Home | Comment & Analysis    Friday 26 December 2008

SPLM has to keep its allies intact


By Roba Gibia

December 25, 2008 - Since the initiation of the SPLM/A movement in May 1983, its principal cause was fighting for the liberation of the marginalized people of Sudan from the oppression, inequality, uneven distribution of wealth, developmental projects and its concentration in Khartoum. Therefore, in my view the SPLM movement belongs solely to the marginalized people of Sudan, because their hope and aspiration rest on the SPLM vision to satisfy their thirstiness and lift them from the pit of desolation. And that was evident, because the first people started congregating to SPLA/M, were from the desperate and oppressed people of Sudan from the different walks of life. Thus, the SPLM/A gained its potency because for its call for liberty, and because of the marginalized people of Nuba Mountains, Blue Nile, west, east and northern Sudan. Dr. John Garang believed that the marginalized people of Sudan needed tutor and enlightenment to open their eyes to see what they could not see, and they lacked leader to show them the path of liberty and unify their front. And that was exactly what Garang did in uniting the marginalized people of Sudan under the emblem of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army to realize their dream of New Sudan, where everyone pays undoubtedly allegiance to Sudanism but not Africanism and Christianity or Arabism and Islam which was the corner stone of movement’s struggle.

Dr. John Garang with its wise and charismatic leadership, personal saturation and believe in the movement’s philosophy, which he (Garang) initiated managed to make SPLA/M a converging haven and center for marginalized people and freedom fighters. John Garang toured and visited all parts of Sudan in south, east, west, and far north to explain the purpose of his mission in dreadful and hazardous times. And whenever he travels in those areas, he places himself into those peoples’ shoes, listens to them, eats with them and behaves like them and that was why he was liked by marginalized Sudanese from west to east and from south to north. During the SPLM/A movement there was SPLA military training center in Kauda, Nuba Mountains and it was one of the strategic and significant movement’s training and headquarters in Southern Kordofan. Beside that the movement has got sound presence in eastern Sudan, Kurmuk and Hameshgoreb which indeed tightened the screw on Khartoum. This was the purposely unity required from the marginalized people of Sudan, which has to be maintained under any circumstances as far as the struggle continues. And indeed when John Garang died in plane crash on July 30, 2005, his casket was taken first to his home in New Site, then around in his footsteps in Yei, Rumbek, Kauda, Kurmuk, Bor and finally to his resting place in Juba. This has got tremendous and significant impact at the midst of his supporters and fellow comrades in those areas. And even though SPLM/A supporters were in grieve but were happy to say farewell to their leader, which consolidates and fortifies the spirit of struggle among the marginalized people of Sudan, and at least to remind them that despite the fact that their leader have gone in everlasting sleep, but has not forgotten them and that the SPLM/A unity will continue to uphold after his death under the new leadership.

As we have witnessed during the Naivasha negotiations, Abyei, Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile issues were discussed and incorporated in the agreement, and were permitted to have a democratically say to determine their future. This has been done because of the marginalization and strong bond between south and those areas, and because they are comrades and SPLA/M allies. Hence, Garang asserted in several occasions that after peace agreement, their principal objective will be concentrated on building movement across Sudan as whole. But is that happening now after demise of Garang, and after four years from concluding Naivasha agreement? I do not want to speculate around because the reality on the ground is self-explanatory, but would like to stress that building SPLM as political party across Sudan as whole doesn’t constitute merely by opening SPLM party’s offices, but through mobilization, enlightenment and consolidation of SPLM on the actual ground and at the midst of marginalized people of Sudan, because they are the dynamic force and strength of the movement. SPLM has to make its presence in every locality of Sudan, and has to reach to the remote and rural areas to see and experience the actual predicament of the populace. But as we talk today, SPLM offices or secretariats in the ten southern states, Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains are inactive and has got no activities due to lack of fund, as claimed by some SPLM officials but there is enough fund for SPLM leadership to spent on air tickets and hotels, because they are moving up and down and have got no time to sit down and concentrate on building, mobilizing and transforming the movement into real political party with systems and strategies in place, and above all, as how to formulate its short and long term policies and as how to face the upcoming general elections in 2009! Therefore, SPLM has got enormous responsibilities to shoulder and to not ever detach and ignore its people and comrades whether being in Blue Nile, Nuba Mountains, west and east but has to keep them intact in order to preserve the movement’s unity, continuity and capacity to confront the enemy.

