Opinion

OPEN LETTER TO AWEIL EAST STATE’S GOVERNOR, HON. DENG DENG AKUEI:

Case of Majok-Yinh-Thiou or Majok, the so called “municipality!

By Tito AwenBol

Dear Governor;

I am much perturbed, baffled, mind boggled and seriously ached by the issue of the so called Municipality of Majok-Yinh-Thiou which you have inadvertently or intentionally named thus forcing me to beseech through this open letter. But before I familiarize the readers with the term or the name Majok-Yinh-Thiou or just Majok as it is commonly known.Let me give the following assurances to the governor and the entire readership (I don’t meant leadership): First, I will remain firm, respectfulto avoid the usual berserk& oblivion from many writers and cordially I will stick to the issues matching the above subject. Secondly, I am not a rebel or anybody’s sympathizer or stooge but a patriotic South Sudanese, a concerned native of Aweil East state and a beloved son of MalualBaai County. These days in our Country if one complains; he/she is connected to these nasty dark forces of rebellion so that the ‘interest group’ could create antagonism and level their ground hoping to gain after tagging such individual with the bad tag as English proverb says, “give a dog a bad name and hang it.” Thirdly on the same, I am not writing as students’ leader but an individual. So, if I err anywhere or you don’t like what I wrote then consider it as my own with no connection to students in Kenya…so, for those who know my little title,hey my little leadership aside.Further still on this assurance, I am not very sure if your office Manager(s) and press personnel are ready to read or assume anything as rubbish and fail to bring it to your attention.  If they do read; let them proof it by bringing this letter to your table because I have started this great concern with seriousness and I am sure if not handled by your office then the communitymay need intervention from above and I am concretely sure that you are able to handle it without intervention from the above.

As the English proverb says, “stitch in time saves nine.” This issue needs to be contained before it reaches far.  But for non-natives of Aweil to understand, Majok-Yinh-Thiou is an area situated along the South Sudan-Sudan border within the former state of Northern Bahr el Ghazal (NBG) roughly 150 KM from Aweil town and it is found within the former County of Aweil East which is currently Aweil East State. Majok-Yinh-Thiou has never been a no-man’s land.It has ever been a contested area but it belongs to the former Payam of MalualBaai which is currently MalualBaai County. Those who think that it is disputed are intentionally creating conflict among the peaceful people of AbiemEast and this should be resolved earlier before it is late.

As a result of the Presidential Order No.36 which curvedAweil East from NBG as a state and you (Hon.Deng DengAkuei) being nominated as its first governor; I was having it and still have it in mind that we (Abiem community) have advantage ofexperience and knowledge from you since you were a deputy Governor before Northern Bahr el Ghazal was partitioned. Hon.Governor, do you know that many people including myselfwere surprised and shockedto have heard that you announced eight Counties and named Majok-Yinh-Thiouas a Municipality under no County with its revenues going directly to the State Headquarters and administrators coming directly from state Headquarters under the disguise of it being disputed? First of all, did you mean Administrative Area (AA) within the state or you surely meant the Municipality? When we talk about Municipality, there are two things always involved: It should first belong to a certain administrative or political locality; say Payam or County at our level and, it should be a simple Geographical area(town/city.) But for this case Honourable, what is the square area of the so called Municipality ofMajok-Yinh-Thiou? Kindly nameit back as a Payam in MalualBaai County as obviously expected!

Is Majok-Yinh-Thiou contested? By whom and since when?

In 2010 during the voter registration exercise, some individuals (not the whole community) from MadholPayam (now Madhol County) decided to take their people to Majok for voters’ registration contrary to the obvious. This issue brought a very big loggerhead and it almost brewed into conflict between the two beloved communities of MalualBaai and Madhol. When the then Chairman of National Electoral Commission (NEC) in NBG-Uncle MawienKucsaw that it might result into a fight, he went to the local government documents (which I believe are still there) and read through from 1970’s elections’ documents and drew the conclusion that the area belong to MalualBaaipayambecause those voting there those days were people of the present day MalualBaai County. Honourable, where did you get these logics of it being disputed again while it was settled by Uncle Mawiendit?

Is the land supposed to be owned by the host or the hosted?

