Building a peaceful and thriving South Sudan

Eng. Chuar Juet Jock

The whole building of South Sudan can’t stand alone successfully and for quite sometime without good engineers and architects in various walks of life. It must be built with all the possible circumstances, vulnerabilities and challenges in mind, be it internal or external, so it can stand tall unshaken in any environment and circumstances.

If you think we can build a strong and successful South Sudan without first building strong and healthy communities, in substance and structure, then something must be missing in your engineering world. The love for South Sudan, the healthy mindset for peaceful coexistence of our various diverse communities, the strong and good working morals drive and values start from families, schools, communities, faith and spiritual houses before we all meet at the public streets, workplaces, clubs…etc.

If some are oriented on the hate of some tribes, colors, cultures, genders or any other particular differences then this is one of the problems that can’t make the whole building stable and healthy. If the families or communities failed in such a goal then alternatively, we must have a good government that is well founded on great systems of values, policies and order so we rely on it when things go wrong instead of having a government that is being the master of divisions, hatred and deceit.

If you see some people are critical on some issues of injustices, marginalization and inequality towards individuals be it or certain communities, it might not because of their love for criticism and waste of time but their deep knowledge that such ills and shortcomings do not stay where they have first occurred but it affects the whole communities and the country and it is about time. I realized that whenever one writes about his/her own community or tribe in order to fix things there or address some grievances that the community is facing, some of us won’t hesitate to wage a defamation campaign accusing him/her of being tribal and submerged in tribalism.

Well, unless proven true, such ill conceived conclusions and the wanton to manipulate things that are meant for public good, is not only a cheap attempt to score personal or political goals by twisting good things and use them to frustrate the kind of constructive processes we all need to build a strong South Sudan. No individual, family or a community is an isolated island in South Sudan. It will be a hit of ignorance to think that we all can preach hatred or do injustice on certain community and expect ours to live in peace and thrive. Such a building built on wrong footing could fall sooner or later and it is about time.

Our leaders and politicians should be the ones who worry first about any injustice and marginalization practices happening anywhere in our country and confront them upfront instead of being the architects and the drummers of it. While a political foundation of a country could be built on corruption and injustice if those at the top echelon of its leadership see that attaining, maintaining and retaining power needs such evils to survive, stay on seats of power and leadership. Alas, such a negative direction is short lived and counterproductive and no matter what time it could last or wealth its masters could accumulate, it sure miserable end is a certainty and it is about time.

There is a rich history around us for such kind of failed and crumbled rule that was based on injustice and corruption. Pretending to be blind of it or burying our defiant hard heads deep into the sand of carelessness won’t help. I read an article somewhere warning of the possible of South Sudan breakups into smaller units and which also will possibly breakup even further like it was then the case with politically sick predecessor, Sudan that produced it on the same labor of injustice and marginalization.

A lot of people strongly oppose such a possibility without elaborating their reasoning. Why you think it won’t happen to South Sudan if we continue dwelling in deception and political blindness to our underpinning ills that are gradually destroying us from within like a virus and in any system? Injustice, corruption, marginalization and other political and social ills are at thier best work and it about time.

The transitional period brought by R-ARCSS is our chance to turn things around and it is a responsibility of each one of us irrespective of political or tribal origin to play a major role in achieving the smooth transition to a brighter chapter. Peace is for all; the dancer, the farmer, the singer, the business people and many who have nothing to do with politics.

Peace is not only for the politicians. Most people don’t know why we supported this shaky and imperfect peace at the first place. It wasn’t for the sake of the individuals who ignited the war but for the sake of our suffering people. Most of us know very well this peace is missing many important and fundamental ingredients and prerequisites that would make its acceptance a hit of madness. Well, we know the R-ARCSS was a product of every possible compromise and its provisions weren’t that bad if implemented in the right and timely manner but the R-ARCSS was violated and transformed to another foundation for injustice and marginalization from the very first phase of its implementation.

The structure and composition of the presidency has voided the R-ARCSS in its entirety as a catalyst for just and fair power sharing in South Sudan which it was meant to achieve in the first place. Our leaders proved from that point onwards that they were about power and positions to themselves and not necessarily to achieve peace and stability on a balanced power and resources sharing system to the whole country and nation. Defeated and tired of war, our people in resilience, said okay to the presidency bombshell and decided to accept the imperfect peace with its imbalanced presidency knowing too no good outcomes will ever be produced by such exclusive and imbalanced leadership.

The presidency could have been in better shape and composition that would usher to a different true better era and brighter dawn in South Sudan. Now, with some only job in the presidency is to undermine other members of the presidency, the only businesses that has been thriving and booming since the R-TGoNU formation in February 2020 were defections and Coronavirus.

This have indicated that the conflict has not ended yet as we expected but it just took another turn and in a different manner that could take us back to the bloody square one. All these irresponsible political activities which seem to have been blessed and masterminded by the corrupt deep state or orchestrated by the disgruntled left out politicians in order to fail the current peace and wish for a one that they would be part of it, could definitely make the peace fail if a new measures and direction aren’t enforced to safe guard the R-ARCSS mission and path now and in the long run.

The transitional period if led by a responsible leadership, it could be the time of reconstruction of the broken unity of our people during the war, the fatally damaged social fabric, to heal the deep psychological and mental wounds inflicted on our long suffered people. War, hunger and diseases haven’t spared them for the last 64 years and culminated even worse in the last 7 years in the independent South Sudan that they have gave it all for the last 23 years. It should be a time for our people to be truly free and happy. Public leadership isn’t about to make money or for the false fame but to revolutionize people living standards for better and in every way possible.

Public leadership is to lead people to a new better economical, social, cultural and political horizons and South Sudan is so blessed with resources that would make such a goal come true for the approximately 12 million of its populace and in a very relative time. With good management and leadership, using the petrodollars wisely and effectively to build solid and modern infrastructure, revolutionizing the agriculture sector, South Sudan could be the true brilliant jewel of Africa and the advanced technological world was and still ready enough to make that happen through good and well planned short and long term developmental projects and contracts.

But this was far from happening. What happened is that we have indulged ourselves in useless political war and wrangling over government chairs and positions that haven’t added a value to our country in any way but a bloody war that has damaged us internally and externally with a cost of half million death, destroyed social fabric, divided nation and the billions of oil money ended somewhere in the region. When COVID-19 surfaced and appeared uninvited, all we have were 4 ventilators for the about 12 million citizens but imagine that we spend billions in buying million tons of war weapons just for our own destruction and the region was mockingly and jokingly telling us “ South Sudan now you can shoot the COVID-19 with your RPG and AK47 flat and dead”. When will we learn from history and our own mistakes?

Eng. Chuar Juet Jock

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