Home | Comment & Analysis    Monday 16 November 2009

Can we all get along?


By Luk Kuth Dak

“ We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive, is devoid of the power to love”.
Martin Luther King, Jr., strength to love, 1963.

November 15, 2009 — As an average reader that I am, I have a total of four books authored by the late Dr. King under my belt. However, what really fascinated me the most, is his unbelievable ability to love and to forgive those who have inflicted so much harm upon the black people of America for over five centuries long.

Undoubtedly, as Southern Sudanese people, we have our work cut out for us to heal the ugly rift of South-on-South internal wars. Unfortunately, we have decided to keep going down this road of self-destruction and controversy at all cost. All those attempts for reconciliation have all been but a total failure, sadly because it seems as though we are the only people on the planet who do not buy into the power of forgiveness and moving on with our lives.

As human beings, we all make mistakes. Some horrendous mistakes. Because we are not perfect. As a matter of fact, there is no such a thing as perfection. In deed, I am not even so sure that God Almighty is perfect. Otherwise, why is He allowing innocent children to die of various diseases that they can’t possibly control? And why has He created the Lions to make a living off the fleshes of other innocent animals instead of grasses? And why didn’t He stop the Arabs’ massacres of over two million Southern Sudanese and almost a half a million in Darfur? But yet, we still love Him unconditionally.

They say: “ War’s not pretty”. Virtually, however, there’s no single village in South Sudan that had not seen blood. Lots of blood. Of course, some have seen more blood than the others. But that’s the ugly reality nature of wars, unfortunately. The compelling question is: how can we move beyond all this mounting animosity that engulfs our hearts and threatens our co-existence in a future state in South Sudan?

The simple answer to the question is, if we stand a chance of becoming a nation, we have to be honest with ourselves first, in order to come to terms with the fact that, dwellings on the past and pointing fingers at one another, will not bring back all the lives that we have lost, but in contrast, it will only reopen the old wounds that are just beginning to heal. Therefore, it’s only logical to move past the bitterness and division that had only benefited the Arabs occupants. And yes, if the late Dr. John Garang de Mabior, the (SPLM) founder, could have signed the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) with bloodiest regime of the National Islamic Front (NIS), to end the longest civil war in Africa, we too, can find some room in our hearts to forgive those who have done us wrong.

Previously, I mentioned that am not a member of any political party in South Sudan including the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM). I figured early on that for me to be a credible and a balanced columnist that I can be, my suitable place would be the “ Neutral zone”. My decision is simply because, if I were to join a party over the others, I thought that it would ultimately hinder my judgment as a neutral journalist. But it angers me when I read some commentators refer to the symbol of our struggle, President Salva Kiir Mayardit as a coward and called Vice President Dr. Reik Machar as a murderer, and the Secretary General Ustaz Pagan Amum as a drunkard! Dr. Machar deserves to be applauded, instead for keeping out house together. It could have been a whole lot worst than we can imagine.

And so while it’s true that our media had overcome some major huddles in adjusting to rules and regulations that every journalist must abide by, there certainly still a long road to walk. Unfortunately, negativity in Southern Sudan media outlets today, is almost ubiquitous and malicious to the point where it would extremely harder to find quality future leaders, who won’t be interested in public service, if all it means is thrusting themselves and their families through the kinds of name-calling the current ones are being subjected to.

Consequently, we’re not in any way, shape or form suggesting that politician should get a fee ride. It’s absolutely perfect to criticize them as long as our criticism is constructive and is based on how they perform their respective duties. Everybody deserves to be treated with all due respect. And everybody should be presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, including those who hold public offices. Until then, all this extremely disrespectful lambasting of our leaders is simply baseless and it should never be categorized as a freedom of press. In reality, this is nothing more than just an abuse of those individual leaders, and it should not be tolerated.

Final thought

The journalism is a burden! Because journalism is a responsibility.

The author is a former broadcaster- Arabic Service , Juba radio. He can be at: lukedak@hotmail.com.