Between 2008 and 2011, many returnees coming from Sudan as an impact of Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) found it appropriate to settle and be settled at Majok-Yinh-Thiou since the government of the former NBG and the NGOs received the returnees in the area. Many returnees from almost everywhere in Bahr el Ghazal including all the Counties ofAweil, Warrap, Abyeiand Wau found it a good place to do business and farming hence chose to stay there which is the right of every citizen to stay anywhere in the Country. But could that renders Majok-Yinh-Thiou to be a disputed land because the kind owners (hosts) accepted to demonstrate hospitality to the hosted? So, is it right for the people of Warrap and Wauto claim that it belongs to them because their people were/are staying there? If no, then you know the answer or why doing the contrary Sir!Truth is as crystal clearas mirror and it cannot be blocked by the image but the image of truth can be reflected. This is an open truth that can be reflected anywhere in the state including in the Transitional Legislative Parliament sittings and within your Cabinet meetings…reflect and imitate on this truth Sir.

Hon.Governor, remember thatMalualBaai is the only one among the former 7 Payams of Aweil East County that never produce a national or state minister from 2005-2016 before the 28 states were named not because its people never participated in the war of independence nor because its people are incapacitated in any capacity. But they never made noise against the state or national government not because they are unable to do so or were comfortable with such marginalization but because they are peaceful people. Remember, MalualBaai is the only area whose its vast Agricultural land of Tony-col is divided by rich ‘outside’ politicians away from its sons without a single benefit to the host community which is against the land investment policies but these people never wanted to complain not because they don’t see the injustice but they kept quiet since they are peaceful and generous people. Kindly Honourable, don’t provoke these peaceful people with your so call Municipality; you are a man I dearly respect. It is not a merry-go-round affair any more but a case to be answered and amicably solved. Hon.Governor, are you aware that the first teachers to be employed in Majok-Yinh-Thiou in 2005, 2006 and 2007 before the returnees influx were from MalualBaaiPayam and under the payroll and supervision ofMalualBaaiPayam…if yes, how can you accept that it is disputed? If it is because of border revenues, then let the revenues go to the state or Juba since it is international border and the land remain to the owners as it is in our Transitional Constitution. Are you aware that any conflict that may result from this will be counted on your family and generation because you are the first Governor and you are openly manipulated to create or accept to create non-existing problem? Any elder or chief (except the bribed) in Ajuongdit and Abiem knows where Majok belongs. The first people who settled in Majok-Yinh-Thiou are having their blood relatives whom they shared the 3rd great grand-father in Kot-ic village of Wundeng sector today, likewise in the surrounding areas of MacharAkoon and others; their blood-lineage-relatives are currently in Ameth and Akong villages of Lou sector, all in MalualBaai. You must make a reasonable resolve as quick as you can…even if there are hands of influence above you;be cautious, it is about the people and your personal reputation!

Recommendations:                                                                                              

  1. Governor, go to the local government documentsespecially the 1970’s elections of Sudan and read through to affirm, acquaintance and familiarize yourself on who were the people living in Majok-Yinh-Thiou before the war of 1983,
  2. Consult with Uncle MawienKucon how he handled the same issue that arose in 2010,
  3. Consult the local Chiefs and elders in Abiem and Abiem East especially on who were the first people to settle in Majok-Yinh-Thiou and surrounding areas of MacharAkoon. They will tell you who owned Majok that was killed to name the area after it. It was not even a bull but a he-goat with the colour-Majok and they will tell you even the surrounding story,
  4. MalualBaai youths and chiefs should prepare an official petition and serve to your office, copy to the County Commissioner (Hon.AngachAkot Yak), National Transitional Parliament and Government of National Unity on the same and gazette the petition on the newspapers for further reference in case the state authority don’t intend to solve,
  5. If the state government is unable to resolve in a given period of time then you will be required to request the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) to form a Parliamentary Committee to which the MPsof Abiem Eastin the National Parliament (who are currently in bed with this silence conflict for the reason known to them)should be members to investigate and give their recommendations,
  6. A case will be opened in Arbitration Chamber (if appropriately any) of the High Court against your government for creating the conflict among peaceful people of Abiem East.

In conclusion, the whole community of MalualBaai County is looking forward to see a speedy positive response from your office or the state government of Aweil East.

The author is a dual student taking Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from University of Eldoret, Kenya, and concurrently taking an Associate Degree in Development Studies from University of Eastern Africa-Baraton,Kenya.

He can be reached at: awenbol2007@yahoo.com or +254715873089

 

 

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