By Dak Buoth,
SENIOR YOUTH OF SOUTH SUDAN (SEYOSS)
March 4th, 2018(Nyamilepedia) — We writes to register our commendation to the revolutionary Leaders of the South Sudanese armed opposition parties namely SSUM, NDM, SSNMC, SSPM, FDP, SSM/A, UDRA, SSPD AND NAS that have decided to merge and work together in their quest to restore calm and stability in the trouble South Sudan ahead of the peace talks that is scheduled to commenced soon in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
We strongly endorse their ‘coming together’ even if they are faking it. It is our utmost desires to see our people joining hands and walk should by should in this clamor for change.
Since time immemorial, the liberation struggle against dictatorship has never been done and achieve in isolation. This gesture is fingers-crossing; it is a good sign of hope in South Sudan.
If this unity holds and gains momentum, our people including those at the grass root shall have confidence in the opposition leadership than ever before.
Moreover, this rare show of unity has potential to mend fences and rifts within the opposition block.
This opposition unity is long overdue. So far, it has bred some senses of trust and comradeship among the downtrodden both at home and abroad. Now, the south Sudanese have got something to smile about.
It is paramount importance for us at this critical time to choose unity over separation in our quest to liberate our country from oppressive and repressive regime in Juba.
Those who care to read our moods in various platforms will attest to the fact that this opposition unity has elicited jubilation across the political divides for we believed soon there shall be light at the end of the tunnel.
It is now open and clear to everyone on this Planet that the SPLM regime of President Salva Kiir is out to claw back the gains and dividends of our hard fought independence.
We elected this government to office in 2010 hoping that they will improve our wellbeing. But with this turn of events, everyone has regretted frankly. Those with eyes can see that we are in deep ruination.
We have left our beautiful country to the dogs. Right now vast majority have scattered and assumed the position of beggars in the neighboring countries.
The records speak by themselves; hundreds of thousand South Sudanese have died so far in this conflict and over 2.5 million others have been forced flee from their homes.
As at now, there is no safe place to call home in South Sudan. Many of our mothers and sisters have resorted to live and languish in the Refugee camps. The respect for human rights is left at the mercy of ‘unknown gunmen’ who keep terrorizing the defenseless civilians both on roads and in the UN protection camps across the country.
Therefore, the only means and ways of preventing these treacherous forces from encroaching further is ‘unity of purpose’ which these opposition leaders have now shown in broad day light.
This nationalistic spirit of working together will cascade down to other levels of our society sooner than later. We believe this historical Unity is the way forward and the way to go especially at this tough time in our country history.
We therefore call on other armed opposition parties to follow and walk in the same spirit. All over the world, any leadership that fosters unity and cooperation among its people deserves applause and praise because unity often gives birth to peace and development in the country.
Now that the opposition parties have announced to join and work together in good faith, we have a reason to exude confidence that the peace talk in Addis Ababa will yield fruits.
In addition, we would like to remind our people to remember and appreciate that in a conflict situation like this, leaders who care about their people are always ready to be sacrificed if that will save the country, because national interest do takes precedence over personal interests.
On the other hand, we commend IGAD mediators for observing the ‘principle of exclusivity’ in this high-level peace revitalization forum. In the same breath, the opposition leaders should grab the chance to be heard and avoids becoming the proverbial cooks who spoils the broth.
In one or so weeks, peace talk will resume. We then urge the opposition Leaders to take advantage of their numerical strength in the negotiating tables. In the midst of the opposition leaders, there are a few we know that have progressive ideas that could help IGAD-plus reached an amicable solution.
The Unity of the opposition groups is the stepping stone. Should they tread in that line of comradeship, we are sure they will soon romp into convincing victory if an old adage that ‘people united can never be defeated’ is anything to go by.
However, we are aware that the opposition leaders have made numerous mistakes and blunders over the last five years. And we all know, the division within opposition parties is the mistake that have enabled the regime in Juba to make inroads into our heartlands and strongholds, and that undeserved trump have created an assertion and aspersion among the international community that the regime in Juba is popular, strong than opposition groups combined.
We are equally convinced that the only way for the opposition leaders to avoid these mistakes is when they decided to remain mum or do nothing in the face of gross human rights violation in South Sudan. The one who has never done any mistake is the person who refuses to try anything good in his or her jurisdiction. In any workshop or struggle, mistakes are inevitable but we must always avoid repeating these mistakes of the past.
The glaring division within the opposition parties has been their greatest undoing from day one. Over the years, the rogue in regime in Juba has been poking holes in those gaps by exploiting our divisions with a view to maintain its iron hold on power.
More often than not, the disgraced beneficiaries and sympathizers of Juba regime keeps going around shouting and laughing at us that if they can managed to repulse the forces of General Peter Gatdet in 2014 with help from their foreign allies, and eventually abetted to put Dr. Riek Machar behind bars in South Africa, that the rebellion of Dr. Lam Akol, General Cirilo Swaka, Madam Rebecca Nyandeng, Governor Joseph Bakosoro, Dr. Adwok Nyaba, Dr. Majak Agoot, Hon. Lew Chang, Dr. Castelo Garang, Hon. Pagan Amum and the likes is no much, but with this unprecedented unity, these anti-democratic elements will now be in for a rude shock.
In conclusion, we would like to state that we are ready to impart our inputs in this peace and unity talk; should our service be needed we are available and don’t hesitate to seek our wise counsel.
Dak Buoth, Co-convener, Senior Youth of South Sudan (SEYOSS)