SHILLUK INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS IS NOT A CREATION OF LAM AKOL
Shilluk International Congress (SIC)
March, 4th, 2007
In response to our public statement issued on
Feb, 23rd, 2007, Senator Dr. Peter Adwok Nyaba wrote an article in the daily newspaper the Citizen denying the existence of our organization and accused Dr. Lam Akol, the Foreign Minister of Sudan, as being the one who wrote the statement fictitiously. There are a lot of allegations he raised in his article against our organization. However, we are in a position to answer the relevant ones. The SIC does not want to assume the position of Lam Akol and would not answer the attacks labeled against him personally by Senator Nyaba. What we are concerned with is the denial of the existence of the SIC.
The Shilluk International Congress (SIC) was founded on
Dec, 21st, 2006, by the intellectuals of Collo community living in
North America and
Australia. It was created to address economic and political problems facing Shilluk community in
State. There are so many socio-economic problems members of Collo community need to address after the conclusion of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). One of them is political marginalization. Although the South Sudanese in general are victims of minority Arab clique marginalization, each community has a natural right to fight for itself in a country like
Sudan which has more than one hundred and sixteen tribal groupings. We feel that one way to address marginalization of
South Sudan from national cake in
Khartoum is not to fill all positions with Nuer or Dinka, but with all ethnic groups from the South. However, the idea of New Sudan the SPLM has been fighting would become another form of domination by privileged ethnic groups from the North and South if, for instance, the Government of National Unity (GoNU) is dominated by Jali and Dinka ethnic groups without regard to national diversity. This may ignite a lot of questions from other ethnic groups of
Sudan and question the legitimacy of the New Sudan the SPLM is claiming to champion.
Senator Dr. Nyaba might have made a leap of logic by arguing that there is no organization called the SIC because it never issued any statement before accusations were brought against Dr. Lam Akol.
However, we would remind him that the SIC existed even before Dr. Lam was falsely accused at Yie meeting of SPLM Leadership Council of
Feb, 8th, 2007. Since political marginalization is one of the problems the SIC must address, our organization had to react to false accusations brought against a Southern icon who hailed from
Kingdom. Dr. Lam is a Southern leader who is subject to false accusations like any politician in
Sudan. But tribal conspiracy against him because of his ethnic background may even force his adversaries from Collo community to come to his defense cheaply because an attack on Lam because he is a Shilluk is also an attack on all Shilluks including Collos who are his political enemies. We know where the false accusations against him originated from. The fact that Pagan Amum was used as an errand boy to speed up smear campaign against him does not mean that there are no anti-Collo in the shadow who planned false accusations against Lam. Members of Collo community find it difficult to fathom why the Dinka elites attack Lam repeatedly because of 1991 Nasir Declaration without mentioning Riek Machar. If the reason is that Lam Akol is the intellectual father of the revolution, what about those who accepted his call and assumed leadership of the SPLM/A—Nasir faction? Does being the intellectual father of the revolution absolve Riek Machar, Gordon Koang and the rest from blame if the Dinka militants mistakenly belief that the 1991 declaration was a disaster? Why did the Dinka elites single out one person from the group that made the declaration?
The reason why the names of the leaders of Shilluk International Congress are not made public should not tempt an intellectual like Senator Dr. Nyaba to jump to conclusion that the public statement of the SIC was authored by Dr. Lam Akol. The executive leadership of the SIC is fully aware of the security risks by questioning false accusations emanating from Garang’s boys like Pagan Amum. Some of our members were there when Lokurnyang Lado was executed in Bonga by the SPLA in 1984. The role of Pagan Amum in the killing is well documented. Besides, Pagan Amum warned Southerners in a party in
Juba last year that “any body who disagrees with the leadership of the SPLM would be followed up to village”. What this statement means is that somebody marked by Garang’s boys is not only subject to physical and mental harm but also his family members in the village may fall victims. Therefore, the SIC has legal responsibility to protect its members from potential harm in
The Collo community is also aware of the personal animosities between Dr. Nyaba and Dr. Lam Akol. The former was arrested in December, 1994 in
Tonga by Lam Akol’s forces of SPLM/A—United. Dr. Nyaba was then sent by Riek Machar to persuade Shilluk officers to arrest Lam Akol and hand him over. However, things did not go the way he planned and Nyaba ended up in jail instead. Prior to that, Nyaba was one of the conspirators who convinced Riek Machar to dismiss Lam Akol from the SPLM/A—United without conducting a trial or following the administrative procedures to establish his guilt before dismissing him. There is no question that Senator Nyaba would easily jump to conclusion and accuse Lam falsely of being the inventor of the SIC to settle personal grudges.
The personal animosities between the Senator and the Foreign Minister have caused a lot of concerns among the Shilluk community and the SIC would like to appeal to both men to seek counseling from Shilluk’s Reth (King) who has spiritual powers to exorcise hatred and ill-feelings against one another. Dr. Nyaba’s article of accusation against Lam was prompted by personal vendetta rather than expression of personal opinion. If his hatred against Lam is not cured by the spiritual powers of Collo King, people may wonder whether the Senator is not going to enact a law in the national parliament that would target only Lam Akol in the country.
The Shilluk International Congress therefore advises Senator Adwok Nyaba to distinguish between a legitimate civil society organization and a political adversary. Besides, being a Senator is a respectable position which demands care before one should jump to conclusion.
Shilluk International Congress
Contact: [email protected]