Skip to main content

In memory of chief Jubek, Mobil roundabout's another victim after CE & Juba market

By Deng Kiir Akok,

I was a bit late to arrive at London Cafeteria in Atlabara, Tumbura road where a friend of mine invited me for lunch last Thursday Jul 20, 2017.

On my way to cafeteria, I received almost five telephone calls from him asking for my current location while coming. I told him I was at Mobil roundabout.

As though I had invited the problem, one bus passenger that was sitting next to me nodded his head, feeling sorry with the name I used to call the roundabout.

" What? Come again! Why don't people ask for the name of the place if they are not familiar with before locating themselves to others," said the passenger in a loud voice. Then he looked around trying to see his sympathizers.

In 2011, the then Central Equatoria state demolished the part of the Juba Market with the intention to turn it into a Square.

The part of the market that was demolished was then fenced off from the neighboring buildings, including Juba main prison in the south-east, Juba northern sector police in the east, Ivory bank in the north and Jubadit store in the west.

People were trying it very hard to figure out what exactly would the state do for the demolished part of the market.

A rumor didn't take patience and it had that this place, once the demolishing is over, would be surveyed and redistributed to their former owners. So shockingly, it was signposted Jubek Square overnight.

The square was named after Jubek, a British colonial period Bari paramount chief with his base at Kondokoro Island. Also the current capital of South Sudan, Juba derived its name from him.

It was time for Jubek state to put something to honor their fallen hero. He was to be remembered in this particular place thought other places with such name are coming soon.

In 2015, the president of the republic of South Sudan, Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit, had issued a decree creating twenty-eight states from ten states. This was the first time for South Sudanese to give names that are not of geographical or political background to their States.

Most of the former ten States' name didn't make comeback in which the former Central Equatoria State was one of them.

The move marked the end of the British colonialists' and Khartoum's meaningless and war mongering names for the southern Sudanese residential areas such as Atlabara, Rujal Mafi in Juba, Jubek State and Kor-Sahud in Kuacjok, Gogrial State.

However, the northern Sudanese and British colonialists in particular seem to have been defeated in pronouncing southern Sudanese names for people and places.

But they never gave up calling these names. Thus, their poor pronunciations led to the creation of different names apart from the existing ones as the like of Gakrial that becomes Gogrial.

The same thing happened to the present day Wau which was called Wath. Toc becomes Tonj, Mading Ayuel to Awiel, and other towns that share the same grievances and didn't appear in this list.

No name that got correct pronunciation from the colonialists. Thus, every name for the people of southern Sudan or the place was getting wrong in the mouth of northern Sudanese and British colonial masters.

As the time went, the correct southern Sudanese names were gradually forgotten and completely gone.

Since the current thirty-two states are maximizing freedom within their territories, the governor of Jubek State, Augustino Jadallah Wani renamed Mobil roundabout 'Jubek roundabout in May 18, 2017.

The renaming ranked Mobil in third position in the list of places that saw a drastic change of their original names into chief Jubek's name after the former Central Equatoria State and part of the Juba market.

Mobil is an American oil company that operates petrol stations in many countries including South Sudan. It had in the past a petrol station at this roads join lying between All Saints Cathedral church and Juba teaching hospital before selling it to Patronas, then to foi and finally to the Nile Petroleum Corporation.

The majority of Dinkas assumes that the place was called Mabil, a Dinka word for a male cow with dark brown color covering large part of its body with some white colour. Instead, it was just a coincident that brings their bull's colour Mabil near to Mobil.

Although the statue of chief Jubek at the roundabout is now looking good with a cowboy hat, hoe, bow and arrows, still it would miss many generations without calling it Jubek roundabout.

The council should have learned from the experience of the former Meridian Hotel at Suk al-Arabi in Khartoum which was renamed Regency. No one never calls this accommodation industry with its newly acquired name.

If at all the city council wanted to have a good number of places named after chief Jubek, they should have looked for nameless places. Streets are good examples.

To conclude this piece of writing, I hold no bad intention against the State's will but just putting suggestions so as to help it avoid clashes of names like the current confusion in the former Mobil roundabout.

Another thing for the city council to have done was to put a signpost bearing the new name for the roundabout such that it directs whoever pass that  place.

Also, I would have welcomed the council's decision if it had built Schools apart from Jubek Model Secondary school in Gudele, public libraries, museums, and then name them after Jubek.

In doing so, all the people living in the capital Juba regardless of their nationalities would never miss to mention this Bari infamous name  in their everyday lives.

Popular posts from this blog

South Sudan should avert famine first and hold on building Ramciel

By Deng Kiir Akok

Famine by Dictionary.com is an extreme and a general scarcity of food, as in a country or a large geographical area. On February 20, 2017, both the government and the United Nations declared the present of famine in two counties of Mayendit and Leer in the former Unity State, blaming conflict and collapsing economy in the country.

Building Ramciel on the other hand, serves the vision of the late leader and founder of Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A), Dr. John Garang de Mabior who proposed it to be a new capital of South Sudan when he visited the place now located in a newly created Eastern Lakes State in 2003. His promise was later left unfulfilled when the leader died in a Ugandan presidential Mi-172 helicopter crashed in 2005. To revive the building of a new capital, the Council of ministers sat on September 2, 2011 and resolved to relocate the city from Juba to Ramciel. Thirteen months later, a young nation slid into civil war, which shut down …

Dinka people - from liberators to MTN

By Deng Kiir Akok

It was on Friday, March 10, 2017 night when I was thinking of what would be the fate of the Dinka travellers on Juba - Nimule and Yei roads this time after the national prayers.

In the minds of South Sudanese people, the Friday national prayers were meant to change and prepare the hearts of the country's politicians to be ready for the involvement in the long awaited national dialogue which was due to start this month.

Another hope for the prayers was to forgive one another.  Some of us were praying to the almighty God asking if He could change the minds of the Equatoria's roads terrorists to abandon their evil nicknaming and killing of Dinka people.

The MTN's slogan, "Everywhere You Go," had been used by the killers along Juba - Nimule and Yei roads to categorically kill Dinka and leave non-Dinka bus passengers since the war broke out in 2013, between the forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and his former Vice President and rebel leader Dr. Ri…