By Mabior Riiny Lual
Had it not been fresh lies intertwined in Today Ateny’s post, one would not have bothered to respond to Ateny’s Facebook post. In his usual quick response to Facebook allegations, Ateny claimed that
“It is not true that the President is leaving power in favour of Dr Castelo Garang anytime, and for whatever reason. Dr Castelo is not an SPLM member, nor did he ever been part of the SPLM political hierarchy”. This is the view of someone who is himself new to the SPLM. Dr Costello Garang is not on Facebook and only became aware of the rumour doing round in Facebook through others about President Kiir alleged desire to relinquish power to Dr Costello Garang.
He, Costello did not take rumour seriously as he knows relinquishing power takes certain procedures, he was as well surprised how J1 takes every Facebook post at face value. But what should keep Ateny and his cohorts awake at night are the current public unfavourable view of the government? The way rumour did rounds is a litmus test of how people are fed up with the current government and their desire for a change of guards. Such views are not the making of Costello, but south Sudanese sovereign desire for freedom.
In his quick rejoinder to make his defence known for the government, Ajal Bol Gai quipped “Well articulated I guess SPLM-IO especially Mabior Riiny is paying those media to mislead the public it can never happen as said by molana Ateny Wek Ateny thanks for clarification”. This is one of the pathetic sycophants always on guard to sell south Sudanese for a job with government thanks to the failures of the system to employ educated South Sudanese based on merits.
Unbeknown to Ateny Wek Ateny, Costello is an old member of SPLM since its inception in 1983. I wonder where Ateny Wek Ateny was by then. Ateny should consult his boss about the past members of SPLM. What Ateny has forgotten is the fact that current SPLM government is dominated by outsiders foreign to SPLM, and it is laughable that NCP bigwigs during the struggle are the one advising President Salva Kiir on the daily business of SPLM, is Ateny not ashamed of this? Ateny Wek is not a spokesperson for SPLM and he is green of who was who in the old SPLM. For the sake of record and for Ateny Wek’s benefit, below is brief summary of Dr Costello’s contribution during his days in SPLM.
1. In September 1983 Costello Garang was appointed by Dr John Garang representative of the SPLM/A in Germany. The appointment letter was sent to him by Hon. Joseph Oduho, as member of the politico- military high command and chairman of the political and foreign affairs committee. the appointment was later on renewed by Dr.John personally with the letter of appointment handed over to Dr Costello by commander Martin Manyiel Ayuel, who was director of Dr John Garang’s office as chairman of the SPLM/A.
Costello Garang organised the first visit of the SPLM/A DELEGATION to Germany and introduced it members to Central Europe. These were Hon. Joseph Oduho, Judge Martin Magier and current General Alfred Akuoc. The German Authorities first denied the delegation entrance to Germany. Joseph Oduho and his group have to wait for 6 hours at the Airport in Frankfurt until Costello came back from Vienna to facilitate their entrance. General Alfred Akuoc, the former Undersecretary of Wild Life is alive and could witness what happened in Frankfurt.
2. In May 1989 Dr Costello Garang organised the first visit of Dr JOHN to the West after the inauguration of the SPLM. Dr John started with Bonn, where Dr John and Dr. Costello spoke in the German Parliament. Dr.John was accompanied by Dr Mansour Khaled, Commander Edward Lino and Commander Uyai Deng Ajack among others. The extremely successful visit of Dr John was nearly overshadowed by a diplomatic row resulting from the fact that Dr John himself and his Security guards entered Germany and the German Parliament armed. The Germans were not amused about the fact that the arms were not declared. Dr Costello had to iron out the Crisis with the German authorities and security organs.
3. Until the signing of the CPA, Dr Costello Garang was a Minister in the SPLM/A. He was a Member of the National Executive Committee (NEC) and Commissioner for International Cooperation And Development. It was in this capacity that he:
a) Formed together with Dr Riek Machar the current National Oil Company, NilePet. Dr COSTELLO brought the late German lawyer, Prof. Karlheinz Jung, to help form NilePet and flew to Yei to register it there.
b) Brought the Chinese company HUAWEI to South Sudan to put up GEMTEL.
c) Brought the German Railway Company, Thyssen Krupp Gleistechnik, to make the railway feasibility study Juba-Gulu, Juba-Nakuru and Juba-Lamu.
This was in coordination with Dr John Garang, who in this connection sent him to President Kibaki, Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and President Museveni.Dr. Costello Garang was appointed by the SPLM after the CPA was signed to become Member of National Parliament in Khartoum and proposed to be Minister of Investment. He turned down both seats. His seat in the Parliament went therefore to Hon. Aguer Alic and the Ministry went to Malik Agar.
d) 2008 Costello Garang became Presidential Advisor on Special Programmes and Special Functions and Member Of the NLC of the SPLM
Dr Costello Garang is capable of leading and if need be, he will form his party to contest elections.