By Job Kiir Garang (Kiir-Agou), Edmonton, Canada.
February 9, 2015 (Nyamilepedia) — Two days ago, a defining moment happened in JUNUB. It is a moment that those who witnessed it will live to appreciate what it means to be a South Sudanese. For once, our young nation finally realized to accommodate its own subjects without being discriminated on any ground. The country was rocked by the news that Isaiah Chol Aruei, the chairman for South Sudan’s National Bureau of statistics, Mr. Mading Akueth and Mr. Jacob Aleer were somehow ‘mysteriously’ landed in a rebel-controlled zone in Jonglei town of Jiech.
From the streets of Juba to inside little hamlets around the country, suffocating fear hanged in the air. Hope was ebbing away. There were far cries from those in Diaspora as well calling for the release of those three gentlemen unscathed. Luckily for all of us, the SPLM/IO did the most humane thing and our cries were heard. The three men were released and everyone was elated to see Uncle Isaiah Chol-Amot returning home sound and safe. His reception at JIA speaks for itself.
I describe this moment as ‘defining moment’ in the history of our country because there were a lot at stake at the time. Since the three gentlemen were released without even a single bruise, I am not going to contemplate what might have happened had the opposite occurred.
However, it is my pleasure to thank those that worked really hard to ensure the release went through as quickly as possible and in a successful manner. My thank goes to the family and relatives of Uncle Chol-Amot as well as friends and supporters for the significant amount of patience they showed. We all panicked in silence rather than violently.
Much thank, however, goes to the SPLM/IO LEADERSHIP. I have said time and again that Riek and his comrades have the country’s best intention at heart. They have a commitment to bring about significant changes to South Sudan; changes that will benefit, not only one tribe, but all the citizens; a pluralistic society so to speak. That was exemplified two days ago when those men were released. That was a heroic act of leadership.
I was recently condemned by a few bloggers when I put out couple articles. In one, I described Dr. Riek as the “ultimate Messiah”. My wordings were condemned to the extreme levels especially by my dinka brothers who are stuck in the atrocities of the past; atrocities that I, also, condemn deeply. I am, however, very glad that Dr. Riek has undoubtedly answered some of my THOMASES out there. If we all act in the same spirit as did Dr. Riek and his close compatriots in SPLM/IO leadership, South Sudan will undoubtedly move towards a more accommodating society.
So, to the masses that think Riek is a devil with blood dripping from his oral gaps, wake up and look at things from a humane point of view. A view that says we can only move forward if we forgive one another and treat one another equally. Nobody is an absolute clean, at some point in life; someone will have their hands soiled. Thousands of innocent Nuers have died in the heart of Juba in the hands of the president and his tribesmen and our reaction has always been very cold and sullen.
Mading Akueth, one of those who were in custody, in an interview with SBS radio recognized what it means to live and love one another even when you have differences in opinion. One of the people he pointed out is a figure of great body of work especially to SPLA/M. Time and again, he has spoken with a voice of togetherness. He has worked all his life for that cause. The man is Dr. Majak Agot. He loves South Sudan to the core of his bones and that applies to the people in it. He has a vision for a youthful and vibrant South Sudan but silly bullies on the blogosphere have gone after him of late.
However, the following confession by Mading Akueth in that interview with SBS might give you a different view and here it is:
“During the crisis I was having my opinion on former SPLM officials of G10 especially Dr Majak Agot but during our custody I realised why you have to love your people despite having different opinions. Dr Majak was there for us; he calls almost after every hour just to ask how we are and whether we were being looked after. The Government, SPLM in O and individuals played a roles but Dr Majak was there. In terms of care; we were well fed and soldiers carried our water for the 12 hours journey that we took from Jiech. During the times of our departure to Juba; Governor Duop Lam made for us a great farewell. They slaughtered a goat for us and we ate good meal before our departure to Juba. He also came to the airport to see the plane taking off and we then wave at them. I will not go without saying thanks to the Ayod women because these women did an amazing job to protect us. Few women came to make sure that we were safe. They were Mary, Ayen, Nyanben and others who came around us during the night. They needed to protect us. One of them knew my humanitarian work back in Bor and she told us, “if you were born by women then none of you will die here but you will go back as free people.” Their heroism did change our perceptions and such appreciation will have to go to them. I am a different Mading now and I know our people love themselves and they need peace.”
That defines a true act of heroism. Kudos to the rebels and especially the man of the people: Dr. Riek Machar Teny. Without an apology, I will still repeat it that he seems to exudes that firing desire to change and offer his effort to bringing the woes of South Sudan to a final end. He is the only glue that we need. I am sure at this point in time, some section of the dinka community have a partially forgiving heart to Dr. Riek for what the rebels have done.
Since I picked side and throw my support behind Dr. Riek, I have had my face punched a couple of times. Reason: I have picked the wrong guy. Where is freedom of choice or as western world calls it: democracy? Cowboyism is a dead system. It has been tested and has failed miserably. He (the president inu) divides rather than unite. He discriminately kills rather than indiscriminately forgive. His hunger for more has turned him and his tribesmen into gluttonous monsters who do not get satisfied.
Dr. Riek will one day be our president if given a chance. Long live the Doctor! Long live South Sudan.