The malicious sacking of Lt-Gen
Johnson Mogoa Kimani Ondieki by the United Nations Secretary General Ban
Ki-Moon on alleged inability to prevent attacks on civilians is likely to spark
a diplomatic row between Kenya and the United Nations. this may undermine
the progress achieved by the Kenyan government in promoting peace not only in
the volatile South Sudan but also in Somali where the Kenya Defence Forces is
battling Al-Shabaab militants.
The spiraling conflict in South Sudan is deeper
than what world leaders may presume because it dates back to the early 90s when
a splinter group a rose from SPLM led by the former vice president Riek Machar.
These warring groups are acutely divided along tribal lines and have harbored
eternal differences against each other occasionally resulted in fierce attacks
and reckless killings of civilians for decades. It is thus disheartening for the
UN chief to base his sacking on a mere report that failed to explain the
genesis of power struggles and political wrangles in South Sudan.
Speaking during the cadets’ commissioning
parade at Kenya Military Academy in Lanet President Uhuru Kenyatta slammed the
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon for sacking Kenya’s commander and
vowed to pull out Kenyan forces from South Sudan. The withdrawal of the
Kenyan forces will likely jeopardize the ultimate peace promotion in the
The move to sack and replace the Kenyan General
is not only demeaning to the Kenyan defence force but the entire African Union
force whose mandate is not to engage in active combat with rebels or faction
allied to various leaders but protect civilians. According to the Kenyan
authorities, the rhetoric that the Lt. Mogoa failed to offer leadership which
in turn resulted to deaths of civilians is baseless.
The international community and Ban Ki-Moon in specific should not quickly forget the audacious role the Kenyan government and its meticulous men in uniform have played in the promoting peace in the young republic of South Sudan; a nation whose creation resulted from intense negotiations led by General Lazarus Sumbeiywo who is proudly Kenyan.