Contributor's Opinion

Commemorating the 5th Anniversary of Lt.Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech’s Death

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Who Killed My Father?

By Ter Manyang Gatwech.

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May 05, 2016(Nyamilepedia) —– “When I had the death my father, I did not cry because he called me before his denatured to the frontlines’’. In my mind, I knew my father had been assassinated; the people who assassinated my father are within. ”[1] revealed Ter Manyang Gatwech at an award ceremony by the Foundation of Ayod (CFA) in Ayod, Jonglie State, “where Lt. Col. Sir Micahel Manyang was being honoured [in 2011] with a Award for his contribution to the liberation of Africa.”[2] Sir Micahel Manyang Gatwech Gatchang Lam, the former SPLM/A Lt.Col. Michael Manyang was killed on Monday, 7th March 2011, near the town of Fangak in Northern Jonglie state, in a frontline in to crash George Athor’s Rebellion on ‘’his way back somebody killed him’’. He is already done with the married in Fangak County (Laak-Nuer Community). The person who supposed to go to the frontline is not Sir Michael Manyang but, the ‘’person was coward’’ then Lt.Col. Michael Manyang received order from Juba (Bipam Headquarters of SPLA). Lt. Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech had go to the frontline immediately.

The very Government (SPLA) who sent my father to fought had forgotten my father’s family totally. That is why the system in Bipam(Juba) was shambolic due to unethical and unprofessional in the Top Military Commands in Bipam. My father’s salaries were cut after 4 Months. How can somebody interest in that government? Are those people who cut the salaries of living people will not die?

Part One

Early childhood

Bajak is a tiny village located in the west of Ayod County (Gawaar-Nuer Community). I used to played with my best friends when were young these include; Kangach Yoang Lam, Diang Bipal Lam, Jal Riek Deng, and Puok Thai Tut. We are always looking for young girls in Bajak and around Ayod land. We are well known by girls by than due to our uniqueness among other young men in Gawaae land. The village is a thick with forests. We used to play under palm trees with my friends and peaceful place where nothing much has changed for hundreds of years. It was here that I was born on 1st January in 1966. I was born into Gawaar clan, which is part of the Nuer tribe in South Sudan.

The late Lt. Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech’s picture (2011)(Photo credits: Ter Manyang)
The late Lt. Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech’s picture (2011)(Photo credits: Ter Manyang)

My father, Lt. Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech Gatchang Lam, was a business man and members of the Gawaar clan in Ayod County, Jongile state by then. Although my father could not read or write, he was sensible man who knew much about the history of our people. My father was most trusted man in Gawaar clan because his actions and beliefs. When I was born my father gave me the name Ter which means ‘’conflict ’’. Put more basically, it means ‘’trouble-maker’’. He could not have known what position ahead of me. But looking back at all the ‘’trouble’’ I have caused, it was a good name. My mother, Nyajany Ruot Chany, was the first woman for my father’s eight wives. My mother was in pregnant by my father at the aged 16 years and my father was 18 old boy. When became her pregnant, the elders discovered they could not go ahead with married because they are related by blood. They had to separate according to customs and beliefs of Nuer. My mother was remarried by another man who is not related to her by blood. Altogether, my father had 24 children, 6 boys and 18 girls. I was the first born of my father. According to my father, he is always moving with his friends and the family members. Upon time he called me, he said my son ‘’never move alone, never eat alone’’ that is why am always with the people whether I knew you or not I must associate with you. My father was baptised in the Presbyterian Church whereas my biological mother was unbaptised. He has three beautiful wives from Gawaar-Nuer Community.

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No one in our family had ever gone to school before; it is only me plus my young brothers and sisters who are coming up. In those days men are very strong than women in the society. These patriarchal attitudes often favour men so much. My father was never smoke, alcohol during his time on earth. That is why not smoking and drinking alcohol is. My grandfather was paramount chief of the Gawaar clan by then. He is powerful chief among Gawaar chiefs. My grandfather had two wives and my father has eight wives. He told me always please my son,’’ associate with the right people’’; associating with the right people who are achievers will give you an opportunity to purse your ‘’personal career in life’’

I remember the letter I wrote to the former Chief General Staff of SPLA, James Hoth Mai about the salaries of my father, Lt. Co. Michael Manyang. I quote ‘’my father’s had been cut –off without justifying reasons. He had been killed during George Athor’s Rebellion 2011 7th March and had 8 wives with 24 children including me who am the first born child. I am still in College pursuing Diploma in Public Administration and Management at Makerere Institute of Professionals (MIP) in Uganda. I am in second semester. I don’t have any other sponsor to pay my tuition fee and feeds the whole family beside my fathers’ salaries. After Mayang, do hereby requesting your esteem office to consider the situation of the family of Lt. Col. Micahel Manyang Gatwech . Please I beg your office let my father’s continued until I finished for my studies and I will take whole responsibility of the family’’. Thanks for your understanding and cooperation. The date 3rd January, 2013. With those words no one reply my request up to date.

Lt. Col. Michael Manyang Gatwech joined the SPLA on 4th February 1986, he was trained in Bongo and his division was Zalzal one battalion Mor-Mor and graduated in commando in 1987 directed to Pibor in same year of his graduation.

SPLA unit

In Kapoeta in 1987 to 1988, in Ayod County 1988 to 1989 they went together with current Director of External Security, Thomas Duoth Guet. In 1989 he was promoted to the Rank of 2nd Lt. in Nasir in 1992. He was wounded in Wat (Lou-Nuer land) and he went for further treatments in Unity State in 1992. Dr. Riek Machar Teny orders him to stays in Leer County with his forces. Lt. Col. Micahel Manyang got married with two beautiful ladies from Dok-Nuer and now are the permanent mothers of Gawar Micahel Manyang and Gatwech Micahel Manyang Gatwech. In 1995 he went to Ayod County where he becomes the field trainer of trainees with Daing Duoth. In 2000 -2005 he went to Khartoum, Sudan where he became businessman when there is no government of Southern Sudan by then. In 2007 1st July he was promoted to the Rank of Lt. Col.


He was deployed in Division Two at Mangala in 2007-2008, from 2008-2009 he deployed again in Division 8 at Akobo, where got married with beautiful mother(one) from Lou-Nuer Community in Akobo county and he taken back to Pangak county in 2010, from there he moved to Pigi to 2011, 2006 he was deployed together with Gen; Peter Puok Koang in Upper Nile state and back to Pangak (Sir Micahe Manyang has two beautiful wives from LaakNuer Community) again where he meets his death 0n 7th March, 2011. The question is who killed my father?

The part one will be continued……

The author Ter Manyang can be reached at termanyang24@gmail.com Tel: +256774755763

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