Articles & Analyses

The proposed national dialogue between acceptance VS refusal ….part 2 


By Dr. Henry Jembi Somson

An initiative was made by Caesar (I) and an invitation was sent out to armed groups, Opposition groups, Political Parties, Civil societies, Religious and others.

The second scenario goes like this:

i. Caesar (I):  

The broader objectives of the National Dialogue are to end violent conflicts in South Sudan, recons
titute national consensus, and save the country from disintegration and usher in a new era of peace, stability and prosperity. To achieve these goals, the following are the objectives of the National Dialogue:

To end all forms of violence in the country;

To redefine and re-establish stronger national unity;

To strengthen social contract between the citizens and their State;

To address issues of diversity.

To agree on a mechanism for allocating and sharing resources;

To settle historical disputes and sources of conflict among communities;

To set a stage for an integrated and inclusive national development strategy and economic recovery;

To agree on steps and guarantees to ensure safe, free, fair and peaceful elections and post transition in 2018;

To agree on a modality for a speedier and safe return of our internally displaced persons and refugees to their homes;

To further national healing, peace and reconciliation.

ii. Armed Group Actors (1): 

Commander Wisdom, I am Commander Born today and this is Commander Dark Star, we salute you in the name of our struggle. Commander, we were delegated from the battlefields to come and know from you exactly, as our military commander, our position from the Nation al Dialogue Objectives. Commander Born Today and Commander Dark Star, who sent you and delegated you without my consultation? But since you have come in a good faith, listen to me carefully, we don’t believe in the political objectives, our objectives are military ones only and no more and we will continue to struggle for that until the end whatsoever. I am now commanding both you Commander Born Today and Commander Dark Star in the name of our armed resistance to go back to your comrades and soldiers in the battlefields, to tell them what I have told you as an order (we don’t believe in the political objectives, our objectives are military ones only and no more, and we will continue to struggle for that until the end whatsoever). Dismiss now. On arrival to the battlefield where the two comrades conveyed and ordered all the comrades and soldiers what they had authorized by the overall Commander. 

On hearing that, all the field commanders yelled, shouted, saluted one another energetically and praised their top leadership wise stand and position. 
iii. Armed Group Actors (2):  

Early in the morning when the Sun shines, the military trumpet was blown in the training camp west of the Nile alarming and calling for the morning parade, and the soldiers and officers of that camp came out from their different shelters and taken their places on the lines. Suddenly, the top commander of the camp came out accompanied by his low-rank offices. As they stood before the parade, the top commander announced the latest development in politics and government’s imitative about the National Dialogue and read before them its Objectives. Immediately, one officer commented strongly that who needs to end all forms of violence in the country? We are not the cause of these forms of violence in South Sudan; instead, we ran from them and joined the struggle for fear of our lives. Those who have created that meaningless violence against us ought to face us otherwise let them forget about their thoughtless initiative and agenda that will not materialize and see light due to the blood of our fellow brothers and comrades whom they had arrested, tortured, slaughtered and killed everywhere in South Sudan. Hence, another officer asked the top commander of the camp, commander Black Star, what is your opinion about this initiative and objectives that you have brought before us? Comrade, Run Away, you are right! Your question is meaningful, and this is my answer to you and all of you who are here before me in this parade. We cannot make mistake twice, we cannot be deceived twice, we cannot be fooled twice and we cannot believe our rivals anymore. I came before you personally in order to tell you that we, in the top leadership of your group have agreed that the only option for us is to resist the competitors until we take our rights and freedom by our own strength and effort so we are going to wage the war this year by all means possible. Comrades, do you get me? Do you understand me? Do you have any question?  No, no, no. and now dismiss and go to your camps. 
iv. Armed Group Actors (3): 

• Commander Ginger: Commander Weak Man, what do you think about those objectives?

• Commander Weak-man: I think they are meaningful and reasonable we need to reflect on them.

• Commander Backward: Commander Weak man, do you have time to reflect on those objectives?

• Commander Weak man: Of course I have enough time and free time even and I am going to use them carefully in order to understand the core meanings of those objectives so that I can help others to understand and get full meanings of them. What do you think Commander Backward?

• Commander Backward: I don’t have time and I am not free even and I don’t waste my time if I have and effort for that hopeless and meaningless political initiative whatsoever. I just need to focus on my job, duties, and responsibilities that all. 

