By Jwothab Amum Ajak

Pachodo Website lately has shot off through the roof and went out of the window with indecent and disgusting stuff. The targets of the exchange were none other than some of our prominent public figures. This exercise in self-destruction no doubt left its trail of bitter and rancor. There is no excuse for trading insults and stopping at nothing. This is not something to be condoned. It will not be enough either to
deplore. It must be condemned and nib in the bud before it runs a mock in the community as whole.

Differences about community or public affairs, irrespective of their nature and
purpose, will always be there no matter what. That is life. They may show a healthy
dynamic society. One not governed by herds? instinct or blind conformity. The issue
therefore is not our differences. Precisely the issue is in the way some
unfortunately handled the differences. If you handle any problem positively then
surely the end result will be positive. Handle it negatively and you are inviting
problems for your self and others as well. War and other violent engagements have
their code of conduct what about alleged political differences? Historically, even
at the level of the kingdom there were differences. It is not something new to us
either. And history tells us that those who tried to bend rules of fair game play or
come to power riding the tiger ended up either in the tiger belly or the same rules
boomerang against them.

So whatever differences, let those who resort to any form of verbal violence such as
vulgar language, not be carried out and far, as if they are engaging in an end-all
game. Political ground is the fastest shifting ground ever. True is the political
axiom that there are no permanent enemies or friends in politics. Tomorrow friends
may be tomorrow enemies and vise versa. After all the people criticized, to be
modest, may be adversaries but for sure they are not enemies.

If we enjoy the freedom to criticize without fear we shouldn?t forget also that the
other side of freedom is responsibility. Guys I am not saying we should be goody
goody writing only to please politicians and leaders; on the contrary they should be
subjected to rigorous scrutiny, ruthless judgment and serious corrections, if it is
in the public interest. Telling them where they went wrong but also where they went
right, should be the way, a balanced constructive criticism. However, there is a
complete difference between constructive criticism and taking aim at, and shooting
and hitting someone under the belt for short personal gains, because of differences,
which I believe are not so fundamental,

A difference of opinion can be expressed as far as you can express yourself without
turning it to criticism. However if there is a merit judgment then t is better
expressed as an opinion rather than a critical examination of the criticized person
character. Who else could claim a perfect character? Criticize not the person but
only policies, motives, attitude and actions towards certain public issues.

Our culture disdains foul mouth and reserves special place of respect to elders and
community leaders. The inherent motive of smear, mud slinging and character
assassination are not part of the rule for a fair political encounter. Anybody born
and nurtured in the Chollo land would have noticed the strict adherence to respect
for authorities whatsoever, even if we disagree with them. This has nothing to do
with personalities per se but out of deference for the system they are representing.

Our generation or let me say our educated class, I might be wrong, instead of
looking for and seeking common grounds, reconciliations, and solutions for problems
or differences which are not unique or different from other communities problems in
any way. Instead are going for each others throats. We seem to have deviated from
those highly cherished and upheld values, towards a propensity to increase rift and
heighten existing tension. Other communities, if you carefully look a round, are
always actively trying hard to resolve their issues in a win-win manner. Apparently
they are meeting with success and enjoying some relative peace. One wonders do we
lack the skills and tools for amicable and peaceful resolutions of issues and
conflicts or to at least keep them within the community ambit. Folks we shouldn?t be
ready to trample our values and traditions and take things to extreme when
discussing public issues and making them personal.

History books speak that Chollo kingdom was once upon a time having absolute control
over the White Nile. It extended up North to the confluent of the White and the Blue
Nile or the present Khartoum (rightly ?Kat-atoum?, according to our late scholar
Walter Kunijwok.) The kingdom extended up to upper Blue Nile. Yes, up to upper Blue
Nile. Ochollo or Odagg the son of legendary Dagg, the son of Nyikango, Chollo
ancestor came rushing from southern Blue Nile in the east to Detang in the west, a
village near Malakal. He was desperately making a risky short cut a cross wild, then
completely uninhabited jungles, avoiding the long route from Blue Nile to Aba Island
or ?Geizera Aba? on the White Nile then upstream. He is believed to have been driven
by time in order to catch up with the succession to Nyikango throne, after the big
tree, Dagg, fall down.

