BY Sirir Gabriel Yiei Rut,
August 28, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — Liberation struggle credentials have resulted in bad decisions and bad leadership starting at national assembly.
I know that our liberation struggle history needs to be rewritten.
I know that our history has been manipulated and usurped to paint a select few as heroes while those who truly sacrificed much remain destitute and forgotten; that is not right.
However, let us be very clear that, simply because one fought during the struggle does not necessarily mean that they will turn out as good leaders.
We have seen claims and counter claims of who did what and when during the struggle.
My question remains: So what?
Of course, I respect and honor those who sacrificed their lives for our freedom, but to me, that does not necessarily entitle them to political power nor does it mean that God deposited only in them the monopoly of wisdom.
South Sudan has been mismanaged because of this claim that “I fought the war, therefore . . .”
In fact, many competent patriotic south Sudanese have been crowded out of leadership positions for the wrong reasons, no wonder why we are in trouble.
Liberation struggle credentials have resulted in bad decisions and bad leadership starting in national assembly.
For me, whether Vice-President James Wani Igga shot down a helicopter or not has absolutely nothing to do with us creating the south Sudan we want in the future.
It has absolutely nothing to do with whether he is a good or bad leader.
Our future must be significantly different from the past and it is a shame that now, in the 21st Century, we still have people in SPLM -Juba faction thinking that they are entitled to lead simply because of their purported struggle heroics.
It is only in Africa where liberation struggle credentials continue to be abused as a right to power and privilege.
Struggle heroes deserve to be honored and remembered and that’s about all; it is time they moved on and let us support ambitious and progressive south Sudanese leaders who can create a better south Sudan that can compete with the rest of the world.
The power cling within SPLM-Juba are totally irrelevant to our times.
We need solutions and conversations about the future.
For goodness sake, we need a new narrative for our country’s future and not who shot what down whom 21 years ago!
As we grapple with the deteriorating economic and social conditions, I would have expected the leadership of this country to have sleepless nights discussing together how we can get out of this mess.
Instead some are busy praising president Kiir for carryout killing, while others are busy plotting and murdering innocents at night.
What a comedy!
South Sudan certainly deserves better.
It is disheartening to see our neighboring economies progress with constant leadership renewal being a common feature.
I always say that we can revive south Sudan within 100 days given a chance.
It will not take much, but to just ensure the rule of law, the respect of private property and revival of our agriculture sector.
As all this leadership succession fiasco carries on, I will not at all be surprised if, after all, President Salva Kiir Mayardit decides to stay on.
Actually, sadly, it’s most likely that he will and gives the usual excuse that SPLM-Juba will collapse without him. (Something that is highly likely by the way).
So all this bickering is really not going to add an iota to our economic recovery.
The amount of lost opportunities and waste of potential for south Sudan because Salva Kiir has simply failed to nurture new leaders is unimaginable.
He must take full responsibility for the quarrels happening now, it is his fault.
The majority of south Sudanese I have met are just surviving from day to day as the economy tanks.
Not many are creating wealth as should happen in a normal economy and it will take some time before we can compete with our neighbors.
The amazing fact is that nobody within SPLM-Juba seems concerned. Leadership failure has become endemic.
We have so many talented and ambitious out there and struggle credentials have nothing to do with what we want to achieve in the future.
In fact, they have led to us electing bad leaders.
We must broaden the country’s leadership base and make use of all our potential in every field.
At the rate things are going, south Sudan will never reach its full potential.
To all those who truly liberated us, I say thank you. To the pretenders who continue to claim entitlement to power, I say, south Sudan does not need you anymore. I pray that God is hearing our fervent prayers.
We need to see new leaders emerging sooner rather than later and that is something all of us must fight for.
The author is student of political science living in Cairo; you can reach him through:firstname.lastname@example.org