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INTERVIEW: Top official from Juba university joins South Sudan rebels

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March 27, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) – A top official of the University of Juba has defected to the South Sudanese rebels led by the former vice president, Riek Machar, vowing to work for the removal of president Salva Kiir whom he accused of being a “terrible dictator and fascist.”

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A member of South Sudan’s rebel SPLM-In-Opposition patrols the streets of Upper Nile state capital Malakal, on 4 March 2014 (Photo: AFP /Andrei Pungovschi)

Oyet Nathaniel Pierino, who heads the Department of Political Science in the University of Juba, in an exclusive interview in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, said he and his group from the Greater Equatoria region had now joined Machar’s opposition group to topple Kiir’s regime either at the negotiation table or in the battle fields.

“I join SPLM/A In Opposition not just as an individual but as a group from Equatoria under my leadership because of the failure of leadership of president Salva Kiir. He has become terrible dictator and fascist,” he declared.

He accused Kiir of planting tribalism, corruption, nepotism and dictatorship in the new nation as well as handing over the country’s sovereignty to the foreign countries such as Uganda.

Pierino holds president Kiir accountable for what he said was the genocide his “tribal private militias” committed against unarmed civilians of the Nuer ethnic group in Juba in December last year and continued to commit.

He called on the international community to sanction individuals in the Juba regime that are responsible for the “mess” in the country, beginning with president Salva Kiir and his mentor, the Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni.

The senior academician also condemned the proposed deployment of IGAD troops to the region, warning this will regionalize the internal conflict where each side will look for allies to fight on its side.

He further warned that the SPLM In Opposition may seek another neutral mediator should some IGAD member states continue to meddle in the internal conflict by militarily supporting president Kiir.

Pierino envisioned an interim government without Salva Kiir prior to elections as a resolution to the conflict, adding that during the interim period Machar would establish a new constitution based on federalism which would give answers for the shortcomings in the system as well as under which Machar would seek additional mandate as president.

“Whether through military triumph in Juba, there will be an interim administration and we will hold elections in the shortest time possible to seek mandate and consent of the people of South Sudan, and if the people will not give Dr. Riek mandate, he will go home and the nation continues…,” he concluded.

Below is the full text of the interview…

Q: Why did you decide to join SPLM in opposition?

A: I join SPLM/A in opposition not just as an individual but as a group from Equatoria under my leadership because of the failure of leadership of president Salva Kiir. He has become terrible dictator and fascist. Kiir has failed first of all to provide peace dividend to South Sudanese. South Sudanese expected development, prosperity in social political and economic aspect of the society. President Kiir instead promoted corruption, tribalism and nepotism which resulted into his tribe-mates becoming masters of others. They are the ones who had access to wealth and resources in the country. He stocked his government mostly with Dinka tribe-mates and appointed close relatives to positions of authority. President Kiir abused his powers by breaking the constitutions by interfering with independence of judiciary. In 2011 he dismissed the chief justice and appointed another one. He dismissed three governors and appointed new ones thought they were elected. He encouraged the arbitrary use of power such that national and state constitutions, legislature and judiciary were nonfunctional. President Kiir dissolved the historical SPLM party and planned to assassinate its members. He arrested most of the historical leaders. He now rules the government and the party whom he dissolved the structures single-handedly by decrees. He raised another army of 13,000 soldiers only from Dinka Bar el Gazel only. He used them to commit genocide in the country. I cannot be ruled by a blood thirsty president. He further promoted sectarianism within the SPLA ranks and file. With his unfair promotion and appointment he marginalized other people especially those from Greater Equatoria. He compromised the sovereignty of the republic by inviting foreign forces composed of UPDF, JEM, SPLM-N, et,c to protect his regime. He is now pursuing a path of isolating South Sudan from the international community by attacking international community especially the UN, AU, EU, etc, calling them to leave the country. Nobody organized coup in South Sudan. If president Kiir says coup has taken place in South Sudan, he is the one who organized it by attempting to disarm his bodyguards who were Nuer, dissolving SPLM party and arresting the leaders. He has now effectively placed the country under state of emergency and suspended the operation of the constitution and placed the country under foreign military rule and dictatorship.

Q: Will you have any roles on the peace talks?

