Community Leaders’ Open Letter To Kiir Mayardit

Date: 5th August 2006



H.E. 1st Vice President of the Republic of Sudan,
President of GOSS
1st Lt. General Salva Kiir Mayardit
H.E. speaker of GOSS Assembly- Juba
H.E. Governor, Lakes State-Rumbek
H.E. Speaker of Lakes State Assembly Rumbek
H.E. SPLM secretary-lakes State RK
H.E. Minister of Finance.

Your Excellencies,

We the chiefs and elders of Agar and Gok communities on behalf of our people we are forwarding to you our concern regarding our government of Lakes State headed by H.E. the Governor, his deputy and the minister of Finance. On what they have since the coming of their rule.

• Maker Riak Regional Court RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Manyang Derder Ajieng Paramount Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Arier Makoi Arier P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Aparer Chut Dhoul P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Majak Agok Machol P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Majak Malok P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Mayom Dhuol P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY
• Makuac Khersid P/Chief RUMBEK EAST COUNTY

• Madol Mathok Apoldeer P/Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY
• Makol Malual Kodi P/Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY
• Mageng Mabor Keer D/P/ Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY
• Makuet Thokriel E/Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY
• Wetnhiak Manyiel P/Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY
• Majok Maper Manyiel P/Chief RUMBEK CENTRAL COUNTY

We the Gok Community of Cueibet county, Brigadier John Lat Zecharia when he was a commissioner for our county, after the death of Late Zecharia Mathen Riak. Brigadier John Lat did not attend the funeral for Zecharia. Secondly he made the Payod (Sitting Room/Rakuba) his office for the period he was a commissioner.

We the Gok community have no peace amongst ourselves since Brig. John Lat was a commissioner and as a governor now. When Gok and Agar last fought in 1968 in what is known as the "The War of Amok", no fighting took place again between the two communities. Now fighting is common between Gok themselves and Agar and Gok. Here in Gok community, Brig. John Lat Zecharia has interfered his civil/Local courts by giving directives to the local court authorities.

We the Agar community have condemned Brig. John Lat Zecharia the Governor of Lakes State for the starvation and subsequent death of people of Lakes State in Wau. He told them that you will be transported to Rumbek in 2007, and then sent his minister of Finance to collect their salaries. The starvation to death of more than 30 people from Lakes State in Wau is solely responsibility of the Governor, His deputy and the minister of Finance. An internal displaced person (IDP) Agar citizen on his way from Khartoum to Rumbek was shot dead by a Gok citizen in Cueibet Town. The accused was caught and brought to Rumbek Central Prison awaiting court verdict. Brig. John Lat ordered the prison authorities to let the accused be taken to Cueibet to be imprisoned there. He followed the accused to Cueibet and released him. In the court of law, he directed the Judge so that the accused pays dia/Compensation of 31 cows and not to bet sentenced to death by hanging. Your Excellency, if the head of the State Government does these things, is there not going to be a serious insecurity within the state? The citizens will have to take the law into their own hands.

During your last official visit to Rumbek Town, Gok citizens from Cueibet County looted/raided the cattle of Agar. When the Agar ran after their cattle, they secured their animals, on the way Brig. John Lat ordered SPLA soldiers based in Kubur William/ Williams Bridge to ambush the Agar citizens and their animals. Fire was opened on them and 32 young men lost their lives on the spot, and their cattle where driven back to Gok area.

Your Excellency, has the governor has extra judicial powers to condemn a person to death? An example is the incident involving his minister of Agriculture, Col Khamis Abdellatif Cawul Lom in Rumbek Airport which is also used by international NGOs. This also refers to the act he did by releasing a criminal who had murdered an IDP who did not know the problems we have here in Lakes State. This incident will prevent the returnees and IDPs who have intentions of coming home because of too much lawlessness within the state.

Your Excellency, it is a common behaviour to Brig. John Lat that bad incidences do happen. An example is when he toured Pakam areas of Rumbek North County for seven days, Within 24 hours after he left, Pakam was attacked by Dinka Luac. More lives, both human and wealth was lost by Pakam community of Rumbek North. This is a clear indication that he Brig. John Lat makes allies with Dinka Agar neighbour for the downfall of Agar community.

Your Excellency, we both communities of Agar and Gok and all the other communities within the state wonder what Brig. John Lat has done since he took office. He built his palace/House in Gurman area. This place has historically been a source of problem between the two communities because its ownership is usually contested by the two communities. By building his house their and based soldiers there who are creating insecurity on the road from Wau to Rumbek. Our question is, "has he taken this area for Gok community"? , "has he got the right of demarcating the boundaries"?. "The army he based there, is it a Gok army, his own protection army in the area, or is it an SPLA army"? We asked these questions because they are only targeting people of Agar origin.

Your Excellency, we are sending to you all our grievances because it is a concern for all of us as communities of Rumbek Lakes state, Southern Sudan, and Sudan at large. Our governor is unable to unite Gok people themselves, Gok with Agar, Agar with Luac, Nuer with Agar, Agar with Atuot , Atuot with Ciec, Ciec with Aliab and Atuot with Aliab. He is unable completely.

Your Excellency, we are begging you to consider our request by taking out the Governor Brig. John Lat Zecharia, His deputy and the Minister of Finance from the Government of Lakes State. We the Agar community do not want to tell you our choice to replace the incumbent Governor and we do now want you to contact any person about who are the fit people to lead the government of Lakes State. We have given you the choice and may the almighty God be with you forever.

Long live SPLM/A
Long live the Southern Sudan leadership.

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