An Open Letter to Salva Kiir Mayardit, the President of Republic of south Sudan.
The undersecretary for the ministry of petroleum and mining Mr. Mchar Achiek Ader is frustrating the first Malaysia-trained oil production Operators and Technicians.
By Mabior Machar Thon,
Juba, South Sudan.
May 06, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — Forgive me your Excellency for taking this type of media communication to you but it is because of; It is hard to get you to present our one man-made grievances to you in person and that has opted us to write an open letter to you, whether your press secretary may take it to you or not but still we made our grievances known to the general public to know what Machar Achiek is cooking in the ministry of petroleum.
Secondly, if this open letter doesn’t reach you, still it has reached the public to know what has been really happening with the first Malaysai-trained production Operators and Technicians.
Allow me on behalf of 111 south Sudanese trainees to explain to you briefly how the programme of training the south Sudanese nationals to work in oil field was started in 2011 without greetings and salutations.
It was in November 2011 when the ministry of petroleum and mining in collaboration with the Petronas and joint operating oil companies ( DPOC, SPOC, GPOC) in south Sudan oil fields had initiated an initiative of taking south Sudanese youth below thirty(30) years, who had completed their high school education to Malaysia to be trained on various trades of engineering, particularly in Exploration and Production, Laboratory , Mechanical, Instrument, and Electrical to come and work in south Sudan Oil fields.
The programme was sponsored by three oil companies namely, DPOC, SPOC and GPOC. We did interviews in April 2012 and in July 2012, the results of the interviews were released and 120 students had passed the interview. We were told to process our passports in July and also medical checks. We were given an ACCEPTANCE LETTER to sign by Machar Achiek Ader, which says the duration of the training is 24 months, 18 months are to be spent in Malaysia doing theory part while 6 months are to be done here in south Sudan oil fields doing practical part, in other words, it is called On Job Training.
In November 2012, we set off for Malaysia to a state called Kuala Terengganu particularly a payam or district called Batu Rakit. We started our theory part of 18 months as per acceptance letter immediately in November.
We finished our theory part in April last 2014 and we came to south Sudan in the same month of April.
However, things started falling apart between the ministry of petroleum, Petronas and the joint Operating oil companies when we reached south Sudan. According to the schedule that was given to us in our institute (INSTEP), we are to start On Job training in late May 2014. But due to the crisis in the country and practically security threat in the oil fields being posed by the ongoing rebellion had put the programme of On Job Training (OJT) on hold. We started the On Job Training (OJT) in August 2014. We successfully completed it on 31st January 2015. The team was sent from INSTEP institute in Malaysia to assess the work we did in oil field for the period of six months. The delegated team found that 18 trainees only didn’t do enough in their six months practical part in the field and the rest did very well.
The whole programme was handed to the ministry by the delegated team to decide the fate of their well-trained sons and daughters. To our surprise, the undersecretary of the ministry, Mr. Machar Achiek Ader ,rejected the worthy and technical proposal given to him by the Director General of Petroleum, Mr. Arkangelo. Mr. Arkangelo proposed that the passed trainees should be given their certificates and immediately taken by the operating oil companies to substitute the foreigners who are occupying the nationals’ jobs. Mr. Machar rejected the proposal to the letter and said that all trainees including those who passed MUST go to the field again for 6 more months. Where on earth can you learn everything when you are doing internship?
We know that some of us might have not done well in 6 months practical training but we have hope that they will know more when they are employed fully. No one can learn everything in short time. Learning is a gradual process that takes time. This nation needs technical personals like us to take over the hired foreigners who are now working in our oil fields. We would want to make it crystal clear that the ill-intention of Machar Achiek against us this time will not be tolerated. We have endured enough and now we can’t no longer go ahead with this oppression.
We have offered ourselves to contribute to the nation building by leaving our universities, colleges and take up this mere certificate training course which is now going for almost 4 years since 2012.
we are calling for your intervention to save us. Some of us have regretted if helping to build the nation can cost us so much like this. We are between black and white and we need your immediate respond. The undersecretary and oil companies are very much comfortable with foreigners working in the oil field of south Sudan because it is benefiting them in one way or another.
In conclusion, your Excellency, if this government really cares for its citizens and its first priority is to provide the jobs opportunities to its citizens, then we are calling you Mr. President to take immediate action on this matter. Machar Achiek Ader has totally failed and frustrated us.
Mabior Machar Thon is the leader of Malaysia-trained south Sudanese oil Production Operators and oil Technicians. He can be reached for comments at firstname.lastname@example.org