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Tuesday, Sep 02nd, 2014

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Lul Koang and Philip Aguer: two symbols of lies and greed for power

By Kuir ë Garang

August 31, 2014 (SSNA) -- South Sudanese can sometimes be excused in many things because the country is new and its institutional strength is weak. However, it’s good to note that human beings are rational entities and being credibly logical is expected of everyone. Being rational doesn’t require a country to have been independent, or to have been a democracy, for centuries.

It has become apparent that neither the government of South Sudan nor the rebels under Riek Machar can be trusted. They all lie with a flamboyant blitz!

While the voices and faces that’re made to convey the messages in both camps are, to a given extent, mere vessels of the forces behind them, it’s good to note that spokespersons are not mere automatons. They are humans. They have to know that they are the conveyers and custodians of the horrors Dr. Riek Machar and President Kiir have brought to this young nation.

Philip Aguer Panyaang, the SPLA spokesperson and Lul Ruai Koang, the rebels’ spokesperson, act as protectors of President Kiir’s desire to remain in power as long as he wants and of Riek’s desire to ascend to power by ‘all means necessary!’

Colonel Philip Aguer Panyaang lies for the government in a very illogical and consistent manner. Brigadier General Lul Ruai Koang has a very imaginative lies processing capacity. All just for Riek Machar to get what he wants.

And to top it up with their don’t-care attitude, President Kiir and Dr. Machar don’t give a rat’s foot about the civilians. They’ll only sign the peace agreement if only they get what they WANT: POWER!

After getting what he wanted in the would-be peace agreement in Addis Ababa, President Kiir signed both the Cease Fire Agreement implementation matrix and the Agreement leading to formation of Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU). However, Riek refused to sign the agreement papers because the agreement put him on the receiving end. Machar only opted to sign the Cease Fire agreement implementation matrix. Well, now, the rebels are saying they didn’t sign the matrix but only that they recommitted themselves to the COH agreement signed on January 23 and reaffirmed on May

9. Who knows?

President Kiir loses nothing in this agreement. His door is open to take part in the next general election; he keeps he puppet, Wani Igga as his Vice President and also has an authority as to who is selected as the Prime Minister by SPLM-in-Opposition.

Riek Machar on the other hand has a difficult choice. If he chooses to be the Prime Minister then he’s illegible to contest the next general elections after the Transitional Period. If he chooses someone else to be the Prime Minister and Kiir still remaining the president, then his chances of winning the next election are close to impossible. Kiir would use his resources to make sure that he prepares the way for his re-election.

Riek is therefore in a tough spot and refusing to sign the agreement will reflect him as the one prolonging the war and this could open the way for sanctions against his group. Tough luck, doc!

To make the matters worse for Riek Machar, his commanders on the ground, the likes of Peter Gatdet, are not making things any easier for him.

Peter Gatdet, against all available human logic, warned UNMISS that he’d shoot any plane that passes through his territory. Now a UN chopper ‘crashes’ in the same area Gatdet controls. It would be logical to assume that Gatdet just fulfilled his promised. Even if the investigation is to still to be done for the cause of the crash to be determined, one can’t blame much the people accusing the rebels.

Would you blame the government for exploiting Gatdet’s mischievous warnings? Logically? No! Factually? Maybe yes!

The rebels need to control both what their commanders say and do. The rebels are shooting themselves in the foot.

This, of course, doesn’t mean the government couldn’t have done it. While it would be a wild imagination to say that the government forces shot it down knowing that Gatdet had said he’d shoot down UN plane, to set up rebels, it’s good to remember that the government forces control Bentiu and they are in the area and they’ve been recently involved in clashes with the rebels.

So why would it be the rebels that shot down the chopper (if it was indeed shot down) and not the government forces?

What the SPLA spokesperson, Colonel Philip Aguer said is what we always expect him to say: “They did it!” The same thing applies to the rebels. Rebels’ spokesperson, Brigadier General Lul Rual Koang, denied the accusation like he’s always done: “We didn’t do it!”

With such attitude of these two camps, how can one really expect South Sudan to be peaceful? It’s lies after lies and greed for power. Can one blame the two spokesperson? Maybe note! However, they have to think about their role in the current tragedy even if the lies they tell and the greed for power comes from above them.

Is anyone surprised that Kiir signed both documents but Riek didn’t? You’d be sleeping if you are surprised!

