South Sudan Army has lost direction: Governor Bakosoro

Members of South Sudan Police Service sleeping during the 4th independent anniversary in Juba, South Sudan(Photo: file)

Members of South Sudan Police Service sleeping during the 4th independent anniversary in Juba, South Sudan(Photo: file)

July 17, 2015(Nyamilepedia) – Joseph Bakosoro who is governor of Western Equatoria state has blasted the South Sudan Army of being unprofessional and “losing direction”, in the first open criticism of the army by a senior government official.

Bakosoro accused the army which is dominated by supporters of Salva Kiir from Bahr El Ghazal region of being part of the current insecurity and chaos that has engulfed the young nation including his state of Western Equatoria, Bahr El Ghazal is believed to now make up 80% of the Army.

The outspoken governor called on the government to instead invest more on the police rather than on the army which he described as being indiscipline and unprofessional.

The army under President Salva Kiir has been accused of involvement in several incident which involved the army fighting civilians using full combat equipment including Machine gun, Grenade explosives and Tanks, this has raised eyebrows and concerns amongst citizens, politicians and also foreign observers on how a national army would be using excessive force to deal with local situations which is suppose to be handled by the Police and civilian law enforcement agencies.

Governor Bakosoro has called on the police to take a more active and greater role in maintaining law and order and protecting civilians, arguing it was not the armies job to maintain law and order as it’s the police duty according to the constitution.

The army has been accused of causing insecurity in Western Equatoria state and also killing several civilians including a commissioner in Mundri and also in Maridi areas of the state.

The constitution tasks the army with protecting the country against foreign threats and other internal threats that can be considered a national security threat.

The governor made the remarks after returning to the state capital Yambio from Juba where Salva Kiir held an emergency meeting with all state governors on the increasing insecurity situation across South Sudan.

“The army have lost direction, in all the states you find that the army attack civilians, the civilians attack army and so on, in all the states. The police who are supposed to keep the rule of law have no arms and have no power in all the states.” Governor Bakosoro told reporters in Yambio.

He added that insecurity around the country was made worst by lack of a strong police, army indiscipline, proliferation of firearms, unprofessional army, youth unemployment, food insecurity, poor roads, and a crippled judiciary system.

Bakosoro said the collapsing economy and the poor living standards of the people is forcing many including soldiers to resort to criminal activities to make ends meet.

“The inflation has made people now take arms and loot so they can eat. That is another problem. So all these blocking of the roads and looting of the vehicles is because people have not enough food to eat. So that is how some go to look for food.”

The governor concluded by saying what the happening today is not what the people had fought for during the liberation struggle, instead people were looking for a better life and the army is supposed to be a discipline army.

“the army they are only …suppose… to fight (external war) … but it seems there is not much discipline now in most of our soldiers and we have lost the vision which we were coming with from liberation.”

South Sudan has been hit by increased insecurity and violence ever since the start of fighting in December 2013 which started as a political disagreement between the President Salva Kiir and his Deputy Dr. Riek Machar and later turned into a full blown civil war after Presidential guards mostly from Kiir’s dinka tribe massacred thousands of Nuer civilians in the Capital Juba.

Transformation of SPLA into a professional army based on regional balance is one of the contentious issues at the current peace talks aimed at ending the current civil war with rebels calling for a new structure and command for a new national army.

The Bahr El Ghazal region were Salva Kiir comes from currently makes up 80% of the army and security raising concerns about Kiir’s commitment to creating regional balance within the country’s security system.

Observers warn South Sudan could be descending into lawlessness as government has lost capacity to protect it’s citizens or maintain law and order, meanwhile the the country’s economy faces an imminent collapse.

9 comments

  • Why Dinka young men in the army wasting everything by paying marriages expenses to Zanda while it is no good.

  • All are Dinka soldier, and why are you crying if you have people?

  • what happened to this offers they have been drinking all night? or they are been on duty all night.

  • Dinka are people like every one created by God .but their beha iours are not good .they have not excuse .

    • Madut Abraham

      Rapael Tanga, Stop tribe talking. What more you south Sudanese people want Dinka offer you again. During long civil war between North and south Sudan. Most of SPLA/SPLM freedom fighters against muslim extremist in Kartoum were Dink young men and women. Nuer lead by Riek Machar joint kartoum in 1991 after he attack civil in bor and committed genocide against bor people and non of you is concert .During the war freedom fighters were not paid , SPLA/SPLM have no money at that time. Now south Sudanese forgot and start complaining against Dinka. While Dinka lost most of their love sons and daughters to free south Sudan from muslim dominated Kartoum in Sudan. The problem now in south sudan is Riek Machar, he is secret muslim and have secret seal symbol of muslim on his bottom . People are stupid , they do not question this evil Riek Machar, there so many points to proof this .1991 he rebel, 1997 he signed south sudan oil to Omar Bashir , 2013 he rebel again, and 1991 he committed genocide in Bor. 2014 he said to Omar Bashir , that he is sorry for letting south sudan got independence which is not true. Dr John Garang made it happened . South Sudan open your eye . Look what happened in 2013 when Kiir reshuff his leadership removing Riek Machar and many others from their position. Nuer people were holding these positions : minister of defense John Kong, general shief of staff James Hoth Mai, Vice president Riek Machar, second in commend of arm forces Gatdet Yak, Minister of health current Riak an other not Riek machar, Minister of law John luk and so many others general in army were head division. When look this , it is stupid for people hear what Nuer people are talking about. Again there asked bring of their to replace Riek Machar and they all refuse knowing they control the Army and they want to take over by force when it or not. They want Riek Machar to be president of south sudan by force . Riek Machar is terror who want to promoted muslim ideal in south Sudan.

  • the poster of that article is stupid, how can governor concern be combine with police photo, nonsense

  • we are lacking governorship inside the country

  • dinka family

    NO may brother we have a good governor like bokoswere but our president have all the authorises in his heand