PEACE AND SECURITY: THE COMMON PRAYERS OF THE MAJORITY SOUTH SUDANESE

By Dr. Aldo Ajou Deng-Akuey

Let’s hope for the best, while we thank God for giving us the R-ARCSS, signed on 12 September 2018, by the then warring parties (the -SPLM, SPLM IO and SSOA).

As the public of South Sudan is affected and devastated by traumatic insecurity, lack of food, death and poverty, our expectations are always put on government leaders to bail us out of the sufferings on which hopeful wishes hang on smooth implementation of the peace deal “in letter and spirit” and in good faith.

Our expectations need inclusive and concerted efforts for the R-ARCSS to succeed. But, without Join commitment, honesty, trust and confidence among the leaders and the affected citizens of South Sudan, the “expectations for peaceful stable country shall never be achieved.” There is a believe, right now, that the political parties: the SPLM, SPLM IO and SSOA in the Presidency and R-TGoNU, are not collectively united in a sole agenda of “peace and security” per se, but differ on their agendas. The SPLM honestly leads the agenda of “peace and security.” But, the former adversaries of President Salva Kiir Mayardit, who should be seen to firmly commit to peace and security agenda, are half-heartedly uncommitted. To be exact in my reading, SPLM IO and SSOA are gambling on which is which agenda?: Peace and security or the “regime change.” They have already succeeded by dissolving the 32 states and sanctioning official supporters of President Salva Kiir through the Sentry “Enough project.” These parties are not in peace with the SPLM, but they have a devised strategic change of approach towards the “Kiir must go!”

Yes, the evidence shows that some criticisms are constructive in terms of power sharing, but, seriously, domestic and international critics pose a targeting and destructive campaign against our country and its founding leadership. For example, “Kiir and Riek should be excluded from unity Government!” That means the R-ARCSS could collapse. We are very much aware that South Sudan is a fragile, weak socially, politically and economically, thus facing compounded problems of livelihood in all fields.
In my assessment, the only option available to South Sudanese, in order to save the unity of the country and humanity is the R-ARCSS if the national security institutions are reorganised, united and integrated. These challenges are so huge and so much that the main political parties’ leaders, can not solve them alone without public commitment and necessary support.

To be exact and honest, the problems facing the Presidency and R-TGoNU, are getting worse under the pandemic COVID-19 regime. First, the pandemic has done away with the only National source of revenues: (a) oil markets prices internationally are down, (b) no exports or imports duties, (c) food production failed last year, thus causing severe hunger, (d) repatriation, rehabilitation and resettlement of 6 million returning refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), (e) rendering the country to an acute poverty. In a nutshell, our country is financially handicapped to fund the implementation of R-ARCSS, let alone the humanitarian disaster, in terms of hunger, internal homelessness and coming back of refugees from the neighbouring countries. But, the good thing is that, the politicians are not going back to war. But the violence ranges among the communities (call them tribes if you like).

But, Nevertheless, new violence has moved out of Juba to states of Jonglei, Upper Nile, unity versus Warrap, Lakes and Central Equatoria. The fighting in Jonglei is a politico-community war. It involves Morlei, Nuer Low and Dinka. The war expected to erupt in Upper Nile, would be among the Nuer, Dinka and shilluk. The war going on in central Equatoria is said to be a liberation war, against who? It is not yet clear, but gossips figure point against politicians and warlords. These fightings are not small, they can seriously divide the communities, states and regions or could derail the ongoing Revitalised national peace.

Let’s accept the fact that our country is at the climax of national paralysis and dispersal in all fields of livelihoods. All of us must unite, avoid social and political anarchy for national dialogue, reconciliation and forgiveness.

In my opinion, the problems facing the country now are comprehensively identified by many South Sudanese intellectuals’ forums, such as the National Dialogue forum, Ebony centre-Think Tank, Sudd Research institution, professionals of schools of know how, universities and other centres in Africa and elsewhere in the world. Available are South Sudanese writers like Francis Mading Deng, Jacob Jiel Akol, Bona Malual, Dr. Lual A Deng, so many more-and check on historical records for political philosopher, Dr. John Garang’s on unity of Sudanese Africans, Arabs, Muslims and Christians. History of decolonized and post independence developments infrastructures are available.

