Opinion Politics

Opinion: My Response to my good brother Okuc P. Awol on his defense of Dr. Lam Akol

My Response to the article published by Nyamilepedia on December16, 2020 by my good brother Okuc P. Awol on his defensive for his tribe man Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin

Santino Aniek, Author(Photo credit: Aneik's Profiles)
Santino Aniek, Author(Photo credit: Aneik’s Profiles)

Dec 18, 2020(Nyamilepedia) — My good brother Okuc P. Awol, I welcome your quick response and your criticism of my article. I respectfully disagree with your honest defensive tone regarding my brother Lam’s messes in the old Sudan, in the SPLM/A, and in South Sudan. I hesitate to say anything about your response, not because I’m afraid of upsetting you, but because I know the blatantly hypocritical, self-contradictory I will look in the eyes of South Sudanese people defending myself against Lam’s indefensible records all these years. And therefore, if I don’t respond, that will annoy me so much, and, honestly, I’m tired of being annoyed all the time. It is not good for my soul and I wanted to free myself from these lingering thoughts in my chest all these years about my elder brother Lam. Do I believe Lam is a good person? Hell yah, you and I are from the Upper Nile of the world, we are neighbors, majorities of our people know each other, there is a sign of good that can be seen in you and me, and in any community they are good people and bad people. But however, leadership is a different animal, and my brother Lam Akol is not as good as you think in terms of leadership. I have known Lam for many decades, he joined the SPLA the same year I have joined the SPLA, and I was with him in Nasir in 1991.

My good brother Okuc, Lam Akol may be your relative or whatever the case maybe, tribe man, but you may not know him well closely, let me tell you the Lam you don’t know, and why I always disagree with him. The Lam I know was a member of the Communist Party in the old Sudan and joined the SPLA in 1986 after having been a secret member since 1983. In 1987, Lam was given the assignment as Commander of Northern Upper and I was stationed in Bilpham. In the Northern Upper Nile, the majority of Lam’s soldiers were from Shilluk and there was a clash between Lam and some senior officers including Oyai Deng Ajak. Garang called Oyai back to be with him and several generals have left Lam and joined Khartoum because their advice and many years of military experience did not make a difference in swaying Lam on the key leadership issues. Remember Lam was not a soldier, just a politician, and so, Northern Upper Nile was a mess under his leadership. This is not santino aniek, you can reach out for Oyai Deng Ajak!

In 1991, Lam, Riek Macher, and Gordon Kong broke away from the SPLA and formed Nasir Group. In 1994, Lam was dismissed by Riek Machar because of his bad behavior and became chairman of SPLM/A-United. He subsequently signed the Fashoda Peace Agreement with Khartoum regime in 1997 and was appointed as Minister of Transportation, a post he held for four years, and he became NCP. In 2002 Lam resigned from NCP and became a member of the Justice Party. He, with most of his forces, rejoined the SPLA in 2003. In 2005 Lam was appointed as Minister of Foreign Affairs, but in 2007 when the SPLM withdrew from the Khartoum government; it demanded that Lam be removed from his position as Minister of Foreign Affairs, as he was accused of being working in favor of the Khartoum regime. With all the above mentioned, doesn’t make Lam a good leader as you alluded in your pathetic response.

Nevertheless, I totally disagree with you brother Okuc, there is not even a shred of sane or rational logic you can use to defend brother Lam and the only weapon you are using is this pathetic augment that Lam has contributed to “genuine commitment to the right to self-determination was the real game changer that led to the reunification of these factions in 2002 and 2003”. I love when hypocrisy freely becomes the soul of the supporters of Lam at this point and bless your heart, but you are better than this. People like yourself who doesn’t have sense of logic would believe that SPLM was fighting for United Sudan, but when we evaluate the strategy of the movement, we would find that SPLM has affiliated with East Africa countries, and the language that was used is English including those who studies in the liberated Areas were using English.

“The 1991 incident and what followed did not cloud his judgment unlike the present day tribal bigots who would want to be holier than the Pope”. Let me explain this to you Okuc, Lam has a lot of messes, what matter here is not the time period, the important point is it wrong for him to be dishonest about their despicable acts, and yes, whether he did it 30 years ago, it will be still wrong, and that part is what people like you don’t get it. While I don’t feel sorry for those who continue to support Lam for the fact that there are thousands of people who have lost their lives in the hands of this guy. I got it, but what you should know and the likes of Lam’s supporters is this, people like myself will never ever keep quiet about people like him even if his ideas become honeycomb. The Nasir rebellion doesn’t need verification, it is not a lie, because I can testified of what happened in Nasir, and if you asked general Peter Panom and Kuol Deng Kuol to name a few in their graveyards, they will tell you that they were killed by Lam and Riak with others Jieeng officers in Nasir and that is not “the service of this country and its people”. If the records of my brother Lam when he was a Member of the Communist Party, Northern Upper Nile commander, in the SPLM, Member of Nasir Group, SPLM-United, SPLM-DC, NDM, and SSOA don’t drive away a good chunk of his supporters including you, and then almost nothing is going to convince you. 

