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Opinion: SPLM/A government has the wrong priorities with building Ramciel city!

South Sudan Cartoon

We can be sure that General Salva Kiir Mayardiit must be proud of the agreement done with the Kingdom of Morocco that has offered a fortune to build the new capital city of Ramciel. This is apparently very important for the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) who is already mixed in a dozens of issues. That the movement of Juba capital shouldn’t be the focus, but here is the agreement made earlier in February!

The agreement between the nations:

“South Sudan and Morocco have signed four partnership agreements and five Memoranda of Understanding covering areas of health, education, mining and infrastructural development.

The deals include an agreement on the building of the South Sudan Capital in Ramciel which cabinet approved shortly after independence in 2011.

The agreements were on:

  • General Operation
  • The building of the Capital Ramciel
  • Promotion and protection of investment
  • Avoidance of double taxation and prevention of physical invasion with respect to taxes and income. The documents were signed by ministers from both countries in the presence of President Salva Kiir and King Mohamed VI” (Radio Miraya, 02.02.2017).

So the Kiir Government and Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) has focused on the wrong things these days, as even court justices, ministers and others are deflecting, as the fighting with rebels and other fractions are weakening the central leadership. So the news of this is absolutely bonkers:

“President Kiir appointed FVP Gen. Taban Deng Gai to head the Ramciel city project committee. The project is scheduled to start before May. Taban Deng Gai has been winning the trust of his career mate, His Excellency President Kiir” (South Sudan News, 17.02.2017).

So the man who took the place of Dr. Riek Machar who is fighting the SPLM/A government with his SPLM-IO fraction, the reality is that the Central Government is so fixated on the Ramciel building that they have continued to work on it:

“The order also named Nhial Deng Nhial, senior presidential advisor and special envoy for diplomatic affairs, as deputy chairperson of the committee. The committee members include the presidential advisor on legal affairs and constitutional development, Lawrence Korbandy, minister of finance, Stephen Dhieu Dau, minister in the office of the president, Mayiik Ayii Deng and minister of petroleum, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth” (South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation, 19.02.2017).

So that President Kiir is using time forming a working committee to work on building a new capital, instead of securing peace and shielding the citizens. The government is not using funds or securing the inflation, they are not making sure the people who go without water, food or shelter. Instead they are fixated on building a new town to have the main buildings. A new administrational seat instead of the one they have had for a long time. So they are creating a new administrative seat, so they might have a commercial seat and the administrative in the South Sudan. Still, the issue is that nation is grappling with such giant issues that should not contain city or town building at the moment.

With over a million citizens abroad, with drought, with lack of food and armed battles with rebellion, as well as problems of raping soldiers and such, the administrative seat of government, should be the least of concern. The problem of getting petroleum export and pipelines sufficiently works, so the petro-dollars come’s safe in the state coffers too.

In 2011: “MP Andrew Acijok told Good News Radio that legislators representing Greater Yirol met on Saturday and they raised concerns about the governor’s appointment. He said an appointee from Greater Yirol would be more familiar with the background of the new capital and would be of greater assistance to the committee. Mr. Acijok stated that the communities around Ramciel have given the land for the development of the new South Sudan capital for free. Mr. Acijok said traditional songs show that Ramciel had local residents for close to two centuries. He added that Ramciel natives offered the land to Dr. John Garang be used by the national government. On September 2, 2011, South Sudanese ministers designated Ramciel as the site for a planned capital city. The place, an open space in Lakes state, is considered the geographic centre of South Sudan” (Catholic Radio Network, 14.09.2011).

So the modernization should be more than enough to focus on and to secure the current capital. Because the other dire issues and unfixed problems in the domain. All the people that are in the limbo, that is in refugee camps in Uganda, Ethiopia and Kenya. That the spies of South Sudan are following into these camps and nations to pick-out the rebels inside the neighbour nations. This been told by resigned officials that they even went this far. So the missing South Sudanese could easily been taken by South Sudanese officials and their friends in EAC nations. When we know that the United Nations blue-helmets, MONUSCO could safely transfer SPLM-IO into the republic of Sudan and to Khartoum during the month of July, 2017.

