From: Twic East Community-USA, Open Letter to the President of South Sudan
To: His Excellency, President of the Republic of South Sudan, Salvar Kiir Mayardit,
Cc: his Excellency, Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan, Dr. Riek Machar Teny
Cc: Honorable Speaker, James Wani Igga
Subject: Twic East Community-USA demands Justice for the Family of Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol and South Sudan Nation.
As we remain unwavering in our quest for Peace, Equality and Justice in South Sudan, we hope for a better and brighter future. This renewed hope, is clearly manifested by the level of interest and commitment displayed by the South Sudanese communities around the world. They have been supportive as well as sharing sorrow with the family of deceased, Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol. Although, we acknowledge the significance of ongoing investigations conducted by the United States Federal Bureau o into the mysterious death of Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol, we still stress fully compliance in part of government. The government of South Sudan must assist in offering computer data, cell phones, and communication systems and other necessary materials that would help in the process of investigations. The Twic East Community in the United States demands justice for the family of Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol. As you are aware, Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol was mercilessly and brutally assassinated in Juba by unknown gunmen. We believe, he was killed because he had written controversial articles that are critical about the functions and performance of South Sudan government, and even with that kind of writing, we also believe that there is no justifiable reason whatsoever that could be use to take his life. We believe his killing was deliberately a violation of human rights, freedom of expression and freedom of press. We urge the government to protect all the citizens.
The cruelty perpetrated by the government’s security, police or unknown gunmen against Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol is unacceptable. The government has a constitutional responsibility to provide equal protection for all her citizens. All we are asking for is justice to prevail for Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol as a fundamental right under the South Sudan constitution.
We constitute to share our deepest sorrow and sadness that we extend sympathy on behalf of Twic East Community in United States of America to the family and friends of the late Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol. As we ponder this terrible tragedy, we extend our support and solidarity to them in this time of trial and heartbreaking. No words or condolences can adequately compensate his family and friends for the deepest loss they have suffered, but nevertheless we extend our support and solidarity to them in this time of trial and tragedy.
Diing and his family have significantly contributed to the liberation struggles for our country from 1983 when he first joined SPLA/SPLM until he was brutally murdered 5th December 2012. His tragic death in the prime of his productive life is undeserved, unwarranted and certainly should not go freely unpunished. We are confident that no effort will be spared in swiftly bringing to justice the perpetrators of this hateful, hurtful, and heinous crime to one of our courageous sons. In his own way, even in his death, Diing made a bold statement against evil and injustice act in our beloved country. Diing’s brutal and barbaric murder was certainly not a befitting end to the life of such a patriotic person. His three brothers died in frontline during the liberation for the country. It would be deserved to course of freedom of expression and press, and to freedom, justice and equality they fought for, for 21years.
We pray that Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol’s soul and the sanity of his family and friends as we struggle to deal with this sorrowful lost. May God bless his eternity and rest him in peace and may his light of love and devotion to freedom of expression and press continue to shine in our country. We are looking forward for justice to be served.
Prepared by Twic East Community-USA leadership
Twic East Community-USA
Gabriel Mabeny Kuot- Vice President
David Mayen Majok- Chairperson of board of Director
Deng Chol Yuang- Chairperson of Council
Signatories and witnessed by Payams leadership
Lual Bul- Chairperson Ayual Community (Nyuak Payam)
Abuoi Manychol Deng- Chairperson of Kongor Payam
Apai Mabior Apai-Chairperson of Lith Payam
Alier Reng-Chairperson of Pakeer Payam
Garang Mapior Agany-Chairperson Awulian Community (Nyuak Payam)
Ahou Yuot, vice Chairperson of Dachuek Community (Nyuak Payam)
Australia - We, the Greater Bor community in Australia are profoundly outraged about the assassination of Isaiah Abraham. We are condemning the killing in the strongest terms possible. The circumstances surrounding late Isaiah's death clearly showed that our people are being systematically targeted and we're demoralized beyond words. Our community has been subjected to persistent harassments, false coup allegations and marginalisations and killings by President Kiir’s junta. Who would again dispute the country is back into tyranny, when the Republic of South Sudan is becoming a country where opinion kills. No columnist or journalist deserves to be detained, tortured or murdered for their views.
