Is there unity in our diversity, what is it?

Opinion,

By Laura Nunu,

Souther Sudanese children rehearse their dance routine to be performed at half time during South Sudan's national football team match with Kenya as part of the independence day celebrations.

Souther Sudanese children rehearse their dance routine to be performed at half time during South Sudan’s national football team match with Kenya as part of the independence day celebrations.

May 11th, 2019(Nyamilepedia)  — This is a very big question that provokes and brings us face to face with the question of our identity. It is a question that asks: ‘how do we come to exist as diverse as we are?’ Depending on where you are seeking, science and religion/spirituality has different answers to this same simple question. As a result, there are thousands, if not millions, of answers out there for you to look from; to find one that can quest your thirst. I am here to add my personal contribution to this big question for a very narrow prospective. And that narrow prospective is: finding some answers to the identity crisis issues of the South Sudanese people.

As a Christian as well as a scientist, I came to realize that the concept of Unity has its origin in Singularity. And really, Singularity in science, especially in the western world, has its basis in the Judea/Christian idea of ONE GOD that created heaven and earth. What Charles Darwin did in his theory of evolution is taking God from the equation and replacing it with ‘the process of natural selection for the survival of the fittest’. But then, the question that is still puzzling some of us is: ‘what is nature?’ Anyway, as I said, this is not the focus of this article. So, let us move on to the issues.

So, if you want to understand UNITY from the original Judea/Christian prospective, we are told: God created heaven and earth and created us humans in His image. My understanding of the phrase ‘creating us human in His image’ means: He chose us as co-creators in His universe. This is because as far as I am concerned, we are the only race/animal kingdoms with the enormous creative abilities. And in our diverse, God given creativity, we can either benefit the world or destroy it. As such, we are not aimless collection of dusts; we are co-creators of the entire universe with diverse/specific talents. And whether we choose to benefit or destroy the world with our God given diverse talents is our personal, as well, as collective responsibilities.

But, if you want to understand UNITY from the scientific prospective, which means, not giving any attribution to God; then the fact that we are ONE HUMAN FAMILY is enough for you. Which equally means, we are one human family of diverse, racial colour, talents and responsibilities. And for us to interact and relate to each other as members of this ‘one human family’ in all our diverse racial colour, cultures and talents, there are basic moral responsibilities that is required of us. And it is in these basic moral standards; we can truly call ourselves ‘one human family’. And we shall equally feel at peace and harmony in our interactions and relationships with each other, at individual, as well as at group levels.

As different as we are in the colour of our skin, ability and disability, cultural norms and practices and where we come from and live in the world, if we are not treated with the basic moral standards of RESPECT, CARE and JUSTICE, we are being roped of our humanity. And we don’t feel like belonging into this ‘one human family’. We feel discriminated and hurt, whether at family, community, national or global level. Depending on the depth of the hurts and discriminations, we can loose our identity as human beings. This means, if we really want to remain as ‘one human family’, we must behave like one.

What does this mean?

This means, we are one global human family, united in our humanity.  We are the global diversity of unity in our humanity based on RESPECT, CARE and JUSTICE. And when these three aspects of basic moral standards are met in our interactions and relationships with each other, we feel at peace with our fellow human beings and ourselves. Otherwise, we are at war with fellow human beings and ourselves. In this interactions and relationships, indeed, it is in giving that we received (Saint Francis of Assisi). You cannot give that which you don’t have; as well, you cannot take without giving back. This is because we are living in a dual world and everything is balanced and crosschecked, period.

And Peace is when these basic aspects of moral standards are balanced and crosschecked in us and in our relationships with each other in our daily interactions. The truth Peace exists in each and every one of us. We only need to find a place for it in our lives. Nobody, should preach to you about peace, you will know it if it is there or not. It is in the reflections of our common moral values in our integrations and interrelationships with each other.

How is this relevant to the identity crisis issues of the South Sudanese people?

After five decades of war, suffering and instability, South Sudan seceded from Sudan in January 9, 2011. But only after two years of independence, it is in war with itself with the most brutal genocide and human rights atrocity the world had seen, forcing nearly 3 million people to refugees’ camps in the neighboring countries, over 200,000 living under Protection of Civilians (PoCs), over 2 million Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), and estimated 400,000 deaths from civil war related causes.

The question that is in everyone lips is: they are as dark as night, and have just separated from what they called ‘Muslim-Arab domination and discrimination’ then why are they fighting?

