Help Yourself: A Political Football Match on the Palm Tree

By Deng Mangok Ayuel

August 10, 2013 (SSNA) — Since the former Vice President declared his candidature to challenge the President in the fight for SPLM chairmanship before he was sacked, South Sudanese, especially opinion writers began voicing their thoughts comparatively on elites of the SPLM for the fight of party’s top seat, which is not the case in this piece. I don’t base my opinion on mixed ideologies. We shouldn’t mix country affairs with party politics. South Sudan is for everyone regardless of political colours, tribe and states and President Kiir, Dr Machar and Pagan are political family. If they have problems among themselves, it is the work of SPLM to solve its internal tribulations.

As a young nation, our leaders should be politically united and focus on the success of this nation. The SPLM as the bridge and the ruling party should be paradigm in political cohesion and nation building. And if the SPLM as an elephant has a problem itself … who can solve its problems? When an elephant roars in the forest, the lions and other animals usually hide because it is going to be the bad day if the problem started with the biggest animal.

The SPLM is strongest and big, if a man, could be  larger than life, composed of bigger and simpler elements than ordinary men, a gigantic historical figure during his own lifetime, superhumanly bold, strong, and imaginative, one of the two greatest men of action his nation has produced, an orator of prodigious powers, the savior of his country, a legendary hero who belongs to myth as much as to reality, the largest human being of our time, to borrow words from Isaiah Berlin

As politics is for politicians and the Republic of South Sudan is for us as its citizens who voted during the referendum, our leaders should also recognized their efforts, energy utilized and millions of lives lost in order to become a nation. Should our leaders at all level of government be Museveni, Mugabe or el-Bashir alike? I am not a fan of any politician because political tribalism seemingly at the wrong angle of truth. It’s like regionalism. When politics is tribalized, regionalized, democracy looks ugly.

Who doesn’t want to be a leader in this world? All of us do, but chance and patience determine any desire. As democracy is the government of the people, by the people and for the people, I am not writing to support or criticize any aspired politician from any party in South Sudan who is willing to lead the nation in the 2015 election. It is too early for me to count my eggs. I am only behind the SPLM, but lead us not into temptation. When there is opposition within the same room, others may start a quarrel as part of complication in order to worsen the nature of the problem. This is the case with some comrades!

If we wanted to teach the world about our political cultures as South Sudanese, we should be together and consult ourselves as family before making any decision. The current political skeleton of the ruling party can’t easily be changed by any aspired politician who wishes to lead before convincing its leadership to give go ahead, political blessing from the party. How many years stipulated in the transitional constitution for presidency?

In the time of need – a real time, political alternatives evoke exceptional circumstances impulsively, and the political equation may consequently make U-turn from its X and Y methods to acclimatize chauvinism, dogmatism to avoid sidelining with the sons who wanted hook the father in the same political engine which shall be the lost to others.

Any failure in our country goes to everyone. We shouldn’t point fingers at leaders only. Who is doing what to his/her elastic limit in South Sudan? And who thinks he is the best among others? Some of the CPA tycoons are currently in troubles, our economic shattered, rebels have been killing people in Jonglei and the innocent school head teacher and his deputy were recently gunned down by unknown gunman in Lakes State, Rumbek. The problems are everywhere in the country, you see!

In our society, leaders seem to be equal in their doings – bad and good at the same time. And among these leaders, there is no single leader who should claim to be the best among the messy masses – no leader should claim political paradise before public judgment. When a farmer, for instance, you should look for tools, seeds before rainy reason, have long views on fragile climate before accusing the rain makers for intensive rainfalls. Now that the cabinet is born with fresh ministers and their deputies, it is believed that the ministers shall not fall into the same holes dug by the predecessors.

Deng Mangok Ayuel lives in Aweil, South Sudan. He can be reached via [email protected]

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