I am interesting to tell this as South Sudanese story, but this would be very hard to do. Because the South Sudanese story would need so many book pages. So I am better off doing this at a personal level.
First of all, I am one of the people from Southern Sudan that voted in favor of a separated country (results were 99% in favor of separation).
My perspective are shaped by war memories,( hard facts to wear away). These memories are not strictly personal, but too observational about other South Sudanese’s experiences.
South Sudanese went through horrible, unbelievable time: slavery, colonialism and Islamic fascism that created conditions for civil war that plunged the South Sudan into Death Valley. But I feel like this is not a chapter for these “civil war” stories, or I’m not in the right capacity to tell it as it is. There will be time for it.
Sincerely, I am interested not in my past but my future and that of my community and south Sudan. In fact, my feelings are absolutely shared all over by most of South Sudanese. I must declare! We, Southern Sudanese have been almost universally optimistic about our future as a result of this referendum. Our lives are filled with rich thoughts of changes for the better and the feeling that one has duties and things to go about and fulfill.
Sudan was an Africa nation–which has a fate no one can understand or change. Nonetheless, this referendum, brought solutions. Southerners will separate and go our own way, and that causes not just joyfulness, but a sense of self-determinism which for long time is missing. It gives people of South Sudan the privilege to unreservedly and freely obtain their rights, that would foster and assist them in the realizing every man’s full potential as they live with dignity, liberty, independence.
It would take meditative and abstract thinking for anyone who is not South Sudanese to understand the metaphysical aspects of voting for self-determination and separation. South Sudan, the world newest country, put every South Sudanese’s life back together and it soothes me.
People in the camps worried about everybody they loved back home and about the country itself. It is bad to spend your days visualizing your country going through torture. Thinking helplessly about the nation is the hardest part of war after you survive; it is unrelentingly hideous and butchered without mercy. It is an excruciating hell of a life to lead. and its Consequently make war and it outcome your inevitable autobiography.
You know, when war came to South Sudan, I was lucky. I got out of the war zone to be in a refugee camp in neighboring countries. Refugees’ camp was no walk in the park, but it wasn’t Sudan. But no one could truly escape the war no matter how far you seek safe haven.
While I was in the refugee camp, I would hear news from home that would make my heart sink: funerals every day of the week, being told that relatives of yours had been killed, or a kid that I had played with had been killed.
Even if you became blessed a second time and escape refugee camps and settle into a free and democratic country like Australia, it doesn’t take long for you to realized that you are not the same as everybody in the land. The tag African refugee from Sudan is equated to something else so humilating. And I am not talking about the abyss crack of discrimination, or the news about you and your country as the worst of Africa’s countries with vast natural resources and refugee camps. Sudan is reported as countries that can’t grow it own food and is depopulated by starvation, AIDS and war. Inhabitants are portrayed as uncivilized people that are half-naked, carrying Kalashnikovs with prominently exposed-ribs and bare breasted women
it is not just how war has annihilated the family, the law, and the state of Sudan, but also communities and individuals. After they have gone to a relatively peaceful and democratic country, they will be always be different. This is how it is.You are not only entrenched into a personal lonely and isolated struggle in Australia, but also some very far away woryings.
you go through my daily errands with always this large elephant in the room. The elephant is the country I left behind and seek asylum; Sudan is not just a country, it my family that I left behind too, my mother, sister and brothers and relatives who never left.
What’s more, there are multitudes of Southerners who are still languishing in abject poverty and desolation in camps in neighboring countries, with millions of children growing up without education or basic health care. These children could still witness the horror of death in cold blood by beastly militia and maverick soldiers.
Although then there was a peace deal signed in 2005 in the Sudan, the possible war outbreak still loom. And that means children could still be conscripted into army, women could fall victim to rape, and others could be infected by the lethal diseases without medical care.
Accordingly, we were beleaguered, Although displaced physically from the dangers of our natural habitat (our land), this is not the case mentally. Our South Sudan “homeland” as a geographical or temporal destination looms like cloud covering all the time — it could be nostalgia induced. We were silently searching together for a country and relative stable life. And I can’t stop imagining that the the new nation will make South Sudanese’s circumstances better and people around the world will probably begin to glance at us another way.
Akech Yangdit completed the eight week journalism training program for Sudanese Australians run last year by the Centre for Advanced Journalism at The University of Melbourne with the support of the ABC, AMES, the Sidney Myer Foundation and the Victorian Multicultural Commission.