But it seems that SPLM leadership has been unilaterally occupied with the issues in South Sudan, but not as during the war and has almost abandoned its comrades in the struggle, in eastern Sudan, Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains. As at this juncture, the people of Nuba Mountains are wondering, what has peace brought to them? Nothing, except agony and suffering and that the Nuba Mountains’ torment has tripled under the Naivasha peace agreement. Currently there is total anxiety among the Nuba Mountains’ SPLM/A members that the SPLM/A leadership in Juba and government of national unity in Khartoum has sold their case, as since signing Naivasha agreement in 2005 to this date, Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of SPLM-led GoSS never visited Nuba Mountains, and this is a clear indication that their sacrifice went with wind! Beside that the closing down of Kauda SPLA training center in Nuba Mountains and redeployment of its weaponry, convinced Nuba people beyond doubt that they are deserted by SPLM/A after peace. Thus, now there is call within Nuba Mountains’s population and SPLM/A members to detach and distant themselves from the SPLM and commence their struggle unilaterally against the mistreatment and humiliation of the NCP which is taking place currently in Southern Kordofan. In my view, if SPLM/A doesn’t desist from its current policies towards its allies, there is high probability that things will fall apart, and the SPLM/A will shrink, disintegrate and be confined in localities and South Sudan or on tribal grounds, and once that happens, its consequence will be grave and its price will be paid evenly by poor marginalized people of Sudan, but after confining each group in its own area and dealt with in absolute detachment.

Roba Gibia, is a Sudan Tribune journalist. He is also the author of John Garang and the Vision of NEW SUDAN . He can be reached at robagibia@yahoo.com

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  • 26 December 2008 10:11, by Gatwech


    The problem started when late John Garand could not tell the truth to those in Nuba Mountains, Blue Nile and the rest under the umbrella of the "marginalized people’ of the Sudan. He did not tell them what the people of South Sudan want as their destiny, and then see how to fight the common enemy with well defined interest for alliances. Because every thing was blindly duped under the so-called fighting for united socialist/secular united Sudan without considering the aspirations of the South, you are now reaping what you saw. Alliances can be done on many interests not necessary on being commonly called the "marginalized’ or sharing the same geographical location or borders. You can make a strong alliance with a European country or South Africa which are far away from Sudan as long as you share strong interests. South Sudanese policians like late Garang could have told these people the truth and the regions should support each other even if the South forms independent country if they don’t want to fight with the South to form one country. Don’t blame the SPLM/A because it follows the interests and aspirations of the people of South Sudan who have been subjected to unique and historical bondage of all sorts from the Greater North.

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    • 26 December 2008 12:33, by Samani

      The late John Garang had a vision that had followers even in the north. It was to bring democracy and equality to all sudanese and build a strong and United Sudan. Unfortunately this vision was hijacked by the current corrupt SPLM leadership. The want to stay in power and control the millions of dollars they and their families get, while the rest of the south remains poor and impoverished. The beat to the drums of separation so the SPLM stays in power and continue to control this great wealth. They dont care about the Sudanese in the north or south or especially the marginalized. Tell me ONE thing they have done for their people or the so called marginalized people of Sudan. The 2 billion dollars they get every year without doing ANY work, they and their families live like kings, smuggling money to the UK and god knows where.

      Years will pass, South Sudan will separate. Not because the people of South Sudan will it, but because the SPLM will force it. Despite the fact that it is stipulated by the CPA that both the NCP and SPLM would make Unity attractive. When this separation occurs, You will see the fighting between the Southern tribes in a way worse then in Somalia. Each tribe trying to take control of this wealth, leaving the people of the South to continue to suffer for years to come. The SPLM claims 90% of the Southerners want separation. How do you know that?? A pole or survey you might say. If they cant even count how many Sudanese there are in the south, you want me to believe that they know what they want. This is bull propaganda by the SPLM to keep them and their tribe in power and control. The South is building is an army with these millions of dollars. The UN estimates the South is spending 1.2 Billion dollars every year on the army. This is money that could have been used to save and help so many people in dire need. This strong army they want to build will be used to keep them in power for many years to come and crush any other tribe or people asking for equality.

      I pity the other small south sudanese tribes when this occurs, now you have one enemy you say. Tomorrow you’ll have many and no one can stop the blood shed then. I just hope when this happens you stay from the North as far as possible !!! Because you wont have our pity or sympathy !

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      • 26 December 2008 13:44, by Gatwech


        You confidently talked of corruption, tribalism, no care for the North, loss of billions of dollars and building up of forces just to keep the SPLM/A (tribe) in power and the prediction of another Somalia after 2011’s possible independence.

        Well, first of all, a northerner like you cannot qualify to challenge the SPLM/A or the South in general on those issues. Corruption is inherited from the North by the South. You groomed it. Ask Omar elBashir how much he loots from the oil money. How do you expect us to take care of you people in the North when you had the chance to loot the country for 50 years without caring for the South. Or do you think it a right for you not to take care of the South, but an obligation for the South to take care of the North? Search your soul, Samani!