We commend the government's call to order investigation into Isaiah’s death, however, we're concerned that justice wouldn't be served if the government that appears to be implicated in this heinous act investigates itself. The $50,000 bounty for information leading to arrest of perpetrators behind the death is a sham as we suspect the government's security organs have a hand in the elimination of our brother.
Furthermore, we would like to illuminate for our readers the tenacious role the Greater Bor community played during the liberation of the Republic of South Sudan, the country where we're apparently being executed in. Yet, it's a fac that our community stood patriotically and steadfastly against Jalla and in solidarity with the cause of the people of South Sudan for dignity and freedom, and ultimately independence. Our community's contribution during the ardous struggle is well known and documented. The indomitable forces of Koriom battalion hailed from this community. Their performance in the battlefields was magnificent. They fearlessly fought and won many combats. It was a battalion that inflicted an enormous blows to our former enemies from Khartoum. Koriom battalion destroyed first batch of Jallaba known as “Ten Thousand Troops” at Pan-Wel, Abiryai battle. We carried ourselves with dignity and candour throughout the movement to ensure we achieve the freedom which is appalingly being abused.
We took up arms to reject slavery, marginalisation, suppression, systematic killing, injustice, extortions and corrupt systems amongst many others. We fought for a country where we will be equal citizens and voice out our thoughts freely. We want a country where one can sleep without lingering doubt of being dragged out in the dead of night and imprudently killed in the helpless manner our brother Isaiah Abraham was slained.
We fought for a nation where citizens can walk from Rumbek to Bor, from anywhere to somewhere in South Sudan without being waylaid and torpedoed aimlessly. We fought a system that was full of flaws and deceits. Ironically, the very system we fought tireless against is resurfacing in Juba. Suddenly, our own sons and daughters (South Sudanese) whose responsibilities were/are to protect and maintain law and order have turned deadly like the Jallaba we separated from. It's a failure for Mr. Kiir's administration for citizens to be abducted, tortured and killed in cold blood. We have noticed, with deep regret, that Juba Juba appears to be a subset of old Sudan. Citizens live in terror as if there is no government in place.
We chose to be quiet, thinking things will change down the track, but they deteriorate by the day. The recent cowardice killing of the renowned and insightful writer, Diing Chan Awuol (Isaiah Abraham) is an ominous bombshell for our community and nation at large. It is obvious that the new nation is being hijacked by terrorists who view everybody not from them as an alien. The death of Isaiah is first of its kind for a journalist, but not the first assassination. People are nightly abducted and slaughtered with impunity in Juba, for instance;
First, Colonel Chuol Manyuon Anei, a veteran from Zindia battalion of Koryom was killed on December 24, 2011 in Juba. He was dragged out of his residential house and killed mercilessly.
Second, Angeth Kuech Awan and Atem Awan Maper were deliberately shot and killed in a bank in Juba. No justice is done about their cases.
Third, John Akuach Jook, a lawyer from Makerere University was killed in a highly suspicious mysterious car accident in Juba in December 2008, and until now, the killer is not indicted, and is dangerously on the loose.
Fourth, Mayol Kuch Duoi, a SPLA veteran who was an American citizen was shamelessly bashed to death by SPLA soldiers when he paid visit to his mum at Pan-pandiar. No justice has been done as well.
Fifth, Malong-dit de Aleng's compound in Juba was deliberately fired on with the intention to kill him. Fortunately, they failed..
Sixth, Mading Ngor Akech Kuai, co-founder of the New Sudan vision, former radio talk host, Bhakhita radio station in Juba had his pant ripped apart and terribly beaten in front of Parliament by the lawless officers and now he is still being threatened.
Seventh, Mabior Garang de Mabior and his brother Chol were stalked, ambushed and beaten by a group who identified themselves as being purposely sent for them. The same group may be the cause of Mabior's broken jaw.
Eighth, Kuol Achiek Mac, a University student was dragged out of his house and tortured severely just because he quarrelled the previous day with a police officer.