Kuir ë Garang is the author of ‘South Sudan Ideologically’. For contact visit or follow him on Twitter @kuirthiy

The G10 are power grumpy hogs whom will never stop at nothing but ascending to the coveted seat

By Chemical Thanker

August 25, 2014 (SSNA) -- Yes as shoddy deals and back room back-stabbing are beginning to emerge in Addis, it's important to revisit the position and contribution of the messiahs of the conflict to its resolution. The G10 throughout the crisis are perceived by majority of us, as the least of the 3 evils. Whether that's vague argument depends on which part of the fence you leaned on. Of course they don't have any army to carryout deadly skirmishes or capture a territory like the two warring piglets but their neutrality gives the crisis a green light to continue. Had they joined either of the parties, the peace deal could have been struck long time ago and crisis brought to an end because there would've not been any middle men to juggle the talks. With G10, IGAD and TROIKA are attempting to impose a deadly deal on South Sudanese which maybe deadly as the armies of the two parties. Deadly because they would stand rewarded for a blood of other parties who sacrificed their families/friends to be freed or maintain the status quo. This will not stand well with those carrying guns and their families.

G10 are neither neutral nor innocent. We have seen in their statements what they stand for. Their policy for way forward and governance in South Sudan can't be differentiated with the SPLM-I-O. They demanded a federal system of governance and Ramciel as a capital and so did SPL-I-O.

Based on their fairly- sewed policy document of way forward in South Sudan, the G10 wants to address the war and its causes, democratic governance, reforms in the economy, security sector transformation, the justice sector, civil service reforms , the Nile waters, Social policy, fighting corruption, development of infrastructure, land and natural resources, the process for a new Constitution, foreign policy and more importantly, the establishment of a Transitional Government of National Unity (TGONU) that will prepare and lead the country into a new era of peace, stability, democracy, justice, the rule of law and constitutionalism. This is no different to SPLM-I-O position either and I believe they saw the SPLM-I-O paper before they wrote theirs.

Now, what do G10 wants to get away with sitting in the middle of the whirling pools of polices made by government and SPLM-I-O? Simple: power and IGAD & TROIKA want to deliver just that because "they are neutral". These are the guys whom among them stole millions of dollars in dura scandal, bogus anti-fire equipment deal and disparities in austerity measures. They also among them have one of the architects of the current damning constitution that gave Kiir the upper hand in everything. The already obsolete group were made to be so special by IGAD that they are now negotiating with the SPLM-I-O on transitional arrangements without the other warring party, the SPLM-Juba! And they seem to be comfortable with it even when knowing that the outcome won't bear anything. (Yes, the 6 days boycott by the government delegation is so wrong given that they also share the same need for direct talks with SPLM-I-O, who preferred the government delegation to lead the protest and receive condemnation in return. A political manoeuvring).

The G10 want to remain as yes men as possible to escape with a much bigger plate. Now with Dr Lam Akol disowned by political parties' delegation to Addis Ababa, "for ganging up with a group of disgruntled delegations to work out a deal to overthrow the government through pen and paper" as SSTV's Oyet Patrick called it, do not rule out a possible coalition between the G10 and Dr Lam Akol. Although it may not appear as a major breakthrough in peace talks if they formed one, it's indeed a worrying one since IGAD and TROIKA forcefully want a way out of SPLM-I-O and the government of salva kiir, and that coalition can fit their bills.

Interestingly, the South Sudanese have fully understood the former detainees’ shaky project and how they can’t be trusted anymore to bring the much needed peace to South Sudan. To add insult to the injury, their popularity continue to dwindle ever often they present a press statement. The group don’t appear to realise this either, instead, they’re depending so much on IGAD and Troika that they forgot the core of the South Sudanese who sang in ululation when they were released early this year.

The recent stalls in peace talks in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) will be felt so badly by the group more than the government and SPLM in Opposition. Former detainees were given a lot more recognition than they should by IGAD. Per the failed IGAD communique, the group were given the post of a deputy prime minister, the second vice presidential posts in the transitional agreement as well as numerous government ministerial portfolios. Technically, the group who are currently 10 in number can all be in the transitional government if it was not for warring parties to abstain from signing the presented IGAD document. To them, failure in striking a deal on Monday is not business as usual and so it might not be a surprise if they pursue sanctions on warring parties with the help of IGAD and Troika as long as it clear the way for them to ascend to power.

The Author is a concerned South Sudanese who lives in Australia.

Introduction to Conversations with Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule about a Blueprint for South Sudan

By Margaret Akulia, Canada

August 25, 2014 (SSNA) -- “The present catastrophic crisis in our country has exposed in ugly details the monumental wrongs which afflicted our country long before the events of the 15th of December 2013”, began a Preamble to a position paper by Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule. It is the official position of his United Democratic Front Party (UDF) about how to resolve the ongoing carnage in South Sudan. However, the position epitomizes what the majority of the masses of South Sudan are thinking but unable to verbalize because of fear. In conversations with Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule about a Blueprint for South Sudan, we unveil the issues that have brought South Sudan to the brink of total collapse, along with solutions to the issues.

