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Does South Sudan really strive to build democracy?

By: Bol Khan


October 17, 2015 (SSNA) -- Does South Sudan really strive to build democracy? Who shall spearhead as a leader, the building of democracy in South Sudan? Mr. Salva Kiir Mayardit? What an illusion! Is he honest enough still to be expected as a person who may transport democracy to South Sudan? Yes, before past six decades or so, Mr. Salva Kiir Mayardit was good at least for something. At that time when you talked anything with him or if anything was told to you by Salva Kiir Mayardit he accordingly lived up to what he said to the end. I am talking of the time of the SPLM’s reclusive vision of Secular, United Sudan and New Sudan Vision “the vision of no return” as they were saying, where we would find them almost everywhere chanting “From Nimule to Halfa and from Genena to Ameskhoref, in Eastern Sudan”. Personally, but not in their quest for United, Secular New Sudan, I was among those who termed him (Kiir) “a good, trustworthy and a man of few words who could only believe in action”.

Little did we know that, a year latter or less (that was) after independence, Salva Kiir would become number-one among the liars or most in-trusted President in the world. I am not abusive, this is the fact. Globally, it is a must and necessary for any head of state and Government to possess required qualities. Or know precisely, what it takes to lead a nation like South Sudan. So I was one of his unpaid fans. I can even still remember the fierce political and national arguments we made during the six-year interim period. We would strongly ague with the likes of Gordon Buay who were by then irrationally the arch-political opponents to Salva Kiir. Someone, a year ago wrote an article asking questions like “What had happened really to Salva Kiir Mayardit”? Was it sweetness or tatse of power that could drive him into the point of becoming a famous liar, a behavior which subsequently led to uncontrollable chaos on 15 Dec 2013? Or was it something else? I concurred with that guy or author! As a matter of fact, Salva Kiir would have become the most reverted President on earth and leave behind even a good political LEGACY. However, drastically, Salva Kiir changed his mind from a habit of building a nation to that of deceiving a nation at best. The recent past, current and present events make up my defend team convincing at this point. All those fatal events could be prevented if there was a political will in our country’s leadership.

Introspect without doubt, we all became familiar to the reason as to why Salva Kiir abruptly branched or deviated from his national-bound duties. I think there is no need for categorical vindication. Salva Kiir had since then became number one—among the most liars Presidents ever in the world. He is no longer a trusted top human being in South Sudan; for he changed the true sense of this famous adage “Words speak not louder but action does”. However, nowadays, Mr. Salva Kiir Mayardit, the South Sudan’s current President doesn’t practically implement what he says. In short the entire speeches he has been delivering right after independence had not been implemented as expected. Particularly the speeches which supposedly mean to strengthen and build a democratic foundation in South Sudan.

Now let’s go direct to the topic. As titled above, this piece is a critique of Kiir’s last speech (article), “South Sudan’s strives to build democracy” under his leadership. Whether or not, the article was written by one of the Jieng Council of Elders or Juba’s government Council of Ministers’ member; that is none of our business. Our concern for today is to shed light on Salva Kiir’s illusion. His article or speech was published in Washington Times, other several international news outlets as well as the national ones. The speech was full of empty promises and it might disseminate unfounded information which should not go unchallenged. In that article Kiir illogically tried to put across: Juba is ready to implement IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace Accord. But the reservations he made on 26th August 2015 in Juba are still in the palms of his hands. This was the first intent and condition Salva Kiir places on the table. Second, he wants the world to sees him as peace lover and under him as President, South Sudan will strive to build real democracy. The latter is as easy as passing of the camel through the tiny hole of the needle! Does Salva Kiir revere rule of law—for him to build democracy? What was Salva Kiir’s hidden agenda when he signed peace Agreement in August? These are the two basic questions this critique is trying to extract!

Does Salva Kiir revere rule of law—for him to build democracy?