These groups and individuals are not being consulted on related issues to their professionalisms and expierences to success or failure and why? There is no country anywhere in the world, that does not consult or refer it problems for experts opinion or advice, specially when the country is under establishment and eventual nation building.

The politicians need to involve South Sudanese civil society, women, youth, intellectuals and the church, in order to succeed in their endeavor to implement the R.ARCSS successfully. Otherwise implementation process shall fail. Aldo Ajou

Accept and Upheld the crisis in our country

The presidency and R-TGoNU, let alone the National Legislature and Judiciary, which are yet to be formally revitalised and established in accordance with constitution and R-ARCSS, are lockdowned. The High Level Coronavirus Taskforce Committee, led then by First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar, tested positive, quarantined and replaced.
The New National Coronavirus Taskforce Committee is headed by Vice President Hussien Akol Ayii Akol, in his capacity as the head of the R-TGoNU services cluster and membership of technocrats. This National Taskforce Committee is correctly composed of national experts and professionals. I assume the Committee shall be in touched with scientists of South Sudan and the world.
Although the terms of reference of the Committee seem precisely, confine to emergency campaign against the unknown disease, covid-19, yet it is complementary to peace and security arrangements, the acute economic crisis, humanitarian issues-in terms of repatriation of refugees and internally displaced communities, the hunger affected citizens in the towns and villages and the entire insecurity all over the country.
In a Nutshell, this hugely compounded crisis facing our country, should be upheld, accepted and obligatorily recognised by our leaders and the loyal citizenry of South Sudan as unprecedented, and therefore ultimately dangerous to livelihood of our people and the country.
To overcome this compounded national crisis, the collective transitional leadership, led by the parties in the presidency, R-TGoNU, the parliament, Judiciary, the states’ governments and the communities must come to “sensefull peace” and condemn the “senseless war” along with evils and devils of hate, jealousy, suspicion, none idealogical rivalry, political anarchy and violence.
Putting these evil social relationships among the politians and communities behind us, could surely provide the solidarity and collective approach we badly need to overcome the current dangers facing our country. We also need the world to understand our humanitarian crisis of the post war and the world extended coronavirus human killer. South Sudan alone, shall not overcome these disastrous phenomena.
In my opinion, South Sudan needs to concentrate on its available resources to generate money by increasing petroleum production and mineral wealth available. Second, we have to seek the international diplomatic deals and support through the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the African Union Security Council (AUSC), since they were/are both involved in humanitarian assistance, peace and security in South Sudan. The leadership in the presidency and R-TGoNU must appeal to the UNSC and AUSC for the world support we need, without diplomatic prejudice. This is the only option, I think, which is available to us for mere survival of the population and the country. Otherwise South Sudan shall not lonely survive this “sunama.” Dr. Aldo Deng-Akuey

Self Claimed “Liberators”

