Open Letter to President Salva Kiir: Fake Your Resignation and See the Euphoria

By Dak Buoth,

Opinion

South Sudan President, Salva Kiir, showing his skeptical face during peace talks in Addis Ababa. That agreement has now collapsed and the leaders continue to impose themselves amid an intense conflict that is now in its 4 years(Photo: file)

South Sudan President, Salva Kiir, showing his skeptical face during peace talks in Addis Ababa. That agreement has now collapsed and the leaders continue to impose themselves amid an intense conflict that is now in its 4 years(Photo: file)

May 19th, 2018(Nyamilepedia) — The ongoing war in South Sudan has totally torn our social fabric apart. It is a common knowledge that south Sudan is a divided country on a verge of diminishing under your leadership. Our peoples’ lives are at stake, and we are pointing blaming fingers at you.

Who is driving our country in speed at the wrong direction? If it is not you then tell us who is behind this destruction of lives and properties. South Sudan is being driven to where we left in 2005 after we attained our independence. Your leadership is doing exactly the same things that we resisted from various successive regimes in Khartoum.

There is no inclusivity and accountability in governance. It is better I am telling you these despite the fact that you misconstrued them as propaganda. But propaganda aren’t facts that can be justified. Most of us are speaking the truth. Your leadership has soon retracted, and it is now depriving and striping many citizens of their inalienable rights to life and conscience.

Everyone is a walking prisoner in South Sudan. Many fear to talk, and if they talk they speak what your surrogates want to hear only. But as former National President of Pan-African students Organization in the Americas Prof. Maina wa Kinyatti opined in his latest Book entitled ‘the Pen and the Gun’, ‘‘the freedom of expression and opinion is one of the most sacred and inalienable rights of all humanity’’.

We cannot afford to return to the dark days of dictatorship where we lived on our knees under the mercy of Arab colonialists in Khartoum. Our slogan shall always be: ‘‘Backward never forward ever’’ Nothing holds us together at the moment. We have no national values worth respecting. Your leadership seems to be committed to complacency. You’re doing nothing to earn our loyalty. I wish I was in the position that you are occupying, I would have done nothing but the obvious: fostering national unity through justice and the rule of law; developing south Sudan and the world generally. My works would always reflect human rights values for greater good of all those who prefer to live in South Sudan.

Moreover, I would embrace critics and proof wrong all the cynics, especially those who normally say when their glasses are half-full they say their glasses are half empty.

I would always be at the forefront and showcase that I am down-to-earth man when it comes to matter pertaining democracy and social justice. I won’t condone ethnic chauvinism, domination, oppression, repression and exploitation of mankind.

South Sudan ought to be a country for brother and sister, mother and father, and it should be a nation where gender parity is guaranteed. The Dinka and Nuer domination of other tribes shall be the thing of the past. All our national institutions should be occupy be men and women from all regions in our land. The policy of ethnic hegemony must end. We are committed to restore our national worth.

Contrary, SPLM leadership is now busy implanting a culture of not being brothers’ keeper so as to maintain your iron hold on power. Your leadership is acting very dangerously on daily basis. SPLM leadership is ideas bankrupt. We had long lost our vision that is why we continue to crush or clash all these years. There is no coordination and cooperation among citizens and your leadership. The left hand does not know what the right hand is doing which mean we are living in confusion due to loss of vision. And as the holy book in the proverb verse 29: 18 says ‘‘my people perish due to lack of vision’’. Our peoples keep dying for many reasons and lack of vision is one of them. South Sudan is perfect example of a country at a cross roads.

We have no clue of where we are heading to. And if there is anywhere we are going we are heading nowhere for sure. There is no national unity. Not even the national anthem and the flag can unite us under your leadership. Hence we must devise an appropriate alternative as soon as possible. We are fed up completely. Many of our love ones have died so far.

Many of our people have been brutalized and killed. And hundreds of thousands are forced out from their homes. Notwithstanding, we shall stood our ground. Before we die we shall resist and act fearlessly in accordance with the law.

The constant feeling among South Sudanese is characterized by the elements of war such as hatred and division. A few who will survive in this war might change everything including the national anthem and the flag so as to erase all the bad memories as done in Rwanda after the 1994 genocide.

The effects of war have gone deep into our bone marrow. Unfortunately, the English language is not rich enough to explain how we are feeling daily. I had talked to you many times until I can’t talk again.

Early this month of May 2018, you were reported telling IGAD countries via the media in Juba to release your arch rival Riek Machar from detention in South Africa; that he should be brought back to South Sudan and that your SPLA forces will protect him when he comes back. Few weeks before you made that statement, you publicly mentioned that, you did regretted saving the lives of some people in the past. Nearly everybody knows it was Riek Machar whom you were referring to. We all remember in the aftermath of the July 2016 crisis, you said in an interview with CGTN journalist, Robert Nagila that you saved Riek’s life after his forces were reportedly killed during the state house dog fight.

In that live interview, you claimed that you personally ordered your body guards to escort Riek to his resident at night at Jebel Kujur. You went on to say that you even gave him your personal vehicle which you said he went with to Congo. However, since you already said on cameras that you regretted saving Riek’s life, I doubt whether Riek will come back to Juba through your advice.

With all due respect, nobody takes your words seriously because you often say what you don’t mean. Imagine, just the other day, on 17th May, 2018 when third phase of the High level revitalization forum kicked off in Addis Ababa Ethiopia, you soon gave three conditions ahead of peace talk: that you will not accept two armies; that you will not accept dissolution of the security sector, and that you will not accept the return of Riek Machar to Juba in his official capacity. These are sentiments of someone who is anti-peace. You can’t give such conditions if you are longing for peace in the country.

Whether or not Riek comes to Juba in his official capacity, it won’t bring peace to South Sudan. We all know Riek has been in Juba with you before. He has been your vice President for eight years.

Again, he became your first vice President in April 2016 after the signing of the Agreement on the Resolution of the conflict in South Sudan (ARCISS). There has been a war and there will continue to be war in the South Sudan for as long as you remain the head of state unless you heed these calls we are making.

I must tell you here and now that any leadership formation or leadership structure headed by you will not bring peace or end the war in our country. James Wani Igga has been your vice President for four years when everybody was away from Juba, but still war was raging like bush fire across the country.

Again, soon after Riek fled on foot to Congo, General Taban replaced him and became your first vice president, but still the war keep increasing like never before. Furthermore, many of your top army men keep defecting and resigning consecutively. This is an opportune time for you to sit and ask yourself: what is the problem? Find the solutions to this problem facing our country. You owe us answers. You might have heard here that I keep saying ‘our country’ because South Sudan belong to all of us. It does not belong to you alone or a few in the leadership positions.

Therefore, instead of engaging in these shenanigans by issuing unnecessary conditions during the peace talks, just do the right things first:

In 1970s, Ugandan President, General Iddi Amin Dada was said to have faked his death after attending the burial of the first Kenyan President Jomo Kenyatta to see how the Ugandans would react to it. Relatively, try to fake your resignation and see how people will react to it.

I am sure you will see the euphoria. Your resignation will be a breath of fresh air. Even the birds in South Sudan will fly in happiness until their feathers fall off. I often heard you saying that if you quit today there will be genocide that is untrue. Already genocide is currently happening in Unity State and other parts of the country, and it will only stop after you resign. I beg to repeat, it is not the coming of Riek Machar to Juba that will bring lasting peace in our country. Finally you don’t have to fake it. Just resign and let the people select your successor, from there we shall be good to go. I rest my case.

The Writer is the co- convener of the Senior Youth of South Sudan (SEYOSS), he can be reached for comments via eligodakb@yahoo.com