Tribalists and Tribalism in South Sudan

Photo: File

By: Cde. Sirir Gabriel Yiei Ruot

July 21, 2017 (SSNA) — It has been almost to one year since we gave the Addis Ababa peace agreement on the resolution of the conflict in the Republic of South Sudan a trial. I and my colleagues in the movement (SPLM-IO) Media department face some littlest bruises on the process to its implementation. My arrest on the 12 April 2016 is one of the historical periods I will never forget. Perhaps, today I want to drag your attention to the following behaviors that I thought to be bogus and disgusting to be happening in the 21 century.

First of all, let me start with the billboards. One of the weird scenarios I witness in the month of April 2016 was the magnitude of tribal madness that our people in South Sudan has possessed.  The hatred toward Riek Machar and his tribesmen have made me believed that it will take South Sudan another decade to eradicates the tribalism and segregation.

Can you imagine the Billboards we erected along the streets of Juba city in the month of April didn’t spend 24 hours standing?

Do you know only the sculpture or the image of Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon Ph.D. was the only victim?

Now, as a citizen, neutral as you were and who was desperately yearning for security, sustainable development and peace who do you think could be responsible for the destruction of the Billboards that hold the images of the two lions of the country? (public to answer)

Secondly, all the posters, banners that used to carry the images of Riek Machar since 2005 to 2013 were all Wipeout. Why?

That is also tribalism.

Thirdly during the time, I was arrested along with the current Press Secretary for Press in the office of SPLM-IO Leader Riek Machar, comrade Lam Kuei Lam, I also witness the most tribal act of my lifetime.

It happened at exactly 10:28 Am in the main gateway of National Security Headquarters in Jabel Market. We were on the mass media mobilization campaign for Gen. Alfred Lado Gore to be welcome by hundreds of Juba city residents.  I was the main speaker.

As we approach the gate, the Disco- Joker low down the music of Emmanuel Kembe’s song “Salam Jah schemes salah kalas mafi zol tani bi kori”

I said only three statements which I squeezed into three lines they were;

  1. “The residents of Jabel Suk, peace has come no one will sleep under his/ her bed again”
  2. I told them that nobody will urinate in the bottles for fear of unknown gunmen.
  3. Finally, I assured them that none of them will sleep with one eye and ear open.

And before I could elaborate on the message of peace and the coming of the than our chief Idealogue Ladu Gore, I was caught and dragged down by my trouser’s waist. So sad as we were beaten and hit with guns barrels.

We were led in one line blindfolded with our campaign clothes. Some of the uses worlds ended that day.

However, Inside the compound was the park of the filthy Mathiang Anyoor who were waiting for anyone to laid their bloody hands on.

I was the second man on the line, fattest and taller after John Guesh aka Abu site.

One of the soldiers of which I believe to have served in murder and killing approaches me and wiper to me in Dinka, saying ” Eyin Monyjang?”

To provoke him more I replied him in Juba Arabic. ” Monyjangda Shunu ?

You can’t believe how this soldier run to get the gun crying to killed me. That day my lucks were near. He was denied the guns by all his comrades. But nobody denied him his hands. He came back in Rambo and Jean claude Van Damme style and hit my ribs hard.

I gasp for air to breathe but because I am determined and solid to the cause I compare my life to those who perished earlier my life would possibly make no difference. I stood firm.

Back to the topic of tribalism and segregation

As they were busy distributing punches and kicks equally to all of us, one of the senior tribalists in South Sudan at large came to me and gave me a hot side kick at my chest.

I nearly lost control of myself I look at him severely. The man told me not to get angry with him as he is fighting with Riek Machar (picture in my chest.) I told him but I am wearing the T – shirt that carries the image. “I am getting hurt” I added.

He commands me not to worry as he continues fighting with Riek Machar’s photo at my chest. It was a terrible day for me and my colleagues.

Tribalism in South Sudan is a disease that needs an early cure. It is dangerous and those who are practicing it are idiots who do not have South Sudan in their hearts.

I call upon my brothers and sisters in and out South Sudan to embrace love and patriotism so that peace prevails once and for all.

Tribalism is useless, Tribalism kills, and Tribalism must be completely eradicated. Let try this.

Let South Sudan be our Country and region be our tribes. e.g. my tribe is the Upper Nile.

Cde. Sirir Gabriel Yiei Ruot is the SPLM-IO Youth League Spokesman.

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