By: Urbano Tito TIPO                                                  

May 30, 2008: The much-awaited SPLM convention did finally take place in a mess of contradictions, political blackmail, tribal alliances, several groupings and all the like. After long heated debates that went for several days and long hours, finally the convention came into an amicable end. But question is, what was Southerners waiting to see? What were their expectations?

The convention went as predicted by those who wrote earlier that it will be rigged. Mr. Yassir Arman, one of the architects of the convention, was very instrumental in widening the gap between SPLM leaders and wanted to see into it that Dr Riak Machar was removed from the leadership who he regards as having spearheaded the Nasir faction. He managed to smear Dr. Lam Akol as a collaborator of NCP until he was removed from FM.

Almost 80% of those who came from the counties were through rigging and hand picked delegates. Some could not even understand what the convention was all about. Some were recent converts from NCP. The amalgamations of the conventioneers were either to support their icons to retain their positions in power or for their tribesmen not to loose.  The convention was not based on any ideological or political philosophy. It was not about protection of the CPA or any defined program.

The same faces were confirmed to their positions after several days of wrangling for power. Then where is democracy the SPLM was talking about?

This was a waste of resources which the south needs. The cost for conduction of such rendezvous must have run into millions of dollars. With this background, how many southern children are dying of diseases and hunger? How many are not going to school while we waste money that could have been used for providing the much needed services?

The paradox of the outcome of the convention that everyone should know is that those confirmed are the same leaders who were managing GoSS from the beginning. They are stained by corruption, tribalism and nepotism. There was lack of transparency and good governance. Then how come we hope that they will change overnight and do the right things? It is like a priest telling a thief to stop stealing and the heavenly treasures will become his.

Southerners will have to put up for the next five years with the past events. The next five years will witness the fattening of the foreign accounts of individuals. The new policy will be corruption tolerance.

Donors are demanding accountability before they could help. Accountants were brought from the north to audit the accounts of GoSS; instead they were redundant. They were refused to look into the books of the government. Those who squandered the money of the south and bought houses abroad are the heroes of SPLM now. There is an outstanding bill of 1.5 million dollars for accommodation in Juba for government organized workshops that the donors are getting concern of.

SPLM after the convention lacks the political will to lead the south into any meaningful future. NCP has even known the weakness of SPLM and are strategizing on ways how to deal with future situations.

There are two instances which showed the weaknesses. First is the pulling out of SPLM from the government of GONU in September 2007. After the reshuffle and removal of Dr. Lam Akol from FM, the other demands were dropped and SPLM resumed business as usual.

The second is the question of census. GoSS through the council of ministers refused to participate in the census because of exclusion of religion and tribe from the census forms. The Vice President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha went on TV and criticized the move by SPLM justifying why the south should participate because their leaders had earlier approved the forms. All of a sudden, there was of change of heart by the leadership and the census went ahead in the south.

The concept of New Sudan may not be very clear to people in the south if it went on as explained. The concept seems to advocate for unity of the Sudan and should the southerners wish to separate then they vote in a referendum by 2011. Then should this brief explanation be the case then the convention has confirmed in the leaders that will work for unity of the Sudan than for  separation.

In two instances, the secretary-general and his deputy suggested confederation as the best solution for the Sudan. That indicates the confirmed leaders will re-negotiate CPA in due course.

Southerners should now look into their future from the past. No miracles will happen. Come 2011, either we go in for the next war or live in a unified Sudan under the northern government since our current leaders will secure positions of power within government in a power and wealth sharing and SPLA becomes a renegade militia in the south.

Southerners will be assumed by the international community as trouble makers, corrupt and are not able to rule themselves in a separate country. Many of the returnees are disappointed because of lack of basic services in their home areas and thus decided to go back to the north. The confirmed leaders are now celebrating their victory that they have become a political party. But political party that does not deliver basic services and development is nothing.

A weak SPLM will not make it in the coming elections since the SPLM-Communist members will go back to their original party and some southerners from NCP who became or joined the SPLM tactically will definitely go back. In short, the convention did not unite the south.

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    Bravo for the excellent analysis Mr. Urbano!

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  • Guest - Aban John

    Sorry bro. you’re analytic did not add up to any thing. It proves how shallow your mentality capacity is, whom do you want to fool here? Or you think these dummies Shulluks will buy into it. Man up and stop crying like an old woman.

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  • This is for Mr. Aban John,
    I believe that those of us who write, read and comment on this web site do so becuase we want to share our thoughts but to degrade Mr. Urbano calling him shallow mentality is not ecceptable if you have different analysis to the current plotical situation you're more than welcome to present.
    what I find worst is for you to suggest that Mr. Urbano was selling his analytic to dummies Shulluks.
    I don't know you but I will assume that this is an idea of a joke get off drug and learn to read, skullik are not dummies they are reall people who did thier share in South Sudan people struggle for independent Shilluk young men fought and died for this country but they are not dummies and deffinitely not puppet of any tribe in the South Sudan.

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  • Guest - Tipo Wiliam Mel

    I doubt that Aban John is a real name. since he has started his comments in this website, nothing good he has said as a contribution for Chollo community's advancement. Let's watch out for the anti-Chollo who come in Chollo's name. The Bible says "by their fruit you will recognize them." back to the article, in addition to what Mr/Urbano said about SPLM 2nd convention, I can describe the convention as the battle fighting for positions which mean that much need to be done for SPLM to survive as a political party in South Sudan and the generation to come.

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  • Guest - James Okuk

    It has been clear from his comments that the so-called John Aban ( a ghost name perhaps) carries a big mouth in his small head. He is just born in this website to vomit his filthy brain from his small head through his big mouth to a website he does not know how much it costs to maintain it. Shame on this ghost when he finds nothing to say but to insult Collo members. Please John Aban or Aban John, if your are suffering from trauma this website is not a psychiatrist clinic for you.

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