Was Dr. John Garang leadership style as worst as Salva Kiir?

By Makoy Kuong Thong,


Dr. John Garang the Mabior, the founder of SPLM/SPLA, the first president of GOSS and the first vice president of Sudan with his Salva Kiir the deputy Chairman of SPLM/SPLA who felt out with him in 2004(Photo: Thomas Mukoya/Nyamilepedia)

Dr. John Garang the Mabior, the founder of SPLM/SPLA, the first president of GOSS and the first vice president of Sudan with his Salva Kiir the deputy Chairman of SPLM/SPLA who felt out with him in 2004(Photo: Thomas Mukoya/Nyamilepedia)

Oct 03, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — Many analysts and writers who might have evaluated on the leadership style of Dr.Garang during the liberation struggle from the time of the inception of the SPLM/A to the signing of comprehensive peace agreement (CPA) where Dr. John Garang became the first vice president of the Republic of Sudan for 21 days in office before he made his tragedy  in chopper crash in 2005 would concurred that Salva Kiir keeps the status quo of Dr.John,s leadership style while others might put in contrast in the sense that Garang led the rebels movement that consolidated different people with different ideologies and managed to  control the guerrilla despite the enormous challenges like fracture  of SPLA itself and with Anyanya 2 over the ideology.

I Makoy Kuong would also says Dr.John was not in any way had correlations in terms of leadership techniques with Kiir because Garang was very outstanding  and unequivocal leader who had all personalities despite of him portraying some negatives tendencies on other groups like Anyanya2  who took up arms against Khartoum regime  in order to be free and enjoy in an independent nation South Sudan but that never worked with John Garang and his group like Kerbino Kuanyinbol,William Nyuon,Salva Kiir and Arok Thon Arok who opposed the ideas of Anyanya and established the movement based on the United and secular State of Sudan which hadn’t gave them full support among  South Sudanese elites who think the only option to win over the Arabs was to called for plebiscite on self determination not united Sudan.

The SPLA under Garang shown some notions that were negative to the community where most of the Anyanya2 fighters came from and harbor them, they indiscriminately targeted Gajaak Nuer  especially around Nasir for supporting the Anyanya 2 but that killing did not persist after the Anyanya 2 resolved their differences with the SPLA in 1987 and jointly fight on the same cause nonetheless, to catch your attentions on the title of this opinion, the leadership of Dr John is not comparably to Salva Kiir rule for the fact that he (Kiir, s) era after succeeding Garang becomes so gory base on ethnics cleansing which were instigated by the poor leadership and tribal hatred as a result, people lose trust on the SPLM/A unlike to the time of Garang  where South Sudanese participated massively in any entity for the reason that they believe in their leadership.

What bring mistrust on Salva Kiir,s headship today  are developing  in series day by day month by month and year by year and they are as follows for the readers to be informative on how genesis of  Salva Kiir,s ruthless and failures begun,

In 2010: The SPLA clashes with a militia of late Gen Gatluak Gai in Unity State and 300 people were killed according to UN in Unity before escalated to Jonglei and Upper Nile States.

The CIA issued a warning that “over the next five years, a new mass killing or genocide is most likely to occur in southern Sudan. Inter-ethnic fighting intensified in 2011 in Jonglei state between Lou Nuer and the Murle. The White Army warned it would also fight South Sudanese and UN Forces. The White Army released a statement, to wipe out the entire Murle tribe on the face of the earth as the only solution to guarantee long-term security of Nuer’s cattle. Activists warn of genocide in the current Jonglei conflict.

In 2011, the SPLA/M’s attempted to disarm rebellions among the Shulluk of Gen Oliny and Murle of Gen David Yau yau, they burned scores of villages, raped hundreds of women and girls and killed an untold number of civilians. Civilians alleging torture claim fingernails been torn out, burning plastic bags dripped on children to make their parents hand over weapons and villagers burned alive in their huts if rebels were suspected of spending the night there. The SPLA allegedly set fire to over 7,000 homes in Unity State. The UN reports many of these violations and the frustrated director of one Juba-based international aid agency calls them “human rights abuses in March 2011 in the North of Malakal, clash erupted between then Captain Olonyi, a rebel loyal to Athor, and the SPLA. 600 people mostly civilians were killed in the fighting.

In the same year, SPLA captured Athor’s rebel headquarters and killed 168 innocent civilians”, burning down at least six villages in Atar/Korkulos and the area became a war zone where civilians were subjected to rape and others abuses by the SPLA.

In 2012, The SPLA launched a massive campaign against David Yau yau rebels who composed of Murle tribe and in that operation thousand lives lost and Pibor County set to raze for the reason to bring the insurgents to an end.

2013 Alleged coup d’état attempt

President Kiir alleged that on 14 December 2013, a largely Nuer faction of the SPLA loyal to former vice president Dr. Riek Machar attempted Coup d’état and that the attempt was put down the next day. However, fighting has continued. Machar denied trying to staged a coup and called for Kiir to resign. Over 20,000 people mostly Nuer were killed in Juba and over scores injured.

Conclusively, the leadership of the two were marked with bloody of innocents South Sudanese to kept their supremacy however, Dr. John did try his best to keep the solidarity and unity of the Southerners alive through his tirelessness to ensure that the bond of the people of South Sudan is not wrecked unlike to Comrade Salva kiir whose era becomes so devastated with the killing of people, destruction of properties and probably disintegrations on the ethnic line which is a setback to our co-existence therefore, to avoid all these calamities to occur again, we need to embark on reconciliation under able leader to bring back the lost trust among South Sudanese because the current leadership in Juba has put itself in an isolation position where people fade up with it.

The writer is a Mass Communication student at Kampala University and he can be reach at Makoy.Kuong@yahoo.com    

  2 comments for “Was Dr. John Garang leadership style as worst as Salva Kiir?

  1. October 4, 2014 at 5:02 am

    It has been your culture since,when one is maintain in his position, he praise Kiir but as soon as he is removed he tip his finger on kiir as bad leader


  2. February 14, 2015 at 3:26 am

    well! Dinkas are Dinkas, starting from Abil, John Garang, Salva Kiir, Kuol Manyang, Malong, etc. they all promote Dinkas culture not a government of south sudan. Since 1980’s they bought traitors Nuer to killed their own Nuer and other ethnics to killed their own tribes. yes we have some good Dinkas, but they kill them too if they rejected Dinka orders. Never allow Dinka to lead us again, they are born to eat and kill not to rule south sudan. That is why majority of them used substances as their own main income all over the World, especially Juba. Thanks to all Dinkas who joined our federal system, we are not tribes promoters; we are south Sudanese nation period!


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