How Corruption is Corrupted in South Sudan…!
Corruption? What is it? No, though I can feel and find it, I fear to define it. I can be wrong, hence criticized. It is infinite in terms of time and scope, and indefinite in terms of timing and meaning. There is a dictionary which attempts to define it here, but that still does not satisfy me.
cor·rup·tion [kə rúpsh’n]
|1.||dishonesty for personal gain: dishonest exploitation of power for personal gain|
|2.||depravity: extreme immorality or depravity|
|3.||undesirable change: an undesirable change in meaning or another error introduced into a text during copying|
|4.||corrupting of something: the corrupting of something or somebody, or the state of being corrupt|
|5.||linguistics altered word or phrase: a word or phrase that has been altered from its original form|
|6.||rotting: rotting or putrefaction, or the state of being rotten or putrid (archaic)|
[14th century. Via French < Latin corruption- < corruptus(see corrupt)]
Microsoft® Encarta® 2006. © 1993-2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
For those who are allergic to correction; in other words, those who see correction as criticism, I have to pick the meaning from Nos. 3 and 5, in relation to the verb ‘corrupted’ and Nos. 1 and 6 for the noun ‘corruption’ in relation to the title of this piece.
Wh(o)y appointed this Day?
By resolution 58/4 of October 31, 2003, the UN General Assembly designated December 9 as International Anti-Corruption Day. This decision aimed to raise people’s awareness of corruption and of the role of the United Nations Convention against Corruption in combating and preventing it. The assembly urged all states and competent regional economic integration organizations to sign and ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) to ensure its rapid entry into force. UNCAC is the first legally binding, international anti-corruption instrument that provides a chance to mount a global response to corruption.
Today, December 9, 2011 is (apologies to our Holy Number 9 which falls again on) International Anti-Corruption Day. It was celebrated, say commemorated, here at Nyakuron Cultural Centre under Central Equatoria State’s Anti-Corruption unit. Don’t ask me why not at the RSS level — ask the Greater Bahr-el-Ghazal Leaders’ Council first for celebrating our National Independence Day again on December 3, 2011 (last Sato!) on which they not only invited but also honoured all the heroes and ‘sheroes’ of our liberation struggle. It was a national event, heavily attended by all from President, Vice President, etc. who were showered with gifts and presses, including declaring Salva Kiir ‘The Founding Father of the Nation‘ (RSS?)! Nevertheless, this anti-corruption day, though under the state, was also national, but was officiated at the level of a Deputy Governor of Central Equatoria. So why is that? Let us assume so for the sake of not sounding critical on the effort made by this public watchdog. But count how many efforts so far…
Now, before we talk of anything and everything of that kind, the word corruption itself was corrupted! How? (See the corrupted picture of the corrupted banner, left). My focus is on the theme of the 2011 IACD, which goes: “Act Against Corruption Today”, with the slogan: “Corruption, Your No Counts”. However, all these were avoided for one reason or the other that they(ou) know best. The global theme which goes against their guts, ‘Act Against Corruption Today’, was South-Sudanized into the usually monotonous “ZERO TOLERANCE FOR (not against) CORRUPTION IN SOUTH SUDAN”.
Funny enough! This is how corruption is corrupted in South Sudan. The theme there to the layman, leave alone the linguists, means “Zero (empty) tolerance for (in support of) corruption in South Sudan”. We don’t (or if we do) need a dictionary again to define the possessive adverb/preposition, then I only cut, according to the theme of today, the definition No. 21 out of 22 applications of the word ‘for’ as follows:
adverb , prep
in support of something: in favor of or in support of something
Do you think it is intentional or a typo for the Government of the Republic of South Sudan to dodge the directly flesh-piercing theme of the day, ‘Act Against Corruption Today’, and replace it with something that grammatically and drammatically sounds like “Act in Favour of Corruption Today!”? Why for our Freedom’s sake would somebody do such a thing? Is it not enough or does it not speak volumes that no leader has been arrested and imprisoned since 2005? Now, it is officially declared, take it or leave it!
How did the mistake come about? When the title was corrupted, the root cause is still corruption. How? The contract to the Commission’s secretary/communications officer being given on merits of tactical know-who instead of technical know-how. As if that is not enough, the contract of printing the publicly displayed messages on banners being offered to novice companies, which might be on corrupt deals. Hence, leaving corruption campaign message being corrupted as in the picture above.
