Home | Comment & Analysis    Wednesday 1 September 2010

Dr. Deng is entitled to his opinion but...

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By Isaiah Abraham

August 31, 2010 — Sudanese Oil Minister Dr. Lual Deng was reported to have preferred unity over separation. The London based Al-Sharg Al -Awsat newspaper that purported the report, reports that the minister justified his choice based on his experiences from the American system. The Minister there (in that interview) confessed to have been a convert of late leader Dr. John Garang, about the unity project. It has become no more any secret therefore-unless the minister clears the air about that matter- Dr. Deng in his capacity as a national leader from the South is a unionists, and people of the South respect his democratic rights. Others like him will come, and this is normal. No one can stone Dr. Deng for going for unity but am afraid the minister has treaded on dangerous ground! We wish him and his group good luck. We shall meet at the polling booths on January 9, 2011.

Yet deep within my heart, I doubt whether Dr. Deng had actually uttered such remarks at such crucial stages of our history; when our people are only left with few months to finish off a great job left behind by two millions dead Southerners. Its unfortunate if it becomes true that Uncle Lual wanted the future of his people with Arabs. My eyes couldn’t believe what I read on this website on the same, given energy this man called Lual put to help his colleague Dr. John Garang at a very difficult moment of the movement struggle. Unity we heard Garang talked about was about fundamental changes at the center, a total shift of 360 degree. He knew it would be mirage however. Being a seasonal politicians, he never left his people without clear position. We can prove him right; may his soul rest in eternal peace. For the past five years, nothing has changed; we still at the same status like before (before CPA was signed) saved for appointments to positions at the top. Even with that its too earlier to start trusting the North because few changes happened here and there. I don’t think the minister remarks and his choice for unity will go well with our people at all levels including the constituency that elected him to parliament.

Dr. Deng should have been careful not to expose himself to media once more given an incidence in December 2007 when he was also quoted out of context, of having openly criticized why SPLM Political Bureau pulls SPLM members from the government. But his open lecture about benefits of unity over separation is probably the most risky statement so far on his side. This has stunt even a street child, because of our experiences of living together with Arabs/North again. The price paid to bring about CPA and the freedom we enjoy today didn’t just come out with no sweat and blood. Men died not for the sake of unity, but separation. Unity of the South and the North to be exact will not become true, when Southerners still have breaths! Southerners reject unity long time ago. I didn’t know what makes the minister to talk like that. Our people should wait and hear an official statement from Dr. Deng.

To you Dr. Deng: remember a short while ago (a month ago, as one of the commentors put it yesterday), a story of oil transparency, or say irregularities/uncertainties surrounding the exact proceeds going to the South from oil was nip in the bud and our people around the world made no mistake to blame you for trying to clean up the dirty/mess left by Dr. Awad Al Jazz in that ministry (oil). Who doesn’t know the oil revenues figures coming to the government in the South don’t agree with exact barrels that are send to the world markets. Now on this particular case of unity or separation, the honorable minister should have allowed waters to cool down on that matter of transparency in the Oil Ministry; is too much anything to go public at this stage. The SPLM top should know this fact. Look, Southerners at whatever level aren’t joking about their future, they know precisely what tomorrow will look like. Dr. Deng you started well and no one can dispute your developmental achievements in your area; people were made to believe in your leadership quality and your change of heart to listen to others than your people has raised more questions than answers about whatever you have been doing in development there. If they hear you talking unity, what do you think they will do on January 9, 2010? You played a bad game to the benefit of someone in Khartoum; kindly return to your people!

My simple advise to our leaders is this: please stay away from utterances of this nature even if this is your legitimate rights; we aren’t anymore interested in what others think is the best for us. How about us, don’t we have our own minds to figure out what is best for us? Is Dr. Deng the right person to tell us where to go, when Dr. Garang showed us the way? We don’t need your caution Mr Deng, we don’t anyone generally to lecture anything about our future, please. We are tired of our leaders not being conscious of what people that support them want. We want separation, raw or ripe! I don’t believe in glossing an error when it is so; Dr Deng owes his people and the people of South Sudan an apology (if the story is really true). We don’t care about his past records, we care about our future more. Even if Kiir or Dr. Machar says it, we will challenge them in their faces. Southerners from all walks of life are shock by the minister statement. Unless the paper has put it on Dr. Deng’s mouth, Dr. Deng needs to tell us more about his new found relationship with Arabs. He has inflicted pain to our people. This is too much to bear for a heavy weight like Deng, unity by the way is an insult. Let no another leader talk about it in our land. I also doubt so much whether Dr. Garang was a unionists as claimed by Dr. Deng!!!

Isaiah Abraham, lives in Juba; he can be reached at Isaiah_abraham@yahoo.co.uk

P.S.

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  • 1 September 2010 05:09, by David Glenn

    Dear Isaiah Abraham
    Please can you more specific when you write about the North and the Arabs?
    What is your geo-political definition of the North?Does it include the Nuba Mountains,Dar Fur,the East of the Beja and Hedendawa,the North of the Danaqla,the Nubians?
    What is your definition of an "Arab",is he who speaks Arabic(including the Juba Arabic,or the Kinubi Arabic of Uganda and Kenya)?For there are peoples in Sudan whose mother-tongue is not Arabic?Just as Rnglish is not your mothe r-tongue,nor is it mine?Are the Nubians,the Mahas,the Kunuz,the Beja,the Fur,the Zaghawa,etc.. Arabs?Or is this mere hate-mongering?Even an Independent South Sudan,will have to coexist with it’s neighbours in Africa,and for your information 80% of those called Arabs,live in Africa,from Mauritania to Djibouti?
    With all due respect Brother,politics is something,hate-speech is something else.
    I dont think any newspaper in the world would dare ascribe such a statement to any body if he did’nt agree to it and it is his right,his democratic right,otherwise,you are scaring us about the future state which you seek.

