September 14, 2016 (JUBA) – South Sudanese president, Salva Kiir, should resign from the presidency after the exposure of his involvement in the documented corruption practices, says spokesperson for the armed opposition leader, Riek Machar.
- President Salva Kiir adresses a joint press conference on 9 July 2016 (Reuters Photo)
A 65-page report by US-based ‘The Sentry’ organization has revealed for the first time evidences of documented gross corruption practices involving President Kiir and his immediate family members, including his adolescent kids who also hold company shares worth millions of dollars.
Among Kiir’s children involved in their father’s revealed “groundbreaking” corruption in the report includes his 12-year-old son who held a 25% stake in a holding company formed in February this year.
Overall, the report has revealed evidences showing that at least 7 of Kiir’s children – sons and daughters – with their names as well as companies’ shares recorded in the report, and also with Kiir’s wife, Mary Ayen Mayardit, have held stakes in various national and international business ventures through dubious deals at the expense of the suffering people.
Machar’s spokesperson, James Gatdet Dak, said the report has painted a “shameful” picture for the president who should resign for the sake of his dignity and leave others to change the nation.
“If Salva Kiir is part of the world where shame is a heavy burden to carry and quitting voluntarily from public office is a wise decision to attempt to regain one’s dignity in the face of that shame, I think he should resign immediately following the shameful exposure of his immeasurable corruption, together with his family,” Dak told Sudan Tribune.
“This corruption revelation has shown one thing very clear, that these leaders in Juba and their family members are a bunch of people who do not have vision for the country and the lives of their people,” he added.
The Sentry has found evidence that the top officials responsible for mass atrocities in South Sudan have managed to accumulate fortunes and have been involved in illegal transactions, insider deals and outright fraud.
Dak said his boss, Machar, was not implicated in the report, arguing that the only properties claimed to belong to him are rented and temporary guest houses in Nairobi and Addis Ababa, which are not owned houses.
He also challenged the government for threatening to sue in court The Sentry organization, saying the report implicated President Kiir and his family members by their names and not the government.
It is therefore Kiir as an individual that should sue the organization in court and not the South Sudanese government, he said.
KIIR LOST OPPORTUNITY
Dak further said the South Sudanese president, Kiir, has lost his opportunity to go down the history as a leader whose leadership gave birth to the independence of South Sudan and would have united the people and laid the foundation for development for the future generations.
He said the president will instead go down the “anal of history” as the most corrupt and violent divisive political leader in the history of South Sudan, who had no idea how the nation was born, torn it apart and squandered its wealth in the most “primitive way.”
Dak argued that most dictators in Africa at least provide services to their people, open up roads, build schools, hospitals, and ensure that their people can feed themselves, unlike Kiir who he claimed could not even connect with tarmacked road the national capital, Juba, with his home town of Kwajok, let alone the rest of the country.
The opposition leader claimed that his boss, Machar, provided numerous chances to president Kiir to become a good leader, but wasted such opportunities.
He claimed that when Machar championed the right to self-determination for the people of South Sudan since 1991 which finally brought the independence of South Sudan in July 2011, it was Kiir who was “made” to sign the “first protocol” on self-determination for the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in July 2002. He said this was six months after the Nairobi declaration between Machar and late John Garang, who signed to the self-determination objective for the first time.
“You know the first time for Salva Kiir to actively surface politically was when he was made to sign the Machakos Protocol on self-determination for the CPA in July 2002 in Kenya. It was good that he held to it. But it is unfortunate that he did not know what to do for the people of South Sudan once that self-determination translated into independence,” he said.
When Kiir rebelled against Garang in Yei in November 2004, he added, it was Machar who took him to Rumbek and reconciled him with late Garang, which resulted to him being appointed as vice president in 2005.
Dak further said that when Garang died “mysteriously” in a Ugandan helicopter, Machar also recommended Kiir to replace the late leader, saying although he was not sure how to lead the people, Machar assured him that he was going to support him in the implementation of the agreement.
“But see what has happened now. He has been instead trying to kill Machar who was grooming him with the hope that he would become a good leader for the people and the country,” he said.
“Worst of all, he has turned the country into a madman’s house with dying and suffering people,” Dak lamented.
President Kiir’s spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny, on his part reacted angrily against the exposure of the president’s corruption allegations, saying the government would take The Sentry to court.
However, a top official of The Sentry organization said they have “irrefutable” evidences that the president and his family have involved in the corruption, saying the information and documents were gathered from various partners involved.
“The evidence is thorough, it is detailed and it is irrefutable. It involves arms dealers, international lawyers, international banks, international real estate and it is because of these international actors that we are also able to provide solutions to help end this criminal behaviour to protect innocent civilians,” said Georg Clooney, co-founder of The Sentry, Enough Project.