Putting a wrong person in the right place, or the right person in the wrong place, or the wrong person in the wrong place, altogether, did not start with the Anti-Corruption Commission in this case. I had already developed ulcers with the previous jobs or campaigns, for example. The SPLA’s national anthem team spoiled it when they avoided poets and lyricists and replaced them with some generals, who came up with ‘cemented our national foundation’. This should grammatically read ‘…our nation’s foundation’. This should be discussed separately if you doubt my argument, or let us just leave it until we grow up in language later, if not our children to correct it.
Secondly, the SPLM Secretariat for Mobilization (or how do they call it?) already spoiled things for me in this grammatically and internationally known slogan: “Yes to…No to….”. The SPLM or GOSS of the day (as if) forcefully programmed it unto billboards, politicians’ mouths, musician’s lyrics, and public’s chants as “No FOR Unity, Yes FOR Separation”. This is probably the first time this slogan changed form and meaning in the world’s campaign history, un/fortunately in South Sudan.
Another one, which I found being done there and then during the referendum voting, was the labeling of the polling station with this popular and sacred name of the venue of Dr. John Garang Mausoleum. When some polling officer took a marker pen and tried to write on the first ballot box, he messed it. When told, he quarrelled and sent some guys out. The second time, he tried on his own to correct it but still read: ‘Dr. John Garang’s Mouseleum Poling Center’. When I lost my linguistic temper and intervened, he called the police, “Take away this intruder”. So I had to take this picture (see it beside) and continued on my queue and voted. Thank God, I did not vote wrongly. But what continued to pain me and well wishers of this new Nation was, why put wrong people at the right places?
This question was asked by one of my foreign colleagues yesterday when I received two different phone calls from my fellow members of the civil society coalition requesting me to help them write presentations for the International Engagement Conference for South Sudan in Washington DC. “But why send delegates who will not represent people well outside there? Why didn’t you go?” he wondered. I simply played it down that I was not in that meeting when the selection was done. Actually, the reality with our delegations or employment or deployment in South Sudan is based on the principle of Representation, not Presentation. I mean they s/elect and send people who will merely represent, but not really present for, us in those foreign fora.
The same worry is on every South Sudanese’s mind about the appointment of ambassadors and their junior
diplomats. Nhial Bol of The Citizen newspaper once described them on his ‘Straight Talk’ column as “drinking diplomats who will open bottles of beer with the lip of a pistol instead of the opener”, just for recognition in those foreign clubs, bars and pubs! As we are fresh and always refreshed with aweful stories of the queer behaviour of some of us, sons and daughters of liberators (The Big Ones) in East Africa, one would not be surprised to see the same characters, who cannot address a press conference or write a good media report, appointed as media or communication attaches in our RSS embassies. They are already in waiting to join the joints instead of working to educate the world about the potentials of our new born nation. Due to lack of competence, they will neither represent nor sell us in a positve way. If I could ask, have you ever read good media articles or reports about South Sudan in the country where you are? Why is our baby nation not featuring in the world media? I am being particular on media because it is my field of expertise. So let nobody take me for a jealous writer, am just a zealous one.
To prove how corruption is roaring wild, while roaming our country through impunity by immunity, contact your old news sources and memories of the scenes and experiences of open public dramas on this piece of cancerous economic literature called ‘corruptioniasis’. I was entertained last week when the Petroleum and Mining minister (Dhieu Dau) dialed a police number and handed over an Israel investor to spend a night behind bars for giving him only US $5,000.
This is the only first open sincerity of anti-corruption fight by a government figure in the history of the Republic of South Sudan, dating back to 2005. Media Thomases and Tea Parliamentarians are all inflated with questions: what if the figure was 50,000 or 500,000? Why this time since CPA? Why only this minister? Is it the first attempt of bribery since then? etc? However, the lawyer to this Israeli, Mr. Kiir Chol, argued that his client was neither corrupt nor trying to corrupt the minister with that amount. That he was trying to open the suitcase to give the minister his company document when a bundle of dollar notes jumped out. Hmm? Only God and minister and the investor now know how and why…?
Back to the open rumour, which is no humour to both of us, the cheats and the cheated. I hear the ‘Dhieus’ would be forced to declare their wealth. I bet by my health, it is as im/possible as requesting you to declare your other parts! But our Big Man has chosen to execute it in this way as the baton was passed behind to be taken to the finishing point by his First Runner up against his firsts ‘runners down’, as read on y/our government rediffusion set (call it SSTV) a few days ago, thus.
