So long as our cameleon like politicians and jalaba affiliates stay out of its outcome
By Justin Demetry, Canada
July 18, 2010 (SSNA) — While we are heading towards referendum with higher aspirations for our new independent/sovereign State, we need to be physically, psychologically, ideologically and religiously prepared for either good or catastrophic results of the referendum. If your question is why? The answer is: CPA has given a provision for a democratic election, a type of an election that some of us thought was going to be a democratic one with its ultimate meaning. Surprisingly, our African acquired leadership norm of single or few rulers, with vested abusing authority, took its toll in broad daylight under the watchful eyes of those whom the movement fought for and those whom we were begging for support, in our loud clamor for our just cause, prior to the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. These are the same bureaus our current government file claims to with their usual five year complain of lack of implementation of the CPA as if they are in benevolence to Southern Sudanese, or implementing the CPA themselves in Southern Sudan.
For some of the Southern Sudanese victims blessed with wisdom, their reaction to the electoral rigging was, to follow the right channel bestowed through the court Justice System – a system that is supposed to be an important policy/decision maker; having an upper hand that goes by the book with its considerable discretion in its ruling. Courts are known to be political as well as legal institution; yet are independent of the government. Embarrassingly enough, our “garawiya” or the former “B court” of late chief, Andrea Gore was far better; and would have done a better job than those useless judges who finally ruled the election results of almost all the cases filed in favor of imposed rulers.
I’m not a lawyer, but yet cognizant of the basic court system in the sense that, once it accepts a legitimate case, it follows its due process such as the oral arguments, hearing, decision, opinion et cetera. However, the general principle adopted by all truly democratic nations such as: “the power of courts to decide whether a governmental institution has acted within its constitutional powers and, if not, to declare its action null and void” seems to have no room in Sudan. The question is, why do we have to invest in those humongous buildings? If it is for pickpocket prevention or liquor brewing/consumption crack down, then those lower courts can do better with less pay and fare judgment.
Even though an official release by the court hasn’t been seen for some cases probably due to avoidance of embarrassment or fear of public dismay, the oath that has already been taken by the accused officials is a concurrent clear indication of citizens’ neglect and support of government foul play by our court system. Needless to say, God fearless cherry picked committee of Moulana Abel Alier were at least courageous enough to come up with some baseless findings that, the election results was in fact valid despite all the evidence collected and submitted to their unworthy National Election Commission and Supreme Court combined. Something that is not a surprise; especially when it involves those of Abel Alier.
The funniest of all is the recently formed GOSS cabinet that comprises of some losers in their various constituencies. This particular scenario reminds me of former Liberian President, Charles Ghankay Taylor, an indicted war criminal who is currently in the Hague facing charges of crimes against humanity. Despite the fact that soldiers under his command committed lot of atrocities such as savage murder, rape, maimedness of civilian, slavery and other inhumane act to name a few; his presidential campaign slogan was: “I killed your ma, I killed your pa, you will vote for me.” In substance, whether they like him or not, he is coming back as their leader, in bracket, dictator – and he truly did.
Let me not go too far, during the recent campaign, some of the MP candidates were so proud to the extent of telling the voters that, if they don’t vote for them, they will still be installed as MPs; furthermore, President Kiir himself told the citizens of Central Equatoria State that, without their ballots, he can still win the election – that itself is a mockery in an election campaign, if not peril of democracy; that is why individuals with such erroneous sentiment should not be given a chance to convince any voter but their ghost ones if we do live in a true barbaric free society.
Another unacceptable democratically illusionary practice is the way members of other Political parties were labeled in the same way former US president, George Bush labeled his critics/opponents in the aftermath of September 11, “you are either with us or against us,” that means, the implied consequence of not joining the team’s effort, ready to reckon with the terrorist, is to be deemed an enemy. That front of war the Americans and other nations were and still handling is a different form of a war, but ours is a seek for the basics necessities and democratic/constitutional rights. I usually do feel ashamed when I see learned individuals supporting the intimidation or harassment of other political party members, candidates or opponents. The truth of the matter is, if the status quo party is doing their best, what are they or their supporters afraid of? They should continue doing their best mean while allowing other aspirants to try their luck. Let the end justifies the means if it is not autocracy.
Whenever an elected official wins an election, in theory, they are suppose to act as an official representative of their people; and if they perform well especially in delivering the basic service to their people, chances are, they can be re-elected if they stand again in the same or higher positions. If they decide not to stand, at least they will show a good reputation of the party they represent; and the next candidate from the same party might definitely follow and voted for overwhelmingly.
Now if we end up having some imposed top government officials such as presidents, Governors, Ministers and “MPs,” will they really dare to care about the service to their citizens? I believe the straight foreword answer to this is a big “NO.” To them, to hell with the rest because they are appointed or imposed government officials who are there to serve themselves and their masters period. This scenario again is in fact being attributed to some comments from the previous top government officials who advertently spit irritating comments such as: “I was not elected but appointed.”
As a matter of defeat to the principle of “check and balance,” the fact that the cabinet list submitted by the GOSS president went through in the Southern Sudan Legislative assembly unopposed makes me wonder about the capabilities of our MPs in that August House. Those are suppose to be our guardian angels in this period of referendum; and most importantly, have the final say should the current rulers temper or go contrary to the choice of the Southern Sudanese masses which is known to most as nothing else, but an aspiration for a total sovereign state in Southern Sudan, comes January 9, 2011. Now if they continue to act like buffoons to their superior without the ability to question anything, then we are truly in danger of having those creatures in that respective house.
The dumbest of all is the response made by Speaker Wani Igga who during his recent interview with Al-Ra’y al – Amm on July 14 state that “unity is much more possible and not too late to achieve it ……” God have mercy! Was Wani Igga not the very person whom during the liberation struggle was among the very individuals who professed that we cannot live with the Jalaba; and the very person who skip death when he was poisoned in Khartoum by the Jalaba right after their first visit to Khartoum? Instead of speaking in such a tongue, the speaker need to tell his masters including the Southern clone ones that, it is up to the Southerners as a whole, NOT FEW INDIVIDUALS/GROUP, to decide through the democratic method of a free and impartial supervised plebiscite.
Majority of Southerners are not driven by transient whims, strong personalities or propaganda to have a second thought contrary to their hope for a sovereign state of Southern Sudan. The Southern Sudan Independence rally all over Sudan is a clear indication that, the South is going if left for the whole Southerners to decide; therefore, instead of our speaker giving unnecessary comments as if he was still in the mobilization days, he better focus on real outstanding issues that still need to be amicably tabled – issues such as the border demarcation, citizenship, oil wealth etc.
Few world leaders have predicted about the consequences of the whole region should Southern Sudan secede – in their fear of other nations disintegrating for quest of their sovereign state within a state. Their wish is a unified Sudan. Not a bad wish though, as it has been said: “Unity is power,” but our unity as Southern Sudanese with the North has always been the main cause of crises for generations. Should unity be imposed on the South, its impact/implications on the region again will be truly devastating; that is why, serious measures need to be taken into account so that no matter whatever the case is, LET THE SOUTH GO to avoid any catastrophic results.
Those measures should not be limited to the millions of US dollars pledged by the US, UK, EU, the United Nations, etc, but their participation/involvement in terms of logistics, technicality and supervision including verification of the ballot count. Besides, IGAD, the local Referendum committee should comprise of people with higher integrity, not the likes of Moulana Alier. Even if succession to others might mean heading to hell, it is our choice as well as our rights but not the choice of the few rulers or world leaders who have no clue or might have forgotten or care less about what we went through.
The author is a South Sudanese currently living in Canada; he can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org