February 14, 2017 (JUBA) - South Sudanese government, members of the Islamic council, Muslim community and individuals have come together in extending heartfelt condolences to the government and to the immediate family members of presidential advisor on religious affairs, Al Tahir Bior Lueth Abdalla Ajak, who died on Sunday.
- The South Sudanese president Salva Kiir (Photo: Reuters/Tiksa Negeri)
A renowned Muslim, Ajak died of suspected cardiac arrest at about 8pm (local time).
The deceased, who hailed from Jonglei State, was described by many, particularly those with whom he participated in the liberation struggle as a "hero" and "liberator”.
Ajak held various command posts throughout his days the Sudan Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA), at the height of the conflict. He was among commanders who had the opportunity to command different units of Neran Battalion under Muor Muor Division, under the overall command of late Commander Nyacigak Nyachiluk.
Joining forces under the Bee battalion of Commander Martin Manyiel and Neran under his commander, the SPLA successfully launched military operations in eastern Equatoria region, resulting in the capture of Kapoeta, on the 12th of January 1987.
He rose through the ranks and had many roles assigned to him as when the command decides to assign him until his retirement from active military service at the rank of a Lieutenant General. Ajak was buried on Monday with full military honours. His burial and funeral was attended by President Salva Kiir and his two deputies, Minister of Defense and virtually the entire high command of the SPLA.
Reacting to his passing, ex-deputy minister of defense and a member of the former political detainees, Majak D’ Agoot, described Ajak as “a true nationalist”.
“My deep condolences to all of us for this sudden and untimely passing Comrade Cdr. Al-Tahir Bior Abdala Ajak!”, wrote Majak on learning the death of his former comrade during liberation struggle in which also fought as one of the key commanders and one of those who was close to late founding leader, John Garang.
“Though he has gone too soon, Cdr. Al-Tahir should always be remembered as a true nationalist, who in 1985, made a difficult choice of taking to the bush and joining the SPLA against a prospect of successful military career for a Southerner who had a privilege of attending the elite officer training in Wadi Saidna in 1968; attending the U.S. Army Engineering School - Fort Leonard Wood”, he added.
The former South Sudanese spy chief said Ajak as a Muslim and son of a well-known chief who was part of the 1947 Juba conference. He equated and elevated him to the status of prominent South Sudanese Muslim figures in the person of Ali Abdel Atif, Abdel Fadil Al Maz, and Ali BGwatala, remembered in the history of liberation struggle as having been at the forefront of collective emancipation.