The knowledge of all of this, the dying need for food for so many with the drought, the instability of the arms and battles between forces, as the government army and rebels are trying to controls areas. The government should use the manpower and the arms to secure the population and not to use time to build a new capital. That is waste of the Kingdom of Morocco donor aid and also the spent man-hours that the South Sudanese authorities shouldn’t need to use. The building of the Ramciel instead of Juba is misusing the capacity and the structures that already there. Instead of building stronger institutions and using the time to focus on needed restructuring and negotiating peace with rebels. The Government are getting busy on a project instead of trying to build a lasting peace.

The South Sudanese authorities and government should focus on building the nation, building the institutions, building the legal framework and the civil society, instead their focusing on building a town and city. That is not a key issue or pressing demand; the demand is to show up and be there for the citizens that fleeing violence, killing and lacking shelter. Even lacks peaceful villages to grow food and sell it on the market. Now, it is time for something else than fancy projects, but instead being there for the people. Peace.


Quotes and Outtakes from the newest UN Report on Violence in South Sudan!

South Sudan Cartoon

Here is the basic outtake from a report that was released on the 9th March 2016 from the United Nations Office of Human Rights Council. This focused on the matters of human rights and dignity, as it looks at the laws and regulations, how the state affairs with the matter and create safety and security for their people while not taken away their trust and their justice as free men and woman. As the Government of South Sudan has signed and ratified certain statues and human rights laws into their own as a civilized government who want to be respected and seen as a respectable state.

The major problems and issues is not only stemming from sexual violence towards the public as many has addressed, I have also taken that into the picture, but I want to show you the more of it, but not go into the laws and the ratifications, as that is important. For the moment we should all just see the pains that have unjustified hit many of the South Sudanese as the differences between Generals has hurt them. Take a look!

Salva Kiir P2

Internally Displaced Persons in South Sudan:

“By December 2014, more than 1.4 million South Sudanese had been displaced internally, while approximately 467,000 people had fled to surrounding countries. Additionally, roughly four million people in the country faced serious food insecurity. Humanitarian access continued to be hampered by fighting and violence perpetrated by both parties to the conflict against aid workers, equipment and infrastructure. In Unity and Upper Nile states, active hostilities and insecurity continued to disrupt humanitarian assistance as well as, road and air access” (…)”By mid-December 2014, more than 100,000 civilians were housed in UNMISS compounds – designated “protection of civilians sites” (POC sites) – because they were too afraid to return home, fearing potential violence. The bulk of these internally displaced persons (IDPs) were in Bentiu (43,000 people), Juba (32,000) and Malakal (17,000)” (UN OHRC, 2016)

Violence against IDPs:

“For example in Bentiu the SPLA soldiers have taken aggressive postures towards civilians in the PoC site. On 30 September, UNMISS witnessed approximately 20 SPLA soldiers in uniform, including child soldiers, outside the entrance of the PoC site pointing their weapons, including a vehicle with a mounted machine gun” (UN OHRC, 2016).

In Lakes State:

“In Lakes State, inter-communal conflict among different Dinka clans has continued despite efforts by the Government and state authorities to defuse tensions. Revenge attacks, including acts of sexual violence, continued in relation to the killing of a Paramount Chief in Cuei-Chok Payam on 5 August. In response to the violence, the Government has increased its security presence in the State. However, this has given rise to further violations as a result of heavy handed measures sometimes adopted by the security forces” (UN OHRC, 2016).

In Easter Equatoria:

“Eastern Equatoria has also witnessed major incidents of inter-communal violence, including on 6 December, in Loronyo, Torit, where several civilians, including women and children were killed. Reports received indicated that human rights violations were committed by security forces sent to the area in response to the violence, including sexual violence and looting of property. Likewise, the deterioration in the security situation in Chukudum in Budi County, Eastern Equatoria, in September and October, led to allegations of human rights violations by the SPLA, including arbitrary detention, torture and extra-judicial killings” (UN OHRC, 2016).

