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Angong Deng Kur: Forgotten Heroine of Liberation Struggle

Summary:

  • She is confined to a wheelchair, incapacitated, but leadership cares less to help her meet medical needs.
  • Her gratuities have never been paid to her since she left parliament though entitle by law for payment
  • Her medical treatment abroad is unimaginable endeavors

 

By Wol Deng Atak

The SPLM leadership is yet to commit to its heroes and heroines, in Bhar el Ghazal and elsewhere in the country. During the liberation struggle the leaders of the struggle in then Sudan turned to women and men for help when the movement was in need. One of these resourceful people is Hon. Angong Deng Kur, a lady of the likes of Mama SPLA from Yei District, who devoted her time and resources to serving the liberation movement. But to her surprise the current leadership does not even utter a word of recognition in appreciation of their contributions to our freedom. Although the movement benefited from her own resources and connections, Angong is ignored in her wheelchair at her time of need by the very leadership of the movement she served.

 hon angong deng kurHon. Angong Deng Kur, with her grand children and a pet

Many in Bhar el Ghazal may recall her agile skills in meeting need of logistical mobilization at ease. People who used to be around her then say a mention of her name used to be first step to finding solution to almost every leader mobilizing for food resource. SPLA mobilization for food to feed soldiers attacking then Khartoum interests in the town of Tonj, Wau, Warrap, Gogrial of Bhar el Ghazal was where Angong does her best. She used to be on the top of the mobilization.

Many a time liberation leaders turn to her when seeking information from her network within then government garrisons. Her network in turn brings soap, clothing, and other basic necessities to the liberators. But now, Angong is alone woman, forgotten by the very leaders who jointly worked with her to liberate the country. She is confined to a wheelchair, incapacitated that she could not leave her bed without help of others. Her tragedy is tripled by the fact that the leaders currently pass near her house in Warrap town without stopping to enquire of what went wrong in her life. A situation suggesting that the current liberators in power are not only unwilling to acknowledge their international friends who helped them succeed in struggle, but their nationals who played crucial roles in liberation struggle get no helping hand from them at their time of needs. Hon. Angong’s confinement to a wheelchair occurred when she got involved in accident while in campaign for president Salva Kiir Mayardit in 2010 general elections.

Although she served as a member of parliament in Warrap State Legislative Assembly from 2005 to 2010, she was never paid a penny of her gratuities after she left parliament; making it barely possible to meet her basic needs. More so meeting her medical treatment abroad is unimaginable endeavors after this ordeal. The law governing constitutional post holders’ benefits expects her privileges to have been paid to her immediately when she left the office. But since 2010 Hon. Angong never saw a penny of her privileges. This made life difficult for her during the last six years of confinement.

Hon. Angong is not alone in a situation where liberators who got access to power forgot their former colleagues who did not ascend to the same privilege. Gen. Marko Chol Makiech died this year seeking USD 15,000 to access medical facilities abroad only for president Kiir to donate 1.5 million South Sudanese Pounds, an equivalent of USD 35,000 after he died. The donation came months after the deceased family made all the efforts they could to rescue him from the jaw of death, but to no avail. He died unhappy man, feeling betrayed by his colleagues in struggle. Many former liberators have died in the same way.

This medium could not independently verify whether President Kiir is aware of the condition of Madam Angong Deng Kur, though there were efforts made to help her support for recovery were without success.

The current condition of the orphans, widows and disabled liberators raises question whether present liberators in power understand their responsibilities to their fallen colleagues and the meaning of what they fought for. The children of fallen heroes, and widows are languishing in poverty with some having been already taken advantage by the living colleagues who used them for pleasure and discarded them.

Concern has also been raised in the regards to the manner of which soldiers killed in war are buried in mass grave instead of honoring them. But the leadership never altered anything about it. Worse still some unlucky soldiers are left for birds of air to feed on them.

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