A look back at South Sudan’s achievements since 9th July 2011

South Sudanese sacrificed their blood to see the next generation have their own Country that cares for its people and provide the basic services for them. Simple! We did not expect more suffering than it was when we did not have this country. Today, I take a look back since we got to rule ourselves and check where we have reached. I based my judgment against the below basic functions of what government should do and realities on the ground;

  1. Security to the Territory and all the citizens
  2. Provision of basic services (Food, Hospitals, Education, and Clean water)
  3. Infrastructures (Roads, electricity)

Let’s have a look at them one at a time

Security

  • South Sudan doesn’t have internationally recognized borders until I write this note
  • There is bloodshed all over the country in all the Thirty-two plus states, at least dozen of lives are lost in a day in this country on average (This is my own figure)
  • I cannot call the police when I have a problem because I do not trust the police to help me and indeed he won’t. The arm forces part takes in huge crimes committed in the country.
  • I can’t work in another state freely, I may be killed and true this is happening. People get killed.
  • I cannot travel by road from one county to another, I may be killed and for sure, people die every day
  • The farmer can’t grow crops or they get killed on the farm by the neighboring communities
  • The Judiciary is on strike. So, the country is ruled by no law

So, has this been met? NO

Provision of basic services

  • Famine was declared in the country earlier this year, 2017 to evidence the lack of food. No mere ugali
  • We import everything including okra, tooth pick. Match stick. Everything!
  • 90% of our women and mothers are still victims of villages’ midwives. No hospitals.
  • Our education system is the worse in the world. In fact, the worst form of corruption has reached to another stage in South Sudan. Corruption in education sector hits the last nail on the country’s coffin. No unified curriculum and system for Primary, Secondary and Higher Education. Students have no good classes but passing National Exams with 90%. You find second year Student in University that can’t write a letter. Yet, we have two Ministries for Educations.
  • The clean water issue is a luxury and can’t be talked of at this watch in my beloved country.
  • The Economy can’t move an inch. It is crippled. The Central Bank has become a shopping center for the government officials
  • No salaries for the civil servants for the last 4 months for the Juba based staffs and six months for the rest outside the capital. The arm forces have nothing to feed their families. What will stop them from using the power they have to get food?
  • Though we have oil underground, Citizens line for a fuel up to 2km. Still, you can’t fuel your bike. The government subsidizes the fuel highly and when it arrives, it is allocated to the chiefs of the nation, not to petrol stations, who in turn sold it in a Black market, take to Uganda or DR Congo for a better deal.

So, has this been met? NO

Infrastructures

  • There are no roads across the country. An ideal nation with vision would at least have had one tarmac from Juba –Renk, Juba-Awiel, Juba-Yambio, and Juba-Narus to mention but few.
  • No electricity across the state. In fact, it is the only country without city power in the world.
  • Nothing has been done

So, has this been met? NO

What a resilience society? With all these, they can still afford to smile? People still pretend that everything is alright! We are ok! NOT ME!

To nobody surprise, the families of all our BIG GUYS access all these provisions internally or externally

Hindering factors

  • Corruption
  • Huge Government (Take simple calculation, when we had tens states. Government pays 10 Governors + Deputies + its government, and serve them with V8s, compare with Thirty two states’ spending
  • Poor Institutions (Governance) which is manifested by war, ethnic hatred & Economic crises

 

 