In Western Equatoria:

“In Western Equatoria, the influx of armed Dinka pastoralists from Lakes and Jonglei with their large numbers of cattle has seen an increase in tension with host communities, particularly in the Mundri West County areas.  In Central Equatoria State, UNMISS monitored developments in clashes between the Kuku and Madi communities spanning the border between Kajo Keji in South Sudan and Moyo district in Uganda, resulting in several deaths in both communities and the displacement of between 8,000 and 10,000 civilians from the Ugandan side to the South Sudanese side of the border” (UN OHRC, 2016).


Conflict related sexual violence:

“State officials allege that at least 20 women were abducted from Souq sabi, Dere, and Lich University and taken to Guit and Nhialdiu. Allegations have also been made that SPLM/A-IO used rape as a punishment for suspected Government sympathizers” (…)”In another incident, in December, three women out of a group of 30 were reportedly raped by SPLA soldiers while proceeding to a village located near the PoC site in Bentiu, after soldiers allegedly asked them to join them and then shot at the group” (…)”Incidents of sexual violence have also been reported in the context of inter-communal violence. In Lakes State, women and children have reportedly been used as proxies for revenge, including through rape. In Rumbek East, the allegation that the paramount chief of the Guony clan was murdered by the Thuyic clan reportedly ignited a wave of retaliatory attacks, including reports of rape against women and children” (UN OHRC, 2016).

Child Soldiers:

“Child soldiers have been observed in Bentiu, Malakal and Kuajok. Between September and November, UNICEF documented more than 70 incidents of grave violations against children affecting more than 2,000 children” (…)”During the reporting period, the SPLA issued new orders prohibiting the recruitment and use of children by the SPLA as well as occupation of schools. On 8 October, the United Nations submitted to the Government and SPLA a list of 20 schools reportedly used by the SPLA for military purposes” (UN OHRC, 2016).

I think the words in the reports say’s enough and I won’t comment on it; as the violence and actions are so straightforward and harsh. The people are victims and the reasons behind it should be sorted out. As they are violated, injured, harassed and killed by armies and militias while they are searching for power or keeping power. Peace.


UN Human Rights Council – A/HRC/28/49: “Report on the human rights situation in South Sudan” (09.03.2016)

United Nations Security Risk Assessment of South Sudan by September 2015


Today is a day where I will discuss and show findings for certain UNMISS report that is from UN Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) and UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) its numbered: ST/SGB/2007/06. It is the United Nations Security Risk Assessment – South Sudan. It was approved 11th September 2015! And here are some interesting findings. I think the quotes speak for themselves!

“Following the onset of the conflict in December 2013, UNMISS could not fully perform its mandate given it under Security Council resolution 1996 (2011) because of the security situation and the need to maintain impartiality. Subsequently, Security Council resolution 2155 (2014), 27 May 2014, fundamentally shifted the basis of UNMISS’ mandate from support of the Government in capacity-building in traditional UN peacebuilding areas to four key areas. In the line with the UN Security Council resolution 2223 (2015), UNMISS activities are:

  • Protecting the Civilians
  • Monitoring and investigating human rights
  • The Creation of conditions conducive for humanitarian assistance
  • Supporting the implementation of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement” (UN SRA SS P: 2-3).

“Despite the attacks on the Akobo CSB and the BOR PoC in April 2014, that were more linked with the ethnic based targeting of South Sudanese sheltering within UN premises, generally speaking the UN is not a primary target for hostilities. Moreover, the UN is more often caught in crossfire during armed conflict and access is affected as a result of armed conflict. This will continue to be a risk”(…)“The fact that UNMISS hosts over 166,000 Internally Displaced People (IDP) increases the UN’s operational risk profile and reputation” (…)”PoC sites are volatile with the potential that the high level of tension amongst the IDPs may spill over in violent clashes. Staff members are therefore at a higher risk working within these sites” (UN SRA SS P: 3).

