OpEd, Politics

It is said nobody is above the law, where is the truth

By Joseph Akim Gordon

The rule of law is important once implemented, it will reduce cases of criminality in the country, offenders will be scared to break the law because the penalties for breaking the laws are very severe, but in a situation where the law becomes lenient, this will encourage criminals to increase their level of criminality in the country, in theory, it is said nobody is above the laws of the country, but there are cases where highly placed personalities who should have done more in implementing court order, we have many cases in court where the highly placed govt. official do not bother to appear in court, particularly in regard to land grabbing and refusing to pay the monthly rent to the owner, for cases of plots you find the true owner has all official documents available, but they will continue to be threatened the true owner of the plot and frighten to punish the owner.

The case may be clear cut but the court will take many years to reach a verdict, this renders the owner of the property or the complainer frustrated, in a given situation when the case is complicated so the court will take long to reach a verdict, in a simple case when the court delays to reach a verdict, this makes the accused bold and feels that perhaps the delay is beneficial to the accused, he/she must be making money, for renting the illegal plot to make more money, the delay of cases in court allows the offender to make more money, because of the long delay, the owner will take law into his/her hand this makes the case becomes more complicated so the early intervention in court cases is credible.

The court needs some evidence that indeed the crime was committed and whether the person committed the crime and the punishment to be enforced in line with the crime committed. The problem many might ask is why simple cases take several years to reach a verdict. It appears that ordinary citizens are more vulnerable in the court of law than well-placed personalities.

It is said that the law is blind, which means despite one’s status the judges should also be blind to pass judgment according to the crime committed. They should not look at personality, be they ordinary citizens, highly placed, or rich. There are vulnerable citizens who do not have a voice; the land is grabbed; their ancestral land is invaded by pastoralists, making them unable to farm; and the law is silent about people breaking the law and the poor farmers who cannot defend themselves and are unable to farm on their own land, causing food and nutrition insecurity. I failed to understand when presidential decrees were issued but ignored.

If the final authority was ignored by the head of state, then where is the law? This emboldens the offenders to continue to disturb the farmers and not farm on their own farms. We are talking about unity. How can unity come about when my rights as a farmer are ignored? There should have been mechanisms put in place to support the pastoralists. The flood did not only occur this year; it has been in the making for several decades, and there is no concrete plan to help pastoralists. It seems as if there is no plan to help them k keep their animals in a secure place. As such, they extended their problems to Equatoria and other places. Even if we are one country but divided into states, counties, and bomas, if an individual moves to another state, that is normal, but the whole village with its population and a large number of cattle moved to a place the farming population.t seems there are no concrete plans in support of the pastoralists. Why should Equatoria become a victim? Now unable to do proper farming, crops are destroyed, and insecurity is created in the areas. We are leaving this case to ferment, and reaching a solution for the cattle keepers to return to their original places becomes harder. The earlier we take positive steps, the better.

We have not seen such a crisis during the British and successive Khartoum regimes. And now the citizens of one country have decided to inflict pain on us when we have one destiny, so it is not too late to wake up and do the right thing for our country.

The author can be reached through e-mail: akimgordon222@gmail.com

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