A senior South Sudanese rebel commander has vowed never to return to government, unless a system to facilitate democracy and dismantle “dictatorship” was established.
- General Dau Aturjong (ST)
In an interview with Sudan Tribune on Thursday, Gen. Dau Aturjong, said dictatorship had no future in South Sudan and has to be ended by decisive mass action to ensure peace and stability in the country.
“The mass campaign of defiance and other actions of our movement and the people inside and outside the country can only culminate in the establishment of democracy if we work together to remove and dismantle the system which has been established,” he said.
Aturjong said the destruction caused by the country’s conflict has inflicted immeasurable pain on the people and can only be relieved if people joined the movement to work for establishment of strong institutions, not putting in place a system of strong men and women.
“The social fabric of our people has been shattered. Millions of our people are now homeless and unemployed. The economy of the country has been ruined and the national sovereignty and pride we fought to establish has been sold to the foreign countries to sustain tyranny and dictatorship,” the official told Sudan Tribune in an exclusive interview.
“Our struggle has reached decisive moment. We call on our people to seize this moment so that the process toward democracy is rapid and uninterrupted. Now is the time to intensify the struggle on all fronts. To relax our efforts now would be a mistake which the generation to come will not be able to forgive,” said Aturjong.
Tens of thousands of people have been killed and about 1.8 million people displaced since violence broke out in the country over a year ago due to political disputes within South Sudan’s ruling party (SPLM).
Over 100,000 people currently live inside the United Nations protection of civilian camps, with many more in neighbouring Uganda, Kenya, Sudan and Ethiopia as the war shows no end signs.
Calls for both warring parties to cease hostilities have repeatedly been ignored, despite mediation efforts by the East African leaders.
“We call on our people to join us in the shaping of new South Sudan. The freedom of movement is a political home for all South Sudanese without distinction,” said Aturjong, an ex-army division commander.
“We call on the international community to continue the campaign to isolate the regime. Our march to freedom is a reversible. We must not allow fear to stand in our way,” he added.