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The Republic of South Sudan (RoSS) is in a dire need for national; regional; and international political partnerships; to fruitfully consolidate its sovereignty; as well as benefiting from its many valuable human and other natural resources. Political partnership can be effectively used as the practical foundation; and the essence of national unity in the RoSS. South Sudanese politicians ought to learn to work together if the RoSS is to continue to be habitable in a fashion that engenders human dignity; honour; integrity; freedoms; independence; sovereignty; and pride. Political partnerships are inherently akin to business partnerships, with the disadvantage that, in the former types of partnerships, those partners that consider themselves senior tend to grab everything that the other so designated junior partners view as being the most important political and social values. This is the most acute difficulty of political partnerships in multi-religious; multiethnic; multilingual; and multicultural countries like the RoSS. In these types of political circumstances, the most prudent course of political action to take is to positively constitute political partnerships that do not assign others advantageous senior partners’ status based on some subjective criteria.
I sincerely want to say that; the SPLM shall become continuously successful if all the political variables of its functionalism are arranged in such a fashion that, the world and the South Sudanese public are satisfied and are convinced that, the peace and unity of the South Sudanese shall be guaranteed through these agreements. The SPLM shall definitely succeed if the kind of political partnership it has embarked upon with the RoS is predicated on honest relationship and cooperation between and among all the peoples and governments of both the RoSS and the RoS respectively. I must say that; this international/regional/national partnership between the RoSS and the RoS; is a relationship and cooperation which entails that, among and between all peoples of the two sisterly nations; there ought not to exist some culture of inferiority or superiority and which is expressly or impliedly exhibited, or that is explicitly or implicitly demonstrated. These agreements are political partnerships that are the harbingers of South Sudanese and Sudanese peaceful coexistence; and ought not to be based on some culture of accommodation. This therefore means that; neither the peoples of the RoSS; nor the peoples of the RoS ought to feel that; they are being given a favour by some invisible hand, or a person, but a person or a hand which is not living but implied in certain conducts or attitudes where some other groups within the partnership are made to feel very grateful and thankful for being where they are, that is, in a political partnership. These agreements are concrete pillars for international/regional/national partnership as between the RoSS and the RoS based on the will of the two sisterly and brotherly peoples.
The SPLM must operationalise these agreements; and allow them to have a life of their own; to the extent that; these agreements ought not to be made to depend on individual/group subjectivity. That means that, if certain human persons are not there or died, these agreements ought to be able to exist; and to continue to benefit the peoples of the RoSS and the peoples of the RoS. On the other, it means that, if an unfortunate group of such a partnership happens to step on some very important toes, that group’s political career is finish. This is not the way to build international/regional/national political partnerships that are the vanguard of national unity and coexistence. Such kind of political partnerships shall become hostages to personality cult and that is not what the South Sudanese people want. The South Sudanese people are happy to follow political partnerships based on objectivity where the leadership of the party is predicated on transparency and respect for opinions of all big and small in such political partnerships.
Successful political parties are those political organisations that have developed effective and efficient methodologies of mobilising the best human resources in terms of political loyalty and various skills and knowledge into a kind of cutting-age political machinery. These types of successful political parties are not characterised by endemic political placation and reification of its genuine supporters. Successful political parties are not also saturated with political recklessness that include political conduct that verges on deceit and political manipulation of its genuine members notwithstanding their educational and other backgrounds. When a political party delegates some of its operatives to act as political auxiliaries in terms of international, national, regional, and local mobilisation, this delegated political authority must be honoured and respected in terms of these political agents, vis-à-vis their political work.
While influential political personalities within respective political parties are commonplace political occurrences, political parties should not become hostages to such a phenomenon to the extent that, such personalities literally stifle political work due to their personal political whims. The deployment of political personnel should not be tied to some illusive political criteria that are in fact, a distortion of genuine political participation by competent nationals in the political process. It is politically and psychologically offensive to treat political adults as if they were political infants, and it is more offensive when political colleagues notwithstanding their hierarchy in a given political party continue to renege on their political commitments and promises, and demonstrate such personal conduct that shows that, people have lost the capacity to differentiate between lies and facts. Nation building within the remit of political parties must be demonstrated from within political parties in terms of political integrity of such political parties that have the potential to run, or are actually running the country.
