Contributor's Opinion


By Yien Wil Mayuak,
Members of the Jieng Council of elders,a controversial group that advises Salva Kiir, meeting elders from Jubek State(Photo: file)
Members of the Jieng Council of elders,a controversial group that advises Salva Kiir, meeting elders from Jubek State(Photo: file)

Dec 28th, 2017(Nyamilepedia) —– Peace is the only option for the stability to be maintained in South Sudan, why don’t we do it South Sudanese? It is we to make this possible because everything is possible with  people when it is taken as an inclusive phenomenon. If we make our demand for peace an order of the day showing our interest for it in every area our stay including work places and make discussion with your nearby fellow South Sudanese then  I am sure peace will prevail in our country. Let shout out loud that “we need peace back to our nation” because peace is the very precious word ever that is followed only by the thrilling events whenever people consider it as an inducer of the the brotherhood, our people are now divided with their plans engulfed by intending to kill Mr. X because is the member of that tribe who are our enemy which obviously abolished brotherhood among South Sudanese.

This is the time, a time to leave blames, hates and tribalism behind and find an alternative that can bring us back to our unity we had during our  struggle against the neighbouring North for the independent of our country, hence this alternative is peace. Fellow South Sudanese, our country is reaching lethal stages of crisis that will not only affect us but also our future generations in our beloved nation if we don’t cease this current civil war. Our county is for us, so any one of us own South Sudan and none of the  tribes is superior nor inferior than the the other.


Imagine a world where political and ethnic division are the norm. A world where tribalism thrives as intensely as corruption. That world is Africa.

When we say tribalism, we do not mean a fashion print – we wish we did. Here, tribalism is the act of judging and condemning someone solely because they are from a certain tribe or social group. Ridiculous, right?

But it’s still real. Most African countries suffer from ethnic conflicts, some more than others. Kenya, Morocco, Algeria, Rwanda, Uganda, South Africa, Ethiopia, Somalia, Egypt, Libya, Sudan… Tribalism to us, is a curse. Here’s why. In Morocco, if you’re a Berber you’re Scroogelike, if you’re a Fassi (from Fez) you’re a snob and if you’re a Jew you’re too calculating. Whereas in Kenya, if you’re a Kikuyu you’re overly greedy, if you’re a Luo you are extravagance in its purest form and if you’re a Kisii you need anger management classes likewise in South Sudan under Kiir Mayardit’s regime, if you are dinka you feel it better. No need for a PhD to see that these stereotypes are way off the mark. Here, your origins determine how others see you, racist jokes don’t seem that racist and your accent is too funny to ignore.

Clichés are maybe fading but their effect is the social divisions in our society prevent people from seeing beyond your surname. For instance, in South Sudan, if you introduce yourself as Rose, it is not uncommon to find people asking ‘Rose who?’ If you decline to answer then the question becomes ‘Rose from where?’. Tribalism makes people judge you by the language you speak rather than by your personality. The absurdity of it all makes you wonder when the hell you made an application to God personally, requesting to be born into a particular tribe.

Rwanda is – unfortunately – a good example for this. The widely-known version of the story is wrong. Hutus and Tutsis aren’t tribes. Hutus didn’t kill Tutsis just because they hate their guts. Throughout history, imperialist countries made either the Hutus or Tutsis a comprador class of elites. Tensions grew more intense as years passed. So, through a mix of external pressure and a strong sense of ethnocentrism, genocides were committed.

It’s well-known that elections in tribal nations aren’t these countries’ pride. Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan, Somalia and many others suffered from post-election violence due to tribal tension. Votes aren’t based on ideological affiliations or preferences, but on tribal identities. It is deemed as a social duty to be loyal to one’s tribe. The voters do not care whether you are a drug dealer, a murderer, a saint, a corrupt narcissist, a peacemaker, or even the devil himself. If you belong to the right tribe, the post is yours. 

South Sudan has always been rich in human and natural resources. However, we haven’t reached our full-potential. Unity is what we lack. So obviously, tribalism and ethnic conflict isn’t the best strategy. People starve, get sick, die, lose loved ones. When you’re famished, sick, let down or dead you hardly ever think of getting an education, fighting for Africa or finding the solution to your country’s social or economic issues.

Tribalism determines whether deals go through or burn to the ground. Sometimes people prefer hiring from their own tribe and doing business with people from their own region. They do this not because they are evil, but because they are more comfortable sticking with the familiar. This however locks out better suited and more experienced individuals who could have been a better fit for a company. Tribalism is therefore a hindrance to development. You know the saying ‘You can’t choose who you love?’ Well you can. You should. You will. And you must. You simply cannot fall in love with someone who is not from your tribe, that is an abomination. Don’t even toy with the idea. Unless you are begging to be cast out by your family. Tribalism prohibits you from freely exploring and experiencing a culture different from yours.However, with every cloud comes a silver lining. We are becoming more tolerant and start realizing that just because someone does not practise your culture or speak your language, they are not less of a human being. 

My fellow citizens, let us join hands  as brothers and sisters to give peace a chance and indeed see how good it is when country is in the peace. today is our new chapter in life so let’s leave all the mistakes behind and concentrate on our brighter future in the republic where any one of has will maintain equal opportunity in doing whatever can benefit him/her in favour of the prosperity in the nation. Let is build love among ourselves irrespective of the tribe we  belongs and at least looking forward to the future of our nation.

Yien Wil Mayuak is a South Sudanese young man who is currently staying in JImma, Ethiopia and can be reached via his e-mail at gatwiel2017@yahoo.com.

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