Latest: Parties sign Rome Declaration of Principles

SSOMA and government delegation sign the Rome Declaration of Principles |Photo: Thessherald

Full Communiqué

• The conflict in South Sudan is ethno-politically motivated. There shall be affirmed the separation of ethnicity from politics.

• Establishment of a democratic federal system of governance from the start of the interim period;

• The principle of division of power and wealth between the different levels of government shall be in accordance with the principles and characteristics of Federal System of governance;

• The Jurisdictions between the federal, the states and counties powers shall be clearly spelt out in the agreement and reflected in the constitution during the pre- interim period. During the transitional period, there shall be established a body that shall be called The Sovereign Council’ which shall have the responsibility to collegially manage, supervise and take the country through transition period. The Sovereign Council shall be led by a President and shall have equal representatives from each of the three greater regions of Equatoria, Bahr el Ghazal, and Upper Nile

• Any person who is sanctioned and accused of serious crimes or found guilty shall not hold any public office;

• Estabiishment of Inclusive balanced National Security Sector that reflects the ethnic diversity of the people of South Sudan.

• The agreed social contract, through constitution conference, shall be translated into tangible legislations and litigations that shall be binding to all in a permanent constitution.

• Formation of mechanisms of Transitional Justice, Accountability Reconciliation and Healing;

• The boarders and boundaries of South Sudan shall be as of 01/01/1956

• Land in South Sudan is owned by the community. It shall remain the duty of the respective states and the local government authorities under which the city or town falls, to negotiate with the concerned community that owns the particular land;

• Affirm full recognition of equal citizenship for all peoples of the Republic of South Sudan irrespective of ethnic, religious, gender based orientations, and people with special needs.

• We affirm the rights, empowerment and contribution of women in all fields in South Sudan;

• Freedoms of expression, religion, belief, association and assembly shall be fully granted

• Respect for life, Human Rights and dignity of the people of South Sudan without regard to age, gender, ethnic origin, religion and belief in the rightful path of national co-existence for building national unity

• 13. We affirm and respect the ethnic diversity of South Sudanese as a source of strength and national identity

• 13. Affirming the empowerment and participation of youth in the affairs of the country

Breaking: Malong surrenders to government delegation in Rome

October 10, 2020 (Thessherald)–The leadership of the South Sudan United Front/Army headed by Paul Malong Awan has reportedly surrounded to Kiir’s delegation in Rome, according to a reliable source at the peace talks.

“Malong surrendered to the government delegation in Rome as he demanded the sacking of the NSS boss as one of his conditions to return to Juba,” the source revealed.

“South Sudan United Front/Army rebels group have surrendered voluntarily to the South Sudanese government delegation in Rome after their Chairman Gen. Paul Malong Awan was booted out of the SSOMA alliance’s first meeting with the government yesterday in Italy,” the source disclosed.

According to another official at the peace talks, Malong and his entourage are negotiating separately with the government delegation in an effort to reach an agreement later today.

The South Sudan United Front/Army – a holdout group has been facing an internal row after the dismissal of its former spokesman, Emmanuel Sunday de John.

Last month, the South Sudan Movements Alliance suspended SSUF/A from the opposition alliance over a breach of communications.

SPLM-IO submits the names of its nominated Governors: James Gatdet

The First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar briefs the party leadership on the recent allocation of states among the R-ARCSS parties | Photo. Credit: Office of the FVP.

June 27, 2020 (Thessherald)–The leadership of the opposition group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement -IO, has officially submitted the names of its three nominees to be appointed as Governors of the three states recently allocated to the SPLM-IO, according to the Office of the FVP.

“The First Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan and Chairman and Commander-in-Chief of the SPLM/SPLA (IO), Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon, already submitted the names of three nominees to be appointed as Governors for the three States of Upper Nile, Western Bahr el Ghazal and Western Equatoria States—which respective governorships are allocated to the SPLM/SPLA (IO),” said James Gatdet Dak.

Gatdet pointed out that the list of the would-be Governors has already been sent to the President in anticipation of the establishment of the States governments as agreed by the Presidency in recent days.

“They were submitted for appointments this week on Wednesday, 24 June 2020, in expectation of the formation of the States governments, hopefully soon.”

Gov’t won’t dissolve incumbent TNLA until COVID-19 pandemic subsides- Official

President Salva Kiir Mayardit delivers a speech during an official gathering in Juba/Photo:File

May 2, 2020 (Thessherald)–South Sudan’s government will not dissolve the incumbent Transitional National Legislative Assembly until the current global COVID-19 pandemic has subsided, according to a government official who declined to be mentioned, fearing reprisals.

“The government would not dissolve the incumbent Transitional National Legislative Assembly until the COVID-19 pandemic comes to an end” the official disclosed during an exclusive interview with The South Sudan Herald.

“Basically, the implementation of every peace agreement is a step-by-step process, we expect no one to force this fact down our throats,” he said.

The Kiir administration has come under mounting pressure to dissolve the TNLA and form an inclusive Transitional National Legislative Assembly with the opposition.

Last month, during the Extraordinary 71st Session of the IGAD Council of Ministers held on online, the East African regional body, IGAD, expressed concern about the failure of the Parties to implement key outstanding issues, including the formation of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA).

