Home | Comment & Analysis    Saturday 12 May 2018

President Trump, take democracy to South Sudan

By Gatdiet Peter

‘‘Democracy is too good to share with just anybody’’ – Nigel Rees

The role of American governments and people for the independence of South Sudan is something that is incredibly indebted. The U.S.’s previous regimes from Kennedy to Bush administration should be always remembered and reminded for, but one thing has spoiled the pride of independence and that thing is the dictatorship! Dictatorship and intended violence against our people have distant far-away the good friends of people of South Sudan who by then stood side by side with our people in every corner of the awkward situations during the pre-2005 periods.

Today, the independence of South Sudan is marred by the insecurity, killing of unarmed locals, ethnic cleansing, and continued civil conflict. The ongoing strife and civil war in South Sudan demonstrate a call for help from any international intervention because efforts to resolve differences among politicians in order for the war to stop, however, have yielded no results and faded. The August 2015 peace agreement was terribly slaughtered in the Mid-2016 by the dictatorship. Moreover, any process to revitalize the agreement seems also to be paralyzed by dictatorship and non-democratic sub neighbourhoods and the region as a whole – East Africa!

In this case, as of my opinion, I call upon president Trump to wield the U.S. policy of taking democracy to the failed and failing states. In the shortest terms, South Sudan is totally a failed state. All institutions: judiciary, executive, and legislature have since 2015 collapsed. This has led to socioeconomic problems, insecurities, and political violence, which among others, the killing of civilians, molesting of children, and destruction of scarce livelihoods are the matter of daily breaking headlines. There are no courts, no police, no army unless the large swath of ethnic recruitments that every now and then risk the lives of civilians. Against International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and practice, non-combatants in South Sudan undergo physical threat every day, repression, and continuously live in fear – a complete Hobbesian situation of all kinds!

The good fortune of such policy is that war will be stopped in South Sudan once and for all. The authoritarian – ethnocentric regime in Juba will also go away. A provisional administration with a new system of governance will be installed, which will embrace democratic processes like it was the case in Japan, where democratic processes stemmed the ground. The new system of governance will create an environment for human rights, transitional justice, open, free & fair elections, provision of fundamental security to all local citizens of South Sudan, strengthening of the judicial system, and enhancement of socioeconomic development with support from International Community. For instance, support from International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank that has been there for over a decade now but narrowly falling in the corrupt hands.

In the argument, unless in the terrorists’ born nations – or otherwise, the American policy of democratization is quite successful in a number of countries, such as Japan and Germany in post-WW II period. The citizens of these nation-states had yearned for peace and stability just as the nation-state of South Sudan is not the exception. I’m with confidence and knowledge that 99 % of South Sudanese people are desperately screaming for peace and better security in their villages, towns, and even those residing abroad, either being refugees or in individual settlements. We want nothing more than peace (peacebuilding) and democracy in our nation so that we live in peace like the rest of the world. No for war and dictatorship in our country!

Finally, I want to conclude the call for American’s ‘democracy promotion’ in South Sudan with a quote from the White House’s 2002 National Security Strategy:

‘‘The United States must defend liberty and justice because these principles are right and true for all people everywhere. No nation owns these aspirations, and no nation is exempt from them. Fathers and mothers in all societies want their children to be educated and to live free from poverty and violence. No people on earth yearn to be oppressed, aspire to servitude, or eagerly await the midnight knock of the secret police.’’

Gatdiet Peter can be reached at gatdietpeter86@outlook.com