• Commander Ginger: Bravo Commander Backward! That’s good stand and that’s how we were trained in the College as military officers, not civilians and politicians, we should stick to our military regulations and principles instead.      

v. Political Group Actors (1): 

• Green Party: As for us, we are looking forwards to taking part in the National Dialogue because we like its objectives very much; they match with ours 60%. It’s necessary to end all forms of violence in the country, it’s important to redefine and re-establish stronger national unity and it’s good to discuss our diversity. We, the Green party will totally support the imitative and exert effort to enable our participation to be realized and work hard to ensure that South Sudan is back again to its normal circumstances and state of affairs. One of our aims is to make sure that South Sudan belongs to all of us and the power and wealth are equally shared among fairly and without monopoly and leverage base on a tribe, but in the spirit of diversity.  
vi. Political Group Actors (2): 

• Apathy Party: Nonsense, hopeless and meaningless, we are not for that and we will not be for that whatsoever. We had started the movement, we fought for ages and we have won the victory and now you are calling us for the National Dialogue with these objectives of yours which are silly, shallow and surficial to our understanding as such, we initially rejected them and they have no place in our mind and heart. We the Apathy Party members will remind connected to our vision, mission, and objectives and will never ever change our political and military landscape about South Sudan whatever. Unless we die and then others will enjoy the fortunes and privileges of South Sudan. 
vii. Political Group Actors (3): 

• SSDP: Unquestionably, these objectives are good, excellent, extraordinary, awesome and fabulous. We need to consider them overall they are meant to stop the war and fighting in the country, and it’s not a crime to take part in the National Dialogue, it’s not a sin to give opinion, it’s not wrong to criticize the government and the church, and it’s not going to be the first or the last initiative and objectives about South Sudan domestic crisis, but there are going to be other initiatives in South Sudan and by Southern Sudanese regarding other issues in the future, so will you not involve yourself as a southern Sudanese or what? We still have many outstanding issues unresolved between Sudan and South Sudan, who is entitled to resolve them? What about other issues regarding the region and international? South Sudan leadership doesn’t limit here and doesn’t belong to others alone and only, but to all of us, we are duty bound to engage ourselves with or without the cost so as to maintain national unity, peace, identity, democracy, equality, and prosperity at home, in the same way to fight together tribalism, nepotism, sectarianism and favoritism from within our communities and country at large. South Sudanese ought to be the first and the last in your political strategy, otherwise leave us and go anywhere. 
viii. Civil Society Actors (1):  

Women Action Group:  

• Maria: What can you say about the objectives of the National Dialogue, Ms. Adwok? 

• Ms. Adwok: You know anything about national healing, peace and reconciliation is well and good with me. Do you know why, Maria? Because I lost my husband and many women in South Sudan lost their husbands too just because of this war/fight, and if the war/fight doesn’t stop, many women are going to lose their husbands. In addition, many children are going to be orphans. 

• Maria: You are right Ms. Adwok, I did not think that way, and I just thought and focus on the national healing, peace, and reconciliation as a means of bringing stability to our communities and especially among women. 

• Ms. Adwok: Your idea is good because, without national healing, peace, and reconciliation, there will be no national unity, harmony, understanding, identity, and prosperity. Therefore, we need to work very hard to ensure women’ roles, duties, and responsibilities in spreading the objectives of the National Dialogue among women. 
ix. Civil Society Actors (2): 

• Youth Action Group: We, the Youth Action Group, only admire two objectives No. 6 and No. 9; they are the priorities, so the government should not waste our time and its time by creating long projects which will take ages to be resolved. The government should sympathize with its citizens if it really cares and fought for them as it used to say on the mouth of some of its members. However, it seems that the expression we fought for you is just uttered to persuade us falsely and politically. As a result, we are not for that and that is not our will, dream and aspiration, as you know very well that most of the fighting is done by us, and most of the people dying are young men. What if we stopped going to war, what if we stopped fighting on your behalf? What if you are forced to go fighting yourselves? What would you do? And what would be your position and stand? At this juncture, we, the Youth Action Group is strongly asking you to stop the ongoing war and fighting for our common good both the power and wealth of South Sudan, and since there isn’t going to be a winner, but a loser and we are the ones .i.e. the Youth we are not going to fight our brothers again, but we prefer to work for peace and unity instead. 