Conversations with Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule will include in depth discussions about the best system of government suitable for meeting the aspirations of the multiethnic groups of South Sudan in order to avoid future conflicts. These conversations will undoubtedly be very difficult but they are necessary. 

To set the stage for the conversations, this is what Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule had to say in response to a question postulated to him about a reference he made to the great mistakes of miss- governance and the excessive crimes committed against the people of South Sudan in his position paper. He was referring in part to the conflict between Salva Kiir Mayardit and Riek Machar and their cohorts which degenerated into the mass murder of innocent South Sudanese from the Nuer tribe under the direction of Salva Kiir Mayardit beginning on December 15, 2013.

“To understand this piece properly, you have to view it from a historical perspective”, began Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule before elaborating.

“During a more than fifty-year freedom struggle, our fore-fathers and ourselves had committed ourselves to a struggle for liberty, dignity and the welfare of our people. This in a nut shell is the concise vision statement of the broad objectives and aims of our struggle against a savage and brutal Arab imperialist dictator. However, immediately after the SPLM/SPLA took control of the reins of power in the South, it shocked the people by what it really was: a dictatorial, brutal, kleptocratically corrupt and bankrupt system of government. Soon enough the SPLM elites began to make themselves rich by looting state coffers. Tribal centers of power started to be formed at the top echelons of government, critics were arrested and many disappeared and their property coveted. The rule of law and due process were thrown to the rubbish bins. Nobody is beyond the gaze of the ubiquitous Military Intelligence or safe from the nightly break-ins, armed robberies and killings every night. Life and property were no longer sanctified and inviolable, leave alone being considered as indefeasible rights. Entire villages and tribal lands were violently displaced and the villagers terrorized, shot and chased away from their ancestral lands which were seized by the SPLM/SPLA elites and the armies of commanders, officers and men who quickly built tribal colonies for themselves in the looted lands. They were joined by many others migrating en mass into cities like Juba, Wau, Yei, Kaya and Nimule, to mention only a few; displacing the original inhabitants in the process! The stand of the Murle tribe was a case in place against an attempted brutal genocidal displacement by the combined forces of Dinka and Nuer. The Judiciary is no longer independent and impartial, filled with tribesmen most of whom are unqualified and all lacking capacity and training. Judges take sides against the victims whose lands and houses are looted by the gun totting soldiers. The Civil Service is almost wholly recruited according to tribal considerations with the senior positions filled by men ill-qualified for their posts. If these are not crimes against the people of South Sudan, then what are they? Indeed, they are not only crimes against the majority of South Sudanese, but are crimes committed against the many innocent Dinka and Nuer in whose names they are committed”.

In conversations with Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule about a Blueprint for South Sudan, the following themes will be highlighted among many.

Miss-governance and excessive crimes committed against the people of South Sudan including but not limited to torture, looting state coffers, robbing properties of minority ethnic groups, murder, rape and maiming with unprecedented and imponderable impunity.


The need for a national army as opposed to the tribal armies that have currently divided the country into two warring camps of Dinka vs Nuer.

Misusing the most dire coercive machinery of the state leading to grievances that will undoubtedly boil over and explode the same way they did on December 15, 2013.

Lack of confidence in the government and total erosion of trust among the people of South Sudan.

The threat of total anarchy when communities such as the communities of the Equatoria region of South Sudan realize that their survival, and in fact their very existence in the country is in peril, unless they also move into the business of acquiring and possessing arms like the others, for their own self defense.

Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule has been consistent in asserting that the current calamitous ethnic war with its dire consequences felt country-wide, together with the mistakes which had led to it, have transcended and gone beyond its main architects: Kiir and Machar; that it has now become a national concern and not limited only to Kiir and Machar.

Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule has asserted that the ethnic war that has pitted South Sudan's Dinka tribe against the Nuer tribe can be brought to an end through an all-inclusive negotiated settlement by all South Sudanese stakeholders on the basis of a Federal system of governance, founded upon the values of justice, democracy, good governance, respect for fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, mutual understanding and tolerance of the diversity within the realities of South Sudan. 

Stay tuned for more conversations with Lawyer and Politician Peter Sule about a Blueprint for South Sudan and becoming fully involved in crafting the best “system” of government for South Sudan which will satisfy and live up to the aspirations of the people of South Sudan in the share of power and wealth and the proper governance of their own states, in the long run.

Conversations are intended for all South Sudanese and not just Kiir and Machar's SPLM in government and SPLM in opposition as they want to have it.


Margaret Akulia is co-author of the sequel Idi Amin: Hero or Villain? His son Jaffar Amin and other people speak. She brings to the South Sudan dialogue a multidisciplinary professional background including but not limited to “grassroots activism”.

Additional information at: AND

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