A: Definitely, directly or indirectly I will have a role in the peace talks. First of all, as one of the leaders of a popular resistance and a freedom fighter, I will use my force to ensure that president Salva Kiir negotiates not just an end to the war but also an end to his leadership and the system he has created which people do not want. He has committed genocide; he has lost his legitimacy. I fight to hold him accountable whether through peace talks or at the battle field. War and negotiation to me serve the same purpose. The forces we have at our background is a deterrent to president Kiir further perpetuation of Dinkaism ideology and fascism and will effectively put the system he created to a quick end. People should not panic, the war will not last long because we have the capability to end it on a just term. We need good peace not just [any] peace. It is not about ending the war but addressing the fundamental causes that triggered the war. Which of course overhaul of fragility he created in the State.

Q: What do you think will resolve the crises in South Sudan?

A: If president Kiir steps down today we will stop fighting and begin an inclusive negotiation of a complete overhaul of the system he created for the last 9 years. We need new government with new and a federal constitution, in which power shall be vested in the people, not a single man who used it arbitrarily through senseless decrees. And if president Kiir insists to remain in power against people’s will, him and his group will not only be pushed out by force but also pursue them anywhere they will be. We cannot return to the status quo, never! That will mean people who lost their lives in struggle since 1955-1972, 1975-1982, 1983-2005, and now from 2013 up to date would have died amiss. He has committed genocide, he should account for it.

Q: What do you think about the IGAD’s decision to deploy regional forces in South Sudan?

A: What is being called PDF [Protection and Deterrent Force] will never work. This is unacceptable development in the mediation process. First of all agreement should never be imposed on parties. Mutual agreement would be implemented voluntarily by parties. Instead of being seen as part of the problem, IGAD should concentrate on building trust, confidence among the warring parties. If they insist on this force, we are ready to protract the war by hibernating into the bushes of South Sudan and we will also invite our friends in the region and let IGAD come and fight us. IGAD now is fast losing its neutrality. We have been giving IGAD benefit of doubt but the decision now they have taken will have ramifications and we will not hesitate to look for a neutral mediator if that becomes necessary so that IGAD member states can join the war on the side they want.

Q: How do you see Uganda’s role in South Sudan considering it also is member state of the regional bloc?

A: First of all we are fully aware that in 2010, president Kiir and president Museveni met in Kampala and discussed how to protect their regimes. In 2012, they again met in Entebbe State House in Uganda and drew a master-plan of eliminating their political opponents by having joint security system. The first casualty was late Gen. George Athor who was murdered in his hotel room in Entebbe road in Uganda; his body was later flown and dumped in Morobo County of Central Equatoria state. The two presidents opened up a training camp in the suburb of Juba called Kampala one. This was where they raised and trained 13,000 private army for president Kiir. It was this militia who were not part of the main SPLA command that was part of the forces that committed genocide in Juba and other parts of the country in the name of protecting the regime of president Salva Kiir. It is Uganda who is running the show. Uganda’s president planted the mess in our country. They also compromised the neutrality of IGAD. In fact some of the texts in IGAD communiqués are direct copy and paste from Uganda government press releases. They actually undermined almost every effort not only by IGAD but also Ethiopia to mediate the peace and Uganda will pay the price, am telling you. They destroyed Bor town, Bentiu, Malakal, etc. Uganda, JEM and SPLM/A-N are now being paid by dollars that comes from the oil in Bentiu. Uganda is a war merchant in the region, they are in DRC Congo, in Central African Republic, Somalia etc, and would not want to see an end to this conflict soon and we are ready to battle it out with them. They are not immortal and an highland in the ocean that cannot be reached.

Q: How is the humanitarian situation at the UN camps?

A: We have dire humanitarian situations especially with those displaced in bushes and UNMISS camps. People live in squalid conditions as if they are stateless. President Kiir’s forces continue to pursue them there and calling them rebels. He even wants the IDPs released in his hand so that he can finish them. That is why he is calling for UNMISS to leave the country and he has now put them under target by inciting the armed forces and his militias as well as the general public against the UNMISS. We condemn this act in strongest terms possible. Any loss or casualties suffered by UNMISS, president Kiir should be held responsible. He is very comfortable with the suffering of the Nuer women and children in the UNMISS camps. There is a need for food supply, medicine, clean water and shelter to the hundreds of thousands of displaced in the shortest run while in the long run they need to be relocated, resettled and reintegrated to their original lives in society.

Q: Is there any call you want to make to the international community?