“The armed conflict, which is now in its second year, followed last year’s pattern where the dry season was fighting season enabling forces to take control of vast areas of the country. During the rainy seasons (July-Nov) the roads become impassable curbing direct clashes for the period. Even with the IGAD peace agreement signed in Juba on 26. August 2015, assessment is that the country security situation in 2015/16 will remain unsecure” (UN SRA SS P: 4).

“Currently there is no mainstreaming of Security within the UN activities/ programmes. Therefore, the policy that defines that security needs to be involved at all levels of management to ensure security is considered/ mainstreamed into all the activities or programmes is not applied, specifically in UNMISS” (…)”Maintaining security training would enhance the functional expertise of all international and national staff although programme managers would need to receive training in order to learn the identity inherent and associated risks in a timely manner” (UN SRA SS P: 5).

Peace Operation: To help implement the mandated tasks, UNMISS will consist of a military component of up to 12,500 troops of all ranks and a police component, including appropriate Formed Police Units, up to 1,323 personell” (UN SRA SS P: 9).

“Humanitarian programme assessments have indicated that, as the violence deepens, the humanitarian needs and risk to aid workers increases. 27 aid workers are presumed to have been killed in South Sudan since December 2013 and over 150 NGO staff are unaccounted for” (…)”In Juba, there have been a growing number of armed attacks against humanitarian compounds” (UN SRA SS P: 10).

UNMISS Report P11 P1UNMISS Report P11 P2UNMISS Report P12

“At the height of the conflict large numbers of people split over the borders into neighboring countries seeking refuge in Ethiopia, Uganda, Sudan, Kenya and Abyei; these numbers stand at approximately 510,000 individuals” (UN SRA SS P: 13).

“The increased risk specifically in Malakal and Bentiu would require an increase in the deployment of security staff and expansion of the collective security posture” (…)”As the rains of 2015 began to cut off supply lines, military offensives increasingly used riverine methods of transporting goods and fighters to the frontline. The method of delivery was also being used by humanitarian agencies to transfer large quantities of food to communities in need. In April 2015 a barge convoy hired by UNMISS to carry food and fuel supplies for the base in Malakal was attacked by RPGs and small arms fire , injured four persons. In July the government gave strict warnings that all river transportation should stop, further restricting aid delivery around the country. In September there have also been reported incidents of alleged attack on government owned barges and gunboats in Upper Nile State, the SPLA-io claimed responsibility ahead of verification” (UN SRA SS P: 14-15).

“Since the beginning of the conflict (December 2013) until June 2015, there were a total of 594 security incidents involving IDPs in UNMISS PoC sites. Cases include serious assaults, civil unrest, mob violence, robbery, death threats and harassment, and several locations have also recorded serious disruption to humanitarian operation” (…)”Continued accusations by the government actors or affiliates that the PoC sites are a sanctuary for supporters of the SPLA in Opposition also make the PoC sites a target; this point was actively demonstrated in the attack in the Bor in April 2014 resulting in the death of 55 IDPs within the UNMISS site. Similar incidents have occurred near PoC sites in Juba, Bentiu and Malakal” (…)”An outbreak of cholera started in South Sudan on 18 May 2015 reaching total of 1718 cases [dates 4 September 2015], this rapid spread is largely affecting areas of the state capital Juba and also a separate smaller spread in Bor. One death have been reported at the PoC site in Juba with a total of 76 cases of people who contracted cholera inside the site” (UN SRA SS P: 16).

UNMISS Report P16

“UNSMS will have to work much closer with the GoSS security agencies to ensure an improved  security response to UN security related incidences” (…)”In Juba a “blue zone” was implemented to manage the locations which were approved by UN security for International UN staff to reside in based on accessibility to the area, crime rates and distance to UN base in case of relocation and emergencies” (…)”Where the UN has a presence Operational Zones have been created where security clearances are not required in all main urban areas to allow for improved access. This approach is underscore by risk management as opposed to a risk adverse approach, this concept needs to be maintained and where possible further enhanced or monitored” (UN SRA SS P: 17).

