex nature that renders it more of “tendencies” than laws, I believes it is a “normative science” that deals with governance; it is that part of ethics which has to do with the regulation and government of a nation or state, the preservation of its safety, peace, and prosperity, the defense of its existence and rights against foreign control or conquest, the augmentation of its strength and resources, and the protection of its citizens in their rights, with the preservation and improvement of their morals. For a statesman to be able to performs these, he must know the “art of doing” what ought to be done. Politics being a normative science does not overlooks “morality”, it actually complement morality because all laws are suppose to dovetails with morality, though most often than not, there are loopholes that compromises this politics-morality relations.
The emergence of human society came along with the question of governance, hence, politics. Betts (1998) quoted, “we were once alone, solitary and living in a state of nature, but at some specific juncture, we came together and entered into a social contract with other people” this is how we came to exist as society. But meeting ourselves as strangers made it quite hard to trust one another, this brought the ancient problem of “prisoners dilemma” which says a human being will either cooperates or defect in relating to others. Cooperators are those who are honest and would do their role bona fide whereas defectors are those who, after receiving a favor from you, run away without having to do you a favor in return. Defectors to this social contract, who renege their commitment, are the typical free-riders who enjoys at the expense of others. Philosophy termed them as “sadist” because they always finds joy in the suffering of others. These rudimentary societies found it quite cumbersome to deal with these kinds of personalities. They selected for themselves people (leaders) who would look into these matters, make laws to governs how they relates, reprimand free-riding, protect their people, their interest and their properties. The questions that compelled me to write this piece are “how do we identify a cooperator from a defector? what if we ended up selecting the defector? He will temper with the laws and drag them towards his own personal benefits and construe them in the way that best suits his understanding. What will our society look like when the very lawmaker took the laws into their hands?”
All south Sudanese, in this case, are cooperators. They trusted their leader, Salva Kiir. Gave him all the powers to lead them, correct them, protect them and support them. Up on receiving the power, the perfect defector, Mr. Kiir, said hell with the social contract and reneged on his responsibility. In an “animal farm” administrative style, construed the laws to better fits his understanding of it than what the populace want of him. I believe you will agree with me when I say that all articles in the constitution of south Sudan have been violated and mostly by the president who was suppose to be the role model. Instead of championing issues of good governance, fighting tribalism, reduce corruption and re-vitalize rule of law, he is actually spearheading the opposites. He is spearheading poor governance and that is why the country collapsed. He showed to south Sudanese the worst form of tribalism by recruiting a battalion from his own tribe. Though he could reduce corruption, tribalism keeps him in indifferent as all the key players are his right-hand kinsmen whom he do not want to remove.
Though I am not a lawyer, it is my moral obligation to share with you the truth about our constitution which had been disowned in bright day light by the president and his clique. Let’s begin with human right. Article 12 of the transitional constitution (2011) say, “Every person has the right to liberty and security of person; no person shall be subjected to arrest, detention, deprivation or restriction of his or her liberty except for specified reasons and in accordance with procedures prescribed by law” specified reason? What a vague clause! perhaps a loophole. Does this make any difference from Animal farm constitution? Several people including families of the defected have been arrested, tortured or even killed with no “specified reason”. Is this article disowned? You bet.
Article 11 read, “Every person has the inherent right to life, dignity and the integrity of his or her person which shall be protected by law; no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his or her life“. We do not need to deny the fact that 400 gentlemen were deprived of their lives by police forces in Gudele police post and deliberately killed base on their tribe not knowing that even some of them may support Kiir.
Article 20 articulates that “The right to litigation shall be guaranteed for all persons; no person shall be denied the right to resort to courts of law to redress grievances whether against government or any individual or organization” I cannot say this article was written after Pagan Amum’s case against the president vanished into thin air despite having signed my majority of lawyers
Let’s cast another glance at article 24 sub-section (1) that says, “Every citizen shall have the right to the freedom of expression, reception and dissemination of information, publication, and access to the press without prejudice to public order, safety or morals as prescribed by law.” Many journalists and advocates have been subjected to arrest, torture and most of them deserted the country for their dear lives. Isaiah Abraham lost his life because he was trying to exercise this right. Did Michael Makuei read this article when he was airing his uncouth message that all media outlet must not broadcast anything related to rebels? I doubt! that is another blunder. Another violation of article 33 that says, “Ethnic and cultural communities shall have the right to freely enjoy and develop their particular cultures. Members of such communities shall have the right to practice their beliefs, use their languages, observe their religions and raise their children within the context of their respective cultures and customs in accordance with this Constitution and the law” was that the traditional dancers regalia of Maale cultural heritage have been seized by the national security and kept in their custody till today. In another very interesting blunder, Professor Adwok Nyaba was denied traveling to Kenya to see his wife who was then undergoing 5 hours operation and the security did not produce to him any reason except telling him to “feel the hit” of Juba. This is in violation of article 27 sub-section (2) which says, “Every citizen shall have the right to leave and or return to South Sudan.”
To take you through the powers of the president, the familiar article 101 which only the unborn have not heard of, let me cite a quote from Aristotle. “Once the constitution is in place, the leader’s main duty is to maintain it and introduce necessary reforms and prevent development that might subvert political system. This is the province of legislative science, which is more important than politics as exercised in everyday political activity such as the passing of decrees ” (see EN VI.8). Just to highlight briefly on this article, let’s have a look at sub-section (r) which read, ” the president shall remove a state Governor and/or dissolve a state legislative assembly in the event of a crisis in the state that threatens national security and territorial integrity” and (s) which read “he shall appoint a state care-taker Governor who shall prepare for elections within sixty days in the state where the Governor has been removed or the state legislative assembly so dissolved in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution, the relevant state constitution and the law“. Two governors were removed with no security threat in their states and the other two, Kuol Manyang and Malong Awan, who would have hit the first list of removal because their states were very insecure were only brought to the national government according to their wish knowing that they could not make it, and after the president turned down popular demand to remove them. Kiir is actually keeping the dog (constitution) and barks himself into irrational decrees.
This is the south Sudan we are in. A south Sudan whose president is Kiir, constitution is Kiir, parliament is Kiir and Judiciary is Kiir. It is more than the Holy trinity by one. Perhaps we can call it “holy quadrilateral” which is: Kiir the father, Kiir the mother, Kiir the son and Kiir the something else. In that manner, he stepped in the way of a meaningful democracy and the popular demand for federalism. He stood at the door with a bid black hat and a stick handy, looking straight into the eyes of poor south Sudanese who are in the house with no means to get out, intimidating them out of their wits that if you are to squeak a word “federalism” he would say “yin” before finishing the ….deralism part of it, pointing at you with a stick. Big drama here in Juba. The only thing is to shut your damn mouth and wait for a miracle to happen from Almighty Father to take him off the door so that you can get out a free person. As south African said, God must surely be crazy. We thought He ended our punishment when Dr. John made it through and brought us the CPA, wele! A slavery only to be continued. He really made his story and very soon we will take him to Hollywood’s movie theatre, don’t mention ICC.
The author is a youth activist who participates in many different south Sudanese youth platforms and he is as well a freelance writer in matters pertinent to politics, justice, peace and equality for all south Sudan. You can follow him on twitter @kuach444 or write him an email on firstname.lastname@example.org