“The IGAD Council of Ministers Noted with concern delays in the completion of some important Pre-Transitional Tasks such as the reconstitution of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA); and in this regard, urged the President of the Republic to dissolve the incumbent TNLA before 30th April 2020, and called upon the Parties to reconstitute the TNLA in accordance with the R-ARCSS within ten (10) days of the dissolution of the incumbent TNLA.”

The Council of Ministers urged the Government and the opposition to break the impasse and agree on responsibility-sharing at the state levels as stipulated in the agreement.

“The IGAD Council of Ministers Also expressed concern with the impasse among the Parties in agreeing on responsibility-sharing at the State and Local Governments levels; and in light of this, called on the Parties to immediately resume discussions and consultations and reach on an agreement within fifteen (15) days of the issuance of this Communique.”

Opinion: Quit scapegoating, true leaders accept self political failure

By Miyong Kuon

Senior government officials posing for a group picture as they welcome Hon. Dak Duop in Juba/ Photo: File

April 17, 2020 (Thessherald)–At the hill of COVID-19, political defection ensued in South Sudan. This time, leaders should work with their party members to help educate the public about the dangerous virus and offer mitigation plans. But none of that is happening.

In politics, the opponent’s mission is to do anything to divide your camp and define your fate. It is, unfortunately, part of the game, so it is, however, not normal, but it is what it is.

My comrades, if you fail to see that coming, empty promises will drive you to the wrong hands. South Sudan’s future is more significant than the positions we are opting for today. Can we let the dust settle first, so we call for what we think we worth?

An increasingly dimmer view of the SPLM-IO by those who should understand and solve any shortcomings is now a central feature of politicians who lacks integrity.

The question is, were they part of the movement to do business, or to bring political change? The chairman entrusted many with everything from leading us at the political Bureau level to the negotiation team, and finally, they led the first team to Juba.

Now that some of the provisions they poorly negotiated in Ethiopia are crumbling, they blame their Chairman and ignite the IO moving train as they jump out.

But let it be known, sooner or letter, the fire you started will be extinguished and the train continues.

What caused this war in the first place has not disappeared simply because we signed the agreement and back to Juba. It is a process that requires everyone’s effort.

What had killed our fallen heroes and heroines and still keep innocents in IDPs and refugee camps remains a challenge that needs a leader with tenacity.

Those who die in Juba and at the battlefield sacrificed their lives for a political change to be enshrined in the constitution and create a peaceful South Sudan.

Do we believe defecting will solve our differences and constitute the change and reforms overnight?

If anyone feels we are failing as a movement and the change we fought for has been abandoned one way or another, what was our political bureau members doing? What was the governors, and party diplomats doing?

If we fail today, which is not the case here, it should be our collective failure, and we all must take that responsibility as leaders.

The general public in South Sudan staunchly supports the movement. The public still depends on the choices we are making today. If you resort to defecting because of a position, have you considered the people?

If you think you are abandoning the Chairman and the movement, think again. Know that you are relinquishing your position to a lower-tier within the part, and the train goes on. Sometimes it only makes sense if we can accept our shortcomings.

Let me draw your attention to what happened four years ago. On April 28, 2016, at 7 pm Juba, South Sudan. It was the night the formation of the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) was announced on national TV. Many of us including Hon. Dak Duop were watching TV at the Chairman’s resident.

Hon. Dak Duop’s name appeared; we all celebrated it. He was appointed the Minister of Oil, a move that relegated the widely expected candidate Gen. Taban to an insignificant Ministry, the Ministry of Mining.

Hon. Dak Duop was excited and cheerfully embraced H.E Angelina Teny and the rest in appreciation. We were there. But brother Dak was new in the SPLM party, yet none of us didn’t storm out of the movement. We considered him
a comrade and a leader.

But the Chairman decision choosing him, a former NCP didn’t go down well. It created one of the most contentious brinkmanship at the party echelon. We all can recall what transpired in the end. People died, and many more continued to die later.

Exactly 1,449 days later, Hon Dak Duop called a press conference declaring his defection from the party. Why? Because the Chairman’s appointed someone else over him.

Now he is accusing the Chairman of favoring friends and relatives, which in your words, you term it nepotism. The letter went on to also said, ”He ( the Chairman) often grasps influential positions and resources through proxies.” Indeed, when Hon. Dak name were announce on TV being appointed the Minister of oil, he rose up hugging anyone he can get in the room. Was that a proxy? If it was, why is it wrong now, and not then?

Four years later, the same leadership gave the same position not to Bhar el Ghazel or Equatoria, but to a brother who happened to be much younger, from Jikany Nuer.

Now, he calls the same Dr. Machar, who chose him over other last time, all kinds of names.
If we decide to turn the reform and change mission into business dealing and not a genuine reform, Hon. Duop should not be the one that stabs from the back. The Ministry of Oil could easily have gone to Bhar El Ghazal or Equatoria. They have the same right and should be the ones that call for nepotism if there is any.

We can now conclude that some comrades went to the bush for business, not for reform. As that becomes the case, please go in peace. You are indeed in the right hand. It is business as usual. Thank you for your short service.

The SPLM-IO party remains focused on the mission. Indeed, it is not an error that any exit of a comrade from a party is a challenge, but the defectors forgo their integrity. The tough times substantiates the gruesomeness of the reality of being an opposition. But it only strengthens the quest for genuine reforms.

The author is a former journalist and member of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-IO (SPLM-IO).

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