By Deng Kur Deng
As we all know, the President is obligated by law to protect his people throughout the entire country. As such, he largely based his decisions so they would address many of the problems in the country, not just the problems of one specific region or group. For that reason, I feel a sense of deep gratitude towards the President for his approach.
Unfortunately, I believe the President is often discredited, even when he is making a sincere effort to end the current war by reconstructing what has been dismantled amidst the crisis. Our people should be delighted; they should be grateful to the President for working tirelessly to restore peace in our country. His responsibilities have become increasingly complex, and many of us have seen how complicated the peace process is in the first place. We, the citizens, must embrace his courage in order to achieve peace for all our people.
Even with mounting challenges, President Kiir is trying to nurture something that is very hard to nurture. The frightening thing about this situation is that a failing peace could easily spread and dissolve into violence, which could once again potentially devastate families—and we don’t need that. To make matters worse, we expect President Kiir to bring forward a solution, but continual blame from many sources makes his job extra difficult. Personally, I am outraged at those who blame someone who is making a progress. What else do you want? If you are not appreciative of the progress President Kiir has made, don’t go around further distorting and weakening everyone else’s enthusiasm; it only lowers our expectations and crushes our hope. We all want peace, and a lot of the negative criticism aimed at our President isn’t very constructive. In those instances, I wish people would please keep certain words to themselves.
We are waiting patiently for the end to two long years of brutality. We must recognize our President’s sincere investment in peace, regardless of our slight disagreements about his tactics or timetable. If he weren’t working hard on this collective state priority, then perhaps it would be appropriate to nag him. But at the moment, the country is experiencing enough of a crisis with regards to our economy, and so our priority is to set aside petty squabbles and establish peace.
As it stands, the current peace is barely holding, as there are constant violations throughout the country. However, I feel certain that our people will recover from this mess eventually. Even with collective contributions from other stakeholders and individuals, there is something about President and Michael Makuei that is an event stronger agent of change, which I must acknowledge: These two men are truly invested in bettering the country. Their words and their actions prove that they are committed to improving our country.
Now, I want to make it clear that I am not saying all of these things because I am not the only one seeking peace and plus I am a member of SPLM all my life. I am simply articulate what I feel in my gut—that the President is the best person to negotiate on behalf of the people’s government and to be a champion of all his citizens.
The President’s confident employees continue to assure him that he and his administration are serious about addressing problems in the country. Peace negotiations have been vital in restoring the lives of the people, and the President is very determined to resolve the conflict in our country—a daunting commitment that not everyone appreciates. Part of that commitment relies on the support of people around him.
Generally, many of the South Sudanese who have been watching peace negotiations closely are able to identify that the Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Michael Makuei, has been increasingly consistent on issues that bring us together as a country, and the evidence is before you. There has been serious progress regarding the peace process. We the people feel confident in how Mr. Makuei has responded to all individual matters and problems that come his way, while he still remains aware of the overall importance of peace to the people of South Sudan. His responses rally people behind the government, and his position has always been very steady, which is one of many reasons why I personally I appreciate his strategies.
Telling it like it is can make some people uncomfortable, but that is the reality of telling the truth. The most excruciating form of dishonesty is when you lie to yourself, which is why individuals find it very hard to make their case when they are dealing with Mr. Makuei; it is very clear that he is speaking the truth, and others have a hard time coming to terms with what he says. If you dig in your heels, or if you slam the door closed just because you don’t like what he has to say, he will call you out for threatening our country’s potential for peace.
Even amidst a failing peace and a growing sense of hopelessness, his commitment is priceless. Like many of us, he wants to ensure that peace is secured for the people. For those who have played into our country’s double standards in the past, Michael Makuei will tell you things you don’t want to hear. But when you are representing the interests of the majority, you must state the facts. As a result of his bold behavior, Mr. Makuei appears to have defeated those leaders who have seemed incompetent in the past. It just goes to show that the truth—and the courage to speak the truth—will always win out in the end.
Both the President and Michael Makuei have played a significant role in achieving peace in South Sudan. It feels great to know that these two leaders are working to ensure that our families are going to be safe in our own country. The President has proven a lot with the cabinet, as several of them have contributed overwhelmingly during the peace process.
This war has been destructive to our people’s lives. However, what continues to bother me more than anything is that the remainder of the Jonglei State’s population is unprotected, which continues to be a major concern throughout the state. War has negated our country’s development, only exacerbating our frustration about Jonglei. Peace has been realized in various states, but it is yet to be realized in Jonglei. We are exhausted from our resentment, so it is time to turn the page. As far as we know, bickering and being spiteful isn’t helping any of us achieve anything, instead it is only morphing one problem into another problem. The South Sudanese aren’t interested in simply putting a new name to the problem; we must get to the root and fix the underlying causes. With the leadership of President Kiir and Michael Makuei, we can dispose of our bitterness and rise above our circumstances. We can join hands and support the push for a better South Sudan.
This article was written by Deng Kur Deng AKA Raanmangar. You can reach him at:firstname.lastname@example.org