Editorial

Who are the Conflict entrepreneurs in South Sudan?

Conflict entrepreneurs are viewed as both economic and political actors they fuel violence as a path for attaining economic and political power. Therefore, a non-violent way of solving grievance, a democratic way of getting power can lower levels of violent conflict.

Conflict entrepreneurs often mobilize individuals through ethnic, religious or ideological solidarity; patronage.

Many individuals who incited or benefited from violence often enjoy positions of economic and political power long after the cessation of hostilities. Corruption is an endemic problem in many post-communist societies, and stagnant economies make access to state power one of the only viable means of acquiring substantial wealth.

Governments often make bargains with warlords, giving conflict entrepreneurs political power in exchange for a little peace. The goal of these “dirty deals” is to buy time and when the money is finished the same strategy continues is not a durable solution in solving conflict.

Participants recognized the inherent problems of allowing conflict entrepreneurs access to political and economic power in return for refusal of violence, noting that such strategies often lead to criminal states where corruption is the conqueror of all institutions.

Good conflict is that healthy one that pushes parties to be better as people and communities.  But sometimes, conflict can become evil. The best defence is a culture of good conflict where questions get asked, honest disagreement is encouraged, and everyone behaves with a baseline level of decency and respect is given an opportunity.

Violent conflict can be alleviated by converting militant groups into parties, accountability and rule of law should take cost and reward defectors with positions is like taking  Panadol but the core issues remained unsolved. 

Reward Conflict entrepreneurs encourage fertile ground for more entrepreneurs in the business who should not be given chance. Accommodating strategy is not enough the root causes of any conflict must be revisited and solved once for all.

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