Ninth, Michael Thon Mangok, a regular contributor of SouthSudanNation outlet was threatened, exiled in Uganda for his writings and he faces harrasments as the new host of Wake Up Juba, South Sudan.
For our martyred brother Isaiah’s case, he took part in liberation of South Sudan. He joined the SPLA/SPLM in 1983 and trained in Bonga, Ethiopia. He served as military and political commissar in the Tiger battalion of the SPLA under the command of current Republic of South Sudan President Kiir Mayardit. His service of being a loyal soldier won him the rank of a shield seven captain. He was later on promoted to the rank of Major but decided to leave the army, after the 2005 peace deal that granted the region a decree of autonomy and the 2011 self-determination plebiscite that led to secession.
Isaiah fought two wars, he went back for studies the time he saw his people were about to obtain independence. He held a BA in business administration from Daystar University and a master's degree from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. At the time of his death, he was serving in South Sudan’s government as a director for administration and finance in the Employees’ Justice Chamber. Isaiah’s father was a Chief from Pawel Payam in Kongor, Twi County. Chan Awuol was killed by Jallaba for standing up for his people just the way his four sons died.
Late Isaiah Abraham was a concerned citizen like any other citizen in South Sudan. He was known for speaking up his mind for anything he believes is right for his country, and in his second last opinion he had this to say:
“Our president is a man with no confidence in himself and the public. My people have suffered under President Kiir and his heartless clique; I have no kind words again against these people. The demonstration we made as people of South Sudan on Monday, not as Northern Bahr El Ghazal people, will go down in history as the beginning of things to come”
Apparently, this is what we believed took Isaiah’s life, because it is evident by this: “On November 21st, 2012 the President security went to Isaiah’s house to investigate him. They showed him a printed article a few days before his assassination”. After his death, the president was quoted saying, “I know it is not the police and security.” Whereas, the Republic of South Sudan Minister for information Dr. Marial Benjamin said: “the ongoing investigation into Isaiah’s death indicated that 70% is assassinations”.
In addition, Wandit, the gentleman who claimed to be erstwhile Republic of South Sudan security agent, had this to say:
“Isaiah Abraham was killed by members of a special protection of president guard unit, called Tiger. What is responsible for his death is his article in which he wrote saying the president must step down. On that fatal night, Isaiah Diing was called out from his home and was made to sit down and then shot in the head. He was shot with only one bullet. He was killed by another Dinka, his tribe people. The murdering people made sure that national security was not patrolling at night in that particular area of Gudele”.
According to Sudan Tribune December 11, 2012, “South Sudan’s minister of interior, Alison Manana Magaya, has admitted that “elements” in the nation’s security agency are involved in crimes in the capital, Juba. There are some elements within the police and other organised forces who commit crimes”
Finally, as citizens of Republic of South Sudan, we deserve to be treated with decency and equality. The mandate given to you as President was to protect all citizens regardless of where they come from. Greater Bor and all the people of South Sudan didn’t believe that you were wrongly entrusted for leadership of South Sudan but because of your weak leadership, our nascent state is at the verge of collapse. Moreover, the preceding tactics and strategies to deject us from the Republic of South Sudan government have now shifted from unnecessary reshuffling to killings. Greater Bor community is disturbed by this trend. However, we are not ready to accept this needless war we are being dragged into. And we want to see the end to it as soon as possible.
We are appealing to the government, if there is any, to resolve and reverse this disguised targeting of our sons and daughters once and for all, for peace to prevail in this nascent State. We call for an immediate cessation of this hostility towards our people.
In conclusion, we hope the culprits behind Isaiah's assasination are brought to justice and charged accordingly, though it won’t make Isaiah come back. We urge the government to collectively nip this dangerous and unwelcome aggressive governance before it pesters.