        You also condemn the SPLM/A for using the money to build up its forces, do you want us to remain vulnerable to northern aggression incase you finally publicly declare the CPA to be not a Bible nor Quran? The SPLA forces are mixed with all the different tribes, not one tribe just to relieve you from your concerns.

        Well, I agree with you on one point and that is tribalism or conflicts after 2011 between tribes in the South if a good leadership does not emerge. Yes, it could reach to the level of Somalia crisis for a short time but not long. Also, don’t predict this only as the fate of the South alone. It is more likely for the North to experience the same. The West, East and the Center could be in great turmoil of power struggle in Khartoum that would make the North having no central government for some considerable time.

        So please, I hope you will not run to the South because we may not sympathize with you. The SPLM/A leaders are doing the right thing to further the separation of the South, unlike the hijacked allien vision of poor unity of Sudan that was intended to blackmail the late John Garang from talking about separation. A wise leader always listens and promotes the interest of his or her people. The people of South Sudan want their own independent nation, which will be surpassing the North in few years because of its abundance of natural wealth. It needs only a visionary leader with developmental heart that does not succumb to tribalism and corruption.

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        • 27 December 2008 01:17, by Kim Deng

          Sammi @ likes,

          You’re right on some points when you said South will be like Somalia after referendum time in 2012, but you ought to know that, it is none of your concern as the same to us in the South not to get involve into your messy situation in Darfur, East Sudan (Beja), Nuba Mnts or even Blue Nile. And don’t forget to seal your border with South when the last D-day of South Sudan happen by the year 2012.

          Don’t forget that, it was Dr. Evil Garang who hijacked the movement from the founders/separatists and change its objective with his poor blind vision known as United secialist Secular Sudan/New Sudan" instead of self-determination for South South in 1983.

          Again, we are not one country any more, North Sudan is for arabized Nubians including Darfur, Nuba Mnts, Beja and Blue Nile and if they don’t want to join their African brothers in the South or form their own countries, it’s up to them, but South Sudan has been for real Africans.

          No thanks,

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          • 27 December 2008 06:35, by Lokorai

            Dear Kim,

            Its morally unfair as Africans and one people to continuo to disturb this man with your insults in the grave. Leave him to rest in peace and never call him names; for your own good and our good name, cease from that devilish overtone and try to give him credit on what he had achieved.

            You might not take it now but later it will turn out against you as a person or your family. You might be blinded by your support to one of the leaders on the expense of this hero, but also some of us support your man but not on Garang’s successes. Dr. Garang wasn’t evil!

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        • 27 December 2008 17:32, by Kur

          You seem to be the most treacherous and evil traitor. You should call yourself Judath because you do not know who gave the chance to speak. Without the determination of Dr. Garang, what integrity you would have in that country called Sudan? we Will not give you an inch to bring your primitive ideology to corrupt our people’s mind again.


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  • 27 December 2008 19:15, by ARAMANACAANI Junuba


    By 2011,south sudan would have been fully governed with its approved county,s [local goverment] laws,states Laws,and south sudan national constitution.Everything would have been planned and at a ready to govern the Newly borned South Sudan Nation and those like,Samani,whho plans to stir tribal clashes after 2011 will deem to failure.we are aware how northerners want to sabotage referrendum through tribal hatred and wars,for their jeasousy of the blessed south sudan;oil plenty,agriculture potential plenty,Nile water plenty,tourism cultures plenty and everything is plenty that many African countries lack.
    Dear samani,we opt for independence not because we want to deny you the natonal cake as you have always done to south but because of your behavors[jalabas] to disregard the people of south sudan and treating them as less human.even on the Media they cannot portray south sudan rich culture,but only arabism and Quoranism! those of Ahmed copied from president Kiirr and begin visiting christian churches which they had never done before! why imitate president kiir for helping and assisting Muslims? if your nature is rejecting other religions?

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    • 30 December 2008 14:06, by Charles

      You are correct ARAMANACAANI,
      I was there in Khartoum and I witnesses with my own eyes the suffering of the non Muslims during Ramadan period.Hotels were closed in the city and no cold water during the day time,all the TV shows are from the Arabs as if every body in Sudan is a Muslim.Non Muslims eat in hidings like thieves during day time.While at at the same time they are talking of unity.What a fool are you Samani! Even if there will be war within the South itself after South SEPARATES in 2011 Our(SPLM) main aim now is to separate from North Sudan.

      repondre message

  • 27 December 2008 19:21, by ARAMANACAANI Junuba

    so south sudan WON’T reach an other Somali situation Level!

    repondre message

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