Archive for: July 2018

Call for release of detained Yei ex-Gov. Lokonga Moses: CPJ

JUL/30/2018, SSN; Centre for Peace and Justice (CPJ), call on national security service to release the ex–Yei governor Lokonga Moses from detention.

Tito Anthony, CPJ’s Executive Director, says any detained person has to either be taken to court or released immediately.

The problem is not arresting someone but the problem is illegally detaining someone without a proper court order and denying him access from both his lawyer and his family.

The detention of Hon. Lokonga has nothing to do with national security but it’s all about individuals who are mis-using their constitutional powers to get rid of Lokonga.

The constitution says all persons have the right to free and fair trial in a court of law, therefore he should be given his rights to free trial… that’s if there’s a case against him.

Hon. Lokonga Moses was working for the government since his appointment as a Governor and the fact that today he is removed from his position.

The national security personnel work is not to detain individuals but is to protect the country against external threat and anything that threaten our national security as a nation.

Citizens should be handled by police and arrested by police and be forwarded to the court but not national security arresting citizens.

Any individual in South Sudan or outside is not a threat until the investigation has proven that his or her activities are a threat to the country.

Hon. Lokonga’s family and his lawyer should be allowed to access him and visit him on daily basis.

I call on the current Yei Governor, Mr. Emmanuel Adil Anthony, to take an initiative to meet the national security to discuss the release of Hon. Lokonga Moses.

The government should abstain from this habit of arresting political figures and leaders if there isn’t anything that relates to their term when they were serving in office that they could be investigated and taken to constitutional court.

I urge the judicial service to pay a visit to all detention facilities in the country and order the release of those individuals that will be found to have no proper record and documentation that support their detention.

I call on national security and all organized security organs and military intelligence to not arrest anyone just because of an order from a minister or governor but the need to be the promoters of the law and arrest someone only if he commits a crime and his detention has be an order of the court of law.

Kind regards,

Tito Anthony | Executive Director
Centre for Peace and Justice
Head Office: Nakedde Road, Nsambya, Kampala – Uganda
Mobile / WhatsApp: +256705148269
Email Address: tito@centrepeacejustice.org | Skype: tito.anthony98 | Twitter : @CPJjuba
Web: https://www.centrepeacejustice.org | Facebook: Centre for Peace and Justice – “CPJ”
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Is the Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCSS) on ‘Life Support’?

BY: Dr Lako Jada Kwajok, AUG/02/2018, SSN;

Some would find the title of this piece controversial. The reason is that it implies the ARCSS was very much alive before it could be put on life-support.

To them, it had died long ago following the J1 shooting in July 2016 and the subsequent manhunt to capture or kill Dr Riek Machar all the way to the borders with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

However, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) had formally maintained the view that the ARCSS was on course and peace can still be achieved through it.

But to be precise, the IGAD itself had been sending mixed messages with some supporting the view that the ARCSS was indeed dead.

The launching of the High-Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF) for the ARCSS on 18/12/2017 was seen by many as the last chance to salvage it and ensure its implementation in spirit and letter.

It was hoped that it would lead to sustainable peace in the Republic of South Sudan. What transpired from the Khartoum round of peace talks made many observers conclude that the peace process is in deep trouble or maybe “gasping” before its final demise.

When the current peace process is recorded in history books, it will turn out to be one of a kind. It’s the first time in history that peace talks were moved between 3 capitals in a very short space of time.

There’s such a thing in peace talks called shuttle diplomacy whereby Peace Mediator(s) travel between different locations several times to talk to the warring parties.

It was first put to use to describe the efforts of the US Secretary of State Dr Henry Kissinger to forge a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt in the aftermath of the Yom Kippur War in 1973.

But shuttle diplomacy does not involve moving the parties on short notice between different locations like what we saw in the IGAD-led peace negotiations. It was evident to everyone that the hosts were clearly after their interests and the whole process appeared chaotic and crude.

But let’s examine the HLRF from its start to where it is now.

In spite of a reasonable chance of a breakthrough towards resolving the conflict, the IGAD handling of the peace process was faulty from the start.

It was marred by biased approaches that worked against the very purpose of the endeavour which is the attainment of a just peace in the Republic of South Sudan.