  

x. Civil Society Actors Group (3): 

• South Sudan Legal Group: Corruption is corruption worldwide and no one is exempted from it, even the most outstanding leaders and politicians are by way or another are corrupted. In the case of South Sudan, it is inherited from the post rules while Sudan was still one Country, but the only different is that they could not get a chance to practice it during those years of united Sudan. Now withstanding the new and unique situation that resulted in multi-practices of corruption even among the junior and senior staffs of the government without fear and it has become part and partial of the profession and through network creation. In South Sudan, each one and everyone wanted to reach to where the government money is and to possess it by all means possible. From the other hand, political and military corruption is practiced by the government itself, as a means of persuading and rewarding others to become loyal to it and is given positions of power while others are marginalized, deprived, intimidated, sidelined and killed.    
xi. Religious Group Actors (1):  

• Bishop African Archangel: My brother priests, sisters, religious and laity the Lord be with you! For sure you might have heard about the National Dialogue and its objectives. So I am asking you all to be vigilant and courageous to perused and direct our faithful toward the good part of our Christian life. Our vocation is connected to Jesus’ call as such I ask you all to focus on the national healing, peace and reconciliation for the sake of God, Christ and our communities at and our country South Sudan. May God guide you; provide you with his knowledge and wisdom so that you in turn may be a good shepherd to lead your parish towards its ultimate goal. 

• Fr. Toto Tipo: My bishop Archangel, what do you mean exactly? Do you mean we should take part in the coming National Dialogue by preparing our believers at the parish level?

• Bishop African Archangel: Yes, you are right this is what I really meant! And you should enforce and emphasize on the church teaching, and Jesus Christ alike. 

• Fr. Toto Tipo: My Bishop, but our faithful are innocents and they have never caused any problem neither to themselves nor to the government, instead, the government is the one who had caused problem to the citizens and our faithful. Should confess on behalf of the government or it’s the very one who should admit its sins and ask pardon from the faithful?  

• Bishop African Archangel: Fr. Toto Tipo, You are right again, but as priest, we need to put things right, and we need to challenge ourselves, and we need to forget the past and open new pages or what do you think Fr. Tipo?  Am I right! 

• Fr. Toto Tipo: My Lord, I have another issue and I don’t know how would say and comment about it. As you know I lost my two brothers and three of cousins due to this very government behavior that is calling for the National Dialogue in particular for national healing, peace and reconciliation and yet it could not control its armies that are acting against the military laws. 

• Bishop African Archangel: Fr. Toto, Fr. Tipo, things don’t go that way; we need to understand the general situation instead. Your case is obvious to all and I encourage you to renounce the past and focus on the future and our heavenly Father will never forget us, especially you Fr. Tipo. You have been serving the Lord despite the pain and agony in your heart and mind. As your bishop, I earnestly, urge you to surrender to the Lord Jesus Christ you Savior and Redeemer who is the only one to judge humanity on the day of attornment. Fr. Tipo, don’t allow Satan to use you for its purpose, you need to throw him away from your life and you need to turn to the Lord wholeheartedly and forever.

• Fr. Toto Tipo: Amen!  
xii. Religious Group Actors (2): 

• Rev. Jude Iscariot:  Rev. Thomas Zee, what is the church news these days? Can you share with me if there is any latest? And I hope you have heard about our new pastor Rev. Peace Iscariot? 

• Rev. Philip Ali Dudu: Rev. Jude Iscariot, there is no any news to be mentioned these day except the issue of the National Dialogue in its second objective states that to redefine and re-establish stronger national unity. This objective is a bite opaque to me and some of our church members; I guess it’s very clear to you. Can you share with me some its insights, what does it mean to redefine and re-establish stronger national unity? 

• Rev. Jude Iscariot: You know Rev. Philip Ali Dudu, the issue of national unity is never been a big issue in South Sudan since seventies, it has never been an issue that needs to be discussed or addressed politically, but as you the weakness of our political leaders has raised this issue to the table unexpectedly. By being a baptized Christian, automatically the sense unity and the spirit of unity is implanted into our hearts and minds by our catechetical teachers and preachers who had been soundly trained and instructed. Unfortunately, the social, economic, political and security needs have changed our past authentic teaching and learning. Yet, we never and will never give up our originality as spiritual leaders and pastors in the church. On the other hand, we need to understand our unity right away from the teaching of the Bible, especially the New Testament where by Jesus Christ is an image and symbol of unity in the whole Bible as He referred to frequently in the gospel of John: I am the good shepherd…, I am the door…, I am the life and resurrection…, I am the vine…, I am the bridegroom…, and I am the Alfa and the Omega, the first and the last. 