Recommendations

  • Stop the war like yesterday
  • Reduce the government size (for instance, 1 Minister for Education, 1 for Finance, Economic Planning and Trade, 1 for Petroleum, Mining and Mineral resources, 1 For Wild Life, Forestry, Dams & Water, Another for Transport, Roads and Bridges to mention but few examples that are being separated at the movement)
  • Reverse the decision of thirty-two states, yes; we appear to implement the ‘taking-Town’ to people policy, but this has successfully divided people of South Sudan according to their tribes. It makes everything more complicated. Besides, taking the town to people doesn’t mean putting everyone on the government payroll. But taking development to the people. At the movement, the government should swallow the pride and accept the fact. There is no money to pay this huge government. Divert those funds to develop the nation.
  • By the way, was the parliament able to pass the financial Year budget 2016/2017? How about FY 2017/2018? That crowd in that building who when shown on SSBC resemble passengers in the Malaysian MH70 is obsolete and must be down sized to less than 100 Members. After all, they are just MPs by the show of hands and figures.
  • N.B. Salaries make an average of 40% of the overall budget. So, instead of calling Country Financial year Budget, It should be renamed as Salaries forecast of year 2017/2018 and beyond.
  • The SPLA after restructuring this year still need some bold decisions such as; reduce the number of Generals to match the number of divisions. Send Home everybody above the rank of major, borrow money and pay them off. Have only ten Generals. Stop rampant promotions. Do not confirm rebel’s ranks when they come back. This has spoilt our army. Professionalize SPLA.
  • Build our institutions and have systems working in every sector. Stop transporting cash in the boxes. Especially, the Education sector, it is the only sector that will ”re-liberate”  this country and makes it great! And Makes it a place to live in.
  • I don’t wish to talk about SPLMSSSSS.. what is wrong with our people? If they truly love the name that everyone wishes to oppose and still keeps the names, why can’t you keep one name or make reforms? Rather than confusing our innocent citizens with SPLM-DC, SPLM-IO-IG, SPLM-IO-In the Bush, SPLM-IO- In Uganda, SPLM-Former Detainees, SPLM-IG, SPLM-Neutral, SPLM Oyeee, and so forth. Can’t give us another name, come up with a real manifesto that will convince the citizens and you will for sure one day win? For me, SPLM  should gloriously be accompanied to join KANU.

 

If all these can’t be done, then there would be no better term to call South Sudan than ‘’ A failed State’’.

I think it is at this stage, a mechanic recommends for an engine overhaul.

I am just saying!

©Mawan2017

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WHY HUMAN BEING IS DIFFERENT FROM OTHER ANIMALS

 

Human being can be like any other mammals, omnivorous and whatever other animals do. But he is different in that he has will to do things, freedom, choice, he is intelligent, he works and has culture. Some of the aforementioned characteristics of man can be attained by other animals but they still remain ANIMALS. Human being on the other hand can lose them but still remain HUMAN BEING. There is ONLY one thing that is very natural that gives man a permanent status of special being.
This is rational soul. This soul is infused into a man immediately after conception. Other animals do not have. This rational soul relates the man with spiritual world. Man qualifies to be both material and spiritual being.
No one has the goddamned right to ever call human being ‘’a monkey’’. Catholic faith and Social Teachings talk more than this.

I failed to comprehend how a Catholic Priest dares called people monkeys. Fr. Rocco Taban has sinned against people of God. He took side and left his emotions to lead his heart and faith. This pastor hails from Wau. And Wau incident was interpreted into different ways. He took his part of story and used his motions in his preaching. This pastor should be sacked from the church of God or sent to recession or whatever that rehabilitate misbehaving pastors.

Parents who post their kids pictures are attention seekers

Parents who post their kids pictures are attention seekers
I highly applauded this article from a psychologist who said that parents who post about their toddlers are attention seekers. For sure, what is the purpose for posting your baby photos for people who don’t even know you? Why not share them on Whats App? I think parents who do this indeed do it in good faith, they don’t intend any harm to their babies but what good do they get in return apart from only looking for approval from the masses.
These are the same people who keep checking how many people are commenting on their posts. They are overcompensating for the admiration and support they lack from family and friends. People need to be sensitive and understand that it might bother others who are struggling to pregnant or even afford what they are showing off.
Have you seen other people who are on social media and they never expose their identity? Would you identify them when they were young that they would opt to not show their faces when they grew up? How old do you know that the same kids would be that persons if only you were to consult with them? In African tradition, it was a taboo to expose the newly born baby to everybody in the family let alone strangers. You can imagine how it has been reversed now without impunity to extend that some partners would busy taking pictures and posting while the other partner is in pain of labor, This is disgusting!
I strongly condemn the showing off on social media to and in order to even calm down your enemies and haters. Who knows you might be exposing your young one to your potential enemies and become a future threat to the innocent one. Please do me favor to stop immediately or do not block me for not hitting like to your pictures.

What is peace?

