South Sudan leadership and Dinka Malual

By Deng Mangok Ayuel

“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy”, Ernest Benn

October 23, 2012 (SSNA) — When the house is burning and nobody pays attention, it shall spread to the neighborhood but the blame goes to owner of the house who didn’t shout for help. As MPs and civil right activists from the Dinka Malual ethnic group in Northern Bahr el Ghazal have critical voiced strong opposition against mile 14 that resulted to peaceful demonstration by youth in Aweil town and the protest in street of Juba last week. However, it is the right of people of Northern Bahr el Ghazal to question the government about mile 14 because it was not part of CPA or contested areas. But my concern is: why did negotiating team/government itself tried to create unrest chapters in history? After South Sudan parliament ratified the cooperation agreement amid protest and mixed reactions from Northern Bahr el Ghazal, social activist and youth; President Kiir in his own words as published by Sudan Tribune dated 16th October, 2012 said to the MPs as I quoted: “People are demonstrating. They are insulting. I respect their opinion because it is their democratic right but if supposed I say”, okay, that agreement is bad. Let us go and fight. I don’t think that the people who are now raising slogans on the streets would even go there.

However, Pagan, Dr. Barnaba Marial, Makuei Lueth and Salva Mathok are said to have understood “14 miles,” better than citizens of Northern Bahr El Ghazal State – that the argument of the people of Northern Bahr El Ghazal State is” ignorance” according to Sabrino Majok’s article. Besides, the governor of Northern Bahr el-Ghazal, General Paul Malong has been critical of cooperation agreement and he vividly stated that he will "fight" anyone who tries to take from his state a contested area on the border with neighboring Sudan {Sudan Tribune,23 October 2012}.

I urge the government not to blame anyone who talks about mile 14 because it was negotiated and signed without consultation from the people of Aweil. Land is a land and there is no joke about it. I know it is not given to Sudan, but who contested it from Sudan before? Governor Malong is urging on truth. He is also a true patriot; true patriot hates humiliation, injustice in his/her own land more than anywhere else.

As one body (government and divided officials over mile 14) is paining now and has partially agree to disagree according to the above mentioned analysis, so what is the what? Should we enemize ourselves over the part of a land we fought for? As this agreement (mile 14) was temporary, it should have been made clear by the government to the people before signing it.

Furthermore, I am appealing to the leaderships at all level of government systems to avoid interpreting the message since reality is known by everyone; that mile 14 has never been contested{ through negotiation} if South Sudanese negotiators and others can prove me wrong. Well, anything claimed by Sudanese in Khartoum is always theirs according to them because too many agreements were dishonored by Khartoum’s NCP ruling elites.

I wish to be heard. Blame and blame wouldn’t do anything at all. Critics on cooperation agreement and mixed reactions by citizen have been caused by officials who went to the media and started blaming people of Aweil instead of clarifying or communicating what was/ were agreed in Addis Ababa. Yeah, communities are like kids, you can’t answer all their claims and requisitions.

The oil shutdown, Abyei, Panthou and border issues are currently giving birth to mile 14, so why are we increasingly creating problems within problems? For too long, South Sudan has been concerned with right than left in politics. However, the train had arrived to the station safely but some wages are still behind and the manager should take care of Iscariots within the train.

Deng Mangok Ayuel is the Citizen of Northern Bahr el- Ghazal, Aweil. He can be reached at: [email protected]

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