South Sudan:Machar’s rejects Kiir’s decree on unilateral unification of forces command

By Deng Machol

Vice President Rick Machar and President Salva Kiir

Juba – The main peace partner has rejected president Salva Kiir’s “Presidential decrees on the unilateral unifications of the forces command” issued on Friday this week, a move violates fragile 2018 peace deal

Kiir allocated three army positions and one police position to the SPLA-IO as his first step in the formation of the unified army command.

A police position was allocated to South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA).

But in a statement this evening, Vice president Dr. Riek Machar said the move violates the peace agreement and are unilateral actions.

Ex – rebel leader Machar alleged that Kiir’s decree is a rejection of the on-going mediation process by Sudan’s government on the unification of forces.

Machar says the peace deal provides for sharing of the command at the ratio of 1.1 or 50 percent for president Kiir’s group and 50 present to opposition groups.

“It is important to recall that on 27th September 2018, the parties agreed in the Khartoum Workshop as stipulated in the Agreement (Art. 2.1.11) that the size and composition of the forces shall be based on the ratio of 50 percent for ITGONU and 50 percent for the opposition,” Machar said in the press statement.

Machar’s group says Sudan’s government is currently trying to find a solution to the disagreement of the unification of forces and that it’s fully committed to that process.

In a decree, the President also directed the Chief of Defense Forces and the Inspector General of Police to immediately implement his order. However, it is to be noted that this is a unilateral decision, Machar said.

The peace partner further says it’s committed to the implementation of the 2018 peace agreement and is urging the East African Regional body IGAD to intervene and resolve the deteriorating working relationship between the parties to the peace accord.

The observers called on president Kiir to call for a meeting of the presidency to try and resolve the differences and deadlock on the peace process.

This comes after a renewed fighting between rival soldiers in Upper Nile and Unity States, threatening a fragile 2018 peace agreement forged with the help of regional and international communities.

 

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