Home | Comment & Analysis    Sunday 25 March 2018

Open letter to Hon. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth

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By Amb. Telar Ring Deng.

I write this open letter in response to the most unfortunate incendiary allegations widely circulated by Hon. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth and register my utmost disgust and dismay at the allegations posited against my person and circulated to all and sundry with the sole purpose of tarnishing my name.

For starters, it is a fact that is within public domain that my father in law, the late Gen. Andrew Makur Thou has been ailing and was hospitalized in Khartoum. My visit to Sudan was made public from the day I arrived. It is quite unfortunate that you chose to take advantage of this most unfortunate event when we are mourning the passing on of a gallant South Sudanese elder who is also my father in law to spin rhetoric from your very narrow political lenses.

Just to put matters into proper perspective, upon learning of the death of Gen. Makur, the 1st Vice President and Prime Minister of Sudan, H.E. Bakri Hassan Saleh while accompanied by the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff General, Engineer, Emad Edeen Mustafa Adawi and his deputy paid us a courtesy call at Gen. Andrew Makur’s residence in Khartoum to condole with the family. Their visit was predicated on the fact that my father in law was first and foremost an officer of the military of Sudan and that is where he was promoted to the rank of Major General by Lt. Gen Abdel Majid Ahmed Khalil.

Secondly, during the implementation of the CPA period, I was appointed State Minister in the Office of the President. As is my nature, I formed long-term friendships that are beyond political formations. There is absolutely nothing unlawful or illegal for me to meet anyone I so choose. Last I checked, we are, or at least appear to be, a constitutional democracy and the said constitution has not been suspended. This, therefore, means that I am at liberty, while under the protection of the said constitution, to associate as of right. Just to be clear, if I had chosen to meet H.E Bakri Hassan Saleh or any other persons for that matter, I would be at liberty to meet them but that was not my mission in Khartoum.

Furthermore, it is most insulting for me to be equated to Gen. Malong’s poster-boy. I am not Gen. Malong’s envoy akin to John the Baptist in the Bible who has to go ahead of him and prepare/facilitate his arrival in Khartoum. Gen. Malong, just like yourself and any other citizen has a right to associate with whomever he so wishes and for a person of his stature, I doubt he would need any facilitation in order to meet with whomever he so chooses.

It is equally quite unfortunate that in your acts of desperation, you chose to circulate your wild allegations to all who cared to listen including IGAD. You are neither the Minister of Foreign Affairs, an Ambassador nor are you the government’s spokesperson. So the question begs, in what capacity were you addressing IGAD?

For a person of your status, you ought to know and act better than embarking on a wild goose chase. Taking advantage of a death to spin political folktales is at best appalling. The very least you can do is to apologise and retract your wild allegations at the earliest.

Please note that I am not wanting in courage and I warn all of you not to push me against the wall, as many of you in Government has been doing to encourage rebellions in South Sudan; in an attempt to serve your narrow personal interests at the expense of public interest.



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