‘SPLM/A-IO under threat,’ opposition official warns as waves of defections hit SPLM-IO

President Salva Kiir Mayardit addresses nation in the capital, Juba/ Photo: File

April 17, 2020 (Thessherald)–Nathaniel Pierino, the SPLM-IO representative to the National Constitutional Amendment Committee has expressed his deep concern over the recent waves of defections of the SPLM-IO officials to the government, saying that the issue shouldn’t be treated lightly as a laughing matter, but must be addressed politically and strategically.

“I am very sick and disturbed by the endless trend of defections hitting the SPLMAIO; the military and political components alike. We cannot laugh it off. It means something is fundamentally wrong in the strategic, tactical, political and organizational design of the Movement.”

“I am ready to face-off with anybody who pretends and suggests the contrary before we loose the ability and capability to implement the peace Agreement and win elections where all hope rests. Politically, you can’t implement the peace Agreement from a vanquished position because the other side will not give without leverage. We cannot rely on the good will of providence and the members of international community to remain relevant in the political arena of South Sudan,” he said.

Nathaniel stressed that the repeated defections of the SPLM-IO officials require urgent action, noting that it raises concern.

“As a conscious and founding member of a movement that struggled for justice, equality and reforms in the governance structure of this country. I have every reasons to worry. The organization is critically being wounded and the stakes are very high! The very existence of the party is under threats. SPLMA-IO cannot loose its political resources and capabilities for winning elections and we say “God Must Be Crazy”!

He pointed out that the recent developments are worrying and that he will be able to evaluate and reflect on the movement’s political future.

“I am very hurt and shall be carrying out self reflection and critical evaluations of the current and future prospects and the viability of SPLMAIO as a political party capable of executing the aspirations of the people of South Sudan, and working towards wining elections. It would be naive and parochial to say, despite these waves of defections, it’s business as usual, obviously it isn’t.”

Adding that, “It is loss of valuable cadres and constituencies. We cannot be dismissive of every defection that occurs. It shall be hypothetical and pathetic. The political and social impact of this trend is negative and immense. Needless to say the military implications.”

The official said he is always concerned whenever he hears any reports of defections of the SPLM-IO members.

“Whatever defection occurring in the movement affects me and I, aboard, is concerned and cannot stand bye and watch as the movement collapses.”

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