The arrogance of individual self claimed liberators of South Sudan that “we liberated it, you were not there!” Yes, you were there. But, maybe you were physically a SPLA soldier or a refugee. Well done.
The liberation war and political dispensations, were successfully well led by William Deng, Joseph Oduho, Joseph Lagu and ultimately strongly completed by Dr. John Garang and Salva Kiir, from 1955-2011 (56 years), respectively into “freedom at last!” Deadly, but with determinant consistency and persistency of our leaders and South Sudanese-mothers and fathers, we were able to arrived safely to the independence’s final port. Let’s commemorate the two and half millions martyrs, heroes and heroines, and thank our leaders who fought hard from 1955-2011, a “thanksgiving” they deserved.
But, what happened to us, the survivers of the liberation war? We messed it up, by initiating a self- destructive “senseless war” from 2013-2018. Nonetheless, the warring leaders, assumingly without clear commitment, succumbed and yielded to domestic and international pressures to end war for peaceful resolution of the conflict.
On 12 semptember 2018, the SPLM, SPLM IO and SSOA, led by President Salva Kiir Mayardit, First Vice President Riek Machar Teny and Hon. Gabriel Changson Chang, respectively, signed the Revitalised Agreement on Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS). The R-ARCSS, not a new Bible, contains the solutions we need to finally resolve the devastating crisis we have inflicted on the people of South Sudan and the very country we fought for, liberated and reclaimed its sovereignty.
Thank God, the R-ARCSS is holding and fully subjected to implementation metrixes,led by the Presidency and R-TGoNU in accordance with the transitional constitution, amended 2019. Inspite of this success, the people of South Sudan and regional and international friends, are caught up by “skepticism,” doubting the sincerity and commitment of the former warring leaders; the very same leaders who made mistakes, led the country to war and assumed to have brought the country out of war. Amazing Grace…?
It is said that “people learn from their own mistakes and that of others.” Do our leaders really show signs of having learned from their own mistakes? As we speak, the evidence demonstrates that they have not learned from any mistakes, theirs or others. Instead of reconciling, forgiving one another, apologising to the people or regretting the damages they have inflicted on the country, they continue locked up in suspicion and political antoganism, thus jeopardising the implementation process beyond the formation of R-TGoNU, on 22.2.2020. At lease people expected immediate formation of the ten states’ governments, but this is not forth coming. Reasons of the delays, they say, are simple and only personal between Salva Kiir and Riek Machar. It is the same scenario that faced the formation of R-TGoNU, that continues to face every step in the process of the implementation.
Apparently, the implementation of the R-ARCSS is not moving at the expected rate or speed. The R-TGoNU is incomplete and exclusive. The Revitalised National Legislature (R-NL) and Revitalised Judiciary of South Sudan (R-JSS) are not yet formed and established in accordance with the constitution, amended 2019. The slow down is real and may not be averted soon with ease, since everything is now dependent on the two leaders, Salva and Riek.
In my opinion, the presidency and R-TGoNU shall fail the Transition. Thus, the guarantors, Uganda and Sudan, should keep the leaders engaged for the sole interest of peace loving South Sudanese and the country. We must stick to R-ARCSS. It is the only peace option and hope! Dr. Aldo Ajou Deng Akuey.

The Pandemic

The pandemic disease, coronavirus-covid-19 (C19) is a new killer in South Sudan. Two and half millions died in the war of liberation from 1955-2005. Forty thousand died in our “senseless war of 2013-2018.” That death was inclusive of diseases and lack of food. All in all, the R-ARCSS and its implementation machine, the R-TGoNU, is seriously interrupted by the Pandemic C19 and with collapsed of our insecurity, economy, hunger, diseases and poverty. The country is seriously halted. We have to move collectively in order to rescue humanity in South Sudan and the Country itself. Let’s standup now and to gather for the purpose of “save ourselves and the country.” All the war mongers must be told to stop now and join our war for survival.

Second Uprising Commemoration

Today is a day to remember and commemorate the second uprising, the 16th of May 1983. The first uprising dates back to 18th of August 1955.
We always confine these great Martyrs’, Heroes’ and Heroines’ National stopovers’ days, to celebrate and remember, critically, the liberation leaderships.
In the lead is the National Icon, Dr. John Garang de Mabior Atem and his Liberation Mates, Kerubino Kuanyin Bol, William Nyuon, Lual Diing Wol, Molana Martin Majier Gai, who helped to draft the visionary SPLA/SPLM’ Manufesto, Constitution and laws that led the way to freedom and independence on 9 July 2011.
Honestly, the National Congratulatory messages, flowing today within South Sudan and worldwide, go to President Salva Kiir Mayardit and people of South Sudan. While we pray to God almighty to divert and reverse the evil deadly disease, coronavirus-vivid-19.
Peace be with me and you
AldoAjouDengAkuey
Juba, South Sudan

Fighting against locust invasion in East Africa – still on!

Agency chief Qu Dongyu stressed that more action is still needed to avert a food security crisis as the ongoing rainy season, which benefits farmers and pastoralists, also provides favourable conditions for locusts to breed.

