opinionBy Wani Tombe Lako
It is our collective moral, religious, political, socio-cultural, economic, and financial responsibility, we, the citizens of the Republic of South Sudan (RoSS), to stand up and tell the government of the RoSS that, we are aware of everything.
For example, the government of the RoSS cannot hide the fact that, the Sudan People's Liberation Army in South Sudan (SPLA-SS), and the Sudan People's Liberation Army in North Sudan (SPLA-NS) (in the Sudan), have got historical and contemporaneous military, moral and other links.
The SPLA-SS is the current national army in the RoSS. The SPLA-SS is extremely connected to all political hierarchies in the RoSS from the President down to Governors and others in the RoSS. Until the government of the RoSS can adduce concrete evidence to the contrary, all the government of the RoSS acts and omissions, show the whole world in general and the peoples of the RoSS in particular that, the SPLM, which is the ruling political party in the RoSS, and the SPLA-SS are one and the same thing in the RoSS.
The SPLA-NS is the current military wing of the rebel movement waging an armed struggle, against the government of the Republic of Sudan (RoS), in South Kordofan, and the Blue Nile areas of the RoS respectively. The whole world knows that, the SPLA-SS and the SPLA-NS are connected. The open activities of the SPLA-NS, the various political and military utterances of the leadership of the SPLA-NS always confirm the fact that, such intimate links between the SPLA-SS and the SPLA-NS exist. This fact is also known to the peoples of the RoSS.
In fact, some senior SPLM Cabinet Ministers, in the RoSS, have at least acknowledged the moral connections and responsibilities, of SPLA-SS, with and towards, the SPLA-NS. These are concert utterances from the horses' mouths as they were. The combined disorganised behaviours of some individuals, within the military and political leaderships of both the SPLA-SS and the SPLA-NS, continue to be the limitless sources of information regarding the said connections between the two SPLAs as it were.
As long as, your political and military mouths, within the hierarchies of SPLM and SPLA-SS, continue to sputter your own secrets out; and run like uncontrollable diarrhoeal infections, you can rest assured that, the whole world shall continue to know and have field-days of free information, as to what is happening between SPLA-SS and SPLA-NS. Therefore, you cannot blame people like me, when we begin to question the fundamental logic and benefit of these connections between SPLA-SS and SPLA-NS. The peoples of the RoSS, want to move on with their lives, and not to be bogged down, by some irrelevant support, for some rebel movement, for reasons best known to a very few of us in the RoSS.
Why do the SPLM and SPLA-SS treat us in the RoSS like some human collaterals or sureties, for their contract with the SPLA-NS? If the SPLM and SPLA-SS are feeling terribly guilty for not fulfilling their promises to the peoples of South Kordofan, and those of Blue Nile, during the course of the rebellion in South Sudan (1983-2005), the SPLM and SPLA-SS must find out better remedies for such hurt feelings in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
Who told the SPLM and SPLA-SS to mislead the peoples of South Kordofan and Blue Nile, and made them to believe that, the SPLM and SPLA-SS were in fact fighting for a united new Sudan? The whole peoples of the RoSS did not mandate the SPLM and SPLA-SS, to mislead the peoples of South Kordofan and Blue Nile. The Late Dr Garang is on record saying that, the whole SPLM and SPLA-SS are, but, minority of the peoples of South Sudan (SS).
This acknowledged moral obligation by the SPLM and SPLA-SS towards the SPLA-NS, must not become the modus operandi for the building of the nascent nation of the RoSS. We do not want to build our nation on foundations of human hatred. A nation built on foundations of human hatred shall quickly come crumbling down by the same human hatred. History is awash of such examples. Modern nations are built on human reasonableness and positive comprehensive reciprocities. We must not become prisoners of hateful consciences in the RoSS.
We do not want to be united with the human beings in South Kordofan and Blue Nile through hatred of other human beings, in the remaining parts of the Sudan, from which we have already seceded. We want to be united with the human beings in Kordofan, Blue Nile, and all other parts of the Sudan, through human reasonableness, human love and human forgiveness. Let the SPLM and SPLA-SS encourage SPLA-NS to achieve their objectives through peaceful means. Human dialogue is the gift of God Almighty. Let us all encourage SPLM-NS to use human dialogue. The SPLM and SPLA-SS must avoid involving us as a nation, in the armed conflict in the RoS.
What are the economic and financial gains that, we as a nation, are harvesting from these moral and other ties with the SPLA-NS? We, as a nation, are in fact, worse-off, because of these moral and other ties, with the SPLA-NS. The entire peoples of South Kordofan and Blue Nile are worse-off, due to these moral and other ties with SPLA-NS. There is abundant evidence, to justify peaceful co-existence, with the rest of the Sudan, and this shall stop the current floods of refugees, flowing into the RoSS, which, itself, is now burying its own citizens, who are dying from hunger, disease and all ills connected with the kinds of negative relationships, which can be enhanced by the kinds of ties existing between SPLA-SS and SPLA-NS.
What are the tangible and objective short and long term strategic benefits, that, we want to harvest, from these moral and other relationships, and connections with the SPLM-NS? We do we want to act as political surrogate mother, for the comprehensive strategic ambitions of others, which they want to achieve through the SPLA-NS, and concomitantly through the SPLM and SPLA-SS, but, at the expense of the short and long term strategic interests, of the peoples of the RoSS? These extant international and regional excitements, with the RoSS, will soon peter out, as soon as others have realised their objectives. Such is the nature of international relations. International governments base their relations on comprehensive interests, not on love of human beings in power. Look at Egypt, Libya and Iraq, plus Iran, and many other countries in Africa. We in the RoSS are not going to be treated differently at all.
Our short and long term strategic interests, in the RoSS, are within the remit of outbreak of peace, as between the SPLA-NS and the RoS. We must tell others like Kampala, and the rest, to devise peaceful approaches, to achieve the goals of the SPLA-NS. We in the RoSS have to resort to dialogue, at the end of the day, to achieve the sovereign country of the RoSS. Whatever arguments are presented in favour of armed conflict, or armed methodologies, we had to finally negotiate. Being humans, we have to, at the end of the day, come down to sit, at the negotiating table. Therefore, if this is already foreseeable, what is the logic of this carnage? What is the logic of SPLM and SPLA-SS being mesmerised with military solution?
Is there a case of armed conflict addiction in the RoSS or what? It is time we led our people in the RoSS, by adopting all political and other policy options, which maximise their current and future benefits, and avoiding historical dangerous pitfalls. While; at the same time, guaranteeing beneficial life chances, for our posterities. This means that, we have to become extremely conscionable leaders in Juba. Leading other human beings, who are vulnerably dependent on you, entails overwhelming duty of care. Therefore, you really have to exercise selfless duty of care, to be able to discharge all the duties bestowed upon you as leaders in Juba.
The author is Professor of Social and Rural Development and Lecturer in Laws.