The disruption in oil revenues and devaluation of the currency as a result of the fighting has had a detrimental effect on the already weakened economy; government, civil servants, armed forces and police are having their salaries delayed. The breakdown in social infrastructure has reduced employment opportunities; creating desperation which has translated into crime” (…)”For example, the on-going cattle raiding and inter-clan revenge clashes that has been served in retaliation have devastated Lake States” (…)”Government officials have sometimes exacerbated tense situations with alienating remarks on their perception of the UN, often with accusations that the UN is favoring one side over the other within the conflict itself” (UN SRA SS P: 19).

Animosity grew when the government made accusations that the UN was harboring rebels within its Protection of Civilian (POC) sites. Direct and veiled threats to attack POCs became widespread” (…)”The effect of this was in April 2014 when “armed youth” attacked the UNMISS base in Bor resulting in the deaths of 55 IDPs and injuring many others including UN peacekeepers” (…)”On 26 August 2014 under suspicious circumstances a UN contracted helicopter crashed near Bentiu in Unity State, killing three (3) aircrew and injuring one (1) other underlining the threats involved in working within South Sudan. Investigations into the cause of the crash were inconclusive” (…)”In the middle July 2015 there are approximately 166,142 people saying in seven (7) UNMISS bases (UN SRA SS P: 20).

“There is also notable internal political  friction between the Central Government and the Equatoria States who have been calling for the greater autonomy via a federal government system. This has lead to local Equatorian communities feeling threatened and evacuating their families from the area” (…)”In Jonglei state” (…)” During rainy season in 2014 there were major skirmishes between the SPLA and SPLA-io reported in Jonglei. The SPLA-io has continued to threaten to fire upon aircraft flying in the areas, which were seven of the eleven counties during this period; the last threat was on 17 July 2014” Upper Nile” (…)”Several major clashes between the SPLA and SPLA-io have occurred; during one heavy exchange some stray bullets entered the UNMISS camp killing and injuring IDPs and causing structural damage to UN resources. All UN personnel remain concentrated in UNMISS camp including several agencies who had to abandon their own compounds” (…)”Unity State” (…)”To the west of Bentiu, UN staff previously based in the former Mayom UNMISS County Support Base (CSB) regularly were “caught in cross fire” incidents when the parties to conflict attempted to take control of the strategically important town, which is principally inhabited by Bul Nuer. UN Mission and Agencies Funds and Programme (AFP) staffs have become the target with regular ambushes, the demand for their trucks, and/or fuel and the forceful attempt to board UN flight by military” (UN SRA SS P: 22). “Also in the Upper Nile UNICEF reports that 89 boys were forcibly recruited by an unnamed armed group in late February 2015. They were takin in an area currently under government control, which is defended by government-allied Shilluk militia commanded by Maj Gen Johnson Olony” (…)”There are reports of an LRA attack in Western Equatoria State in March 2015 when one person was killed, the village was looted and eleven people were abducted but four were later released. This resuming of LRA attacks has increased fear amongst the population as the last attack in the 2012” (UN SRA SS P: 23).

“The oil pipelines exit South Sudan in both Unity and Upper Nile State, oil is refined in Sudan before being exported. The potential loss of oil revenues affects both nations so good trade relations’ remains key to maintaining income” (UN SRA SS P: 23).

Currently the flow of refugees is affecting both countries as fighting affects the communities and so they move on, in Sudan the fighting in South Kordofan has created an influx of refugees into South Sudan and the fighting in northern Unity State in South Sudan has meant many refugees travelled north to refugee sites within Sudan” (…)”Cross border grazing & migration rights also areas of dispute as they host well-armed Sudanese Misseriya cattle herders who move around South Sudan in search of feed for their animals” (UN SRA SS P: 24).

South Sudan lacks an adequate air traffic control system, countrywide. The government took control of the country’s airspace from Sudan in 2011, but to date has not issued any “Notice to Airmen” (NOTAMs), There are areas, however, that the government has declared a “no fly zone” (i.e. over the Presidential Palace in Juba), suggesting that the government reserve the right to fire upon an aircraft that violates this airspace” (UN SRA SS P: 25).

