Open letter to the people of the great state of Jonglei

Category: Commentary
Published on Wednesday, 25 January 2012 19:09
Written by Manyang A. Gak, The New Sudan Vision (NSV), www.newsudanvision.com
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 Dear beloved people of Jonglei, it’s another year, so please wake up and stand upright for peace! The great state of Jonglei has been on the state of violence that needs more attention from the people of the state. In recent weeks, the beloved state of Jonglei has been a focal point of Medias’ discussion both locally and internationally when Lou Nuer armed-youth matched into Murle villages and killed unconfirmed number of civilians, stole cattle, and burned many huts to ashes. This time around the problem is from both Lou Nuer and Murle tribes massacred themselves aimlessly. It should not be ignored and seen as isolated issue it is the issue that affecting the whole state, all communities in it. This issue has been ignored for so long by both local and central government by labeling the conflict as culturally and minor. But today it needs an immediate action from government. I believe the people of Jonglei have right to protection from the government.

The central government should provide protection to prevent further fighting and massacres. Dr. John Garang de Mabior once stated it during singing of the CPA seven year ago that, "with this peace agreement there will be no more bombs dropping from the sky on innocent children and women”. Instead of the cries of children and the wailing of women and the pain of the last 21 years of war, peace will bless us by once more hearing the happy giggling of children and the enchanting ululations of women who are excited in happiness for one reason or other." I personally believe that to put to end this tribal conflict, the government should engage local chiefs, community elders, church leaders, and youth from all over Jonglei in the peace process. This idea of including all the stakeholders in the state will help provides lasting peace and stability where each member of the community should be obligated to act as a good citizen. The stakeholders are essential for lasting peace and stability.

In this letter, I am calling upon all our people from greater state of Jonglei to join hands in peace and reconciliations process to bring stability in the state so that our people can start enjoying their peace dividends as rest of the states are enjoying theirs. You should cooperate with the government and work entirely for peace and stability in our state. It is so sad and disturbing to see our beloved people from Jonglei state live in fear and worry of death. Since peace was initially realized by the people of South Sudan, our beloved people of Jonglei state are still living in fear from each other. However, we the people of Jonglei must act now than later to unite our communities (tribes) in the whole state.

Let us work for peace and unity rather that pursuing hatred and political rhetoric. During all these conflicts, many people mostly from Diasporas have been inciting this rampant conflict in Jonglei state by putting blames on each community without finding the real cause of fighting and solutions. I am one again calling all our people to come together with one voice and condemn this act of fighting. Diversity is good and we the people of greater state of Jonglei need to live in peace. Our diverse background is vital important and we don’t want that to be stolen by conflict. Inciting conflict is dangerous and will not bring any good to the people of greater Jonglei state. Thus to eventually realize peace and tranquil in the greater state of Jonglei, all the stakeholders need to involve in peace and reconciliation process. All communities across the state of Jonglei must to take a lead in reconciliation process by initial peace campaign.

Also it should be a job for youth to choose peace instead of violence. Further, our governments both state and central need to put in place some protection measures to prevent civilians from massacring themselves as thus far. Therefore, peace initiative will be very essential for averting conflict among the communities of Jonglei state. Please together let us stop inciting fighting among our beloved people of Jonglei state and let us choose to take a lead in bringing peace to them. Otherwise, the message here is clear, let us stop violence and start seeking for peace and stability. The conflict in Jonglei should not be seen as an isolated issue, it will affect a new country if correct measures are not immediately taken.

Lastly, I am writing this message at my comfort zone and many of you may be wondering why I am caring much about the conflict happening across the oceans which is somehow not affecting me. But without any doubt, the tribal fighting in my home state of Jonglei is greatly affecting me emotionally, mentally, and psychologically. It irritated me as a son of Jonglei state and always wondering what my people of Jonglei should do to bring peace and stability. What should be done so all the tribes in the state would live together peacefully and in harmony. Thank you so much and God bless you all.

Respectfully yours,

Manyang A. Gak