National Salvation Front/Army
Press Statement For immediate release
Salva Kiir, ethnic bigotry is a vice and not a value
According to media reports, on his return from the Khartoum peace debacle, Salva Kiir spoke to his supporters at Juba International Airport. During the speech, Kiir cautioned Michael who he says is a Dinka, from joining the National Salvation Front (NAS), because according to Kiir, NAS is “fightingagainst the Dinka ethnic group”. To Kiir, it appears that, so far as a rebel group is not fighting against the Dinka ethnic group, then that is none of his business.
Let’s examine the record: it is not NAS, but in fact, Kiir who has declared war against South Sudanese in general and the Dinka ethnic groups in particular. It is this same Kiir who has worked very hard, but thank God without success, to ensure that the Dinka ethnic group is the most hated ethnic group in South Sudan. It is Kiir who is sending young Dinka children to die in senseless wars across the country just to defend his right to loot and to kill. When these children die in battle, Kiir heartlessly pushes their widows and children to the streets of the major cities in South Sudan, as beggars. In short, it is Kiir who is fanning tribal and ethnic sentiments in a bid to drive a wedge of division among the peoples of South Sudan and consolidate his dictatorial grip on power! And in the process brings untold suffering to all communities of South Sudan.
NAS is a national movement seeking equality and justice for all the people of South Sudan and is therefore, deeply concerned and rejects, in its totality, this reckless, irresponsible, inflammatory and reprehensible ethnic bigotry by Kiir and strongly condemns this hate speech and dishonorable conduct by Kiir. We invite all South Sudanese and people of goodwill to condemn this hate speech which is a violation of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and to reject this tribo-ethnic inciting speech from Kiir.
Furthermore, Kiir doesn’t to be reminded that it is under his watchful eyes that explicit ethnic hatred and ethnic-based political ideology have moved from the fringes of our society to the mainstream. It is equally under his leadership that the country has witnessed the most vicious ethnic bigotry resulting into ethnic-targeted killings, communal ethnic violence, and ethnic and social reengineering, based on ethnicities.
Finally, Kiir should know better that now is not the time to equivocate about ethnic hate and incite ethnic-based violence but rather seek to heal and reconcile the traumatized peoples of South Sudan and address the root cause of their endless suffering. Kiir’s rhetoric at Juba Airport, is a vice and curse to memory of our forefathers!
Gen. Thomas Cirillo Swaka
Chairman and Commander in Chief
National Salvation Front
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