By Eng. Chuar Juet Jock
In the 70s, 80s, and even at the peak of the Sudan civil war in the 90s and with Anya Anya-2 and SPLA clashing on ethnic lines, South Sudanese were still at large in a rare harmony and living side by side and particularly in big cities like Malakal, Wau, and Juba. In families like the one I grew up at, we have the Chollo, the Nuer, and the Dinka living and sleeping deep side by side and snoring as hell without the slightest fear of one another. However, one would wonder whether it is a possibility now in the deep ocean of planted tribal hatred, revenge, and bad blood. There is no doubt that the war has attempted to destroy one of the most homogenous African society ever, a society that was well-woven and beautifully intertwined in a rare social fabric across the centuries but now, brothers have turned against brothers in the worst tribal war atrocities and cruelty ever.
Recalling back the good collective heart of South Sudanese wherever you go, branded by unique hospitality that exceeds even the expectations of the visitor, it is unimaginable that we could have lost the road and all those great virtues and the cohesion of our people in a split second. However, I wish we all have come to the undisputed conclusion that war is a true menace that’s like no other, it is built on hatred, on inhumanity and it turns the supposed to be God-like human into a complete beast of no slightest mercy.
But don’t worry that much, the devil has failed and will always fail in South Sudan. Its tests and temptations won’t last that long because we are people that can choose to be good or worst at will and close our minds or open it as well when our ego is or no more in the line. We are Nilotic with an ego that can be above logic, wisdom, and precious life sometimes. We have proved in this war that we can destroy precious lives and things just because our ego and prejudices are insulted, messed up with or put to shame, or tested. Don’t wonder if a stranger asked this question; why are you South Sudanese fighting and killing each other for things that don’t make sense and you have a blessed country with so many blessings and if the stranger added, you guys can make wonders and go to the moon in so short a time if you want to. The answer is that we have much ego that blinds us from all these and I wish that destructive ego can give us a chance to think twice, have second thoughts of the best alternatives rather than violence and destructive explosion. This ego must die for South Sudan to live or at least it has to be nurtured to a more meaningful and useful force.
Education and culture of peace can do a great favor and that’s a work of knowledgeable leadership whether in government, institutions, and civil organizations that can collectively transform the society and shape it into a more tolerant, wise-thinking driven society. Politics that feeds on hatred should be a crime. Nations are also protected from exploiters in the name of politics by laws and constitutions that work for all not particular group(s). The thing is, without internal cohesion as one nation, we are never to reach anywhere.
In a nutshell, whether it is a new approach for our political powerhouses to build their stay in power and leadership on segregation and pitting of tribes against each other, it is never a good political strategy for the nation-state building process, in fact, it is the very destructive substance that surely and swiftly bringing all of us to a dead end. It is the cohesive not conflicting tribes that make the great nations. Our politicians must get back to political parties and movements with better socio-economic and political substance, promises and programs, inclusive enough and has a nationwide approach, not the ones that are shallow, shortsighted visions dwelling on the tribe of who or clan of whom.
Eng. Chuar Juet Jock
Written on November 7th, 2015
In a Nutshell Book Series