Peace! Peace! What is peace about? Who needs peace? Why do they/we need peace? When do we need peace? Where do we need it? Who makes peace?
Peace is an art of being in peace; it is an art of being out of danger, an art of staying in love, joy and freedom without external harassment. Peace is a state of tranquillity, quiet and harmony; absence of violence. Peace is an opposite of war, destruction, killings, discomfort, and any terminology that disturbs life and leads to unhappiness is an opposite of peace. Peace is waking up in the mornings to the smiling faces in the house, compound, at work places, on the streets, in the super markets, in the town, city and beyond the borders. Peace is something cool and sounds smooth and soothing like the word ‘Peace ‘. Peace means peace!
Peace is essential and equally important to all the nature and the man-made structures. Everything needs peace including the weapons used to destroy peace, even when they appear to be doing what they were meant for; they wear out in executing peace, they suffer mercilessly in the hands of the culprits of peace. They cry out louder as they are mistakenly perceived to be doing their job well by scaring the peace away from the universe. They even burn to further prove that they were getting finished and they don’t like it. They need peace just like the animals in the bush and at home do. The woman needs peace to bring people to the earth peacefully and so does the child coming to the earth, He needs it because to him, coming to this earth itself is an absence of peace. It is a very uncomfortable breaths and sound compares to back there in the womb where it used to be warmth and cold when he needs it. An old man needs peace to rest his age and tells folk to the next generation on his very matrimonial bed. Trees need peace to grow and attract more rains for our lives. The list is long! It all needs peace!
Elderly parliament do not exist anymore in our present societies, everything seems to die earlier than the natural life span limits. We are missing of information before of losing these people to war.  On the other hand, we need peace for the development to sound correct and take effects like it will never be knifed at the back. We need it to mentally relax and think like the scientists and discover the drugs for the pandemic Ebola and come back to the endemic HIV/AIDS, we cannot think properly in the absence of door (peace). Anything that grows needs peace, even mountains, they rest during peace from being used as hideouts and avoid stray bullets during clashes on them. We need peace to go out with friends and come back when we want to; to the club, play, get treated without worrying of being completed to death.
This is regardless of our existence or not; we need peace before and after our lives. We need peace when there is disagreement between/among individuals/communities. I need peace with my wife, family, community and beyond this secular, when we felt we didn’t have it. We need it to Co –exist, multiply and feel the earth as required by our father the God. “Go and multiply the earth” said God to Adam. He does not know killing and taking away a life that he brought to man not man-made.
In the football pitch, we need peace to complete the 90 minutes and thus, the Sunderland players could still greet and congratulate the Southampton players after losing 8-1 to them. Albania EURO qualifiers match against Serbia went sour in absence of peace on the pitch. Peace is needed in our families to bringup good children. It is badly needed at Schools, markets, in the fishing ponds, in the hunting forest, in the parliament, in the class rooms and everywhere.

It is the responsibility of the priest to make sure he preaches about peace in the homely. The shop keeper ensures he has good, convincing and soft terminologies to facilitate selling his goods; he makes peace as a shop attendant. The referees on the fields, teachers in the class rooms, doctors at the hospitals, parents in the families make peace. The absence of peace destabilised life, thus, it’s a sole responsibility of everybody!

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WHERE IS THE PEACE ACCORD DOCUMENT BETWEEN AGUOK AND APUK COMMUNITIES

I remember in 1997, we received several strangers in my house along with family members and their cattle. I was a little bit jealous; our little house was full of unknown kids around. We became good friends after sometimes. I shared with them my food because they didn’t have none. We shared my leather made mate with them because they had nothing. I showed them where to graze their cattle for they didn’t know where to take them for good pastures. I showed them playgrounds, swimming ponds, I didn’t forget to show them where to top up lunch with wild fruits and where to hunt and lay traps for bush meat too. They were part of my family. We even flew together when the guns shot approached.  I didn’t actually know where they came from but I heard them say they were from Aguok community. They fled war that tore up their houses, killed or kidnapped others and took their cattle. I thought they were only in my house, how wrong I was. This community (Aguok) was scattered throughout my own. They have settled. Acquired unconditional lands and accessed equal treatment as the natives at the justice systems and they were actually selected in the court system to preside like the existed chiefs.

We intermarried, paying an equivalent to that one would pay even when they were in their homes; the young men from both communities were initiated together and worked as a team as they would on their own. We were like one people and indeed we were.

But what happened? What killed thousands of productive young men?  What closed some families whom members were caught asleep and slaughtered in cold blood? What destroyed the friendship and trade between the two? What caused the questioning of whom land is the other sleeping on or grazing their cattle? Could someone have thought that Aguok community won’t return home after the war (the then Sudan civil war) and created this to send them back?

Honestly, I can’t reply any of those and unasked questions too. However, am certain that someone wanted to achieve something on expenses of others who knew less.  Anyway, several peace agreements were made and fighting resumed.

