By Gatkhor Puol Tangtony
Cc: Dr Riek Machar, 1st Vice president
Cc: Dr James Wani Igga, Vice president
Cc: Gen. Hussein Abdelbagi, Vice president
Cc: Gen. Taban Deng, Vice president
Cc: Hon Rebecca Nyadeng, Vice president
Dear president, it is with the great respect and honor to openly write to you on the issue that angered me and my likeminded citizen who might have come across the ongoing plan of reopening of Jonglei canal in favor of Egyptian people. As a concern citizen, I have seen multiple projects designed and presented to the government of South Sudan by diplomatic partners, investors and the international brokers, your government officials grasp and sign the unhesitant memorandum of understanding without feasibility study of the projects. The Egyptian people have become the anti-development of South Sudan. They have obstructed our natural Fula dam known as “ FULA RAPID HYDROPOWER PROJECT” which requires only the engines and the turbines to generate electricity which would generate the capacity of 40MW initiated by the Norwegian people under the client ‘NORFUND” from 2011-2014. Due to encroachment of Egypt into our country development plan, this project has been forgotten. Coming back to the issue of Jonglei Canal to be reopen as a pretext of water built up in the entire Upper Nile for the last two years particularly Jonglei and Unity is a complete shortcoming of ideas you’re your infrastructural committee. It was on 27th Evening at Bari Community Association centre in Juba Market where the commemoration of singer Bangich Reat foundation was conducted. The Vice President Gen. Taban Deng Gai openly declared to the audience that the reason why Bor, Fangak and Bentiu are flooded today was because Uganda have released immeasurable magnitude of water to the Nile, as a result he has suggested the opening of the Jonglei canal for an easy flow of water to the Northern corridor which is none other than Egypt. In this scenario, I had a very different opinion on this proposal and my proposal if considered it would help South Sudan in one way or another.
My proposal; instead of opening water to the northern corridor, we have to make an artificial lake that can be dug from Jonglei Canal eastward to saharah Tingling of Jonglei between Bor and Akoba. It can proceed to Pibor administrative area, extend to the edges (60 or 80km) of border of Ethiopia and Kenya through Eastern Equatoria and back to the Nile through Magwei down to Bilnyang mountains.
What are the benefits we can get from this?
Agriculture: the vast land of Jonglei can create agricultural expansion to investors through irrigation scheme.
Animals: The animals which migrated due to thirst would return to the territory
It can attract the tourists and investors.
It can mitigate the possible flood in the future.
What are the disadvantages of opening Jonglei Canal?
Possible long term drought in the years to come.
Water from Nile tributaries will drop and will cause the users to migrate for a green pasture. This is a clear depopulation cause.
The fish farming business would be no more, the natural fingerling, rearing and fattening would be affected by speedy flow of water of the Nile since the Canal would be a shortcut for water to run faster northwards.
In summary, the idea of Jonglei Canal is going to endanger our country economy once we start executing the agricultural project. The government of South Sudan should prioritize the FULA DAM HYDROPOWER PLAN and dig the artificial Lake which we can give a name like the RING OF AFRICA, THE U-TURN LAKE or any of our Hero’s name for remembrance.
Ustaz, Gatkhor Puol Tangtony is concerned citizen of South Sudan.
He can be reach at [email protected]