“Our gains have been significant; but the battle is long and is not yet over”, he said. “More people are at risk of losing their livelihoods and worsening food security in the coming months.”

Protecting crops and livelihoods

FAO has released its first progress report on the locust control campaign which began in January and now covers 10 countries: Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania and Yemen.

It was launched to protect crops and livelihoods from what are considered the most destructive migratory pests in the world. A single Desert Locust swarm, which can contain up to 150 million insects per square kilometre, is capable of eating as much food in a day, as 35,000 people.

Through FAO’s support, more than 365,000 hectares have been controlled, and an additional 350,000 pastoral households have been spared from distress.

While swathes of treated land are now relatively locust-free, the agency warned that a second wave of locusts will transition to the young adult phase in June, at a critical time when many farmers prepare to harvest their crops.
Second locust wave and food insecurity looming

FAO said the upsurge is “particularly alarming” in the broader context.

Forecasts made prior to the COVID-19 crisis indicate that more than 25 million people in the East Africa region will face acute food insecurity in the latter half of the year. An additional 17 million people in Yemen are already affected.

“We can and must protect vulnerable people from the impact of multiple crises: conflicts, climate extremes, desert locusts and COVID-19, which threaten to cause a further dramatic deterioration in their food security,” said Mr. Qu, the FAO Director General.

“To do this, we need to intensify our efforts further and focus not just on controls but on supporting the livelihoods of farmers and pastoralists so they can get through this.”

Intensifying efforts

An FAO appeal launched in January has netted $130 million. While funding has been largely concentrated on locust control activities, more support for livelihoods is needed.

Governments have been working with the UN agency to design, monitor and implement control operations. FAO has also been providing pesticides, bio-pesticides, equipment, aircraft and training.

Given the favourable conditions for locust reproduction, the agency has called for sustained efforts, and a revised appeal will be launched in the coming weeks.

The appeal will request additional resources for Iran and Pakistan, which are also facing locust infestations, and for scaling up efforts in the Sahel region, which risks being affected.

Food security fear in Africa

NEARLY 70 per cent of people across Africa said food and water would be a problem if they were required to remain at home for 14 days – and more than half would exhaust their money, according to an Ipsos survey released recently.

The survey included nearly 21000 people from 28 cities in 20 African countries on potential Covid-19 stay-at-home measures. The results were released in global virtual conference hosted online by the World Economic Forum.
Among the countries surveyed were South Africa, Ghana, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, the UK and US.
Two weeks ago, income decreased significantly for 13% of the respondents in South Africa.
The survey was done in two waves, the first on March 25-26 before stringent restrictions were imposed on movement and business and the second on April 11-12.
The waves showed that South Africa’s respondents stocked up on food and other household goods as a result of the pandemic.
In the first wave, 54.59 per cent stocked up, while 64.68 per cent did so during the second.
Chief executive of public affairs at Ipsos Darrell Bricker explained that it was a substantial research project that had to be conducted speedily to assist them in their battle with the coronavirus.
World Health Organization (WHO) regional director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti, said people who were food insecure were not able to earn their daily bread at a household level.
Director of Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention John Nkengasong said unique attention needs to be devoted to the issues of food security.
“The committee that is governed by the AU Commission Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture, are taking this seriously,” he added.
Tatjana von Bormann from World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa said there were three components to food security in the country—there are less than 30000 commercial farmers versus more than 2 million small-scale farmers, social issues were clear signs that the system is under strain and in the environment, food production resulted in transformation of natural environments. The Food Flow initiative supports small-scale farmers and food producers by buying their harvest that would have gone to restaurants, hotels and airlines, among other places.
They have been redirecting food into areas experiencing food insecurity, since founded in March by Iming Lin and Ashley Newell.
They work in the Cape Metro and Winelands, the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo.
Spokesperson for the Western Cape department of social development Joshua Chigome said: “The department made additional funding available for food relief programmes.”

Coronavirus update: England’s lockdown measures start to ease, Brazil records highest daily death toll, another death linked to Ruby Princess

England has tentatively begun easing its coronavirus lockdown, urging thousands to return to work if they can to begin rebuilding a struggling economy.

