By Peter Gai Manyuon
January 18, 2016 (SSNA) — Politically, Nuer are organized in to what might be called “tribes” which consist of further sub-divisions by lineage. The lineages are a major structural factor for political order. The territorial grouping and lineage groupings are more closely aligned for some purposes than others. There is no overall political authority in the tribal structure. Political activity involves various grouping or separation of the many territorial and clan sections. In recent years and currently , there has been extensive military conflict in both South Sudan and Sudan, and the Nuer have become more politically active compare to other ethnicity in South Sudan but the reality is that disunity or dissatisfaction among themselves is always part of their obligation and ideology.
Hence, instead for them to use positive political organization ,they are always opposite to each other based on lack of good leadership structure that lead to current politics of Sudan People Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM/IO) that ended up with formation of different bodies that are going contrary to each other. Instead for them to fight for a common agenda of addressing the root causes of Nuer massacre that took place on the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th December 2013, they are very busy promoting hatred among themselves and fighting over positions on who to be appoints to be an MP, undersecretary, Deputy Minister or Minister has been the only top agenda since last year 2015 to date forgetting what took them to bushes in South Sudan. What a disgrace? The lives of the innocent civilians that got killed because they were Nuer is put a side and politicians are very busy looking for political accommodation with the same government who carried out genocide on civil population that consists of elderly women, men, youth and children. Moreover, serious raping, cannibalism was carried out by the same government to their relatives and they are forgetting the cause of the conflict with positions, what a shame to these [sycophantic] politicians?
More interesting, before the crisis of South Sudan in December 2013, Chief of Staff of Sudan People Liberation Army (SPLA) was a Nuer and other top government officials were Nuer who were working in the same primitive Leadership of Cowboy Salva Kiir Mayardit and eventually they did nothing to protect their people because of individual interests among themselves. Furthermore, seventy five (75%) of the Army of the (SPLA) were all Nuer, across the Republic of South Sudan , yet you find that Nuer were everywhere but because of lack of good leadership organization and hatred among themselves they allow their civilians to be killed in thousands in Juba and they still want to return to the same government. Something must be wrong with the Nuer psychologically or Ngundeng prophecies need to be evaluated again in order for the Nuer to be in the right direction otherwise the political atmosphere of South Sudan is almost isolating the naath community.
However, Nuer in the history of Sudan have been known of always giving a way leadership to the people that they claims to have humiliated them. Hon. Gatkuoth Gual gave leadership to Abel Alier because they were close friends as well Samuel Gai Tut, William Nyuon with Dr. John Garang and eventually President Kiir Mayardit and Dr. Riek Machar in 2002, 2005 and 2010 respectively. Who is the problem now? Is it the people who took the leadership that are wrong or the people who gave the leadership to other who are wrong?
Due to globalization ( inter-connectedness) policies ,ideas, plans or tactics and leadership are always achieve through different means either through military force, mediation, negotiation and elections not through prophecies as many people believes on centuries ideologies which lack practical aspects and good judgmental approaches. Interpretations are always full of assumptions, well there have been prophecies but due to too many interpretations and lies added on top of realities, Nuer are misdirected or guided by those who claims to have known the prophecies, moreover they lack accurate information and good research.
Well those who always believes on cultural stories or prophecies should do so but not all the community members should defend on believes because at the movement, technology is advancing with new ideas and methodologies are always apply on the daily basis, i also want my community Nuer to be innovative in term of ideas and plans for future generations.
In modern politics people believes on practical aspects not traditional ideologies that has got no way through in this new world where realists and liberalism are applying their theories through different ways and approaches. Nuer are the problem to themselves? No one should be blame for their failure in the leadership, the vision to achieve good things ahead of us as Nuer nation is not there at all. Where are we heading? Why don’t we remember the lives of the thousands that we lost during this man-made calculation?
Even thought, we disagree with the realities, Nuer doesn’t have unity among themselves that is why we have the Nuer with Kiir Mayardit government who massacre civilians, we have the Nuer with Generals who defected last year from SPLM in opposition Leadership, the Nuer who are with former detainees, Nuer who are with SPLM in opposition and those who are in the middle. How can we bring this groups to be one body? This should be the main focus at the movement than going for positions and getting money from the same government that have killed thousands in numbers shouldn’t be the priority and if that is the case people are returning back to the same government, there must be guiding principle to unite all Nuer from various groups for the common interest of the society.
All those various groups have emerged within the Nuer Community, instead we look for ways to unite ourselves as one community that is looking for something ahead of us in 2018, we are busy fighting among ourselves based on individual interests that resulted to abandoning of the movement of Dr. Riek Machar in 1991 and eventually in this current political dilemma where the peace Implementation is between collapsing and implementation. Why don’t Nuer have unity for purpose instead of abusing ourselves on the media? Nuer culture and believes are not follow by most of the elite class!
Practically, on what basis can we claims to win the coming elections in 2018 when at the movement we are having serious differences?
Hence, the Nuer leadership structures is not well defined at the movement, people are moving like goats to do what is good for them not for the community. What a disgrace? It’s not too late for the Nuer community to unite both in the opposition, government, Federal Democratic Party, former detainees at this particular period of time. Unity of Nuer can change the political leadership of the Republic of South Sudan as a whole, calling our fellow brothers as Nuer weew, will not help but rather it will demote our potential as the Community for the top leadership of the Country. Democracy is all about the numbers!
In summary, Nuer must have a strategic work plan for the coming centuries in order to accomplish their unity, leadership aspirations and wishes in the current political set up of the Country. There is need to have a comprehensive leadership council that could comprises of sixteen members that are selected based on the counties that Nuer originated from and these very group could form a body that can over see the activities and political ideology of the Nuer in the years to come. Nuer must have the unity among themselves first before they could go to other South Sudanese communities to look for votes in 2018. There is need to have a leadership structure that will address our issues as the community that has got an agenda to achieve. The leadership will help the community to identify who is capable to work for the Nuer interests rather than individuals’ interests. If we have our leadership structure at the movement can determine the prosperity of the Nuer in the nearer future.
Lack of patience and strategic work plan is what is weakening the Nuer in politics and they don’t always agreed on themselves on what could be done in years coming moreover what they always focused at is the short term plan that aims on individualism not community interest.
Going to Juba without a political strategy or second plan in hand is not absolute rather, it could be term as political suicidal or suicide mission or desperate journey for positions while putting a side what lead to displacement of the Nuer in South Sudan, even though no one is listening to the suffering of our civilians in UNMISS camps across South Sudan, still there will be time to change the current system that is led by hooligans and primitive Leaders who doesn’t value human lives.
It is matter of time, Kiir Mayardit leadership might be scattered like Libya government of Muammar Gadaffi who disappeared systematically with his group, some are nowhere to be seen other are disciplined already through politics.
In conclusion, based on the current political philosophy and realism, Nuer are in disarray and their ideas are contradicting their vision, mission and aspirations of where they belong or what they want to achieve in years to come. Disorganization of Nuer will lead to the success of other as per South Sudan politics is concern and unity of Nuer will always block any plan against them politically. The future of the Nuer politically in South Sudan remain uncertain unless otherwise, we open our eyes to visualized and predicts what is good for the growth of our next generations.
Nuer must re-defined their destination in South Sudan politics, currently they are just in stage of surviving and future plans remain unknown to themselves.
The Author is an Independent Journalist and Columnist who has written extensively on human rights and democratization processes. Currently admitted in Moi University Nairobi –Kenya to pursue a PhD in Communications Studies. He could be reach firstname.lastname@example.org.