10. Peter Machuor
11. Majok Mayen
12. Anuan Anuan
13. Andrew Makuei
14. Thon Nhial
15. Thon Alier
16. Mabior Gai
17. Madol Anyang
18. Ayuen Makur
19. Magot Deng
20. Kelei Kur
21. Kongor Gak
22. Chol Atem
23. Machar Yuang
24. Marial Gai
Twi Society of Canada
December 11, 2012
Press Release on the assassination of Isaiah Diing Abraham Chan Awuol
The Twi Society in Canada (TSC) joins the rest of the peace-loving South Sudanese communities all over the world in strongly and categorically condemning the senseless, grotesque and cowardly assassination of our dear brother and patriotic son of South Sudan, Isaiah Abraham Diing Chan Awuol. Isaiah hailed from Kongor clan of Twi Dinka in Jonglei State; a community, like others, that gave so much in terms of lives sacrificed, among them Dr. John Garang de Mabior, Arok Thon Arok and Akuot Atem de Mayen, to the liberation struggle and freedom of South Sudan.
Our community regards the late Isaiah for the great work he did championing freedom of speech and democratic principles for which so much blood was shed, and continue to be shed. Isaiah died doing what he loves and what he believes in: development of a free, democratic South Sudan in which the sanctity of life and the dignity of decent living are paramount. He also died fighting to give every voiceless citizen a chance to enjoy a conducive social, political and economic atmosphere. Twi Community believes in the same ideals Isaiah so gallantly fought for to the bitter end. It was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who said, “If you have got nothing worth dying for, then you have got nothing worth living for.” Like a true son of his father, Isaiah lived a life of unrivalled and unquestionable public integrity; and when it came time to lay his life on the line so as to proclaim the truth, Isaiah gladly accepted the call. May his soul rest in eternal peace.
As a peace-loving community, which still believes in the mandate vested in the current leadership of South Sudan, we are calling upon the government of South Sudan to thoroughly investigate the assassination of late Isaiah. Bringing to book all the perpetrators would not only bring closure to the family of late Isaiah and Tw? community world-wide, it would also strengthen South Sudanese faith in their government.
We also appreciate the fact that Dr. Marial Benjamin, the minister of information and the government spokesperson, has termed Isaiah’s death what it truly is; an assassination. We now expect the government to treat it as such, a politically motivated assassination. However, it is important to note that Isaiah was a political commentator who pointed out government’s failures and misdoings without fear or favour. There is no doubt some of writings must have rubbed some people in the echelon of power the wrong way. We are, therefore, very concerned about the impartiality of the investigations underway; and if, at any given time, the government finds itself in a conflict of interest, it would be advisable to procure a service of an impartial third party co-investigator.
Twi Society of Canada also takes this moment to register its displeasure with the general treatment of South Sudanese citizens by security forces. It appears our security forces have forgotten that their principal mandate is to protect our nation, not to terrorize it. Wiyual Manytap (Who’s still missing),Jok Madut Jok, Dengdit Ayok, James Okuk, Deng Athuai, Emmanuel Jal, Cde Mabior Garang and many others look up to you for protection, but often time, they have found themselves at the short end of the security agents’ brutality. Enough is enough! This is not what Kerubino Kwanyin Bol died for! This is not what William Nyuon Bany died for! This is not what John Garang died for! This is not what Arok Thon Arok died for! This is not what all the martyrs died for! And we certainly hope this is not the legacy you want to bequeath to the next generation of South Sudanese.
TSC is calling upon SPLM, the Government of South Sudan and all political forces to come together and reignite the flame that sustained us through the tough times of liberation struggle and ultimately bringing about independence. The SPLM-led government needs to remind itself of the principles it took up arms for. As a community, we still continue to hope for the best; that is, for a prosperous, democratic South Sudan, and we therefore call upon all the government departments concerned, with great urgency, to:
Finally, we would like to reiterate, one last time, the importance of constitutionalism, the rule of law and the respect for civil rights and civil liberties in building and sustaining a coercive nation. Continued subversion of those important tenets of democracy would have consequences, which include and not limited to, deep-rooted dissatisfaction and disillusionment with the government. We pray it never comes to that.
Mark Aruai Bol Aruai, President
Chol Kelei Chiengkou, Vice President
Job Kiir Garang Kuir, Secretary General