23 Jan 2021

 

Demonstrate Leadership And Statesmanship Or We Remain In Endless Transition

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter" and finally. In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends."

By Advocate Juma Mabor Marial

On first January this year, I, like many other people (presumably), drew up my Annual Resolutions and one of them was to stop having any public engagement of political and/or socio- economic nature in 2021 (reasons withheld).

However, when I went back to my small library to read, I was provoked by the words of Martin Luther King Jr. Which made me revoke such resolutions and got back to public platforms to share a few opinion articles in relation to issues bothering our lovely country.

Before I proceeds to the above subject matter, Martin Luther King Jr. Convinced me to go back to writing through the following quotes:

1. "The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people";
2. "There comes a time when silence is betrayal";
3. "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter" and finally;
4. “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends."

When I read those words, my conscience told me I will be neglecting my civic obligations and betray my country if I remain silent and refuse to communicate with my countrymen and women on how best we should address the problems this country faces today.

The above topic is the reason for today's conversation as we look back to all that we have been doing since the independence of this country, as all we have now is brokerage and cartels development rather than prosperity and harmony.

There is no progress but instead a regress of major achievement like losing the trust that South Sudanese had when they voted overwhelmingly for independence, which is now being shattered and shared in ethnic/tribal plates. However, before my emotions takes charge of me, let me underline the significance of the title of this article, which talk about demonstration of Leadership and Statesmanship in the crisis that we are in today.

The first target for this appeal are the parties to the agreement being led by the two antagonists - the President and his First Vice President, the second category are those invisible drivers and conductors at the respective camps and the last but very important group that I want my appeal to resonates with are the citizens who are mostly opinion leaders but also tribal chiefs.

The reason I resorts to calling for demonstration of Leadership and Statesmanship to end this painful transition is because since the beginning of this crisis in 2013, it has been Mr. A cannot defeat Mr. B or it is Us vs. Them game of thumb or worse still, it has been International Community like the UN, TRIOKA, AU or IGAD giving pressure using preferably carrot and stick for things to move. Unfortunately, all these pressure groups ran bankrupt thanks to Mighty Covid-19 pandemic which limited global interactions, the war in Ethiopia which rendered AU, UN and IGAD toothless bulldogs and ultimately the America first madman Trumph who cares less about what happens in the rest of the world.

Due to the above-mentioned challenges, the parties to the agreement got the opportunity to drag their feet by trying to renegotiate the 2018 agreement as they strategically buy time to maintain status quo. The parties are so brilliant that they have divided citizens on political, tribal and ethnic lines to play their well-designed blame game of this party has done that and that party has done this to no end. Meanwhile as they do this, time is running out and the end results is what could be overheard from loose tongues like the President's Press Secretary of the extension of the transitional period to 2023 - a letting of cat out of the basket kind of scenario but a true manifestation of what is cooking behind the scene.

But be that as it may, there is room for us to get out of this quagmire and this is only when the President and his partner in peace the First Vice President decides to demonstrate Leadership and Statesmanship by ignoring the advices from their peace spoilers or should I call them beneficiaries of confusion, drop their private political animosity and shelves their economic desires and try to look into South Sudan and the suffering of the citizens beyond the Revitalized peace agreement and come up with long lasting solutions.

There is nothing hard for Kiir and Riek to resolve if they put all their efforts and resources to it. They have managed to design and sustain war since 2013 and I do not think they and their associates can lie to us that they are defeated to bring peace to this country. The reality is, all parties to the agreement have discovered that they are the only ones to benefit from this agreement during the Transitional period or lose everything at the end and as such, even if the transitional period extends for another ten or more years, nothing will affect them as the President will still remain the President, First Vice President the same and the other Four Vice Presidents the same all the way down to their shares of the positions and their employed relatives.

Ordinary citizens will continue to be shown the blank pages of the agreement but the reality remains that the parties to the agreement are ruling under this confusion as they are all aware that implementing the agreement to its letter and spirit will end up in a democratic elections which if it so happens, will be the beginning of an end to the status quo.

In conclusion, If the President and First Vice President or their associates/supporters thinks that my analysis are too pedestrian, then I hereby challenge them to forgo all the other provisions of the agreement and invest their time and resources on electoral provisions and take the country to general elections next year. They will see none of the citizens complain as to why they have jumped the other provisions because they are tired and I repeat citizens are tired of this endless transition- a painful one for that matter!

Adv. Juma Mabor Marial
Reachable at jummabor@gmail.com
Juba, South Sudan.

 

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