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Greater Equatoria region split over rebel support

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March 25, 2014 (JUBA) – Leaders and intellectuals from South Sudan’s Greater Equatoria are sharply divided over whether the region should support a rebellion against president Salva Kiir’s government or remain neutral.

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South Sudan’s Greater Equatoria are divided over whether the region should support a rebellion led by former vice-president Riek Machar, pictured here in rebel-controlled territory in Jonglei state on 1 February 2014 (Photo: Reuters) 2014.

The governor of Western Equatoria state, Colonel Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro, said on Tuesday that a statement released earlier this week by the Greater Equatoria Council of Rights (GRECOR) declaring support for former vice-president turned rebel leader Riek Machar did not represent the views of the region as a whole.

“The views expressed in the release do not represent the people of Equatoria. Yes, those outside the region in the diaspora are our brothers and sisters but what they say does not necessarily represent our people inside the country,” Bakosoro said in a statement broadcast on state-owned South Sudan Television (SSTV).

In the 22 March press statement, GRECOR said Machar’s vision is “consistent with the comprehensive and detailed aspirations of the peoples of [the] Equatoria region” and the wider population of South Sudan in general.

However, Bakosoro said that while the people of Equatoria championed democracy and issues of national importance, they were not known for agitating or back-room politicking.

“We do not gossip and do not agitate. We are straight when it comes to issues of democracy and governance,” he said.

GRECOR was created prior to the secession of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011 as an advocacy body for the people of the Greater Equatoria region, with Khartoum-based Wani Tombe installed as its chairperson.

In its statement, the umbrella organisation, which represents various political parties, communities and NGOs of the Equatoria region, also expressed its willingness to join with the armed opposition group in ongoing peace talks in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, saying negotiations to date had largely focused on Upper Nile and Bahr el Ghazal regions, excluding Greater Equatoria.

GRECOR’s statement drew mixed reactions from youth and intellectuals from the area spoken to by Sudan Tribune on Tuesday.

While some supported the call to join the rebellion, others said the comments were an attempt by GRECOR members to seek the government’s attention for their own advantage.

“This conflict is becoming an opportunity for employment by the opportunists and betrayers. If you have been following closely the political activities of some of [South Sudan’s] leaders during [the] interim period, you have seen that there were people who did not want the South to secede from Sudan. One Wani Tombe was one of these groups ... He decided to remain in Sudan, where he decided yesterday to make this poisonous release because he is hoping to take advantage of the peace that may be signed so that he could get a position,” Nelson Moses Duku, of Central Equatoria’s Yei River county, said on Tuesday.

However, Johson Juma, a native of Eastern Equatoria’s Magwi County refuted Duku’s claims, pointing out that issues raised in GRECOR’s statement were consistent with the views of the people in the region

“I think some of our leaders have been confused by their positions to the extent that they are unable to know the people of Equatoria have for long time been marginalised and subordinated. Instead of rejecting the call, the leaders should first of all study the genuineness of the issues raised in the release,” Juma told Sudan Tribune.

“I have read it thoroughly and what I found out is that it calls on our people in all the three Equatoria states to work together and mobilise the support for the cause of the opposition movement because issues identified by this group are consistent to the aspirations of the people of Equatoria,” he adds.

Headquartered in Juba, GRECOR’s objectives include advocating for unity within the region, as well as promoting a federal system of governance and representing the region on issues relating to power and wealth-sharing, democracy and humanity.

(ST)

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  • 26 March 07:15, by mathem jech amer

    Wani Tombe
    I said yesterday whether the 3 governors of Equatoria as signatory or not and I also added that those of Tombe are job seekers not necessary to be rebels.Those GRECOR supporters are outside the country, how will they join and fight?Just to mislead others like what Riek did.They want Equatoria in S.Sudan to fight on their behave while enjoying outside the country.Coem start fight first.

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    • 26 March 07:27, by Joseph Canada

      What you said yesterday is what every Dinka Nipotistical blind have always said. But what I can tell you right now is to wait and let the Smart people of Equatoria decide the fate of this Nation. Give them time.

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      • 26 March 08:10, by mathem jech amer

        Joseph Canada
        You should abandoned lost boys name, abandon slavery where you are cleaning white men teeth, toilets and so many bad things in US, claiming to be smart. Better call yourself, Joseph Juba, Joseph Maridi and so post.Do you knoiw how to fight?or you know how to hide,calling yourself refugee,slave,lost girl, lost dog and so on.

