By Albino Liet
First of all, I would like to thank you, Deng Vanang for bringing up this issue of General Johnson Olony Thabo and your few explanation are welcomed.
Before stating my knowledge about the guy, I am not a big supporter of the two current leaders in South Sudan because I strongly believe the young nation has been devastated under them.
To go back on general Johnson Olony, perhaps he has no history of being an educated person leave about being a leader of Shilluk Division militia.
To walk you a little bit to remind you what happened when he was fighting with the former governor, Simon Kun Puoch within Upper Nile.
There were clashes between his Shilluk soldiers and the bodyguards of Upper Nile State’s Governor and I think you will agree such an event actually happened in there.
This record was kept by the government officials. There was also a fight between Apadang Dinka youths and the Shilluk arms youths then, one of General Olony’s brothers went to help his Shilluk brothers fighting against Dinka Apadang.
Unfortunately General’s brother got killed on spot and General Thabo got foul mood because of losing Shilluk brother General and he started planning according to MI of the SPLA.
Second to that, he broke away from the government when he was called to go to Juba’s headquarters, Bilpam and took two Ferries with many Tanks on board, soldiers were inside Ferries and all kinds of Military capabilities were as well inside.
As I’m speaking to you now, the Shilluk militia have invaded Dinka community of Atar and Lual Yak community.
Basically, if the first vice President Riek Machar Teny still believes that, General Johnson Olony Thabo is the only one of his best choice for Upper Nile State, clearly the peace agreement which was signed by president Salva Kiir Mayardit and him would not hold water believe me brother.
The first vice President Riek Machar is assuming that, General Olony is part of SPLA – I0 forces, but based on our knowledge, observation and the information we got from Shilluk pro-Juba’s government, Pagan Amum and General Oyai Deng Ajak are absolutely in charge secretly.
General Johnson Olony Thabo was told by these two leaders Oyai Deng and the former Secretary-General of SPLM, Pagan Amum that, no mixing up of Shilluk fighters with the Nuers’ SPLA I0 forces.
The former rebel leader Riek Machar Teny asked General Johnson Olony to consider mixing up his soldiers with the Nuers’ soldiers and he turned down the request.
After the peace agreement was signed in Khartoum and when the process started to unify both fighters, Riek Machar asked Olony to go to Juba, but he refused up to this movement.
With all these indications from time to time thus, I would say the President Salva Kiir Mayardit has all rights to reject General Johnson Olony Thabo and if that will cost him going back to war, then he will get the most support.
Third, appointment of General Johnson Olony Thabo is not going to cause massive defection of the SPLA I0.
Simply because the recent appointment of his wife to defense ministry and his Son in law together with his mother have been seen by many as the families business.
I have to tell you this because I had many friends from either Western Nuers or Eastern Nuers and I can tell how much they are feeling.
Today. If Riek Machar Teny returns to rebellion against government, hence he will be caught up alive by his own people because they have seen him as the person who doesn’t care about Nuers but his own family.
In short, every time when Riek Machar signs a peace agreement with any government, like the Khartoum peace agreement, everything ended up paperless and he actually stopped and ran away before the four years completed.
After coming back to rejoining the late Chairman Dr.John Garang eventually, some of his Generals were left behind and later on, they started fighting against government forces and this situation has not changed.
We believe his chief of staff General Simon Gatwech Dual and many other Generals are undecided.
Some of them are not happy why they were left in the bushes wondering how they will survive and there is no food for them.
Other Generals were very angry about Riek Machar appointment of his families whose names already went to the payroll in the beginning, while the families of those Generals desperately need support.
The conflict will not be ending even if President Salva Kiir Mayardit is gone. Still the random rebellion will continue to the next President.
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