Home | Comment & Analysis    Thursday 13 February 2020

How hope for peace in South Sudan turned into despair

By Luke Geng Geng, Kuajok

While the ongoing peace talk in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) seems to be flattering again with no signs of positive progress as it is already heading to no direction in like manner as past rounds with possible adjournment at public view, the two SPLM parties need to be told on how they are watering down the hypes and hopes for peace of million south Sudan citizens across the country. Lets’ say enough is enough! These political leaders should know that it is incumbent upon them to revive the fading hopes for lasting peace by million South Sudanese at this particular juncture.

The young South Sudan nation was deeply immersed into its current political crisis in December 2013 when it began in somewhat seems to be a power struggle between the two leaders of SPLM IG and SPLM IO respectively but in 2015 the two leaders and their parties came together on round table agreeing on the R-ARCSS which set the hope for all. Until then despite the deal, the South Sudan citizens continued to languish in untold suffering while the political leaders continue to enjoy the show in a un-ending manner, and the peace mediators (IGAD, AU and Troika) leaking their best parts as the ongoing but unending political wrangle between the two top leaders avail these supposed to be an independent bodies the best opportunities to exploit them maximally.

The IGAD members and AU brokered peace for South Sudan has become a multi-million project, therefore pushing the South Sudanese leaders to reach deadlock may mean the end of their contracts, as a result, you cannot see full commitment looking into the eyes of the mediators leave alone the warring parties. With so many opportunities that would have brought the country back to its feet gone missing or not properly seized by South Sudanese leaders by themselves, the only and the last hope for the millions suffering South Sudanese citizens across the nation was the latest extension whose deadline was set on 22 January 2020.

However, time is ticking but the recent outcomes of the first talk round of this expected final peace talk has shown that the politicians are still dancing to their usual tune, for years, we were tossed back and forth between one and the other because our politicians put their interests first leaving us with precarious situation economically, socially and politically to deal with, and this is how it looks like when you have got a country where the politicians put their interests above that of the nation. You will agree with me when you see that there is no consistency in SPLM IO position regarding the number of states and their boundaries needless to mention the other numerous preconditions put forth to be addressed before the formation of the transitional government, no change in position by the SPLM mainstream regarding the number of states and therefore obviously no deadlock to be reached if by no miracle intervention.

Among the hiccups of the adjournments, the February deadline which is now turning to be a nightmare was the ultimate dream peacetime for South Sudan but now we believe that even this time around, still peace will never come if the politicians couldn’t jump out of their political interests to give peace a chance. Today, most South Sudanese seem to be in a gloomy, flat, state of mind, one with no horizon; dully comatose, a politically-induced numbness that has no definite treatment in the hands of the current political leaders.

Because we live in South Sudan, a country that has known so much disappointment, hope (if ever mentioned at all) is always hesitant, a bit timid, and apologetic. Despair, on the other hand, is utterly confident and self-assured, as if speaking on behalf of a law of nature, an axiom that states that between these two peoples there shall never be peace, that the war between them is a heavenly decree, and that altogether, it will always be bad here, nothing but bad.

As despair sees it, anyone who still hopes, who still believes in the possibility of peace, is at best naïve, or a deluded dreamer, and at worst, someone who stands optimistic for peace is looked at by pessimist as someone backing a wrong tree or who doesn’t know what the truth is, sincerely speaking, there is no hope for peace, every single hope if exist is often dashed, this is how the hope of million South Sudanese citizens seems to be succeeded by despair.

Interestingly, the question that rings in the minds of every Sudan Sudanese citizen posts itself this way; if these politicians don’t care for their nation, citizens and their sufferings then to whom are they negotiating for? The formation of the transitional government has been deferred twice and the big fear is the next extension.

While the lives of thousands of people across the nation continue to worsen days and nights, South Sudanese politicians must find a just and sustainable south Sudanese based solution in Juba in their final negotiation. Up to here, I rest my point.

The author based in Gogrial State, Kuajok. For contacts, he can be reached at lukageng@gmail.com