To answer this question, you must dig deep into not only to the historical struggles of the South Sudanese people, but also deep into the cultural ethnic power struggle. But most of the time, the answer given to this question is dismissed as political power struggle in the SPLM party between the president, Salva Kiir and his vice president, Dr. Riek Machar leaving the root causes of the problems untouched. And the genocide that resulted from targeting the Nuer tribe is said to be due to groups loyal to the president and his vice. Is that really the case? How can a power struggle between two political leaders of one ruling party (SPLM) end up in genocide of innocent civilians along tribal lines? What had this power struggle to do with innocent men, women and children from Nuer massacred on 15th, 16th and 17th December 2013? And the aftermath massacred of the Dinka men, women and children in Upper Nile and Bahar El Gazal? What about those men, women and children killed in Wau in 2012? What about the men, women and children killed and chased away from their ancestral land of Greater Equatoria, Upper Nile and Bahar El Gazal? What about all the raping of both male and female some of who are as young as five years of age? Are all these also loyalties of these two men?

What about the land grabbing issues and assimilation that is evident all over the country? What about all the looting and burning of villages that are common events of this war? What about the tribalism, looting state resources with impunity and dominance of most government institutions by mainly two tribes? What about the recruitment of tribal militias? Are all these events isolated or related? And above all, what is the power struggle all about?

As you can see, it is not in the capacity of this article, to address all these questions. Above all, we all know the answers to these questions although we may defer in our explanations. Dr. Carol Berger in her article: ‘Ethnocide as a Tool for State-building: South Sudan and the never-ending war’ answered most of the above questions. As such, I am not going to spend any time on them. Because, I am here to find out if we can still find UNITY in our DIVERSITY irrespective of all these.

I think we can find unity in our diversity if we all come together and rise above our ego, greed, and lust for power, lies, hypocrisy, tribes and political differences and speak the TRUTH. For it is only the TRUTH that will set us free. We can differ in anything but we cannot twist or create alternative truth and expect, peace, unity and justice in our country. To my brothers and sisters from Dinka tribe. This is not about you! And this is not about your tribe! Don’t make it all about you! Ego, greed, and lust for power, lies, hypocrisy, has no tribes and no political affiliations. It only has human being to deal with. This is all about the evil in mankind that is eating us alive. This battle has never been yours! It is the battle of good and evil in the world, and we are all part of it, either as criminal or/and, as well as, victims. For good and evil is in all the diverse spectrum of humanity. Don’t make it all about you! Yes, you may be majority in number, but are you also majority in evil? Don’t be scared of the truth! The devil is in details. It is in each and every one of us. Let us all find them and bring them all to justice. Where are the beautiful Dinka cultures? Why can we all rise up and display our beautiful diverse cultures that every country is dreaming of, instead of killing ourselves in senseless war? Where are our moral basics of respect, care and justice? Do we need to be in slavery to be good to each other and when we are in leaderships we enslave ourselves? It shouldn’t be that way; we are just better than that!

For God sake, we are in 21st century! When the entire developed world will do anything to drain diverse talents all over the world; we are killing our diverse young talents. When the developed world is talking about congestions and sustainable development, we are creating unnecessary congestions without any reasonable development, whatsoever! When the world is sending their best to the moon, we are sending our best to the graves! Which world and century are we living in? How can we even called ourselves a country, if we don’t have a clue of how to govern ourselves, other than struggling for powers!

Salva Kir and his government have failed the people of South Sudan and turned them against each other. As such, Salva kir and his government must go! Let us join hands to make sure that Kir must go! Let us install sanity into our government and join the rest of the world in creating a true government of the people, for the people by the people. Let us all, in our diverse approach, make sure that Kir government must go!

Everyone has their reasons of why Kir and his government must go, mine are the followings:

SALVA KIR MUST GO!

  • Kir cheated us of our vote, kir must go!
  • Kir turned our dreams into nightmares, kir must go!
  • Kir scooped our collective liberation struggle for himself and his cohorts, kir must go!
  • Kir turned his personal hatred into national hatred, Kir must go!
  • Kir turned tribal conflict into national war, kir must go!
  • Kir institutionalized tribalism instead of accommodating fresh political ideas, kir must go!
  • Kir turned our national resources into a dinning table, kir must go!
  • Kir chose himself and his cohorts above the people of South Sudan, kir must go!
  • Kir chose ruling by iron fist over constitutional rights, kir must go!
  • Kir is an illegitimate president ruling illegitimate government, kir must go!

SPLM MUST GO!

  • Splm cheated us of our vote, splm must go!
  • Splm chose themselves above the people of South Sudan, splm must go!
  • Splm chose their careers above our aspirations, splm must go!
  • Splm chose their pockets above our national development, splm must go!
  • Splm become puppets instead of whistle blowers, splm must go!
  • Splm broke down into pieces, splm is too deformed to be reformed and splm belongs to the dustbin of history, splm must go!
  • Splm are mal-representation, splm don’t represent us, and splm must go!

For more information you can reach the author through her email at laura.nunu@gmail.co