Now, my concern is the last one that was only ceremonious in individual homes. Unless I see the document signed and read the terms and conditions, I would still be sceptical that it is no difference.

I strongly oppose to the approach and modalities used to approach the problem between the two communities. As I quote from Dr Garang’s speech, ‘’the wrong description of the problem, leads to wrong understanding and wrong approach may be used ‘’. The people who have always tried to resolve this problem only know how to bring about cease-fire but not ‘’PEACE’’. Thanks to them anyways. I know they would call me with whatever names if I were to present my grievances to them. They would pretend to know much than anybody but never thought of why bloodshed never stopped. I love peace with its meaning in full faith and heart, don’t mistake me, Sir/Madam.

I strongly condemned the method of compensation to the victims rather than addressing the root cause of the problem and have it settled at once. Why would someone who claimed to be mediator rush collecting cows and exchange them at the border, make peace between two or so politicians who have had their differences and cut the cows into two pieces and disperse the deceived communities home? Oh! Wait a minute…so, if we bring the politicians together, then the problem is solved? Is someone trying to tell me that they caused the war? Can they be held accountable?

If you can’t believe it, you must live it!

Giraffe city is at the heart of the most decorated state of western Bahr el Gazal, the dawn of the Saturday 20th June 2015 morning in Wau was greeted with the claps of the burglary bullets at the outskirt of the town as the police disturbed the citizen week end with stricken movements in and out of town when a man was shot dead that night. I jumped out of my bed to figure out what the day was and what was happening. First of the all, the day reminded me of the five years I spent in the refugee camp, celebrating this calendar day of the year was not a choice but by default as a refugee, not for good ones but to pray if one God would grant peace to my country so I cloud return home and indeed he did.  And I was the first amongst those who applied for a voluntary repatriation. Now, why am I being awoken again in my country? What happened again? I know there is useless fighting across the country, but has it arrived to Wau too? Am not sure.  Could it be another rebellion? No. Could it be misunderstanding between the deceased and the culprit? Another No. So, what is it then? It is a BIG Economic crisis! Believe it or Live it!

Yes, I had a few survey around the town and the street is healing up, in fact, any town would require road repair under normal circumstances, but this town that used to be very busy is sending home the traffic police because there are no vehicle moving. The town honestly looks deserted. One could drive with less attention because; there are no many pedestrians on the road neither. Where did they go? I don’t Ooh… because am here.  June every year is a planting season and as most subsistent farmers use very ordinary and ancient method of farming, they always come to this place (in picture) to buy Maloda for the cultivation and it is the peak market point for the blacksmiths in Wau town. This year, no body,  it is empty, there is no business, which simply suggest no one comes to buy them and when no one buys, it means either they could not afford or they have improved their tools and might have gone for better machines. The later could be a sign of relieve. And its opposite is an obvious tragedy and a big human error which is most difficult to reverse.

Any trader who would have brought in security pad locks stock really got a good market because 80% of the shops are locked and no sign of any movement around them for the last two weeks or more. The economy is crippled and witnessed by the prices of the foodstuffs. I dropped to Sukjaw and I found a woman crying, real TEARS flowing. This is true! Allah Wahid! She came to Wau in a relative vehicle that was going to Kuajok with 500 SSP, in her plan, she was coming to buy a bag of sorghum and goes back the same day. On her arrival to the market, the 50kg bag of sorghum costs 470 SSP at the shop and 5 SSP more to take it to the bus park and 45 SSP for transport home and another 50 SSP for her fare too. And she rests her journey. She has no phone, no home to go in the town and she can’t afford to go back home.

Few of the restaurants I knew are not functional. The school children walk with less energy and interest in the school. Needless I mention the rise of the hard currency. With these few statistics, one may not wonder why Central Bank has added on the fence and cut the nearby trees and improved their gates security. This is mitigation on the inevitable crime that may prevail across the country too as is the case now and this simply answered what was going on that morning and why? I really don’t want to believe that God has a hand also in this man made crisis starting from fighting to economic sanctions and now to natural sanction of STOPPING the rains. There is no hope that things may change soon after the next harvest festival. This is an eve of another makurup (famine) and a tip of an iceberg that needs a serious stand up.

Mawan©2015

The Author is an Economics and Business Administration student in Catholic University of South Sudan and reachable at mawan887@gmail.com

Cattle, our past or our future?

