By Dr. Mawien Akot*. [email protected]
When Bona Malwal and others formed the so-called Southern Sudan Democratic forum (SSDF) their top agenda was separation of South Sudan from dominantly oppressive North. According to them, calls of the late Dr. John Garang de Mabior, chairman and commander in chief of SPLM/A, for a united New Sudan were empty slogans that fall short of addressing core issues for which sons and daughters of Southern Sudan took up arms to fight successive regimes in Khartoum. This was evident in series of articles Mr Malwal published on Khartoum daily-Al Rai Al’aam in which he vigorously attacked Dr. John for his inclination to sign a peace agreement, which would ultimately result in unity of the Sudan. Mr. Malwal went even far by encouraging Dr. John Garang’s vice chairman, Cdr. Salva Kiir Mayardit to overthrow the later just before signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), an attempt which was rejected by Cdr. Kiir and wisely handled by SPLM leadership in the famous Rumbek meeting.
Having failed to achieve his wicked endeavor to overthrow John Garang by force, the disgruntled Malwal published another futile article rebuking Cdr. Salva Kiir for failure to grasp “an opportunity which is the best for South Sudan”. Of course, those who were closely monitoring Malwal-Garang dispute know the true essence of discourse was not about “what’s best for the South.” It was solely centered around Malwal’s mischievous greed to acquire wealth undercover of “slave redemption program” through which he collected thousands of dollars from western world, claiming that he is freeing slaves from the bondage of Arab masters when in actual fact Bona had stealthily employed fair-skinned militants of his own to impersonate Arab slave masters. Innocent children from Twic and Aweil were utilized deceptively to act as captives, often without consent from their parents or legal guardians.
How Bona and the Crew got Barred from Going to South Sudan?
Although SPLM/A acknowledges existence of slavery practice in Northern Bahr el Ghazal and Abeyi area, Malwal’s endeavors to make profit out of such human tragedy were deemed discrediting to the Movement and its relentless efforts to establish credibility in front of the international community. It’s in this vein that Dr. John Garang de Mabior strictly bared Bona Malwal from going to Southern Sudan with his accomplices; thus halting them from conducting faulty slave redemption business in order to restore trust in SPLM/A. Of course this sparked an overwhelming wrath from Bona’s side so he started to launch personal attacks against Dr. John and made an attempt to even sue him through Kenyan justice system. At that point in time, NIF rouge regime was engaged to a full brim in creating rift among southern Sudanese to weaken SPLA/M; Therefore, Mr Bona was secretly invited to visit Khartoum and offered big financial incentive to create SSDF as an opposition party in the South. Greedy politicians like Aldo Ajou soon joined hand with Bona Malwal and conducted an NIF sponsored conference in Oxford, UK.
Actions Taken by Late Dr. John Garang:
Despite Bona’s continuous “storm in the glass”, Dr. John Garang, the visionary leader, extended a reconciliatory hand to Malwal in an effort to preserve unity of Southern Sudanese leaders. His clash with Malwal was therefore peacefully resolved by some of our elders in United Kingdom like uncle Gordon Mourtat and many others. Unfortunately Malwal’s commitment to NIF agenda was far greater than his dedication to the cause of marginalized, as a result, Bona never abided by peace agreement he inked and witnessed by prominent Southern Sudanese leaders. Instead, he continued his disapproving wanton against SPLM/A, especially its agenda for creating a united New Sudan.
The True Face of a Traitor:
After tragic death of Dr. John Garang in a mysterious Helicopter crash in which bloody hands of the likes of Malwal and Aldo can not be ruled out, many Southern Sudanese who supported Malwal’s separatist vision expected that the man would pull his heavy weight behind Salva Kiir Mayardit to advocate for succession of Southern Sudan in the forth coming referendum. However, the opposite turned out to be true. On September 23, 2005, Mr. Bona Malwal took an oath in front of Field Marshal Omar Hassan Hamed el Bashir, President of the Sudan, accepting his nomination as a presidential adviser. Soon after that, Malwal spoke to reporters in Sudan News Agency (SUNA) declaring his full support for unity of the Sudan. Here many wonder about true political objectives of Bona Malwal and his SSDF? Knowing that an adviser always works to the best interest of the presidency, how Bona Malwal of SSDF separatist party would advise president El Bashir to let the south go?
The marginalized masses of Sudan must know that Bona Malwal and Aldo Ajou are nothing but walking political gimmicks of NIF regime. Their call for South separation was a political maneuver to discredit a committed leader (Dr. John Garang) who firmly advocated our cause till he died. Our new SPLM/A leader Cdr. Salva Kiir Mayardit must fully dissociate himself with them as he rightfully lead us towards realization of the New Sudan.
The author is an SPLM supporter and a staff member of Nuclear Medicine Department at Regina General hospital in Canada