By Joseph Oreste Odhok,
July 18, 2016(Nyamilepedia) —– The recent development of events culminating in armed confrontations in South Sudan Capital, Juba, did not happen out of the blue but there was a series of provocations that pointed to that possibility and that could have been avoided if JMEC had exercised its full powers over the antagonistic factions and intervened timely when the need arose.
At the outset, the peace deal (ARCISS) was negotiated by the International Community and Regional groupings in a sincere effort to bring an end to the devastating war that seemed to consume the country. It was the next best that the international community could provide when the warring parties failed to agree. In the same vein as it has brokered the agreement, it should have used it leverage in the implementation process by using both proactive and reactive approaches to prevent recurrence of conflict and in some instances to impose its decisions whenever there is a disagreement between the opposing factions. A function that is embedded within the Mandate of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) as provided by the agreement.
AS we all know, The Peace deal, which President Kiir and the Opposition Leader, Dr. Riak were frog- marched to sign in 17 August 2015 was not necessarily mutually satisfactory to the needs and demands of the warring parties. It is a roadmap designed to transition the country to a certain degree of peace and stability while the partners would be working to transform it for realization of its objectives, and not and end in itself. The lasting and permanent solution to the conflict therefore, lies upon full implementation of the agreement by all the parties to the conflict and the subsequent elections that would provide the country with new leadership and a new Political System. Unfortunately, this has not been the case as President Kiir’s faction wanted the agreement implemented on its own terms. A situation that is not commensurate with the peace agreement. This arrogant behavior on the side of President Kiir and his tribal self appointed advisory body, the Jieng Council of Elders, met with unyielding determination by Dr. Riek’s faction and allies to stick to the provisions of the peace agreement, would eventually trigger the intense emotions which led to the latest renewal of armed confrontations in Juba, with dire consequences on civilian population and a prospect of a full blown out war across the country.
Needless to recount the manner with which these barbaric armed attacks were organized and executed, one fact remains crystal clear, and that is the undisputable fact that the arc enemies will never collaborate again and Peace now is at stake.
Given these saddening events and the devastating impact on the civil population, requires the International Community to exercise its obligations and responsibilities to act in favour of the South Sudanese People.
What Is The Way Forward Then?
Following this sad development of events, what is at stake now is Peace. The implications of absence of peace is multiple, chief among which is the eventual backtracking of President Kiir to revert to his authoritarian system of rule at the expense of peace and to the disadvantage of the citizens. In fact he has already begun cracking down on the journalists and his perceived or real enemies. The recent arrest of Mr. Alfred Taban, the chief editor of the Independent Newspaper is one such example.
It is incumbent upon the International Community therefore, to intervene militarily to save LIVES, enforce PEACE and prevent GENOSIDE.
The process of enforcing PEACE in an effective and impartial manner could only be performed by a capable, reliable and neutral body. That body would be none other than the UN.
In a country rocked by political divisions and ethnic conflicts, placing the country on a solid political stability cannot singlehandedly be achieved by the same rivals. Therefore, I am of the opinion and so are many South Sudanese Intellectuals that placing South Sudan under the UN trusteeship is the only viable option to salvage what has remained of the country. The justification for this proposal is simple. The two enemies do not trust in each other and moreover, Kiir and his fellow tribesmen have clearly shown their unwillingness to peace.
The misgivings of the current System will be addressed by the UN Supervisory Body as it will among other functions, create an enabling environment for South Sudanese to write their Constitution, develop functional institutional frameworks in a free and fair exercise, build the National Army and other Security Institutions and provide training and capacity building to its personnel and finally oversee and supervise the general Presidential, Gubernatorial and Parliamentary elections towards the end of the transitional period. In addition, during the transitional period, the UN Supervisory Body will build the Public infrastructure across the country for public service delivery which the current leadership failed to provide and also lay the foundation for socio-economic development.
The author of this article is a concerned South Sudanese. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org