When Home is New
Mading Ngor, 28, left his rural home in Bor on August 28th, 1991 during the massacre, he was 8 years old. Ngor lived in Kenya with his family until the age of 18, then moved to Alberta, Canada, where he studied journalism at Grant MacEwan University. He is looking to balance both his Sudanese and Canadian heritage. "I always wanted to come back and I always knew that I had to. After losing my relatives in the war I felt a sort of moral obligation to contribute to the country. I came also see whether there was a place for me in this new republic. I came as a journalist because independence is the story of the century and I wanted to be part of that," he said. "And to assess whether it's really home or not." Mading returned April 1st of this year and traveled to his hometown of Bor for the first time in 20 years. “Everything was different, the rivers I remember as a child were dry. Nothing resembled what I left behind.” Mading left bore during the massacre, “We trekked through the bush on foot; we saw corpses lining the streets. If I was stung by a bee on my head, I wanted to cry out but I didn’t, because I was with my mom and siblings. If the enemy would hear any noise, they would fire in that direction. I cried on the inside. My friend who was also 8 was killed because a dog barked.” “We have a country but if we’re going to put a blind eye on justice what is our future for the new nation? Some people think justice will be done in the future, the future is now, now or never.” “The roosters crowing in the morning is distinctively Africa for me, it’s authentic and genuine, you would not hear that in Canada.” “We have to show we can do our part, even how little it is, like the quote by JFK, ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country. Luxury and comfort is in the west, but it’s more than that, I know how many relatives sacrificed for this country. You can be anything in South Sudan, a doctor, a journalist, a lawyer, and be relevant.” “My memory of Sudan is long horn cows, when we ran during the massacre we were in a cattle camp, we had to desert them.”
Images © 2011. Portfolio design by Neon Sky.