To start with, Salva Kiir began his speech by January 9th 2011 and how difficult it was for South Sudanese to have a country of their own. Read what he said“Just five years ago, as dawn unfolded on January 9, 2011, millions of South Sudanese took the final steps on our seventy-year journey to independence. In our own country, we said, our government would act for us and not against us. It was our friends in the international community who helped shape those feelings into words. “Accountable, representative institutions;” “the Rule of Law;” “inalienable and equitable rights” – for many in South Sudan, the institutional vocabulary was new. But we all had known their meanings by their absence”. Thus, I, Bol Khan, would like to say now and again that Salva Kiir Mayardit is a BIG liar I have ever seen! Does he really know that the very country he leads came as a result of ordinary and millions South Sudanese’s votes in 2011? Also in his speech he said and I quote “The IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace Agreement undermines the South Sudan’s democratic institutions” end quote. Does Salva Kiir really respect South Sudan’s democratic institutions, elected positions and the constitution? Of course not! If he does, Mr. Joseph Bakasoro, WES’s former Governor, the former Governor of Upper Nile state, Simon Kun... Etc would have not lost their elected gubernatorial positions. Because, you cannot claim to build democracy or respect democratic institutions while you’re not a best friend to rule of law! Rule of law in nature, is basically to implement what the law of the land says and the constitution as it had been stipulated. I doubt Salva Kiir’s intention, because if he reveres the rule of law he would have not trained those boys from his own regional states. The boys—Dotkubeny private forces that would then, by Presidential orders, blocked the national road to democracy as it had happened in 2013. He would have not fired either elected officials as he has been doing all along! Additionally, he should avoid separating South Sudan on ethnic basis.

The second window of an opportunity for Salva Kiir to make democracy a reality in South Sudan was that failed SPLM’s Third National Convention in 2013. It is known to many: SPLM’s National’s Convention in December 2013 came to a standstill in December 2013 due to the following:

A) A traditional practices “show of hands” against the the modern one“secret ballot”.

B) Salva Kiir wanted to nominate five (5) percent of the membership of the congresses to the National Convention...Etc.

C) Kiir’s intransigent against all democratic principles.

But he (Kiir) deliberately refused to swallow the modern democratic norms—compared to old traditional practices. He later on admitted, in Arusha-Tanzania the above modern democratic issues as grave mistakes he had made in December 2013. And as true obstacles in building democracy in South Sudan! Though he did admit his fault, after thousands innocent South Sudan people had already miserably pass on due to the SPLM-Kiir’s intransigent against democratic principles.  Now, who can hoodwink who that Salva Kiir will ever succeed in building democracy in South Sudan? I think, even the IGAD-PLUS imposed Salva Kiir on South Sudanese to lead the nation during the upcoming transitional period of thirty (30) months not because Salva Kiir will ever demonstrate democratic spirit in South Sudan. Perhaps, IGAD-PLUS wanted to end the war peacefully by re-installing Salva Kiir to the country’s top seat so that he can stop maiming Africa’s younger nation! That might be the case!

What was Salva Kiir’s hidden intention when he signed IGAD-PLUS compromise Peace Agreement?

Are you already familiar with Salva Kiir’s way of doing things? If not, you should now begin to access Benydit’s true internal cunning way of handling the issues. And what he was intended when he signed IGAD-PLUS compromise peace agreement. Mr Salva Kiir’s inner intend towards IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace Agreement he signed on 26thAugust 2015 was totally different compared to peace lovers’perspectives. President Salva Kiir didn’t sign the Agreement with all his heart and soul; he forced himself to act against his determination. In another words, he was just bluffing—deceiving the nation, the region and the world!  His was but a naked tactic of “let’s buy time”! Take this simple truth from me my dear reader if you don’t have it already! Look at what he says “I recently signed an internationally brokered peace accord to end an insurrection against my government that has plagued us for almost half of our young nation’s life. I did not accede to this deal because it is perfect—indeed, the plan undermines the sovereignty and democratic institutions of our nation in key, unfortunate ways. Despite our misgivings, last month I committed our people, their nation and their government to the Compromise Peace Agreement. But let my reasons be clear: I did not sign the accord because of threats or intimidationI signed because leadership is the art of the possible and choosing between difficult, imperfect options. I signed because a government must lead”.

In our own analysis based on the above sentences, Salva Kiir was deceiving the nation, the region and global community when he signed that agreement. He wanted to free the knot or a looming loop which was about to be tied around his neck. In August if you can still remember, the world media houses were so much dominated by this sad news that “South Sudan’s President, Salva Kiir, refuses to sign IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace agreement, meant to end twenty one (21) months civil war and the suffering of his own people”. In another words, it was only panic of the looming regional and international’s isolation as well as the possible military intervention. All those contributed immensely in one way or another to the reasons. For that reasons, he lately changed his mind and signed peace accord nine (9) days late but in Juba, South Sudan. Therefore, the original plan was to illogically put pen on paper and then blocks the implementation as time goes, then by putting forward the reservations.