Political partnerships are affected by the manner in which the parties treat their members; that is; that shall exactly be the fashion such parties shall tackle the greater affairs of the nation in which they are found. For example; it is very dangerous for a political party; such as the SPLM; to develop a political culture in which, some members notwithstanding their experiences and educational background are continuously treated as guests where they stumble upon political events, despite the fact that, these types of members are monotonously informed and made to feel that they matter so much to the party. It is a common fact that, persistence of political failures in many Third World countries; and that shall also include the RoSS; is due to the fact that, active and effective political involvement by effective citizens of these countries in the decision making process is curtailed. The people are not being allowed to take part in the identification, implementation and evaluation of political programmes that are supposed to benefit them. Therefore, to develop broad based and effective political parties, people ought to begin jettisoning some entrenched political cultures.
Not many human persons enjoy being manipulated especially when decisions are taken during frank adult talks, where the discussants decide on issues of political parties’ housekeeping and the efficacy of membership. There is a limit for political participation by proxy, and the near permanent isolation and exclusion of particular sections of political forces within a political party is not a healthy party work to say the least and to put it mildly. Party political work ought not to be the privy of a particular group nor individuals. There is nothing like a specific point in time at which, a particular political work should commence. Political work is a process and it can commence at any point in time when the political personnel are ready for such a duty. Political placation is very dangerous because it is a short-lived political strategy of mobilising and organising political parties and commensurate political support. Such an approach to political work deprives many genuine party members from developing strong party identity and political independence in terms of the capacity with respect to the ability to elaborate various issues that are of utmost importance to the said political party and organisation.
Effective political participation at least at the conceptual level has become the password for political processes that are imbued with human rights and self-determination parlance. Political parties that aspire to develop to the level of sole political magnet around which all political forces would like to rally ought to develop some political ideology that views all genuine members with the same degree of trust and respect. There are many ways in which to disrespect and thus discourage party members from productive political work, and that include the display of some political conduct that is devoid of human elements of reciprocity in all its shapes and forms. A political party should have the ability to know the quality of the membership it has. It is a fact that in any political party, there are categories of membership, ranging from the flag bearers to the thinkers in the party.
However, when it comes to norms of political respect within the party in question, all these types of membership are equally important and they are all respected by party machineries albeit that, their roles and commensurate attention paid to them by the party may differ. This is a fact, and I am not indulging myself in some exercise of political differentiation and integration within the remit of political partnership in the RoSS. When a political party is on a recruitment drive, it cannot afford to become complacent and politically reckless vis-à-vis those political assets it already has. Potential members are watching the political scene and they would want to notice how the party in question actually treats its actual members already registered. This is doubly crucial when such a party is a multi-religious, multi-ethnic, and multi-racial party like the SPLM. Effective political parties cannot afford a reckless attitude where political statements and commitments are made without any intention of being followed through with concrete political action to demonstrate the integrity of the party in question.
Mangers of political parties should not behave as if they are so omnipotent that, no other human person in the country can challenge their arrogance and incompetence that is actually harming the country and the party more than any amount of foreign threats and political rhetoric. Political parties in the Third World and including the RoSS; ought to fortify the internal front in order to be able to defend the nation from foreign threats. This process of fortification ought to be realised via political transparency and genuine involvement of all competent citizens in the country, and citizens who have candidly expressed their free will and desire to belong to such parties that are making political events to happen in the nation.
Political parties that aspire to run nations ought not be saturated in political culture of placation because by so doing, they are actually building political structures on foundations resting on quick sand that is liable to shift any time thus rendering the whole purported political edify susceptible to destruction and permanent instability. Political parties must endeavour to operate policies that are far from political cultures of accommodation and containment. There are extremely very few human persons in the RoSS; myself included; who do not want to be treated in such a fashion by political parties to which they have declared their political allegiance. Such political personnel are obvious to political parties and such political parties ought to adopt a specific political methodology of dealing with such people. The same broom can move not all pebbles, and political placation is offensive and degrading.
By Prof. Wani Tombe, 9 hours 53 minutes ago
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