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  • 16 November 2009 05:04, by Mr Famous Big_Logic_Boy

    By Luk Kuth Dak I appreciate your point of view as a concern citizen of South Sudan, but first of all you people need to analysis the truth about the cause of bloodshed in South and who is behind this pain. We all sing of arab, arabs arabs but in reality we fail to obliterate the worse undercover virus in South Sudan. I think if you don’t see but you heard about the killing of Shilluk, Nuer, Murle, Equatorians, mundari and other exlcuded communties. Who do you think is responsible for this agony across South? My friend before we stand to face one side lets identity who is licking our hips from behind. We look forward to overcome the problems of Arabs, but people are erasing our footprints so they can claim to be liberators, imagine since the introdcution of Liberator Newspapers here in Juba i read them once and surrender no more. If we are to reach the destination it is quite acceptable that each and everyone must be invloved, this time I don’t want to see people assembling their way to kakuma and Uganda or Ethiopia and destroyimg the names of South Sudan by committing crimes, enough is enough. The goverment alone is another sickness to us, the government is dangerous to its people for choosing their political parties, they want everyone to be part of SPLA gangs invloved in killing, looting, murdering and inflction of pain. Equatorian lady was assassinated in Aug because of her poltical choice, the same to the arrest of eastern Equatoria NCP members. Now how are we going to share one boat through the way to cross the river if murdering become our daily threat. Money for development, but leaders change this money to kill with people. I swear, those who kill WES lady was reward U$ 500,000 secretly.Unbelievable that South will exist as one a head of 2011. The poor medication in South comes from the looting and corruption in South Sudan gangs SPLA party.

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  • 16 November 2009 05:06, by Jayo

    If all our people (South Sudanese) were like Luk Kuth Dak,we would have had the best nation on earth.

    What I ask God to instil in our people is the love of their country and its people (From all tribes).We can disagree as individual and with our leaders but we should remember we all belong to one nation:South Sudan.I wish people should put loyalty to a country above loyalty to tribes,relative or leaders they affliate themselves with.

    It is a huge disgrace for someone who call himself a South Sudanese to curse death upon his countrymen whom he disagree with or who happens to belong to a tribe he does not belong.

    People who call themselves educated should take it upon themselves to educate the illitrate masses that national unity is best achieve when we accomdate and love one an other as citizens.It does not matter how much we disagree.

    Continue your unifying writing Mr Luk Kuth Dak.

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  • 16 November 2009 06:10, by Michael Madit Magot

    Dear Luk,

    These are the kinds of articles we yearn for.
    Indeed the "power to forgive" as you explained is the key to "getting along".
    As southerners we must learn to forgive but not forget or else the history may repeat itself.
    "We mustlearn and correct the past".
    Well your wise question that "can we get along?" convey huge message which could mirror the way forward if the Southsudan citizens interpret and instil it into their lives.

    It is a question worth $$$$$$$$$$$$ millions.
    To satisfactorily answer it we must reflect our past,future and the present.
    Yes no doubt we can get along if we recognize our differences and the blessings of the power to forgive.
    In any situation the two parties involve are not always exempted from blame.
    The difference is how the two approachs the matter.
    Your question will be absorbed and analysed by any peace loving southerner.

    Besides, there are two statements you made in your article above which did not go down well with me.
    Your arguement that you do not belong to any political party is potraying you as not being honest to yourself and your audiences.
    The reasons you gave could not justify your claim to abstain from any political party.
    " How can you fairly judge and avail an authentic opinion when you are in the ocean of uncertainty?"
    You must have a focal point to view a target.
    Otherwise lack of a choice of a party leads to political prostitution as evidenced by the current political unrest in Sudan.
    Being a journalist does not smother your rights to choice of a political party.
    Moreover, it does not thwart your ability to differentiate between rights and wrong.
    Afterall " it is the ability to stick to right that make you pinpoint the wrong".
    "A floating object is always likely to bump into stationary object and change the course of direction or worst disintegrate and thereby causes unwanted messes".

    If you are sincere that you don’t belong to any party then i will not convince you but history will judge you.
    By nature all Southerners belong to a political party with the overall vision of liberating themselves from the Islamic regime.