    repondre message

    • 1 September 2010 07:45, by doot

      To Mr Isaiah,

      In other mind , your article is well written and precisely clear in own words no doubt on that. In reference to what had just been said by Dr Deng , i think we in the south have multiple perspectives and views when it come on the topic of unity and separation of Sudan. one may prefers unity over separation , other may prefers separation over unity. therefore, in south we have two type of people , with these type of people i believe we do not have single view on anything. therefore Dr Deng is right to speak up his mind about he likes and what he doesn’t likes in the way other group would prefer separation over unity. In own my view , majority of southern who will cast their vote in referendum will not vote for the sake of unity or separation but also on their personal responsibility with aim at reasonable satisfactory outcome.Therefore , let everyone decide what he /she wanted to be regardless of their speeches and Histories.

      In other word , the main central cause of conflict in Sudan as Historian project that claim is not whether the region is divide or unite but the main reasons are based on the standard opinions hold upon by particular set of people together with the existing forces in all aspect of societies . All these ideologies and forces will allow others to vote for separation or unity. However, many southerns who once been live in multicultural societies like united states, UK, Canada , south Africa , France and Australia mostly would have different views on what side they should vote for. However, for the sake of our land we in the south need to decide what is the best things for us and our future generations.

      On The contrary , the kind of problem which we are going to deal with , through the referendum is to collect our energies and attentions to what exactly is the right thing for us and the next generation than ruthlessly let other things to dominate us in order to break our will and spoil our choice.

      "people under one God can have commonplace on anything"

      repondre message

    • 1 September 2010 08:11, by Ajang Aguer Pageer

      This is one of the few articles from Isaiah Abraham that make sense to me.Congralutions for your piece of work!

      As for David Glenn,it is not Isaiah Abraham who should give the clear definition of north Sudan or the difference between northern and southern Sudan.Reason being,if there is east,there must be west,and if there is south,there must be north and so is it to center and periphery!History and commonsense have answers to what North Sudan entails be it,people,culture,languages,economics,politics etc.Referring to other part of the Sudan as north Sudan has no link with hatred whatsoever.If David had a chance to live prior to 2005,he should have asked these questions earlier on in the 1990’s:’Why do they recruit mujahideen to go to the south?And what is the rest of the country that fights the south called?’Messages from the islamic project compaigne in the 1990’s have answer to who a northerner should be,so David has enough resources to satisfy his quest for knowledge instead of bothering Isaiah or anyone else who has other pressing issues to deal with!

      repondre message

  • 1 September 2010 15:38, by anthony lupa simon

    Mr. Isaiah, please hold up your breath for a second and then begin breathing normally to enable you think widely. You have stated clearly on your title that Dr. Deng is intitled to his opion, and again I can also say here that you are entitled to your negative opinion about the remarks made by Dr. Lual. Seperation and unity are two options that southerners are going to chose one from them based on majoritys demand. And every mature southerner has all the rights to speak out of what ever he thinks is appropriate for himself but not to be controlled by other minds like you. Taking the side of seperation should not make you forget the real values of democracy and imprison yourself in the cell that the Islamic fandamentalist are now in. Dr. Deng is an SPLM member speaking out his mind and position in the same way that Amum has been doing. Both of them are 100% right if speaking for themselves or for the party. This is simply because the official position of the party on the issue of referundum is still blur although in most instances it is seen as a unionist party. Whatever position the party takes does not necessarily mean that it is the stand of all the people of south Sudan including you, if it was then the referundum could have only been done by the party. Political maturity entails acceptance of diverse opinions where the near right choice is always determined by the majority, free from any intimidations or manipulations. You could count on this man if he had deviated from the partys official position. But remember SPLM is not SSLM to make you feel mad when it has chosen to campaign for a united Sudan in the up coming referundum. You and me will go to the referundum for seperation but do not tie the hands of whoever thinks unity is best for himselves. And again do not always think that SPLM is south Sudan and is synonomous with seperation.

    repondre message

  • 2 September 2010 04:17, by dengdit

    to Isaiah Abraham
    you are right to mentioned that everyone has right to express his/her opinion in regard to national agendas

    and even it’s your right to posted a conflicting article.

    Dr. Deng is culpable to his comments in a society where democracy is only ’claim’ but not practice.

    Isaiah Abraham you are wrong in your passage and quote ’ Men died not for the sake of unity, but separation’. if all of us think this way, then acknowledgement of deceased comrades is no where to be seen.
    we where not fighting for separation as you put it,SPLM/A aim was to bring equality to all sudanese who are marginalised by Arab rule.

    Since 1983, SPLA recruited soldiers from Nuba Monuntains and Blue Nile and other regions. and these people are not geographically from south Sudan. the fact is SPLM as a party in general have no clear direction in term of unity and separation, that why few individaul opinions are flowing against majority’s wills.

    i personal SPLM to disciplined members to respect party policies but if no policies then that why cabinet engaged in personal op[inion than party stance.

    let remember the contribution of Nubians and Blue Nile comrades when we run for joy because they suffered a lot than some of us dodged the war, and those gave in to Arabs during the 1990s. referendum actually need a tough thinking and we must be ’rational’.

    repondre message

    • 3 September 2010 13:15, by Lokorai

      Dr. Dengdit Achiek,

      The other SPLM members who aren’t Southerners have their own way of advocating unity, not you ya humar!

      Men from the South died for the sole reason of independence from day one; when Southerners fight for unity of the Sudan?

      You claim to have rationale approach but we Southerners have also our rationale way of saying no to traitors, you are that one cheap commodity bought by the NCP.

      Lokorai

      repondre message



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