By Nuer Youth Representatives
December 11, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — We, the Nuer youth leaders and representatives in South Sudan and in Diaspora are calling on the two South Sudanese rival leaders, President Salva Kiir Mayardit and SPLM/SPLA Chairman, Dr. Riek Machar Teny, to recognize 15 December as a National Mourning Day. We call on them to observe the coming 15 December by declaring it a mourning day for the loss of tens of thousands of lives in the conflict which started with the massacre of over 20,000 innocent Nuer civilians in the capital, Juba.
This is to pay our respect to the innocent souls lost and to say sorry to them for this unnecessary senseless war which is imposed on the people of South Sudan by mere dictatorial tendencies and greed for meaningless power by General Salva Kiir Mayardit. We want the two leaders to decree to commemorate the day in their respective areas of control and to continue to do so after a peace agreement is signed and a Transitional Government of National Unity (TGNU) is formed. This will be sending a very strong message of reconciliation across the nation, particularly among the youth.
We, the youth from the Nuer communities in South Sudan and in Diaspora have resolved to commemorate this First Anniversary of 15 December this year and we encourage all South Sudanese communities to join us because 15 December and its aftermath have caused and continues to cause losses of countless lives of our loved ones. We therefore urge all South Sudanese to come out, converge and commemorate this dark day wherever they are.
We believe that if 15 December is recognized and observed as a National Mourning Day for the calamity that has befallen our post independent South Sudan, and with strong messages of reconciliation delivered by responsible leaders, this will greatly help change the South Sudanese concept of tribalism to nationalism, stop the war and prevent another tribal or internal conflict from reigniting.
Advantages are as follows:
- Observance of the 15 December will trigger South Sudanese youth to commit themselves to educating communities, particularly the youth sector in the society about the consequences of the post-independence violence and the need to stop the war, initiate reconciliation and heal the wounds, rebuild our country and become one people and nation.
- 15 December will be used to remind all South Sudanese and young politicians not to be bias and to discourage tribalism, hatred, corruption and dictatorship or not commit crime against their own citizens.
- South Sudanese youth will study the genesis of 15 December violence in order to prevent another mass killings and inhumane acts from repeating itself in the future. In this, youth will be educating our young leaders not to turn their political differences into killing innocent civilians, but to make wise decisions to peacefully resolve their differences with political maturity.
- 15 December will be the turning point for the South Sudanese national army (SPLA) and other security organs not to turn their guns on innocent civilians, but to protect them, respect the value of human life and human rights.
- Let the war of 15 December be the last war internally fought in South Sudan among South Sudanese people.
Therefore, we reiterate our call on the leaders to initiate a spirit of reconciliation by recognizing the lost souls and observing the day; stop escalating the fighting and speed up the peace process in order to reach a peace agreement.
We would also like to announce that we the Nuer youth have resolved to establish a 15 DECEMBER VICTIM FOUNDATION, a non-profit organization that shall be providing support and services such as counseling, advocacy, collection of data of all Nuer victims who lost their lives in Juba and beyond, and to support orphans and widows. This organization will support survivors and victims of war during healing and reconciliation process. 15th DECEMBER VICTIM FOUNDATION will have offices in all countries mentioned below. Its headquarters may be located in Australia until permanent peace is achieved in South Sudan.
As we are very committed to a peaceful resolution to the conflict, we want immediate cessation of hostilities and political settlement that will bring a lasting peace and stability in South Sudan. Therefore, we call on President Salva Kiir to either step down or accept to share executive powers with the Prime Minister in a transitional period prior to elections as well as agree on a security arrangement that will guarantee the safety of his rivals and to deter repeat of the 15 December massacre.
We the Nuer youth around the globe would therefore like to make our position VERY clear that we are for a genuine peaceful resolution to the conflict. We are for a federal system of governance and democracy in the South Sudanese politics. Nevertheless, we are EQUALLY ready to sacrifice more lives in order to eradicate dictatorship, injustices and warmongering in the leadership of South Sudan, together with its elements that are obstacles to tangible development and prosperity in our God-given young nation.
Signed by Nuer youth leaders/representatives in Diaspora and in South Sudan.
- Thalage Wal Goch (Nuer Youth in Australia)
- Nyanguk G Riek (Nuer Youth in USA)
- James Madit Koch (Nuer Youth in Canada)
- Kueth Rial (Nuer Youth in Europe)
- John Koang Nhoat (Geneva-Switzerland)
- Gogual Mut Deng (Nuer Youth in Israel)
- Gatkuoth Kim Both (Nuer Youth in Egypt)
- John Chuol (Nuer Youth in Sudan)
- Koat Gatkuoth (Nuer Youth in Ethiopia)
- Gatwech Gach Riek (Nuer Youth in Kenya)
- Samuel Gach Kuiynin (Nuer Youth in Uganda)
- Puol Chuol (Nuer Youth in South Sudan)