A: Yes, they should stop the flow of the oil because it is being used for financing mercenaries and war. There is blood oil now flowing in South Sudan. Another option is to allow the oil to flow but the money should not be used by the government or us until such a time just peace comes. If they want structural changes in the government of South Sudan, they should add incentives for the government to adhere to inclusive and comprehensive negotiations on all aspects. Incentives should include; targeted sanctions on government’s officials beginning with President Museveni, and then; President Salva Kiir, minister of Defense; Gen. Kuol Manyang Juuk, Minister of Security; Mobutu Mamur Mete, Governor of Northern Bar el Gazel State; Malong Awan, Commander of presidential Guards Division; Marial Chanuong, Director for SPLA Military Intelligence; Mac Paul, Minister of Cabinet Affairs; Elia Lomuro, Vice president Gen. James Wani Igga, SPLA DCOGS for Administration Gen. Malual Ayom, Director for Internal Security Brig. Gen. Akol Koor, Director for External Security; Brig Gen. Thomas Duoth,former deputy speaker SSLA, Awet Akot, Chief presidential advisorTelar Riing, presidential spokesperson and government chief propagandist; Ateny Wek Ateny, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Marial Benjamin etc. These individuals we will always hold them accountable for what happened in the country.

Q: What do you say about forming an interim government in South Sudan?

A: It is a must. If negotiations should be conclusive, president Kiir should step aside immediately. It is non-negotiable. President Kiir is the symbol of the status quo; those who want peace in South Sudan should advise him to step down. President Kiir and his government have squandered their legitimacy; mandate of protecting the people and committed genocide. They have also lost control of the entire Upper Nile region and part of Equatoria region. Why should they continue ruling and imposing their will on the people of South Sudan without their consent? We need interim neutral administration without Kiir. Of course we will negotiate the mechanism and modality of interim administration which shall include anybody who will participate in the interim administration [but] will not take part in any elections in the country.

Q: Do you suggest the interim government excludes Salva and Riek?

A: President Kiir can never be part of the interim government. He had enough time to display his leadership but he proved himself incapable. He now rules under the direct order and command of president Museveni. Of course Dr. Riek and I believe in democracy. Whether through military triumph in Juba, there will be an interim administration and we will hold elections in the shortest time possible to seek mandate and consent of the people of South Sudan, and if the people will not give Dr. Riek mandate, he will go home and the nation continues. As simple as that!

(ST)

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  • 28 March 06:31, by Awei-ngok

    Even whatever number of educated persons join Riek, they will all be defeated. Equatorians want to be refugees again because of the foolish Riek’s policies...I am sorry for the innocent lives exposed to Riek vultures.

    repondre message

    • 28 March 08:25, by John The President

      Message to KIIR
      Today I want to remind you of what Garang said during our hard time, when a great number of high ranking officers and intellectuals failed to persist the bush life and here is the message and I quote "even if all joint Khartuom including one of my legs, I will continue with the one remaining leg untill the victory is achieved" his legs were those of Riek, this guy is desperately.

      repondre message

      • 28 March 08:33, by John The President

        .. seeking for something to sustain, he heard that those in Addis are enjoying live in hotel with the money pour in by EU and IGAD, his salary as a lecture can no longer sustain him leave alone his kids. lastly, Democray by force will never and shall never reign in this country, we must denounce this act of killing civilains. it’s out of order to rebelled and still think a song democay...

        repondre message

  • 28 March 06:37, by Bentiu son

    Thanks you very much Democratic leader and Prof Oyet Nathaniel Pierino-the heads Department of Political Science in the University of Juba,you really hit the nail right. Arabs say,’’truth is bitter but last longer while lies is sweets but has got short term period’’. Bible said ’say the truth and the truth will set you free’’. Welcome bravo you have made my day today. Freedom is paramount one.

    repondre message

    • 28 March 06:49, by Bentiu son

      Sava Kiir and his yesmen/women must go by all mean necessary whether through bullets or ballot boxes. We had enough of them all because they became lies manufacturers,corruptists, tribalists,bourgeoisie,land grabbers,Yoweri Museveni pupets, crooks,nepotists, dictators and Dinka slaves/women.

      repondre message

    • 28 March 07:27, by Jewish Ally

      So amazing in South Sudan, a land where there is no Rule of Law and strong Constitution. a land where one think to do what He/she like without query. rebellion in South Sudan is something simple. the principle is: you sack me from my job and i rebel against your rule. no wonder i think every South Sudanese deserve to rebel from now till the end of time. and this country will be hell on earth.