Peace talks are not random processes but guided by international norms. There is a wealth of knowledge accessible even to the layperson on how they are conducted.

Examples could be drawn, and a lot could be learned from previous peace agreements like what took place in Liberia. It’s even pleasant to us as Africans that African peace mediators were the ones who achieved the success in Liberia on August 18, 2003.

In any peace process, there’re issues to be addressed during the pre-negotiation period to ensure a successful outcome. The parties have to agree on all the points before the beginning of the peace negotiations.

The following are some of them:
1. The location for the peace talks
2. The logistics
3. The security of each party
4. The participants
5. Mediators and their roles and responsibilities
6. Timeframe
7. Setting realistic goals
8. Building trust
9. Parties’ agreement on the agenda.

The IGAD-led peace mediation is regarded by many as indecisive and easily influenced by the regional powers. Some would argue that it was as such because of a scheme being adhered to by the mediators to realise a specific result.

Others may go as far as saying that some of the influential players don’t want any change to the status quo in South Sudan. The current regime serves their interests best.

We have seen no discussions regarding the issues mentioned above in the pre-negotiation period. There were numerous instances where the mediation team overstepped the boundaries of contemporary peace mediation.

Khartoum and Nairobi were not in the plan to host the peace talks at the launching of the HLRF. The IGAD mediation team selected them following the deadlock at the peace talks in Addis Ababa. The parties were never consulted, and the move was nothing but kicking the can down the road.

Sudan entirely crafted the Kampala trip in what appeared to be a collaboration with Uganda. Again, some of the opposition groups only knew about it less than 24 hours before departure to Kampala.

It was doubtful that the opposition would have agreed to a round of peace talks in Kampala, had they been consulted beforehand.

The issue of which Organisation/Movement participates and which one doesn’t was contentious. A selection criterion was wanting.

Some Organisations/Movements were admitted to the HLRF, while others were ignored on undisclosed grounds. If individuals could be invited to the HLRF in their rights, then why not any Organisation/Movement regardless of its size?!

Furthermore, limiting the number of the opposition delegates to only 3 was a striking feature of the IGAD-led peace mediation.

Firstly, the number of delegates was not discussed with the opposition in the pre-negotiation period.

Secondly, how possible that three delegates from each party would be sufficient to tackle the enormous political, military, humanitarian, and social issues relating to the future of the country?!

Even the three delegates limit was not adhered to as preferential treatment was accorded to the government and the SPLM IO. They were allowed more delegates with the government of South Sudan ending up with a bloated delegation of over 50 members.

Some Movements offered to cover the costs of bringing more delegates to the HLRF using their private resources, but the mediation team wouldn’t agree. No explanation was given whatsoever.

But what raised eyebrows was the admission of the so-called eminent personalities into the peace talks. What was the criterion used for selection?! And how comes that they were drawn from one ethnicity?!

Furthermore, which entity recommended them for participation in the HLRF?

These questions have been in the minds of many people and yet remain unanswered. But what is certain is that they have relentlessly eroded the credibility of the IGAD peace mediation team as an impartial peace broker.

The security of the opposition delegates was never a concern during the entire rounds of peace talks in Addis Ababa. However, the Khartoum round of negotiations was a different story.

For the first time in the history of peace talks in South Sudan and Sudan, people heard of coercion, intimidation, and delegates being made to sign an agreement under duress.

The whole drama started with the signing of the Khartoum Oil Agreement (KoilA 2018) and the Khartoum Declaration of Agreement (KDA) on the 27th of June 2018.

It was stunning to many of the delegates as they thought they were in Khartoum to finish what was started in Addis Ababa only to find themselves appending their signatures to an Oil Agreement.

Oil was never part of the negotiations in ARCSS in August 2015 nor the HLRF in 2018.

The negotiation style undertaken by the Sudanese peace mediation team was unprecedented. There were no programs or agendas for the meetings contrary to what the delegates were used to in Addis Ababa.

A delegate told me that the mediators kept coming at random times informing them about what they would like them to do. The delegates mostly never knew what would happen next during their entire stay at the Police Academy in Khartoum.

The mediation team was led initially by the Minister of Defense of Sudan Lt. General Awad Mohamed Ahmed Ibn Aouf and the Chief of Intelligence Salah Abdallah Gosh.