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        • 26 March 08:35, by Mi diit

          WES governor Joseph Bakosoro is a diehard supporter of Riek Machar. But it is good to temporarily fool Kiir until when the time comes. The D-day when he and the others I know, will declare their open support to Dr. Machar. Ahahhaaa...

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        • 26 March 09:32, by Joseph Canada

          hahahaha.. You think the white mans teeth need the second person’s cleaning like those hummers you have like Elephant tasks on your mouth Bro? hahahahahaha!!!! what I do here is greater than what you think. All Lost boys are Dinka and Nuer only!! man you make me laugh!! Donkeys like you are hard to be worded message.

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      • 26 March 11:44, by Jewish Ally

        it is really wondering me want i see all South Sudanese spreading lies and propaganda in the media. but actual happening on ground is always overlook. at the end of the day the truth will reveal itself. whether equatoria side with rebellion or Government! it won’t stop southerners from dying. senseless and primitive behaviours of our people is regarded all over the world. let embrass peace only.

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    • 26 March 15:09, by King of Nyamlel

      Wani Tombe is a coward man. Where were he when his agemates dashed to the bush to librate the people of South Sudan. he will die without getting a job in our present! The worst it becomes, the better we want. We are ready for another Wani than our vice president!!

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    • 27 March 05:29, by Tong dut

      You have killed all your relatives to rule the graves, Are you realy reasonable?
      Stand for election, not hiding like a rat in hole.We hope soon you are going to die like any Nuer dogs.
      Why do you spoiled south sudan, we hate you brother,

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    • 27 March 05:36, by Tong dut

      @ we want Poul Wani Tombee to come to equatoria and raise his voice,why is he hiding.stay in south sudan and give you suggestion not in uganda or with Macher the devil.
      Don,t create problem to Bari tribes,we know Ladu Goree is with Machar,Try it Poul wani Tombee.

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  • 26 March 07:23, by Bentiu son

    Congratulation comrades from Greater Equatoria region for boldly shown your political and military stance during this crises and messes caused by Salva Kiir and his arrogant cabinet.Yes,during any crises often opportunists, betrayers, traitors and gossipers benefits. Dinka women,Wani Igga, Elias Lomoro, Wani Konga and Lobong won’t soever stance with you but just continue they will follow u later

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    • 26 March 07:33, by Joseph Canada

      Bantiu , don’t worry about those Money and food lovers. For Lobong, we already know he didn’t fight for South Sudan. He was in the Mudukuru side killing his own brothers, while Wani was the Governor of the Dinka land and studied with Dinka and raised by Dinka under the tree. thats why he was nominated on first place. We don’t care food lovers. we care the Nation and the lost of the National Army.

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      • 26 March 07:49, by Awei-ngok

        Joseph Canada,you are an idiot with no good senses to talk here.Look, you are very contradictory...if Wani was raised by Dinka, would Dinka will have risked themselves with Riek Machar if it was not because of Diversity in South Sudan? You are barking. Of ocurse he fought tirelessly with us when you were in exile and eating only.Nothing more you did this country and that is why he has been good.

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    • 26 March 07:33, by Bentiu son

      Enough is enough for kokoro policy,Dinkacrocy, ant-democratic sentiment,selfishness,marginalization,discrimination,domination,corruption, grabbing of people land and mistreatment. Let us join hands so that we finalize thei power greed once and for all across the country.Look,Dinka regime brought all foreign forces to defense their genocidal kingdom from Nuer warriors whom they cowardly massacred

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  • 26 March 07:31, by George Bol

    Nuer rebels are so desperate to the extent that they even write on behalf of other tribes. They are trying to lobby through lies and cries. They Naath are coming to their sense of dying horse. You can see their writing crazily in almost every websites. SPLA is at the outskirt of nasir.Stepping on Salva Kiir was a mistake by Naath food lovers

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    • 26 March 07:43, by Bentiu son

      George Bol,yes,genetically, a son is like father, Dinkas became lies manufacturers from your paramount Salva Kiir to toilet cleaners.You can see them in their Dinka owned SSTV where they make baseless allegations,unfounded accusations and fabrication reports against Dr Machar n his Nuer tribal men What barbaric and savage community? Stop lying,what other tribes’ name used by Nuer boys on website?

