Opinion

Thirty four years after the first bullet

By Cde Sirir Gabriel

It is now 34 years after SPLA fired the first bullet of the liberation struggle. Reflecting on the suffering endured by the men and women who perished in the liberation war, one can only ask candidly: Is this the country they labored for? Reminiscing how thousands were orphaned because their mothers and fathers had to fight the unjust system. Palpably, as they took to the thick jungles to fight, the liberators had a flaming desire to bring about South Sudan and destroy the Islamic draconian ideals.

They had a mind bent on freeing South Sudan; they should have envisaged a South Sudan, which would be the pride of Africa. They saw a South Sudan in which everyone had equal status before the law; a South Sudan where the national cake was accessible to all.

However, suppose these fallen heroes were to rise today, would they be contented that indeed the current South Sudan represents the fruits of their sacrifices? Would they? Perhaps they would hear of the habit of Salva Kiir, which shocked the whole nation. But after all has been said, there can be no running away from the fact that South Sudan, 34 years on, hardly depicts what these liberators envisaged as they took up arms.

This could actually be an overstatement. Like one musician put it, “Our liberators, who died in the war, would not have sacrificed their lives if they were to see the state of the country they died for today”. We are now in a pauperized country with less than 200 000 people in formal employment.

Millions upon millions have become modern-day slaves in foreign nations. We have become a nation growing hungry by the passing of each day with the economy sinking further. Formerly a country tasked with food security in the region, we are now begging from country to country.

Production has fallen drastically leaving our shops filled with foreign products from countries like Dubai, Uganda, Sudan, Egypt and Kenya. Almost 80 percent of the population survives in refugee camps and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps. This certainly is not the country they desired.

We attained political independence verbally in 2005 blessed by referendum of 2011, but the all-important economic independence has been a monumental disaster and directly or indirectly we find ourselves enslaved by other nations whether we like to call them our friends or partners.

error: Content is protected !!