Use cultural dance to promote peace


A cultural dance group prepares to perform during national peace

day celebration in Juba (Credit: Mose Gum)

By Bullen Bala Alexander
A youth activist has called for use of cultural dances to promote peace and reconciliation among South Sudanese communities.
John Wek Rual Akol, Chairperson for Peace and Reconciliation Centre (PRC) said South Sudanese had developed alot of mistrust among them due to the conflict. He said the trust could only be restored through cultural performance that comprise of all traditional groups.
Mr. Akol was addressing over 20 different cultural dancing groups during cultural festival at the Peace and Reconciliation Center (PRC) in Juba last Sunday.
“The conflict had destroyed the social fabrics among South Sudanese that make them consider each other as enemies instead of brothers and sisters who share cultures,” Akol said.
According to Akol, the PRC was formed to promote peace and unity by bringing all traditional and cultural dance groups together.
“We want to tell the region and the International Community that we can sing, dance and play together as one family,” he said.
Akol appealed to the government to support such activities that aim at uniting the country, saying it was the only way forward to create unity among citizens.
Malual Yak Ayel, Chief of Acheng of Abyei Administrative Area in Juba said culture was an important aspect in promoting peace in the society.
“Traditional dances can unite and bring love among us as it removes bad behaviors among young generations,” he said.
Ayel called on his fellow chiefs to promote cultural activities in the country. He said it was the only instrument for restoring harmony among South Sudanese.
Terekeka state paramount Chief Machar Butis Kidin said during their days they valued cultural dances more than the contemporary music.
“Mundari were very peaceful those days because people used to consider cultures very important,” he said.
He said Mundari were peaceful people, adding that adapting western cultures have made most Mundari people to be violent these days.
“There is need for us to go back and promote our culture through educating our youth on the importance of traditional dances,” Kidin Mundari Paramount Chief said.

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