Secondly, he would worry less, since the IGAD-PLUS compromise agreement states: He (Salva Kiir) must remain head of state and government for the next upcoming period of thirty (30) months—transitional period. This is the art of leadership he meant. Kiir’s government idea, directed by the Council of (Elders/from) his own region was to buy time. Government's offensive in the war fronts and unilateral creation of ethnically-based Twenty Eight (28) new states was the real symptom that Salva Kiir has already started assassinating for good the implementation of the Peace Accord. Contrary to IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace Agreement—an agreement which is only supporting ten (10) states and as stipulated also in South Sudan’s transitional Constitution, 2011.


What is so strange is that, Salva Kiir expects everybody to just believe in what he says not in what he puts in action. In another words, Salva Kiir wants to use the constitution as his personal thing: that he has a legal right to smash the country’s constitution and nobody should blame him because he is the President. He considers himself as above the law of the land! For instance, if Salva Kiir delivers a speech today outlining how elected positions must not be touched in accordance with the country’s constitution, he would tomorrow surprisingly without fear fired an elected official. While the officials he removes were democratically elected just like him and by the same people of South Sudan. However, if you question him as to why an elected official is removed, Salva Kiir and his sycophants would stand tall saying “I/we know there are people who are working against the constitution, the government and the nation. People do not know that I am (he is) the Republic of South Sudan’s legitimate and a democratically elected President”. Now in such contradictory behavior, what kind of human being Salva Kiir and his cronies are? How do you handle such a messes? Should Salva Kiir be considering a kind of South Sudanese leader who must continue leading a nation?

It was indeed surprising for one to read the following sentences from Salva Kiir. “Foreign governments and un-elected bodies will never revere the South Sudanese vote as we do because they did not sanctify it with their blood. They cannot treasure our sovereignty as we do because they did not suffer to establish. They will not cherish our freedom as we do because they did not taste our oppression. Of course we – the elected government – voiced our objections. We were told, however, to keep quiet”. What a degrading diatribe! He even ended his speech by saying: Mr. Salva Kiir is the elected President of South Sudan. When was he elected as the President of the Republic of South Sudan? The best part of all is that, all the elected officials he removed in South Sudan as well as other constitutional’s blunders he made are there automatically proving Salva Kiir’s impractical language invalid. FYI, dear readers, there must be a strange spirit in Salva Kiir Maryardit! I am sure; that same spirit in him definitely makes it also impossible for democracy to become a reality under Kiir’s leadership in South Sudan, comes what!

In conclusion

I would want, therefore, the public and the world to seriously take the following facts into action as we continue receiving empty promises from Salva Kiir’s Government. Salva Kiir’s Government is neither ready to implement the IGAD-PLUS Compromise Peace Agreement nor it is ready to build democracy in South Sudan. In addition and more importantly, the powers he (Salva Kiir) has now in his hands were delegated to him not by the people of South Sudan. He rob them—the powers by himself, because no Presidential elections held in South Sudan since independence and subsequently after 9th July, 2015. Therefore, if you hear today from Salva Kiir Mayardit that “South Sudan’s strives to build democracy”; then he and his group must be clandestinely striving to act, as usual, not in accordance with the law or what is agreed upon by the world. Without exception, we all know how self-appointed and un-elected Presidents work. So, don’t say you are dumbfounded on that day!

Bol Khan is a concerned South Sudan’s civil society activist. He can be reached at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

With CPA II Derailing, South Sudan Political Parties Need to Form a Coalition Party with the SPLM-IO to Enhance Call for Political Deposition

By: Cde. Sirir Gabriel Yiei Rut

October 6, 2015 (SSNA) -- South Sudanese are tired. They are tired of SPLM (IG) and its leadership; they are tired of non-delivery, the arrogance, the economic meltdown and the continuous non-productive political bickering within SPLM (IG) that is wasting our time. On the lips of all I have met is the question: When will this end and when will SPLM in government go so that we can create a new political and social order in south Sudan.