‘’Deng, call Gadluak to help you carry that bag and little Lado to carry the briefcase and put in the V-8 behind seats. I will have to sit in the passenger’s seat today because the bags are huge and heavy, besides, we shall take another one (big bag) from my friend’s house. Don’t forget to inform Kenyi to bring ten gentlemen in the pickup at around 1600H this afternoon’’ A minister ordered his driver.  After collecting all the bags, they head to the local market auction and bought every cow that was brought that day at a tripling price and rushed to the next nearest market and bought them without negotiation. ‘’Bargaining is a game of young boys who value money over the cow,’’ he joked, sending the group of on-lookers into a thunder of laughter.

In the evening, he made a phone call, ‘Hello’, am I talking to General Malual?’  maharhaba? , ‘’this  is Honorable Makuei, the National Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, am in the village now, I came to see my only bull (denial way of admitting your cattle), and it’s approaching dry season, the young men will have to take him to the swampy areas for better pastures pretty soon, unfortunately, they may need some riffles and groundnuts (bullets).’’ He paused, ‘’Yes Honorable, please send me your driver as soon as you arrive in the city, how many will be enough for you?’’ inquired the general. ‘’Just thirty-one AK47 and something like two RPG for now.’’ He replied. That is an easy task for me Honorable. I will do that. And They ended the conversation.

That season, the cattle raiding went on well on the side of the Honorable Minister, a good number of cattle was looted from the neighboring county and another good number of young men were killed on both sides. Now the presidential decrees are issued stopping cattle keeping in certain areas meant for agriculture and civil population is urged to stop cattle rustling and be good citizens. Common sense, if the top persons in the country own a uncountable number of cattle and continue to buy more, what can a cattle keeper tell you if you ask them to stop cattle business?

The honorable ministers and MP went on to prove that they worth their seats by paying Three-hundred herds of cattle to buy his sixth wife displacing a poor guy man who might have struggled for some years to marry her. The gentleman robbed of his wife has to make sure he gets more cows by raiding more and forcing his Thirteen-year-old sister in Primary Five to marry an old man who offered to pay forty cows. Can the government really have the voice and power to campaign against

Can the government really have the voice and power to campaign against forced marriages, underage marriage, and earlier school drop out? Will anybody listen to them when they are the ones creating a condition that encourages the citizens instead?  I strongly agree with Albert Einstein who said,’’ The significant problem we face cannot be solved at the level we were when we created them’’ This means when we created a problem at level one we cannot solve it at the same level. We need to move a step forward to be able to solve the problem that is below us. You can’t change anything you are part of. Our leaders need to step out of keeping cattle to be able to solve the issues of the cattle. Whilst I greatly acknowledge the significance role played by cattle in our struggle for independence South Sudan, we thank God for giving us this particular resource to help us liberate our country and that is why am wondering if the cattle is our past or our future.  Remember, God gives you something to facilitate you get something better to make living. We have all seen what life we could have with cattle or without.

I strongly agree with Albert Einstein who said,’’ The significant problem we face cannot be solved at the level we were when we created them’’ This means when we created a problem at level one we cannot solve it at the same level. We need to move a step forward to be able to solve the problem that is below us. You can’t change anything you are part of. Our leaders need to step out of keeping cattle to be able to solve the issues of the cattle. Whilst I greatly acknowledge the significance role played by cattle in our struggle for independence South Sudan, we thank God for giving us this particular resource to help us liberate our country and that is why am wondering if the cattle is our past or our future.  Remember, God gives you something to facilitate you get something better to make living. We have all seen what life we could have with cattle or without.

I wish I could make some suggestions. I would say the parliament passes for compulsory primary education that is free and executes those who do not take their children to School, and as such, no children will be left to look after the cattle. Thus, no child will participate in cattle stealing and killing over cattle will drop automatically. I would also suggest, the dowry should be a Thanksgiving prize to the family of the bride and should not be a sell and buy transaction. This can be put to law to abolish this disastrous dowry. Therefore, keeping more cows will be useless when you will not pay a lot in order to get married. If our parliament could do this favor of passing the two into a law, I will be a happy man and will have the right to brag of my beloved country.

Therefore, keeping more cows will be useless when you will not pay a lot in order to get married. If our parliament could do me this favor of passing the two into law, I will be a happy man who has reasons to brag of his beloved country.