“We will enforce the obligation of all public officials to publish their income and financial assets. We will provide an opportunity of an anonymous return account for civil servants and public officials to return any diverted funds, obligating them to publish their assets from the date of independence,” he (the president) added.
If you want to continue reading similar stories I wrote earlier about this topic, hit this link:
About the new hybrid type and hype of corruption called ‘Bribalism = Bribery + tribalism…
The cry of the Youth of the South: Save us from Inverter Investor!
Poems from ‘The Black Christs of Africa.
The Eruption, Irruption, Interruption and Disruption of Corruption
It should be defined
It should be defined
It shouldn’t be refined
It shouldn’t be divined.
In its stagnancy,
Is the enemy
Of our economy,
Of our autonomy.
Bulging like anthill,
It takes us uphill
And makes us ill.
It’s a dis-ease,
A deadly disease,
Of no cease for decease.
We have a cancer within, close to the Presidency, that is growing. It is growing daily.
John Dean (1938 – ) U.S. presidential counsel, 1973.
From a taped conversation with the president, Richard Nixon. Referring to the Watergate scandal.
Our National Foodbowl Championship
Goes the starting whistle,
For the champing champions to wrestle,
Kicking the dust up and down,
Tossing the bowl here and there,
From chimp to champ
From county to country
Our politi-called football championship,
That costs a million dollar a goal,
For which every striker strives for personal scores,
With golden trophies to decorate individuals’ rooms,
Is on full swing this season.
Our nation-all foodball match,
A game with fatal knockout of the weak,
The socio-politically unconnected part-tease-fans;
A game where participation is on no technical know-how,
Where qualification is only on tactical know-who,
Is on full swing this season.
That is our so-called social game of unity,
Of unity in units,
At which Man-chaser United
Clutch, clash and crash
The world is divided into people who do things and people who get the credit. Try, if you can, to belong to the first class. There’s far less competition.
Dwight Whitney Morrow (1873 – 1931)U.S. diplomat and politician.
Letter to his son
When we earn money
Through monthly salaries,
They hunt money
Through daily deliveries.
When we make money
Through stall businesses,
They mint money
Through tall busynesses.
As we pocket our coins
After a long day with coils,
They stuff their paper bags
With their paper bucks.
When we become manufacturers
Because we just got educated,
They become moneyfacturers;
Of course, they got eatducated.
This is an impressive crowd—the haves and the have-mores. Some people call you the elites; I call you my base.
George W. Bush
Speech at Al Adams $800-a-plate fund-raiser, October 20, 2000
You’re put in charge of our fund,
You put them aside for your fun.
You organize for your fans fanfare,
You use our funds for your fun-fare.
You call yourself a chief,
We regard you as a thief.
Lo, you continue to steal,
Your licence shan’t be still.
For you are depriving the public
Of the development of their republic.
Pests of our peace, may you rest apiece
In the Land you suck, milk, fail to appease.
Heed to this alarm bell to wake up the nation,
To condemn them who feed us with the ration.
Damn the official thieves of, for and by the people,
And them that issue them the licences of the people.
The jingle jangle.
If you give to a thief he cannot steal from you, and he is then no longer a thief. William Saroyan.
The Kinship with a Kingship
Even the monarch’s co-cousins
Dip their hands deep into our coffers,
And fool us, and pull for themselves dozens;
Of course none of all gives them the state’s offers.
All those self-made Royalties
Do claim from our toils’ royalties.
They assume and consume of powers real regal,
Yet their assumptions for consumptions are not legal.
By hierarchy, we’re their loyalists,
And by oligarchy, they’re our royalists.
We know to the monarchy they’re a far kinship,
It is they by remote anarchy who fake on us kingship.
An Auntie Corruption Commission
Auntie has a nice niece.
Her name is Eunice.
But I call her Younice.
Not only is she beautiful,
She is duly dutiful.
Oh, her downfall: being bountiful!
The girl is a model, a strawberry,
Without any nature’s forgery,
Save auntie, her cash-ier and secret-ary.
Every phone call on her is billed
With no sense of guilt
By her aunt whose wealth is built.
She is a precious shop
In which what is sold is her hope.
Alas, she joins and enjoys hip-hop!
Everywhere, every time accessible.
Who says for women is impossible
In this deal to be incorruptible?
Whether our reformers admit it or not, the economic and social inferiority of women is responsible for prostitution. Emma Goldman.