Name: Paulino Matip Nhial Nyaak| Paulino Matiep Nhial Nyaak
Title: Lieutenant General
Born: 1942, Ngop, Mayom County, Unity State, South Sudan
Died: 01.00 am local time, 22 August 2012, Mayo Clinic, Nairobi, Kenya.
Career: Police Sergeant in Wangkai and Mankien towns of Mayom County in Unity State, 1973-1975; Member of the Anya-nya II movement, 1976-1982; Deputy Chairman of Anya-nya II, 1983-1988; Chairman of Anya-nya II, 1988 approx.-1996; Member of the South Sudan Independence Movement/Army (SSIM/A); Chairman and Commander-in-Chief of the South Sudan United Movement (SSUM), 1997; Commander-in-Chief of the South Sudan Defense Forces (SSDF), 2002/2004-2006 ;Deputy Commander in Chief of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), 2006-2012.
Religion: Catholic, Christian
Family: Matip had 47 wives and when he died was survived by 102 children; 55 boys and 47 girls. One of older sons, Kang Paulino Matip, played a prominent immediately role after Matip’s death.
He was born in 1942 in a place called Ngop in the present Mayom County in Unity state. Gen. Matip married to 47 wives and survived by 102 children; 55 are boys and 47 are girls. In 1973-1975 he served as a police sergeant in Wangkai and Mankien towns of Mayom County in Unity state. He joined Anya-nya II movement from 1976-1982 in Bilpam and was trained in Dire Dawa and Gondor towns in Ethiopia, after which he was commissioned as 2nd Lt. by the Anya-nya II movement.
After a disagreement in the formation of the SPLM/A involving his chairman, Gordon Koang Chol in 1983, Paulino Matip became the deputy chairman of the Anya-nya II under the chairmanship of Gordon Koang. Between 1987-1991 he became the chairman of Anya-nya II after Gen. Gordon Koang Chol rejoined the SPLM/A in 1988. In 1996 Gen. Matip joined the South Sudan Independence Movement/Army (SSIM/A).
In 1997 he formed his own organization called South Sudan United Movement (SSUM) and became its chairman and commander-in-chief. Between 2002 to 2004 he became the commander-in-chief of the South Sudan Defense Forces (SSDF); and in 2005 participated in the grand signing of the CPA in Nairobi, Kenya, and on his part led the South-South Dialogue with late Dr. John Garang de Mabior.
On January 8, 2006, he signed the famous Juba Declaration with the President of South Sudan, Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit. He was immediately promoted to the rank of Lt. General in the army and appointed the deputy commander-in-chief of the SPLA until his death on 22 August 2012.
Paulino Matip Nhial will be remembered by some as the first powerful militia leader who sought to reconcile with the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) after the signing of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).
However, his troops clashed different times with SPLA forces in Unity State due to tribal rivalry with the state governor Taban Deng Gai, who is a Dinka. But the latter always denied such differences with him.
At the time, sources said Matip, despite the merger treaty with the SPLA wanted to have his troops under his direct command. Paulino Matip’s aides and officers have long complained of marginalisation within the SPLA, citing tribal discrimination against the Nuer.
General Peter Gadet, one of Matip’s close aides, broke away from the SPLA in March 2011 before reintegrating back into the South Sudanese army (SPLA) in August 2011 after a deal negotiated with the government. However, despite Gadet’s return many refused to reintegrate with the SPLA and the South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA) has continued its rebellion.
Paulino Matip Nhial died after suffering from diabetes and high blood pressure. At the time of his death he was awaiting a visa to travel to the United States where he already visited in August 2008 for medical treatment that lasted till January 2009.
Unity State observed an three day period of mourning beginning on the day Matip was buried in Mayom County on 24 August 2012.
Paulino Matip Nhial - Links
Paulino Matip Nhial - Videos
August 7, 2008 | Gen. Paulino Matip Nhial-Deputy C-in-C of SPLA | youtube.com
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