Brazil has recorded its highest daily death toll, with more than 800 deaths in 24 hours, while South Korea is sticking to its plan to ease restrictions despite a cluster of cases linked to a nightclub district in the capital city.

In Australia, the coronavirus death toll has risen to 98 after another Ruby Princess fatality, while the Chief Medical Officer is seeking advice on a coronavirus-linked condition that has killed three children in the US.

Another death linked to Ruby Princess

NSW health authorities have confirmed an 81-year-old woman who had been a passenger on the Ruby Princess died from COVID-19 yesterday.

The death raises Australia’s coronavirus death toll to 98 and the number of fatalities linked to the cruise ship to 22.

New South Wales confirmed six new coronavirus infections this morning, from more than 8,100 tests. That came after the state announced yesterday that it had gone 24 hours without confirming a new case for the first time since the pandemic began.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said NSW Health knew the source of three of the new cases.

Victoria recorded seven new cases overnight, with none of them linked to the Cedar Meats outbreak in Melbourne. However, the state’s total only went up by by five as two previous cases were reclassified and removed.

Queensland’s tally went up by one this morning, but Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said it was an “old case”.

Western Australia recorded no new cases this morning, with Premier Mark McGowan saying only one COVID-19 patient remained in hospital in the state.

In the daily coronavirus briefing, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly said the total number of cases recorded nationwide was at 6,975, estimating about 700 people were still sick with COVID-19.

Carnak’s support is welcomed by South Sudan Government

Carnak South Sudan delivered its financial contribution to the government of South Sudan in its battle against Covid19. As of May 8, 2020, South Sudan had 120 Coronavirus cases and 2 recoveries. First Vice President of South Sudan, H.E. Riek Machar, received Carnak’s contribution, stating as follows:

“Today we, in the Taskforce , are joined by M/s Carnak(SS) in solidarity to fight against the spread of Covid-19 in South Sudan. I welcome the representatives of Carnak and warmly receive their contribution. This support is timely and very significant to enable us to facilitate the operations of the Team, particularly the Technical group handling the operations. Thanks once again for coming all the way from Yei River County to Juba to hand in your contribution.”

The Chairman of PTG-hld, the parent company of Carnak, Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa, has held strong views since the outbreak of the Coronavirus. Ayabatwa maintained that fighting the virus was not the responsibility of governments alone. As he explains, “these are unprecedented times requiring exceptional collaboration between governments and the business community. The work to be done, and the material and financial resources to get the job done are too enormous. Only through a collective effort will the African continent end this pandemic.”

South Sudan and Africa as a whole are uniquely impacted by the Coronavirus. African countries do not have the financial resources to fight the virus as in rich countries of Europe or North America. Furthermore, most workers in Africa earn daily wages which is not possible during the Covid19 lockdowns. That is why governments and the business community have to jointly mobilize resources to ensure that families do not go hungry. African families should not face the tragic choice of being healthy or going hungry.

SOURCE: Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa
View source version on accesswire.com:
https://www.accesswire.com/589489/South-Sudan-Government-Welcomed-Carnaks-Solidarity-In-Battle-Against-Covid19

Kazakh President Wishes Russian Prime Minister Speedy Recovery from Coronavirus

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev wished Chairman of the Russian government Mikhail Mishustin a speedy recovery on his Twitter account.

“Kazakhstan and Russia are actively cooperating to contain the coronavirus epidemic. I’m confident that we will overcome this challenge thanks to our joint efforts,” Tokayev wrote.

On April 30, Russian news channel Rossyia-24 broadcast a video conference between PM Mishustin and Russian President Vladimir Putin where the PM confirmed a positive result on the recent coronavirus test he took. Today Russian media reported that Mr Mishustin has been hospitalized with a high fever. His duties have been taken over temporarily by First Deputy Andrei Belousov.

Cooperation between all members of the Eurasian Economic Union will be strengthened as the member countries work together to recover from the Covid-19 outbreak and the devastating effects that the preventative lockdown measures had on the economies of the member states.