Although the Kingdom borders were not kept and maintained yet we gave great
sacrifices to stay where we are now, the northern borders of South Sudan. It is our
culture, system of governance and code of ethics that has maintained and sustained
the kingdom from cultural influence and capitulation. In other words our culture
passed the test of time. No body has vindicated Chollo singular sacrifices across
the centuries like late Dr. John Garang in his speech when he was signing the CPA.
Bravo Dr. Garang.

We should be not be praising history or our past glories but should instead be
looking to the future. At present things are unfolding in an unprecedented way, new
trends are emerging. We need to see or know them in their true real essence and
perspective. Wake up you asleep and rise to those challenges. There is an African
proverb which says ?Not to know is bad; not to wish to know is worse.? We cannot
talk of South Sudan unity if we are not united and waging senseless war at each
other for no good reason. We cannot talk of South Sudan development if we do not
start it at home, not because as they say charity starts at home, but because if you
do not have the experience you cannot give what you lack or do not have.

The personal criticisms meted out were unfairly brutal. Another really very sad
phenomenon was attacks and assaults upon the reputation of our beloved fathers from
young people not their equal or peers. Do you know what such criticisms do? It
diverts our attention from the real issue the kingdom is facing at the moment. It
unnecessarily divides us and dissipates our energies in an endless internal
infighting. At this critical time we are in now, we need all our abilities and
efforts including those leaders and elders? experience and wisdom to deal with
present circumstances. Chollo kingdom is being faced with many challenges of either
to be or not to be. History, will not judge us fairly if we fail in our duty to
serve our people and defend our community rights.

Please advise the contributors to keep their criticism about our leaders and any
body to public domain and let it remains there. Let us give them the due honor and
respect they deserve. They have earned their leadership places through hard work and
we should applaud their successes and not treat them as tall poppy that should be
cut down.

What words you decide to put on paper and on the internet, stop and think about them
first. Because, what you type, whether you like or not, will definitely reflects bad
or good not only on you as the writer alone but on all the contributors like you,
users, and the site but Chollo community as well. This website is read all over the
globe therefore it is not the appropriate place to show our laundry. It should not
be diverted from its noble role to build, educate, inform but also to unite our
entire people of South Sudan to face the challenges of development. Let us be
advised that not many out there are ready to bear with our vomits or entertain
themselves with our late bad show of small battles of egos. They will find it not
only offensive but repulsive too. Please use friendly this beautiful Pachodo website

What to do? May be you can impose some sort of gentleman voluntary self-regulation
for observance and control over one?s own pen and tongue. This is to be made
unequivocally clear in unambiguous terms in form of a guideline of code of ethic.
Those who will contravene this self- rule will not have his/her article or
contribution published and will have himself/herself to blame.

Lastly I am here not to point an accusing finger at certain specific individuals or
look as if I am standing at a higher moral pedestal than the least of you all. Only
I seem to have realized, like most of the silent majority of our people who prefer
not to be party to what has been going on, that what divides us seem to be less
important than the looming dangers threatening us. Enough is enough of this
bickering and infighting. And it is time to let bygone be bygone and open a new page
of forgiveness.

Thank you

Jwothab Wad Amum Adolek
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People in this conversation

  • Guest - James Okuk

    Good advise Jaldwong Jothab Amum. Friendliness is the best tool of diplomatic public relation but boring at time; it hide some real issues and problems. I think Pachoda.Org website is doing fine and being objective in publishing insulting articles as well as friendly ones. Without irritating articles we would have not got the above wise words from you with the code of ethics which you proposed for the managers of this website. Thank you uncle! Could you write something on Collo position in the coming 2008 Census, especially the view of those in Diaspora?

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