Critique of Prof. John Akec’s Mistaken UN Trusteeship for South Sudan Posted:
September 17, 2016 by *PaanLuel Wël* in Columnists
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*By James Okuk (PhD), Juba, South Sudan*

The meeting between Government of South Sudan cabinet ministers and the UN
security council delegation has just concluded. Among the Cabinet Ministers
were. Dr. Martin Lomoro, Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Hon. Kuol Manyang,
Minister of Defense, Hon. Micheal Chiengjeth, Minister of Interior, Hon.
Mamur Mete, Minister of National Security, Hon. Wanawila Minister of
Justice, Hon. Micheal Makuei, Minister of Information, Hon. John Luk,
Minister of Transport Dr. K Richard Mulla, Minister of Federal Affairs,
Hon. Amb. Ezekiel Lul, Minister of Petroleum, Dr. Dhieu Mathok, Minister of
Energy, Hon. Nunu Kumba, Minister of Wild, Amb: Akuei Bwona Malual, South
Sudan Ambassador to UN. From the UN Security Delegation; were, United
State, Senegal, Angola, China, Egypt, France, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand
Russia Federation, Spain, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay and Venezuela.

*September 17, 2016 (SSB) —-* As my part-time top boss at University of
Juba, I would like to thank the Vice Chancellor, Prof. John Akec for
keeping his private hobby of public writing. Many intellectuals of South
Sudan and in many other African Countries abandon their hobbies when they
become bosses. He needs to be appreciated and encouraged to keep up this
consistency and freedom of expression.

What attracted my attention is Prof. Akec’s reference to St. Augustine and
Thomas Hobbes to justify his apologetic defence of Juba’s suspicion and
reservation on the awaited Regional Protection Force.  I’m saying this
because I have been a lecturer of “Comparative Political Thought” in the
esteemed University of Juba since 2012, both to Arabic and English
patterned students of the Department of Political Science.

The evolution of political thought, some of which are practiced in many
countries to date, is an area I have admired with great interest. Thus, I
must thank the electronic engineer, Prof. John Akec, for becoming an active
participant in the classic political field, though. I would have wished to
invite him to attend a special lecture on the context and content on St.
Augustine of Hippo, Thomas Hobbes and Jean Bodin who had put forward some
rigorous political thinking in the history of human governance, especially
in regard to ‘Sovereignty and the Sovereign’ in time of ‘Peace’ and ‘War’.

Those great thinkers of the middle ages in Europe were concerned much about
“Sovereignty of the Monarch”. This political situation was broadened and
cemented by the Treaty of Westphalia (October 1648) that legitimised the
limited European Nation-States’ Systems and Principles between the Holy
Roman Emperor and the King of France and their respective Allies.

However, the French Revolution (known also as the people’s bread
revolution) and the American Declaration of Independence (known also as the
people’s land revolution) made the Westphalia Treaty irrelevant for
constitutional liberalism and democratisation of the modern nation-states.
The Centre of ‘Sovereignty’ shifted from ‘I the King for the State’ to ‘We
the People for the Nation’.

The sovereignty as far as St. Augustine and Thomas Hobbes were concerned
was about “I the King” only with disregard to the centrality of the people
and their dignified livelihood welfare. Is this what Prof. John Akec is
trying to argue for South Sudan now?

Even Hobbes conditioned the necessity of the sovereign and the government
on “not killing the subjects and also not instilling fear in them”. The
Hobbesian Leviathan was for absolute peace and security of the people. Once
the sovereign and the government break this condition, then they should
immediately lose the value to continue ruling the nation in a state.

St. Augustine has also conditioned the sovereignty on ‘Peace and Justice’,
with permissible ‘War of a Just Cause’, conducted through right intention,
declared by a competent authority with good faith, and using proportional
military force while discriminating the non-combatant citizens (i.e women,
children, the elderly, the clergy, etc.) from the warriors of the sinful
‘City of Man’ who are being punished by divine authority to repent and
return to goodness of ‘City of God’ for everlasting eternal grace. Once
peace and justice is denied to the citizens, then the sovereign and
government should be prayed upon for divine fire of deposition and
salvation for a new replacement.

Jean Bodin defined sovereignty as “Absolute”, “Indivisible” and “Complete”,
the attributes which are not nearer to the situation of the divided South
Sudan on the power of their current government.

Therefore, Prof. Akec shouldn’t kindly misquote these intellectual
historical giants to mislead the public about ‘sovereignty’ and how UN
Protection Force is “Trusteeship” in another name. If the Prof. Is not yet
aware and informed about the matter, let him now know that the UN Charter
since the end if World War II in 1945 doesn’t allow ‘UN Trusteeship” for an
independent state with full UN and other regional organisations memberships.

The UN Charter and AU Constitutive Act predicate the modern sovereignty on:
a)Protection of the population without discrimination, b) Undivided loyalty
of the citizens to the state, c) Enforceability of government powers in all
the jurisdictional and integral territory, d) Cooperation with the UN and
other international and regional bodies based on treaties, mutual
recognition and other legitimate obligations, and e) Viability of the state
and sustainability of its government among other nations.

Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States (December 1933) is
what has defined the modern and contemporary state, not necessarily the
traditional medieval nation-state any longer. Article (1) defines a state
as a person of international law that possesses a) permanent population
(i.e, not Refugees or IDPs), b) a defined territory, c) government, and d)
capacity to enter into relations with the other states.

Also the Westphalia principles of equality of states, non-intervention of
one state in the internal affairs of another state and “forgiving the sins
of the past” are no longer practiced in vacuum, especially when the UNSC,
in accordance with the UN Charter, defines a situation as ‘threat to
international peace and security’ as it came out in Resolution Number 2304
(2016) and acts via a “peace-keeping” long-term strategy or
“peace-enforcement” emergency response in accordance with the principle of
“the Responsibility to Protect”.

The Republic of South Sudan should not be made an exception on the
evolution of the power of multilateral diplomacy and international
relations. The Juba Varsity Prof. Akec has missed the intellectual goal
that a professor shouldn’t afford to mess up with.

The Regional Protection Force and UNMISS-Plus is not and can’t turn into a
formal trusteeship force in South Sudan because their mandate is clear and
supplementarily limited to restoring the direly needed peace and security
environment in the embattled country from all fronts.

That was why Juba signed a Joint Communique on 4th September 2016 with the
UNSC Members who came to the country for first-hand information and
experience of the gravity of the situation.

*Dr. James Okuk is a lecturer of politics in University of Juba reachable
at <>.*

*The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity
of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël:
South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion
article or news analysis, please email it to
<>. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before
publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country
you are writing.*
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