Shilluk Community Supports Foreign Minister, Dr. Lam Akol
Shilluk International Congress (SIC)
Feb, 23, 2007
The Shilluk community worldwide is outraged by unfounded accusations against Foreign Minister, Dr.Lam Akol that he is supporting a militia in
State. Those accusations were designed by the SPLM’s faction composed of Dr. Garang’s orphans who want Deng Alor Kuol to be appointed as Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Government of National Unity (GoNU). Since the appointment of Dr. Lam Akol as Minister of Foreign Affairs in Sept, 2005, there have been complaints from Dinka circle, particularly Garang’s loyalists that a Dinka was supposed to be appointed as a Minister of Foreign Affairs instead of a Shilluk. Initially, Vice-president Salva Kiir refused to appoint a Dinka because of fear of backlash from other
South Sudan ethnic groups since the Dinka tribe had nine ministers in the GoNU representing the SPLM.
After Dr. Lam Akol appointed sixty diplomats from the South to Foreign Service this month, many Dinka fundamentalists complained that Dinka were not fully represented. A look at the number of diplomats appointed by Dr. Lam Akol showed that most of
South Sudan ethnic groups were equally represented. Dr. Lam was even too fair to appoint non-Southerners from
Mountain, Southern Blue Nile and
Central Sudan. For instance, a son of SPLM’s veteran, CDR Yusuf Kwa Maki, was appointed as a diplomat. The Nuer were also represented. No complaint has been heard so far from the Nuer community against Dr. Lam Akol.
The accusations brought against Dr. Lam Akol were orchestrated by Garang’s loyalists who are using Pagan Amum to further their aim of targeting few Shilluks in the GoNU. Pagan Amum has a personal vendetta against Dr. Lam Akol because the Shilluk community has not forgiven him for the assassination of a prominent Shilluk politician, Mr. Bol Kur in 1984, in collaboration with late Dr. Garang. Pagan Amum was also the one who engineered the killing of Lokurnyang Lado, former leader of South Sudan Front (SSF) in 1984. Pagan is not popular among the Shilluk and for that reason, the Garang’s boys want to taint the leadership credibility of Dr. Lam Akol that he is supporting a Shilluk militia which does not exist. The accusation is too delinquent that it even disturbs the conscience of Shilluk’s King.
The Shilluk community would like to remind the Sudanese public that SPLM/A—United of Dr. Lam Akol united with SPLM/A of Garang in 2003. All the forces of Dr. Lam Akol were integrated into the SPLA as per the agreement signed between him and John Garang in
Nairobi. The allegations brought up by some deranged SPLM members are substantially irrational and should be considered as smear campaign. The very people who brought up accusations against Lam Akol were the ones who stood against Vice-president Salva Kiir in Rumbek in 2004. People like Pagan, Rebecca Nyandeng, Deng Alor Kuol and their stooges were described by Salva Kiir in 2004 as internal enemies of
South Sudan who amassed wealth at the expense of South Sudanese. Pagan Amum embezzled one million dollars of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in
Eritrea from 1999—2003 until Garang was pressurized by NDA’s leadership to remove him. Pagan and Deng Alor Kuol have also embezzled $60m dollars given to South by President Bashir in 2005. They accused Arthur Ashuein (Akuein) Chol falsely to cover up their own crimes.
The people of South Sudan should be reminded that military clashes reported in
Upper Nile among SPLA soldiers in December, 2006, were not orchestrated by anybody. The SPLA is having disciplinary problems that have nothing to do with Lam Akol. Last year, non-Shilluk SPLA soldiers raped three girls in
Kingdom. When former commanders of SPLA-United appealed to Gen. Bior Ajang Duot to discipline the culprits, Garang’s loyalists of the SPLA refused to take action. In January, 2007, two more girls were raped. The Shilluk community in
Upper Nile was outraged and some of SPLA officers who were formerly commanders under Lam Akol’s faction punished the culprits themselves. Garang’s boys were outraged and appealed to Lt. Gen. Salva Kiir accusing Lam Akol falsely that he influenced officers who arrested rapists.