• Rev. Philip Ali Dudu: You are right! Rev. Jude, as you have explained, unity can come and it is achievable if we stick to our divine teachings, truth of our faith, facts about our spiritual meditations and overall if we focus on Jesus Christ our hope. 

      

xiii. Religious Group Actors (3): 

• Prayerful Woman (1): Mama Angela, can we meet to discuss about our role as spiritual women regarding the objectives of the National Dialogue that was proposed by the President, Mama Alice?  

• Prayerful Woman (2): Mama Alice, which objectives again, Mama Angela? What about the Compromise Peace Agreement that was singed in Addis between the government and the opposition? 

• Prayerful Woman (1): Mama Angela, Ah chee! Mama Alice, how can we take part in that coming National Dialogue really? 

• Prayerful Woman (2): Mama Alice, I think we should start organizing ourselves, planning our activities, and implementing them right away and immediately right now. 

• Prayerful Woman (1): Mama Angela, you right, Mama Alice, we should start pray and ask all women to pray with a clear and sure intentions so that God can listen to our prayers, because through prayers and meditations, God can easily listen and provide us with His grace of love, mercy and protection. 

• Prayerful Woman (2): Prayerful Women congregations, together in one voice have decided to pay their congratulations, gratitude and honor to both Mama Angela and Mama Alice for their strong will, courageous qualities, and outstanding initiative to mobilize all women to discover their vocation and safeguard their place and mission in the community. Since women lives are at risk all the time, they are encouraged to resort to the church and prayer and become spiritual women instead because spiritual women are protected by God Himself and Jesus Christ. 

xiv. Intellectual Group Actors (1):

• Professor Looking Up: Frankly speaking, the government has lost its vision completely and it’s difficult for it to regain the vision once again due to its rigidity, closeness and intolerance as well. The government so far focuses on political of the loyalties rather than technical competence so as to avoid challenges. And by doing so, the rate of building the state would be less than expected. 

• Professor Looking Down: In my opinion, the government has committed massive sins against its people and the innocents’ ones who have nothing to do with politics and leadership. Yet, they are targeted by the government soldiers, especially women and children, and horrific atrocity crimes have been committed against them. However, the step taken by the government regarding the National Dialogue in order to end the war and all forms of violence in the country is a courageous thinking, but I am afraid it may not bring good results due to peoples’ grievances toward the government itself. 

• Professor Hope: Competitive corruption in the country is the result of a lot of armed groups mainly belong ethnic groups and they are not well trained and disciplined because government itself is unable to do that job due to many factors in term of capacity, personnel, logistics and others. On top it is not an easy task to tackle politically owning to its sensitivity.  As a result, it’s always a fail project unless a clear and outstanding strategic military plan is developed. 

• Professor Friday West: For me, I think the government is trying to fool us or waste our time because it knows what to do, yet it posted these objectives in order find out more about people’s opinions and suggestions. This government has been there since 2005, and has it been doing at least something concerning nation building, identity, documentations and many other things that we all know very well. To me the objectives are minor and sallow, but no way out I have to be engaged and involved myself in the process. I guess, this objective is of great important: to agree on a mechanism for allocating and sharing resources. Do you know why? Since 2005 the resources have been utilized by particular groups of people at the expense of the majority of South Sudanese. Even the positions, the same groups are appointed by the government and the some groups have been causing chaos, havoc and derision to the rest of southern Sudanese. And now you are thinking of how to agree on a mechanism for allocating and sharing resources. I don’t think that is the issue! Doubt is bubbling within my conscience, but I am looking forward enthusiastically to hearing its beginning and outcomes.
xv. Intellectual Group Actors (2):

• Mr. Run Away:  Dr. Impossibilities how are you? 

• Dr. Impossibilities: I am fine, Mr. Run Away.  How about you? 

• Mr. Run Away: Not bad. 

• Dr. Impossibilities: Can I help you, Mr. Run Away? 

• Mr. Run Away: Yes, Dr. I have come to see you if you have time. 