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  • 26 March 07:40, by Awei-ngok

    Bentiu son, so you have just managed with your stolen South Sudanese funds to hire GRECOR to launch a mobilization campaigns for Equatoria innocent and neutral people?The diaspora people should be issued arrest warrants even by their parents,brothers and sisters plus relatives back home alike.Wani Tombe should come physically and talk to Equatorians by his mouth but no through this fucken website.

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    • 26 March 07:50, by Bentiu son

      Dinka moron boy,look your selfish and stupidity,you Dinka campaign to involve the Whole Africa Continent and world at large as to fight on your behalf against the Nuer whom you had massacred in Juba,Bor, Malakal and Bentiu while you abhorrently rejecting others not to support Nuer warriors against ur brutal regime which affect everyone in RSS. What a joke? Waw! Dinka this is ur last chance monkey

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      • 26 March 08:19, by George Bol

        Bentiu ,
        Just worry about Riek Machar for him no airport in Africa he will fled if he still in the continent,but I am doubt because he fled already in February to England,while Nuer are being fried for their stupidity. Dec 15,2013 must be a great day for gaar/naath.

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  • 26 March 08:03, by Ajongtar

    Dear Readers the statement was misquoted by Sudan Tribune, what was said in the press statement was that We as Greater Equotorians are going to wage a war against the 2 Greater of Upper nile and Bahar-elgazals respectively.
    Becse the on going war that is going in the newest nation is all about Dinkasm and Nuersm.
    No equatorians we are just used as a donkey to facilitate between the two Dinka.

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  • 26 March 08:20, by Chol A.

    Can other Nuerawi who are celebrated about propaganda statement of Sudan tribune read that? It only some of " GRECOR members to seek the government’s attention for their own advantage" that true who ever follow that wrong path will regrets just like others Nuer who now shame and confuse of what to do.

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    • 26 March 09:36, by Joseph Canada

      By the way Bor is Burning again and Ugandan Soldiers are back to their country this weekend.

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    • 26 March 09:40, by Ambago

      Dear readers
      In today’s divided south Sudan,there are the government supporters and the rbellion supporters. Bokosoro is still in the government. But you can’t rightly say where the majority of Equatoria’s support is at the moment.
      Once John Garang was saying one thing and George Kongor & Moses Machar were saying the opposite.So some people supported Garang, while others joined the NCP belly guys

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      • 26 March 11:13, by Letigolight

        When Samuel annointed Saul as King of Israel, in the face of the mighty enemy - the Palestines, Saul went to consult the demons instead of waiting for Samuel the servant of God to offer acceptable sacrifice to the sovereign GOD!, to the demise of Saul and the Isralites! Kiir has been worshipping the demonic spirits and we Equatorians will not support a devil worshipper for our own demise!

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  • 26 March 11:21, by Letigolight

    We do not want war but our patience has run thin! we can no longer condone corruption, Kiir, Wani Igga and even Gier Chuang once arrested have constructed hotels in Adis like Solomon’s Kingdom costing millions to billions of US dollars! This war is JUST, we are gearing up and we will fight! It is not about tribes, even we will slaughter Wani Igga and preserve the life of Kuol Manyang Juk. D-DAY...

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  • 26 March 15:37, by Kim Deng

    Other coward Jurs (Nyam-Nyam, Burun, Shilluk, Anyuak...) have only two choices, either to remain neutral or join the coward Jaang/Slaves. The Mighty Nuer Warriors are capable of confronting those 60+ coward Jurs.

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  • 26 March 18:36, by Kuonkech

    you G.Equatorians with your Nuer, why don’t you start now here in Juba than telling lies through this webside. Riek and those of Lado Tombe together with alfred Lado have never experence the pains of being a rebel. listen you guys, Riek was in the bush upto 1991, did you asked him why the so called Nuer defected from the government you said to be tribalism or dankdism? you are confused.

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  • 26 March 23:27, by Bolong

    Greater Equatoria Elders committee outside South-Sudan, do not be confused by the peace talk going on in Addis-Ababa. There will be no deal with the rebel of Riek Machar. If you don’t believe it, then I am sorry. You are looking for more treble on your three states. No more appeasement this time. Be a supporter of the government or a rebel.

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