As John Enoch Powell, the British politician once remarked: “All political lives, unless they are cut off mid-stream at a happy juncture, always end in failure because that is the nature of politics and of human affairs.” That is so true in our case and yet so sad. We are experiencing catastrophic political failure and paralysis simply because of one man refusing to admit that his political life has become a burden on everyone. His political life will truly end in total failure. What a pity.

Yes, we need a new political deposition in South Sudan, but let us not be naive and expect this to be a smooth transition. The most dangerous assumption we can make is that SPLM in Juba is ready to let common sense and popular sentiment rule. Theirs is an incomprehensible insensitivity and a clear lack of moral obligation to the suffering people of South Sudan caused by their misguided policies over the last 11 years. Reshuffling the Cabinet and reframing problems will not absolve them.

My greatest fear is that we may be disappointed once more in 2018 as we were in 2013, if we all naively wait and think that we can ever accept to go into another election with the current electoral architecture in place. It boggles the mind why any opposition party would even consider contesting any by-election at this stage. There is no way out of this conundrum except together and the sooner we get talking and organizing ourselves around a coalition of all democratic forces, the better. PLP, SPLM-DC, UPDF, UDSF, SPLM-IO should think of making a coalition.

Hon. Michael Makuei Lueth said there is no provision in the agreement that tights down the hands of the president from rendering service and serve the interest of his people. The president is acting in accordance with provision of the law.

And South Sudan ambassador to Russia Hon. Telar Ring Deng stated that the internal front should remain united. "This is the only way to defeat our enemies" He said.

Questions will follow in these above Statements from our leaders …………. But what I know is tribal statements are igniting violence to continue fueling the current rampant in the young nation.

"The SPLM in government will not engage any opposition party to solicit assistance in transforming South Sudan’s economy, the key ministries shall not be given to SPLM-IO and other political parties,” and so said Hon. Elia Lomoro recently.

These words of divide from public figures always symbolized a government that has created a failed State. This is the vitriol of a government that has failed dismally to unlock the potential of this country and continues to bungle from one calamity to another. This is the arrogance of a government that lacks imagination and any reasonable means to extricate our country from the continuing decline in the quality of life of South Sudanese. These are the words of people who fear any organized effort by free citizens to change the circumstances, which we now face.

Now we must understand the nature of this beast called SPLM (IG). It fears change and suppresses anything that threatens its hold on power. It does not respect fair competition, despite the fact that it has no idea on how to get out of the political and economic problems it has created. It does not respect the ballot box us we all witness in various poll stations in 2010 (NEC) as a means to elect government, but feels entitled to power. It is an archaic patronage system of old men who have no clue or interests in the future we want. It does not see the worth in any talks or dialogue with other south Sudanese outside SPLM in government. The sooner we appreciate that, the better.

And so, since the SPLM in government does not need any of our views to sort out the political and economic mess, it means that unless we do something ourselves, things will get worse and their denials of reality will continue.

So let us put aside our imagined differences and personal ambition for the greater good of South Sudan. I think we have an opportunity to reshape our future as a country so that we can revive the economy, create jobs and create a normal society that enjoys basic rights.

Let all the opposition political parties come together and resolve that without the creation of new conditions. That is what I am working hard at. How can we define a better future together and agree on what it will look like? How can we move towards that future now without wasting any more time? These are the questions I think we must answer.

Should all parties collaborate with SPLM/A (IO) and call for national reform and change of leadership altogether with one voice, that will be the time south Sudanese shall see a light through the tunnel and that light will be for freedom after tyranny rule.

In my opinion the more we delay coming together, the more we are giving SPLM in government time which they do not deserve. The only question right now should be when will SPLM for Kiir, Makuei, Wani, Malong, Marial, Telar,Malaak, Kuol, and others go, and not if. We have had enough and there is no contestation on that.

The Writer is Columnist who wrote a lot of articles about poor leadership and tribal ruling in South Sudan; you can get him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Why rejecting the creation of more states in South Sudan?

By Peter Gai Manyuon

October 5, 2015 (SSNA) -- South Sudanese president Salva Kiir has unilaterally decreed expansion of the current Ten (10) states to 28 federal states in the country in an unexpected move announced on South Sudan Television (SSTV) Friday evening, prompting reaction from the armed opposition leader, Riek Machar that the unilateral move was a serious violation of the peace agreement.

