Mak Banguot Opinion

Opinion: The SPLM-IO Chief of Staff is a strict disciplinarian but this time!

By Mak Banguot Gok (Makjohnson).

SPLA-IO Chief of General Staff Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual (File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

May 24, 2021 — On Radiotamazuj, the SPLM-IO Chief of General Staff, Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual highlighted some of the major grievances that obliged him to take a disciplinarian authoritative action against his director of Military Intelligence. You might have read the interview scripts circulated on social Media platforms in a few hours ago. That conceptual understanding will depend on how your own psychoanalysis led you to the conclusion. 

However, am still respecting the Chief of General Staff, Gen. Gatdual;  I love him of all his legacies; I even belief in his unwieldy trustworthiness and consistency to the SPLM-IO revolutionary objective. The Chief is a trustful man among his colleagues that we all appreciates his objective consistency.

But based on the recent interview, and the version he gave  about the contravention over his deferral of/and revoking of the Chief’s order by C-in-C, I think it is right time for me to shed some correction to the Chief. In his expression, there were sorts of unsubstantiated realities connecting with the Chief’s personal nuisance. He was somehow emotional when answering questions from Radiotamazuj that it seems he couldn’t remember the contexts of collectives responsibilities and loyalty to the SPLM-IO Chairman.

His no-approval of the ongoing regime delaying tactics that are being engineered to tactically sabotage the peace agreement in Juba is the chief’s prime cause of frustration. All of us are physically, physiologically and emotionally frustrated by the fact that we know knothing is actually happening currently in Juba with the peace implementation. 

Despite, what can a true diehard supporter, founder and architect of the SPLM-IO movement like Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual can do is to remain loyal to the cause and remain vigilant until the end. The Chief of Staff might have been bias in his narrative but we understand what he has gone through and what he is currently going through.

On the other issues, which the Chief highlighted during the same interview, he (Chief) might not have gotten his explanation right because of all the uncertainties that he has mentioned and confirmed to be prevailing within the SPLM-IO leadership hierarchy. Problems existing within the SPLM-IO leadership might be known although not necessarily in the same forms. The SPLM-IO Chairman and his Chief of General Staff are the ones to be blamed and it should not be one of them turning around to blame the other or us, the general SPLM/A-IO fraternity.  To say the least, the SPLM-IO Chief of General Staff is overwhelmed and consumed by frustration!   

There is no one apart from the SPLM-IO Chairman and his Chief of Staff that bear the highest responsibility.  The current fall-out is purely administrative and if there are things that are damaging the movement, especially its military front, be it logistical constraints or other decision-making constrains, it would be the SPLM/A-IO leadership that should be held accountable and respectively the biggest share of the blame would be hammered into Dr. Machar’s skull. 

Hence, the Chief of Staff should raise all the military grievances to the C-in-C instead of taking law into his own hand. The entire movement is aware of the damaging personalities within the SPLM/A-IO ranks and files in the person of  Maj. Gen. Dhiling Keak, Hon. Angelina Teny, Hon. Puot Kang, Hon Manase Peter Gatkuoth, among other problematic personalities; however, any pressing issues within the SPLM-IO rank and files should still be addressed to the same chairman of the movement and it’s upon him to take action. Anyone else, who is in the shadow of the SPLM-IO Chairman in pretext of political front in Juba, isn’t making a decision on behalf of the SPLM-IO movement leave alone an alleged promotions in terms of rank in the army.

Major General Dhiling Keak, like all other members in Juba, is just serving as a messenger to the SPLM-IO Chairman- Dr. Riek Machar. Given the fact that the Director of the SPLM-IO Military Intelligence or any other person mentioned above is working in direct consultation with the SPLM-IO Chairman who is also a C-in-C of the same army, and therefore, it realistically certain that he should be held accountable for anything that goes wrong within the movement. Therefore, the Chief shouldn’t blame wrong persons to the extent that he even overlooked the fact that those of Dhiling and the likes are just subordinates to him and his C-in-C.  

Given the fact that the SPLM-IO Chairman has all the knowledge about what was going on (diversion of logistic mend for the SPLM-IO cantonments sites; promotion of pure civilians to the military rank in exchange for illicit financial gains and nepotism; preferential treatment of certain clannish agenda within the army, and so on), I believed the SPLM-IO Chairman might not have been a mere spectator. Such activities could not have been conducted without his approval.

To me, the issue of smuggling in of illegal weapons to the SPLM-IO military posts by Director of Military Intelligence without knowledge of the SPLM-IO Army Chief of General Staff needs thorough investigation before we concluded that, this is true. Until then, I can assert that, there were neither illegal weapons nor illicit logistics support given to preferred pockets of soldiers through whoever’s directive. 

Dr Machar is struggling to gets guns and equipped with light weapons the only necessary unified forces which are currently on cantonments sites around Juba,. And until now there are no weapons for his own protection forces, how do you think that could be possible?

“Promotion of civilians to the ranks and files of the SPLM-IO military because of nepotism or illicit financial flows”! This is not precisely true even if by miracle. This is because, there is no military chain of command that allows the rank of Major General upholding a Colonel to the ranks of Brigadier General. It make no sense for such top down approach in military.

Dr. Machar has no such a suicidal tension to fight his own army halfway the victory. He knows more than many of us the contexts and there is no reason for Major General Dhiling to organize forces contrary to the SPLM-IO military rank and files when Dr Machar is supervising the conduct.

 If you asks yourself as to what may be the motives that prompted Dhiling who is acting upon delegation by the SPLM-IO Chairman, you gives your own answer. And, if you think Dr Machar is aware of these diversionary paths, what would it mean and to whose advantage?

The author is a concern citizen and political commentator. He can be reached for more information through his email at johnsonmak61@gmail.com

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