✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live

No lesson from South Sudan

South Sudan has degenerated into a new war of attritions between the incumbent President Kiir and his estranged vice-president Riek Machar in a run up…

South Sudan has degenerated into a new war of attritions between the incumbent President Kiir and his estranged vice-president Riek Machar in a run up to  the presidential elections in 2015 elections(2015!sounds Nigerian!) . Paradoxically South Sudan at independence was celebrated globally but even more loudly by Europe and America as the “newest” African state. No thanks to the decades long marginalization and oppression by Khartoum in the North, (itself for a long time under the heels of varying dictatorships, the longest and the most notorious being that of the discredited General Nimeiri supported by America). The world legitimately supported the struggles of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM). SPLM was formed in the late 70s by the late Col John Garang. Interestingly SPLM under John Garang did not call for southern succession or Balkanization of the Sudan. Indeed John Garang until his death in a helicopter crash on July in 2005 stood for a united, secular and socialist greater Sudan. Undoubtedly the emergence of South Sudan trampled underfoot the vision of the founding fathers of Organisation of African Unity (OAU) on the 24 May 1963. Ghana’s then president, Kwame Nkrumah and key proponent of OAU had envisioned a continental Union of African States, that by now would have transformed into  a United States of Africa. And that was before the treaty of Rome that led to the formation of European Union (EU). The emergence of South Sudan as a newest state in Africa on the eve of the 50th anniversary of  OAU (now Africa Union, AU) did an eternal violence to the memory and great vision of the founding fathers of modern independent Africa. They had envisioned the dismantling of the colonial borders not further Balkanization of the continent into some micro unviable states.  
However very few observers of the events in Africa would have predicted that so soon South Sudan would return to the familiar road of cut throat elite competition for power and resources that characterized most post colonial African states and wars that have been the lots of Southern Sudanese in the old Sudan. Reportedly over 500 people have already died in the violence this week following the disclosure by President Kiir according to which he had uncovered a coup attempt which he blamed on his former Vice President Machar’s supporters. 500 deaths in a singular violence was significant in a country of 10.84 million out of which as many as some two million had died after two decades of civil war.  “Fighting has spread from the capital Juba, and violence is now being reported in the majority of the country’s ten states with civilians seeking shelter in UN compounds. In recent hours, one UN compound in Akobo, Jonglei State, has come under attack from youths rather than military forces. Three peacekeepers and an unknown number of civilians were killed”.
Certainly no lesson for Nigeria in South Sudan, even when the political narratives increasingly and dangerously sound similar.  South Sudan holds the bulk of Sudan’s oil resources discovered in the 70s which in turn had been the basis of the battle by varying groups and foreign countries including China and USA. South Sudan oil is however dependent on Khartoum in the north for infrastructure needed to export it. Nigeria is also a home of oil the bulk of which is now officially acknowledged as stolen and remaining as sources of corruption and political patronage as distinct from development. South Sudan like Nigeria is set for election in 2015 against the background of suspicions, divisions and dangerous mix of politics with ethnicity, regions and religions.  In South Sudan, a dangerous relationship between the political struggle and  ethnic competition between Dinka and Nuer tribes have emerged. South Sudan also refutes the claim that a country cannot plunge into civil wars more than once. The current violence which is dangerously assuming a war dimension may very well be the third civil war. The lesson for Nigerian political class is to return to win-win politics of development as distinct from zero-sum politics of self, ethnicity and greed that portends violence and wars of attritions. There is certainly no lesson in South Sudan. For those who ever harbour the thought that disintegration and divisions of big nation states into smaller states of so called nationalities would lead to prosperity and peace South Sudan’s tragic experience so soon shatters this divisive aspiration. As we have seen, smaller states bring back old historical animosities and grievances that promote violence. It’s time that AU puts an end to the new violence in South Sudan and safe Africa another photo clips of refugees and deaths in what once just recently presented as the ‘newest’ African state.

VERIFIED: It is now possible to live in Nigeria and earn salary in US Dollars with premium domains, you can earn as much as $12,000 (₦18 Million).
Click here to start.