There has been serious debates going on and going on, based on the unexpected move which most of the people claimed to culminate from (Jieng Coulcil of Elders) who act as the decision making body since materialistic politics combined with ethnicity broke out in South Sudan 2013.

Based on ramifications and polarization of South Sudanese politics, still policies and implementation processes will not be effective unless otherwise miracle of God almighty and his brother Ngundeng come in to force.

But the creation was supposed to be based on the former colonies not Council of Dinka ideas where they have separated powers based on ethnicities. Mechanism was not right and therefore I call for nullification of the decree in order not to take South Sudan to another civil war again.  

Creation of 28States by President Kiir Mayardit, is apolitical Plagiarism that will still kills civilians and prolonging of the civil war in the Republic. SPLM in opposition created 21 states which were nullified due to the implementation of the current peace deal. Why creating States which were refused in recent peace talks? Is that ideology refusal of implementation of Compromise Peace Agreement?

Based on the current reactions on social media, most of the South Sudanese globally are condemning the creation of more states in South Sudan, accept the few idiots and fools who don’t see the effect of the decree. The problem of Former Unity State that is divided in to Northern Lich State, Southern Lich State and Ruweng State will derailed the implementation of the all peace process. And Malakal issue between Chollo Kingdom, Dinka and taking a section of a community from greater Fangak to other side because of Jiengism is another myopic decision that will attract the violence.

The issue of saying the idea is taken by other party should not be the subject of debate on social media. If the creation of more States was agreeable by both warring parties, things could have gone well without digressing but the all issue is polarization of the conflicts to escalate more and more.

The time I read the news, I got myself going to be a Citizen of Southern Lich State but the only complains I observed is the mechanism put in place to resolve the current civil war. What is the reason of taking Koch County to Northern Lich while it is always on Southern part of the State?

And combination of Abiemnom and Parieng County is not absolute. Are they going to use helicopters to go to Parieng or which routes will they use?  The two have no connection or border unless “dinkanisation or Jiengism” influence the idea of creation of States.  How could South Sudanese move forward in this tribalistic Leadership characterized by primitiveness, nepotism and political materialism?

Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) should still push for the implementation of the Compromised Peace Agreement (CPA) and the proposal should be revised based on the appointment of the state’s governors.

Therefore; if things are not reversible by President Kiir and his Council of Elders ,I recommend that, the former Unity States now known as Southern Lich State, Northern Lich State and Ruweng States, the three governors should be appoints by the SPLM in Opposition and their deputies should go to the SPLM in the government. The former Upper Nile State known as Lajor State, Western Nile State, Eastern Nile State, the Governors should be appoints by the SPLM in Opposition and the deputies should goes to the SPLM in the government. And for the case of the former Jonglei State , the governors of Eastern Bieh State and Western Bieh State should be appoints by the SPLM in Opposition and deputies goes to the government and percentages goes as it is agreed on the document signed. The Jonglei State governor should be appoints by government and the deputy goes to SPLM in opposition. That is only issue that should bring the both warring parties together; otherwise another war escalating in South Sudan is high unless those who lack reasoning capacity could not contextualize what will happen in the nearer future.

For the National level and other regions should remain the same based on the 33% in National level and 15% in others State from greater Bhar-elgazal and Equatoria respectively.

I hope IGAD  adopt that methodology immediately, than the all crisis is solve and address, because the issue am seeing from SPLM in opposition is not about rejecting the creation of States but how will they get their percentages rights and what mechanism will be use to implement the all process when peace agreement is already signed.

The only solution is for SPLM in opposition to look for another controversial decree that might silence the decision of President Kiir Mayardit and the only option is to demand the governors of Ruweng State, Northern Lich State, Southern Lich State, Lajor State, Eastern Nile State, Western Nile State, Western Bieh State, Eastern Bieh State, and the rests of power sharing remain as it is. And that is where world will be on your side otherwise rejection alone without justification will not be understood by the rests of the world and Mayardit government in Juba.

The Author is an Independent Journalist and Columnist who has written extensively on issues of Human Rights and Democratization. He holds BA. In Journalism and Communications from St: Lawrence University. Master in International Politics and Diplomacy from Cavendish University and Master of Public Relations and Media Management from St: Lawrence University. He could be reach on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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