By. Mak Banguot Gok (Makjohnson),
July 08, 2021 — Whilst visiting the Greater Pibor Administrative Area (GPAA) in what many people thought of to be an extraordinary travel around, the young Governor is showing signs of unusual political approach to the greater Jonglei’s distinguished inter-tribal conflicts. His tour of the state Counties gives a reasons for citizens of Jonglei to appreciate his objective for its distinctive aims that focused on the greater Jonglei‘s security dilemma.
On his arrival to Pibor town early this week, Governor Chagor was accorded a very warm welcome by the Murle of different groups who received the young Governor with mixes of hope and enthusiasm. Several sources at the scene described the Governor’s visit as one of its own kind in the history of the state. It’s a remarkable visit of its kinds due to the fact that, insecurity in the greater Jonglei region has been one of the shoddier owed to extensive intertribal conflict which have been exists within among the tribes; claimevand persist to be fritter away an uncountable human lives; ruined properties; shattered social fabric, and above all, tent to disintegrated this iconic region geopolitically. Splitting of the greater Jonglei state with the seemingly autonomous area of Pibor was a product of political failures by the then political elite, have mentioned!
Meanwhile, the young Governor was implementing a fraction of his well planned peace expedition to all the counties of Jonglei State including Greater Pibor. Similar visits paid to the greater Lou-Nuer, greater Bor and now to the greater Pibor Administrative Area. During the Governor’s public and private rallies for peace messaging, Hon. Chagor repeatedly assures them that “he know the Jonglei state communal conflicts has been there for a decade’s; that, the difficulties which are coupled with ethnic inconsistency over scarce resources has never been politically endeavored to resolves them without wasting human lives and properties; that, all the governments which have been once ruled the greater Jonglei State before Hon. Denay Jock were only buses instead for prolongation of the bloodletting so that their scandalous projects maximizes profits; and so on.
Governor Chagor proceeded to educate people of the bygone narrations entailing the details of what has been politically lacking during the past times. “According to the young Governor, one can totally agree with the fact that, almost all the types of nonpolitical initiatives which were mends to resolve the years of inter-communal belligerent in the greater Jonglei State yield no fruits.” This is the time to address the issue from its inventive prospective adapting new political approach with new energy and enthusiasm. Young governor talked extensively in a series of meetings with the Murle community, the Nuer and others about the urgent need for a true reconciliation.
The Governor was fully aware of the fact that, “the greater Jonglei’s communal conflicts have complex historical roots in local practices of cattle herding”. But their transformation into deadly communal wars like how we see the cycle of violence amongst the Murle of Greater Pibor and the Lou-Nuer of Greater Akobo was deliberately wrought by the political elites somewhere in order to mobilize civilian raiders for their own ambitions”.
These cattle herders are part of the cattle raiding conflicts, and access further guns and ammunition through their patrons in the towns, thus worsening the general militarization of rural communities.
Governor Chagor once whispered that “in the shadow of the eight years long civil war in South Sudan, cycles of large-scale communal violence in the greater Jonglei state have mobilized thousands of men from both warring communities into armed groups to protect communities and cattle and to serve in alliance with civil war actors.” Therefore, the young Governor is eagerly yearning for political stability within his state government to politically formulate an integrated approach to the communities on the ground.
The young Governor was convinced that the cattle ownership by some national political elites represents a further important bond between national or the state political processes and rural dynamics of violence. This is because many politicians have invested their wealth into cattle ownership in their home counties and fund male family members to guard their cattle, including the provision of guns and ammunition.” The young Governor continued projecting counter measures to tackle the issue of political elites involved in inciting the masses. When a local ceasefire has been agreed, politicians may deliberately stoke tensions amongst the pastoralists’ communities, even outside areas affected by the civil war fighting, if this serves their political ambitions, leaving local communities with limited agency to avoid and mitigate conflicts. Chagor assured the traditional authorities of their roles in maintenance of law and order amongst their communities. “The young governor acknowledged that, “all the peace conferences and reconciliation efforts that were carried out at the grassroots level are doomed as long as politicians are still whipping up their communities.
Hence, observers continued to question whether any local peace negotiations could be viable as long as many national politicians own cattle and can order cattle-keeping communities into specific grazing routes. The inter-communal conflicts have killed thousands and spurred numerous local peace initiatives by the local humanitarian organizations and, yet it is exposing the limits of civilian protection by local law enforcement agencies when countenance with communal militias. The Governor stated!
