Opinion: The painful suffering of widows in South Sudan

By Betty Yom Mageer,

South Sudan Women burying the deads in Malakal, South Sudan(Photo: file)Women burying the deads in Malakal, South Sudan(Photo: file)
South Sudan Women burying the deads in Malakal, South Sudan(Photo: file)

Dec 12, 2020(Nyamilepedia) —  Since the time of various civil wars between SPLM/SPLA movement with the past Khartoum’s regimes in the old Sudan. The painful suffering of widows of both South and North Sudan has never ended. The civil conflicts between the SPLM/SPLA movement and past Khartoum’s governments has ended but the painful and pathetic suffering of widows has not ended in both South Sudan and Sudan. Moreover, in South Sudan in particular, There’re hundreds of thousands of widows if not millions. Widows that were left behind after their husbands passed away in the deadly civil wars between South and North Sudan and the South Sudanese civil wars as well.

Furthermore, after South Sudan achieve her self-determination from the old Sudan. We’ve seen a lot of changes in the world youngest nation for the first time in centuries. For instance, take a look at Juba city; we’ve seen many tarmacked roads for the first time since the creation of Adam and Eve. We’ve seen many costly vehicles own by South Sudanese citizens including luxurious cars such as V8s, hummers, land cruisers, BMW and etc. We’ve seen private jets own by South Sudanese few citizens for the first time in the history of our nation. Additionally, we’ve seen skyscrapers in Juba city and many other luxurious homes and hotels for the first time since after Adam and Eve were forced out in the garden of Eden after disrespecting and violated the rules laid down by the almighty creator after having ate the forbidden fruit.

Moreover, we’ve seen modern classic offices and power plants been built and managed by South Sudanese citizens across the country. We’ve seen millions of South Sudanese citizenry wearing expensive clothes such as suits. Suits were for the rich and political class historically in old Sudan but thanks to God and South Sudan’s self-rule for making suits affordable to all of us minus widows. We’ve seen millions of South Sudanese citizens having many banks’ accounts both within the country and overseas for the first time in decades. We’ve heard even if not seen with our own naked eyes from credible sources that their banks’ accounts are full with both the South Sudanese pounds and foreign hard currencies both within the country and in foreign nations.

Additionally, the above changes in the Africa’s youngest nation are excellent and commendable indeed. They South Sudanese people deserve the above changes in their lives entirely. They were supposed to have the above changes in their lives in the old Sudan before they even have their own dearest South Sudan. However, the heart-breaking and shameful aspect of the above changes in South Sudan is that they’re selective and solely favor the few in the entire country while they abandon the majority of folks in disgraceful destitution. The changes have left millions of South Sudanese in despicable penury. The changes haven’t succeeded to eradicate poverty and suffering amongst millions of South Sudanese folks.

The changes haven’t favor the needy people it is supposed to favor the most in South Sudan. The widows!! The widows of the martyrs who fought so hard and sacrificed their precious lives to liberate us from slavery, oppression and “third class citizens” in the old Sudan and to help create the South Sudan we proudly call ours today did not made a mistake!!The painful suffering of widows of the martyrs and those who lost their husbands as a result of the past deadly civil wars of freedom and self-rule for South Sudan is a national shame! The widows didn’t choose to be widows by choice.

It was because of the willful and brave painful choices made by their partners who decided to sacrificed and fought for our liberty as South Sudanese people that lead to the creation of widows of the martyrs and heroes in South Sudan. Furthermore, there seem to be one commonality on the side of South Sudanese people and their government that seem to suggest that the cries and suffering of widows is a normal thing and therefore it is not a big deal and should be ignore. But that’s a wrong commonality if that may be the case in South Sudan. Here are the reasons why I think we should pay attention to the cries and painful suffering of widows in South Sudan: Firstly, if widows always keep on crying to God in their hearts silently for been oppressed economically even if we may not see the tears on their faces.

There’ll be high possibility that Jehovah will listen to them and that’ll lead to a big curse and endless wars in South Sudan. Secondly, the widows can pass down same bitterness to their off springs. They’ll tell their children how their fathers fought and died for the self-rule of this nation and they’ve been abandon by the state in suffering. Hence their kids will develop chronic hatred toward the country and they’ll be a threat to national security. Thirdly, radicalization: after widows’ kids have grown-up and develop animosity toward the nation, They’ll be perfect potential candidates for armed groups.

They armed groups will tell them similar histories and historical injustices like those of their mums and they’ll believe them and take up arms and fight the nation and it’ll create more senseless civil wars in South Sudan. fourthly, war between “the haves and the have-nots”. The widows’ kids can create civil war out of bitterness between the poor and the rich folks in South Sudan. Lastly, our citizens and government need to do something to help the widows entirely before they fully develop and preach similar narratives of oppression, victimization and dehumanization to their kids to avoid future consequences of the reasons I stated that can happen. Remember, don’t underestimate the power of women when it comes to influencing their children on any topic in South Sudan.

The author is a women’s rights activist and can be reach via Email: bettyyom2009@gmail.com.

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