    The second point is the remark that " God by Him self is not perfect".
    I will not elaborate on this because as a commonsense to everyone, we believe in God without questioning His ability.
    Philosophers , who question God’s powers are always pagan and thus lack the focal point on which they could view the God’s might.
    Afterall, respecting others’ views and believes , is a key to success in anyone’s leadership or journalistics role.
    You play dirty with the audiences and you loss your image.
    That is why leaders speak with respect without attacking anyone’s religion whenever they address a rally.

    "If you could not understand yourself how can you understand God whom you do not see?

    "Remember everything has limit including human ability".
    It is that limit which give us an insight into respecting God.

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  • 16 November 2009 06:42, by Dinka Boy

    We will forgive Riek Machar.
    I think the Tit for tat will teached Nuer.
    Others were very kind and respectful but our brothers from Nuer think that when they are forgive, they think they are brave while those who forgive them are coawrd. That will bring mess at the mement because we al most done with Aarb.

    I know Luk kuth Dak is from Nuer on how he compose his article. I can not be fool about that.
    He is naive and pretender of asking for frogiveness of Riek Machar and the tribal conflicts nuer always did to innoect peopel. My friend that is not forgive. What you nuer does is just open fool acts that a person like me will not considered to forgive the intended ill act.

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    • 16 November 2009 07:41, by Mr Famous Big_Logic_Boy

      Dinkas Bull

      Ha ha Look at this dinkas Bull trying to convince people dinkas will forgive Riek, Riek always therefor u whoever you are. Be frank that you fear the nail not to be smash in your hips again like in 1991. I like that Nuer have knowledge to deal with u like their fellow Equatorians who don’t care about any crap creature.

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    • 16 November 2009 08:18, by Kim Deng

      Cowar Jang/Slave (Dinkaboy),

      The Mighty Nuer Warriors don’t want any forgiveness from anybody let alone your coward Jaang/Slaves community except from God himself, get it?

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      • 16 November 2009 08:41, by Dinka Boy

        Dear Kim and Logic boy,

        Read my comments carefully other i will poison you with my good words that can harm your mouth till anus.
        The wife of Lam Akol can not be forgive my friend if you want me to be clear. Blind primitives can not understand mt intention. Wow!.

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        • 16 November 2009 08:51, by Mr Famous Big_Logic_Boy

          Fool aways with you am not blind or deaf like you Mr Bull. My eyes has a vision.

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          • 16 November 2009 09:34, by Master





            NO HARD FEELINGS :)

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      • 17 November 2009 03:51, by TUR-ANGON

        to these confused Kim Deng

        you are a dinka my friends as your ancestral line deficted. talking against dinka is a blasphemy. you should respect your ancestors although it seem to me that you have been swallowed wholly by food.i too understand your pain that led to the migration of your ancestors to nuerland. dinka land is full of foods if you need some. we have a tradition of feeding hungry pple like you. welcome back to the empire of dinka, southsudan.

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    • 16 November 2009 14:58, by Duongchotguar

      Dear Dinka Boy,

      Are you ready to fight Naath Now?
      If Yes, why don’t you go and attack Ayod County/Yuai payam which is very close to your Bor dinka?
      Fighting is not any easy thing that people who are premature could talk of it.

      I read your comment one day,that telling Gatwich about your sufferings during 1991 incident when you crosed a long distance from Mading Bor to Equatorian land/forest where you think is your heaven. But this time my friend, it will be different thing as much as all naath communities and other tribes in Southern Sudan are aware of you people. For you will not buy any one alive as you use to say and bear in mind that your Garang is dead.

      Please,please take care and watchout.

      Thank for yuor understanding.

      Somebody in the movement since 1985-----------------------

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      • 17 November 2009 04:04, by TUR-ANGON

        son of bitch, Duongchotguar

        it is not a surprise to me to claim victory over the 1991 wicked plan by the wife of Lam, i think you know him’’Riek Machar’’.moreover, after some years later,i know you will claim victory over the murle of your recent coward attacks. we defeated you and follow you to Lou land. famine cuased by flooding by lodging crops if you have skills in agriculture was the reason behind BOR MIGRATION. we got the cows we having now from you pple son a dog. prove me wrong. fighting with foolish skills doesn’t make you what you pple are claiming to be. you have to be smart becoz we will finsh you.

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