When Dr. Lam Akol toured
Upper Nile counties in January this year, a lot of Nuer and Shilluk community leaders appealed to him concerning human rights abuses being committed by the SPLA. Dr. Lam, being a popular leader of the South, persuaded the civil population to promote peace and brotherhood among South Sudanese irrespective of tribe, section or clan. His message of promotion of the CPA was widely received by the Nuer community of the
Upper Nile. He also appealed to South Sudan Defence Force (SSDF) under Major Gen. Gordon Koang to give peace a chance by exploring avenues of peace and reconciliation with the SPLA. Most of SSDF’s leaders who met Dr. Lam Akol swore before him that there would be no more clashes between the SSDF and the SPLA in
Upper Nile. Dr. Lam is also having personal contacts with Gen. Gordon Koang to convince him to sit with SPLA at the table to resolve differences amicably.
Garang’s orphans are having problems with the popularity of Lam Akol among the Nuer and the Shilluk communities. But there is a reason why Lam Akol is popular among Southerners, particularly the Nuer. He is the intellectual father of the right to self-determination. It was him who persuaded Riek Machar to stage a coup against Garang in 1991 to champion the inalienable right to self-determination. Lam was unanimously nominated by the SPLM/A—Nasir faction to lead the movement in 1991, but declined because Riek Machar was senior to him in the military hierarchy. In short, Lam is the one who brought up the idea of self-determination as the most dominant political objective in the Sudanese politics. The Khartoum Peace Agreement, the Fashoda and the CPA contained the right to self-determination because of the political thinking of Lam Akol. History of
Sudan will always remember him as the intellectual father and the icon of the right to self-determination. That is why corrupt Garang’s loyalists want to erase his established credibility among Southerners.
The Shilluk community would also remind the public that the accusations that Lam Akol is pursuing foreign policy contrary to SPLM’s party objectives are unsubstantiated. First, Lam is following the directives of the Council of Ministers of the GoNU headed by President Bashir and Vice-president Salva Kiir. Political rules require him to follow orders from the top. He is not supposed to say things which contradict the presidency. If the SPLM wants Foreign Minister to champion SPLM’s party foreign policy rather than national position of the
Sudan government, it is the responsibility of Vice-president Kiir to change foreign policy in collaboration with President Bashir. Lam Akol is a junior Minister who has no legal and constitutional power to say whatever he likes contrary to rules governing all ministers of GoNU. Even if a Dinka is the Foreign Minister of Sudan, he would be required by law to carry out the policies of GoNU dictated by President Bashir. All the accusations that Lam is promoting foreign policy of National Congress Party come from Neanderthals who lost touch with how modern governments function. Dr. Lam is a Foreign Minister of Sudan, not SPLM. The law demands that he does not step outside the policies formulated by the presidency.
The person who should be blamed for lack of change of
Sudan’s foreign policy is Vice-president Kiir himself. He is the one should tell President Bashir in the meeting of Council of Ministers how the foreign policy of the country should look like. Lam cannot act as Foreign Minister and Vice-president simultaneously. That would be illegal and out of protocol. But Garang’s orphans want Southerners to believe that it is Lam who should change national policies. That argument can appeal only to Bushmen who have no regard to supreme law of the land.
The Shilluk community calls upon Vice-president Kiir to distance himself from Garang’s loyalists who want to destroy the CPA and his leadership. Rebecca Nyandeng and her boys want to spread chaos in
South Sudan by targeting few Shilluks in the GoNU. They feel ashamed that the coup attempt of last year in
Juba failed. Now they want to smear Lam Akol hoping that they would have an opportunity to isolate Vice-president Kiir from the rest of
South Sudan leaders and get rid of him eventually. Removal of Lam Akol would only increase accusations from Southerners that the Dinka are dominating GoNU and the government of
South Sudan. The enemies of peace will use that to mobilize Southerners against the Dinka ethnic group. That is exactly what Nyandeng and her boys are aiming at so that they would be able to convince Southerners that Salva Kiir is incapable of leading the South.
We warn Vice-president Kiir that the accusations brought against Dr. Lam Akol are targeting the whole Shilluk ethnic group. Our community will not sit silent while one of Shilluk’s icons is being attacked unjustly. Those unfounded allegations may create uncontrollable instability in
Upper Nile if Salva Kiir is duped by Garang’s loyalists who are his sworn political enemies.
Shilluk International Congress (SIC)