      repondre message

      • 28 March 07:34, by Jewish Ally

        i think Kiir and group should resign and form their own rebel force if this is the only way one is recognize in the South Sudan. because Riek Machar is a worse dictator than President Kiir but people condoned the latter than the former. lol we shall see where this so call politician are leading us to. i done care about once tribe whether you are Nuer, Dinka, Nyamnyam or Luo, what we need is peace.

        repondre message

      • 28 March 08:00, by Yuol

        @ Jewish Ally
        thanks for your observation that is exactly the case of South Sudan, trust me this is just the beginning otherwise such statements or interviews create more gaps specially to one tribe single out as a problem (Dinka). assume Dinka being isolated would that government work? time will tell

        repondre message

  • 28 March 06:40, by Maguangdit

    Sudantribune, stop craps or your rubbishes! You have really become sickening with made up stories.

    repondre message

  • 28 March 06:49, by philipdit wol

    This is not the solution if we keep rebellion ever now and then, that is not the really demoacry on the ground.

    repondre message

  • 28 March 07:10, by Chol A.

    Because you lost job you can than reside with rebels if that can be solution than you be shame soon as rebels are now ending path. Some Equatorian like you are known of being hatred against other tribes and I am sure your residing with rebels it nothing but you be shame indeed mr traitor.

    repondre message

    • 28 March 07:49, by Joseph Canada

      Ahmed chol, you are very wrong. Equatorians are not haters and never nepotistic or tribalistic. That’s why equatorians call them selves equatorians without mentioning tribes. Your reasoning as a foolish man comes all the way from where you were born and raised and it’s not your fault. Poor good kid like u need education from the mom’s uterus

      repondre message

  • 28 March 07:52, by Axiox

    Where was this Pierino’s bravery during war against Sudan? A Political science major & cant handle his quarrels diplomatically? Everyone want’s to be a rebel until they taste the bitterness of war. Our oil isn’t going to last forever and yet we’re wasting developmental resources fighting primitive cattle herders.

    repondre message

    • 28 March 08:52, by Frak Cho

      Confused country with confused seemingly educated person like Oyet. Tribe is being used as a ticket of the day just to please oneself.

      repondre message

  • 28 March 09:59, by 4Justice

    If Salva Kiir and his self-enrichment satanic cult are wiring millions of US Dollars to their families in Australia, USA and other Europeans Countries, what is left for Oyet to do?

    Once the looting and destruction of South Sudan is complete, Salva and his demons can then retreat to their mansions [bought with stolen money] in Australia, South Africa, Rwanda etc and enjoy their stolen money without any remorse whatsoever.

    repondre message

  • 28 March 13:01, by Mapuor

    This thug must be suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder.Why blame everything on Kiir?Is the president ruling the country using remote control.My dear,there are institutions with specialized functions working together as a system,blaming everything on Kiir is stupid and barbaric.Hahah look at such people who pretend to be professors.Hoo fake degrees.

    repondre message

    • 28 March 14:12, by Adodi Jotuwa

      Ya Nathaniel Oyet Pierino,
      You want to be called "top official" of Juba University because of publicity or declaration of your support to Dr. Fool Riek? We all know that ST is like a computer keyboard, it can type whatever letter is hit. If ST comes to Juba University today, do you still think that it can believe what you claim to be, besides being a political position seeker through Riek?

      repondre message

      • 28 March 14:14, by Adodi Jotuwa

        Ya Nathaniel Oyet Pierino,
        how shallow/deep are you convinced that “interim government” would be formed in order to get Dr. Fool Riek seated on the Presidential chair in the Palace regardless of his constant shift of allegiance since 1991? Do you believe that Dr. Fool Riek will win the current war no matter how it becomes protracted? Don’t rely on wishful thinking and abstract principles.

        repondre message

    • 28 March 14:13, by Letigolight

      Mapuor, at least I can see your desperation as you try to lambast South Sudanese who are expressing their dissatisfaction at the Gogrial Cow boy who has failed measerably in his mandate as the president! He has the chance to save his dwindled legacy by stepping down; Can you imagine he declined to go to the UK because?

      repondre message

    • 28 March 14:34, by Whortti Bor Manza

      Read the RSS 2011 constitution thoroughly, you will discover that Kiir has absolute power typical to that of a bloody dictator. Rebellion is always started by one man or a few, but slowly many join in. The quick end of this narco idiot will only be brought about by his fellow tribesmen the Dinkas from Gogrial or Tonj. Salva is a disgrace, curse and punishment for South Sudanese from God.

      repondre message

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