Subsequently, the negotiations’ file was handed over to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, El Dirdeiri Mohamed Ahmed. In fact, the negotiations’ file was back and forth between the team of the Ministry of Defense and the one belonging to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Some delegates gave two scenarios whereby diplomacy and niceties took the upper hand when the negotiations’ file was moved to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, while intimidation and coercion replaced the former when the file was brought back to the Ministry of Defense.

It’s customary and indeed a requirement that the agenda of the meeting is agreed upon by the parties to the conflict. There has to be a consensus on the issues that are deemed negotiable.

But what we saw was the IGAD mediation team usurping that right from the warring parties. In doing so, it assumed a dictatorial role to ensure the implementation of what it approves of rather than what the people of South Sudan want.

Providing logistical support for delegates was quite messy. It was not clear whether IGAD tendency to do things at short notice was deliberate or indeed it was a sign of organisational weakness.

In the Khartoum round of talks, some delegates received invitations and were directed to obtain visas from the Sudanese Embassy in a matter of few hours.

They were further instructed to travel the same day to attend a meeting the next day. The mediators never thought of their short notice and the inconvenience and difficulties the delegates had to endure.

The IGAD seems to have a problem with planning things before time. It’s just unbelievable! The world has never witnessed peace negotiations carried out in such a manner.

But before the Khartoum round of peace talks, it became increasingly evident that the IGAD mediation team had run out of ideas.

The first indication was when it temporarily relinquished its mediation to the South Sudanese faith-based organisations.

The second indication was when it came up with the Khartoum round of talks that would be followed by another in Nairobi. Despite the initialling of the (Outstanding Issues on Governance) by the regime in Juba and the SPLM IO, the truth remains that it lacks the support of the majority of the people of South Sudan.

The IGAD mediation team did two things that could be seen as an admission that the ARCSS no longer exists.

Firstly, Dr Ismail Wais, the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan initialled the Agreement on the Outstanding Issues of Governance which stipulates the maintenance of the 32 states that was created by President Kiir’s government.

The act is in contravention of the ARCSS which was based on the original 10 States.

Secondly, the IGAD didn’t join the Troika in condemning the recent illegal extension of the term of office for the Presidency and the legislature.

If IGAD is mediating in an endeavour to help the parties establish a Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU), then it cannot keep quiet to the extension of the term of a government that illegally calls itself a TGoNU as well.

As it stands, the IGAD seems to be all over the place. President Festus Mogae did admit following the renewal of fighting in July 2016, that the ARCSS was severely “wounded” but not dead. But all the indicators, however, point in the direction that the “wound” was indeed mortal.

Admitting failure is not a bad thing. In fact, it shows how brave and responsible is a leader or a politician. By doing so, other peace brokers preferably from countries that do not border South Sudan would be most welcome to render their much-needed services.

The South Sudanese people don’t deserve to be held hostage to a peace process that seems to go nowhere.

Therefore, the decent step by the IGAD to take is to issue a “death certificate” for ARCSS on the 25th of August 2018 (the official end date).

Dr Lako Jada Kwajok

Naath (Nuer) suffering under power-greedy Riek Machar is still at large

By: Cornelius Khan, South Sudan, JUL/28/2018, SSN;

I absolutely have no personal grudges against Riek Machar but his 30 years plus reign as Nuer and South Sudan leader and his proven never-dying-greed-for-power, his reckless and ignorant decisions, his lack of strategies and his satanic desire to throw the country on fire if his desires are not met, made me dislike him.

Now, after thousands have died, millions displaced, billions of national resources went to waste, livelihoods vandalized and the country is brought to her knees, Riek Machar wants to come back to Juba as First Vice President (FVP).

-Is he wise or foolish for him to destroy our lives just for him to remain in the South Sudan leadership?

-Is Riek Machar really coming back to Juba just because of the title FVP?

– What is new that he coming to offer to South Sudan?

– Now, does any one doubt what Riek Machar was fighting for position?

Honestly, everyone doesn’t want him back to Juba because death, destruction, instability and suffering accompany him.

Now, civilians hearing that he is coming back are scared to death because his presence Means War and destruction. He is simply a symbol of death and destruction and the whole Naath people have been characterized that way. Sad!!