“On this regard, Governor Chagor repetitively make it clear to the audience that, “the reported conflicts in the greater Jonglei are primarily dyadic rather than pogroms of a majority against a minority”. Meanwhile, the current conflicts between Murle and the Nuer or vice versa are stem from a history of cattle raiding and ethnic group polarization during the civil war with Sudan; discourses of revenge; lack of political representation and security provisions; local tensions over land, cattle ownership and grazing rights; the concentration of cattle ownership among the political elite; and deep distrust against the government. And, according to the young Governor, his state government will prioritize the assurance of good governance ingredients to restore the collaborative trust between the state government and people in the countries.
Furthermore, the young Governor did acknowledge that, the normal conflicts that began as a traditional set of resources constraints is now transforming into an unusual format where the communal militias who are engaging in battles over cattle jumped to attacking and non combat civilian settlements”. That showed the communal rivals have forged a new agenda apart from the normal cattle raiding. The act of killing innocents’ women and children, elderly people and burning down villages are barbaric . The young Governor articulated of its being the new worrying nature of the greater Jonglei violence.
“The young Governor was certain that, of all the attempts that have been tried by man, what was lacking is a political will in response to the dire need of the people in this greater region for peaceful coexistence. Hence! The young Governor furthermore made it clear that, ” the mobilization dynamics of the warring communities differ from rebel groups in that their fighters usually stay deeply connected to their home communities, where they remain embedded as husbands, brothers, fathers, and sons, fighting often with extensive community support). Women and men, children, and the elderly, may support conflicts and provide the logistical preparations necessary for fighting. “Therefore, the young Governor encouraged mainly the traditional authorities with support from his government to take lead”.
Moreover, in his meetings with the groups of Murle women and youth, governor Chagor discouraged the Murle women from often encouraging further cattle raiding by preparing special foods for the men who fight, and shame men into participation, while their small children aid the militias as combatants and herders. “Chagor commenced the efforts of the mothers in letting their own children dislike the motives of raiding for livestock”!
Therefore, the young governor pledged to deal first with the elite politicians in urban centres who may have further undermined the rural conflict resolution mechanisms and contributed to an escalation in fighting. Now, the young Governor has begun what will surely modify all the botched approaches that were used by the previous politicians. Amongst many others triumphant leadership proceedings the governor achieved so far, taking the menace of visiting almost all of the greater Jonglei’s security hotspots, and having a direct rendezvous with both the culprits and victims of the communal hostility is one imperative signal of translating what he wanted to achieve into live out.
Governor Chagor goes on telling people that addressing inter-communal violence requires holistic, full range of socio-economic, political, tackling of environmental issues, education, infrastructure development, social inclusion and respect for minority groups among others, as well as respect for human rights and the rule of law. Meanwhile, governor Chagor reiterated that, faced with this multiplicity of security challenges, national, state and international stakeholders are needed more than before to embark on responses using various prevention, response and mitigation tools.” Governor Chagor has stated it clearly! “Without a peace process that integrates both the national elites and local communities, the solution is far-reaching”! That, “even these ‘stable’ areas of the greater Jonglei that are relatively peaceful today may quickly turn into the sites of renewed fighting. This is likely impacting on the locals with dire consequences for civilians.
More importantly, the young Governor was open to the masses that a peace process spearheaded by the communities ‘ leaders and mandated by the government, aimed at bringing the Lou Nuer, the Murle and Dinka-bor into a dialogue is urgently needed.” The Governor made clearer the position of his state government that, “he is working on locally to further facilitates peace initiatives that to be culminating in the All-Jonglei Peace Conference where the paramount chiefs of all three communities (Nuer, Murle and Dinka) signed a detailed Framework Agreement for peace.
Meanwhile, the young Governor has been carrying key messages which he usually delivered to the audience during the mission. For example, in his meetings today with several groups of Greater Pibor Administrative Area at its capital-Pibor, governor Chagor made a range of articulations on the needs for a politically coordinated action to address all that have never been tried during the past rulers. Chagor started it to the point of dangerously jeopardizing peace and stability of the greater Jonglei.
The author, Mak Johnson, can be reached through email at Makjohnson2005@firstname.lastname@example.org,
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