• Dr. Impossibilities: Yes, I have some, you are welcome, what can I do for you? 

• Mr. Run Away: Please Dr. allows me to explain myself then you will comment on it whether as you like. You know Dr. Impossibilities; I have decided to take part in the National Dialogue because I found that its objectives are really matching with my vision and objectives. 

• Dr. Impossibilities: What is your vision and what are your objectives, Mr. Run Away? 

• Mr. Run Away: My vision is: “to ensure that all South Sudanese are brothers and sisters and they must work together for peace, unity and development in the country”. And my objectives are: “One nation and one people, South Sudan is for all southern Sudanese, there is no any place like South Sudan, and you always feel at home in South Sudan.” what do you think Dr. Impossibilities?

• Dr. Impossibilities: Mr. Run Away, Mr. Run Away, how do you reach to these points without consulting me? I am your teacher, I am your leader and I am your resource man. Mr. Run Away, the points are good and excellent, but I don’t agree with you on the proposal that you would like to take part in the National Dialogue. Mr. Run Away, do you know what is behind the National Dialogue? 

• Mr. Run Away: No, I don’t know. That’s why I have come to you Dr. Impossibilities so that you can advise me. I know you are the most brilliant and wise leader in our community, now what can you say to me? 

• Dr. Impossibilities: You are right, Mr. Run Away. We are all South Sudanese, brothers and sisters and we must work together to realize peace, unity and development. However, there are other issues that cannot allow us to participate in the coming National Dialogue. 

• Mr. Run Away: Wow, what are those issues Dr. Impossibilities?   

• Dr. Impossibilities: First, the timing is not suitable; secondly, the venue is not saved at all; thirdly, we don’t trust this government at all, fourthly, the Compromise Peace Agreement was signed in two different times and places which is a clear sign that this government is not ready to welcome others on board, it’s a self-centered regime not to be trusted whatsoever. However, Mr. Run Away, I cannot prevent you from taking part in the National Dialogue, you are a mature person and you know the different between right and wrong. So, my advice to you is to do the right and avoid the wrong. Thanks for coming, Mr. Run Away. 

• Mr. Run Away: 
xvi. Intellectual Group Actors (3):

• Mr. Lakabata: I guess you are impressed by the objectives of the National Dialogue, Mr. Good Night aren’t you? 

• Mr. Good Night: Mr. Lakabata, Mr. Lakabata, why are always negative and disconnected when things are changing positively in the interest of people? And do you know that we live life once? Please wake up and involve yourself in this wonderful call. 

• Mr. Lakabata: Wow my friend Good Night, I know everything you said, but that is not the way we should live our life, we need to understand life before we live it, and otherwise it will mislead us and mistreat us too. Mr. Good Night, do you remember how you parents and my parents lived their life or you want me to jog your memory. 

• Mr. Good Night: Mr. Lakabata, no need to jog my memory about I know how they have lived and I also know how we had been brought up together, and I also know very well that we had ventured to reach to this stage together. Mr. Lakabata, you are right I should not forget how your father used to advise us and support us whenever he could, and I can also remember that big lesson he gave us on that rainy season; “my son Good Night and my son Lakabata, listen to me carefully, life is good and very short if you don’t disciplined yourself, but if you disciplined yourself, you will enjoy good and long life.” “No shortcut in life you have to follow the footsteps of your parents whatever.” See how old we are just because we disciplined ourselves in every aspect of life. At the end the two friends agreed to keep the advice of their parents instead, which have rescued them from a number of chaos and messy. 

 

 xvii. Conclusion: 

• In conclusion, the whole groups have agreed to demonstrate commitment according to each vision, mission, objectives and methodology. The religious groups have agreed to intensify their spiritual programs, the armed groups have agreed on joint strategic plan to advance their coordination and operation, the civil society groups have also come to a full understanding to intensify their advocacy despite the threat from the government, and the intellectual groups determine to voice out on behalf of the innocents people of South Sudan. South Sudan is a diverse country whereby the leadership should respect the conscience of its people and their needs, rights and aspirations. The leadership of South Sudan should not disseminate fear and discourage when things are going in the wrong direction. The leadership of South Sudan should not turn away the public attention into a particular ethnic group because this would look awkward and uncivilized behavior whatsoever.   

 

Categories: Articles & Analyses