My brother Okuc, enough with people like Lam, and our South Sudanese need to stop flocking with false politicians like him. Lam lived his whole life believing in betrayal of his own people including Shilluk to be objectively heinous and is not willing to abandon that belief any time soon. That is the point I want to focus on, most of these people in South Sudan where Lam is included have become infested with this kind of cult of betrayal. In addition, Lam doesn’t care about our people’s interest, but only himself and we have witnessed throughout about the Parties Lam has formed or joined. Be that as it may, I promised, I always hold each and every one accountable and Lam and the rest are not exceptional in my mind, and you may find in many articles I have written all these years. I also promised, I will defend Lam when he deserves to be defended, I have indeed done that before, many times over these past few years, but put in mind I will never become a lickspittle for my brother Lam at this moment in time.

Therefore, with that being said, what Lam has done all these years is blatant destruction for our people and for our country. And if one of us did exactly the same thing lam has been doing, in the exact same circumstances, he will explode with outrage as he usually does. Nonetheless, one of the fundamental things that separate us from people like brother Lam, allegedly, we are not moral relativists. Our judgment of right and wrong does not change according to what is convenient or expedient. When Lam was Northern Upper Nile Commander and was running wild, he was wrong, very wrong, and SPLA condemned his ruthless leadership. When Lam continued to do it, as he clearly was doing when he became Minister of Foreign Affairs, betraying our own people, he was also wrong, just as wrong, and no more or less so.

Ultimately, the difference between people like Lam and us, we maintain our integrity and judge things according to an objective standard of right and wrong. Now, it is not worth forfeiting our integrity and dignity to let Lam and his cronies to run our nation for their own benefit, that will never happen in our lifetime, he will be criticized, he is wrong here and should be criticized for destroying the unity of Padang Jieeng and Shilluk by supporting a killer period. To suggest that, “Olony is a member of the SPLM/A-IO which nominated him to be Governor of Upper Nile state according to the peace agreement” is nothing but disturbing. However, leaving Padang Jieng in the hand of Olony will feel like leaving a cat to take care of a rat, that is just how profoundly critical the crisis will be in Upper Nile, and how unmoored Padang Jieeng are from the anchors of Olony is being obscured. For that reason, I search in vain for words, historical measures, or even to allow Olony to enter Malakal with this huge militia mainly from Shilluk, will be an enormous mistake. Now for your information, I would want to add that Padang Jieeng is not at war at this moment in time, but Padang Jieeng and Shilluk are already divided as I indicated in my previous piece. With due respect, let me be very clear to you and the rest of Lam’s supporters, I’m not threatening anyone here, but if Olony, Lam, and their supporters continue to operate with this ruthless speed, Padang Jieeng will go beyond division.

Finally, I wanted to quickly say something about this whole lie about Malakal, if Malakal was owned by Shilluk, and you will never find Dinka in 50 miles from Malakal. I know nowadays, the supporters of Olony have become rather obsessed with this idea that Padang Jieeng has grabbed Shilluk lands, because insane Lam’s conspiracy theories all these years led the social media warriors to believe that Malakal belongs to Shilluk. It is false and people like Okuc need to get over. Lying social media types including Shilluk like you have blamed the war entirely on Padang Jieeng in Upper Nile, suggesting that made up stories, and conspiracy theories are a uniquely lying phenomenon. That is obviously ridiculous. Therefore, this is a problem for people like you to spread nonsense and who doesn’t know Malakal is Padang Jieeng land. And so, I don’t think people responsible for passing around lying are all ignorant, and although some of them certainly fit the description including my brother Lam. All in all, Malakal has been Padang Jieeng land and will remain their land period. But as leadership is concerned, Lam is not nearly as good as you think, but on the hand, you are not nearly as good as you think of defending Lam’s records because his records are indefensible. Logically, let me tell you this brother Okuc, deception is such a despicable quality that our people would rather disown it than face it honestly. Unfortunately, the more these people like Lam who are always lying to their teeth disown their darker tendencies, the more deeply they bury them within their darker selves, and the more delusional they become. And the more delusional they are, the less mental and emotional clarity they have that leads to a larger of problems and some of these problems are life destroying as we witnessed my brother Lam have been engaging with nothing, but turmoil, Chaos, and dishonesty all these years.

Santino Aniek is a concerned South Sudanese living in Upstate New York, U.S.A. He can be reached at santino.aniek5@gmail.com, find me on Facebook, on Skype, and on twitter @saniek.

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