UNMISS Report P24UNMISS Report P25

“Use of the River Nile for transportation of UN supplies and fuel has proved difficult with the government threat against all river travel by humanitarian agencies. With military supply vessels regularly travelling the river to the frontline it is not a safe option for delivery of humanitarian provisions” (UN SRA SS P: 26).

Communicable diseases in South Sudan constitute a major cause of morbidity and morality largely due to the limited access to clean water and sanitation being extremely poor with open defection rates, which reaches 60% in urban areas and 80% in rural areas” (UN SRA SS P: 29).

Salva Kiir Cartoon

“In regards to infrastructure, the entire country remains underdeveloped. Road and air mobility is seriously jeopardized especially during the rainy season where whole regions are cut off. Electricity, food and clean water supplies are scarce and seriously impact UN operations in remote duty stations” (…)”Due to poor road conditions in both dry and rainy season and lack of infrastructure there is a heavy reliance on UNMISS and UNHAS air assets for the delivery of humanitarian aid” (UN SRA SS P: 30).

“The existing EU sanctions delivered in July 2014 had little impact on the de-escalating of the crisis, however further extensive UN sanctions were delivered in a tough UN Security Council Resolution on the 3 March 2015, the decision affects individuals through the freezing of their bank accounts and travel bans will affect all players who do not work towards peace and security. There is also an African Union (AU) report which has investigated human rights abuses last dry season which is completed but yet to be published” (UN SRA SS P: 41).

There is an increase of visible signs of South Sudan being a failing state: there is no free media, intimidation, by government security is commonplace, economy close to collapse and lack of provision or accountability of the civilian population by the state with most funds diverted to fund the war effort. Law and order is collapsing too, in some states wages have been stolen or simply delayed for months on end, in urban area reports of police becoming active criminals, local courts do not function and reports that crimes are committed due to perpetrators acting with impunity” (…)”Large numbers of IDPs rely on the security of UNMISS peacekeeping forces for their protection, however crowd control measures can never maintain order if the IDPs turn on their protector if the tensions rise inside the confines of the POC sites, the numbers are simply overwhelming” (UN SRA SS P: 42).

South Sudan Cartoon

It is all worrying even with the Peace Agreement between the SPLA/M and SPLA-IO which signed a deal with amendments and tokens taken off. The worrying path is the records and analyses that the UN and UNMISS is delivering in this report. The numbers of people that are fleeing from South Kordofan in Sudan and the ones fleeing South Sudan to neighboring countries like Ethiopia, Uganda and DRC is massive! Should be worrying and the way the air-space is not secured. Also the reports on how the seasons are changing and making it difficult to spread necessities like food through air should be seen as a GIANT sign that something has to change. Infrastructure that is gone during rainy season and the air-drops has to happen for no open roads. River Nile isn’t safe and is in the front-line and dangerous travel with transportation of necessities though that path.

There are the issues with the skirmishes in different areas and also military assaults in the various states. Both between SPLA and SPLA-IO but they are not alone. There other military groups making it worse, also the report of even LRA has done damage in the country. Those also innocent children have been abducted and all the weakness of the security issues together with the fractions inside the SPLA making the reports and data on the ground more worrying.

On top of it all the sanctions that has been put on the Government of South Sudan and it hasn’t hit the ground running, but been useless and if it does anything it’s been just a certain individuals that has lost bank accounts, but it hasn’t stopped the fighting or stopped small-arms coming to the country!

There is so much more I could have put into ink and discussed because its powerful to see what the UNMISS is writing and discussing in the report. I have taken what I seen as main issues and fresh insights. I am sure somebody else would have taken more of the context and background into it, but that you can read somewhere else. Peace!


United Nations Security Risk Assessment South Sudan – September 2015 – UN Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) & UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) – Approved 11. September 2015 – (Given out 15.09.2015)

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