After all the noise, the slogans about “Salva Kiir must go,” and failing to achieve a single item of his demands and failing to overthrow the Government by force, why can’t he simply step aside honorably instead of him waiting for his supporters to push him aside?

We all know, his supporters now have come to know him better and are willing to overthrow him since all he is killing people for the position of FVP.

It is always wise to step aside peacefully instead of waiting for the angry mob to push you out.

He has failed and there is absolutely no question about it and the best he can do is call it a day. But, we know him and his greed for power, he will never give way to others unless he is pushed by force.

If he failed in the frontlines, failed to achieve his goals in negotiations and finally forced to sign what was asked of him to sign, can he do anything after that in Juba?

Again, this time round, he is coming to Juba alone because we will not allow him bring his militias to Juba. No Riek Machar’s militia will be allowed to come and caused havoc again.

We will be the ones to protect him and it will be up to us to decide his fate. He will be allowed to Juba just to give peace to the ignorant villagers whom he misled otherwise his time is up.

Lastly, we still call upon the Nuer (Naath) to stop putting their hopes in the weak Riek Machar and start paying their loyalty and support to Gen. Taban Deng Gai, the man whose actions speak louder than words.

Be wise, be bold, be decisive and stop following the lost crowd, make that decision right now!!

Did I hear that the so-called South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) has refused to sign the peace agreement? I must thank them for sparing us time and space and letting them go lick their financial wounds since that’s what they are fighting for.

Maybe they are misled by the American slogans but they will regret this for a very long time.

CONTINUE TO FOLLOW RIEK MACHAR AT YOUR OWN RISK!!

The Tyranny of Greed in South Sudan

By: Duop Chak Wuol, South Sudan, JUL/28/2018, SSN;

Tyranny comes in many shapes and forms. It’s social, regional, economic, political and foreign. In South Sudan, Salva Kiir’s atrocious regime is being kept in power by Uganda, Egypt, Kenya, Eritrea, and Morocco, as well as arms dealers in Ukraine and Bulgaria, among others, regardless of the level of carnage he has committed.

Kiir’s connection with these countries and international arms traffickers has turned South Sudan into a battleground for greedy nations, institutions and people who lack conscionable judgment.

The military assistance provided to Kiir’s regime directly and indirectly by Uganda, Egypt, Eritrea, Kenya, and Morocco encourages Juba’s ruthless regime not to accept any peace deal that calls for reforms unless such a pact maintains his cruelty.

For peace to return to the country, the international community must use its mandate under international treaties to punish Juba’s regime and its foreign backers.

Nations like Uganda, Kenya, and Egypt are Kiir’s main backers. They supply him with lethal arms and ammunition, and their main goal is to keep him in power, contrary to what the people of South Sudan demand.

It is good to keep in mind that Uganda and Kenya are members of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and their leaders Yoweri Museveni and Uhuru Kenyatta are part of IGAD’s strategy to bring about a lasting peace in the country.

However, their dealings as Kiir’s regional weapons traffickers, money launderers and key players in the peace process make it impossible for the East African regional bloc to find a peaceful solution to the conflict.

It is hard to comprehend how Ugandan President Museveni would accept a peace deal that strips power from his ally, Kiir. Those who believe that the Ugandan leader is working for peace are wrong.

Museveni is working to keep his grip on South Sudan’s commerce, and the only way for him to keep his bloody hands in South Sudan’s economy is by keeping Kiir in power.

The income Uganda generates from South Sudan and the undisclosed monthly payment Museveni receives from Kiir’s regime is enough to keep him pretending that he works for peace.

The Ugandan leader’s participation in the ongoing peace process cannot be trusted. The man has too much South Sudanese blood on his hands.

Museveni also committed atrocities on behalf of Kiir. For instance, he dropped poisonous and banned cluster bombs on rebel troops in January 2014, a well-documented incident.

In May 2014, the United Nations released a report detailing how cluster bombs were used against South Sudanese rebels, their destructive capacities, and why they were used. The report pointed a finger at the Ugandan air force.

Kenya is another important ally to South Sudan’s leader. Kenyatta’s government proved its loyalty to Kiir’s government by abducting rebel officials who lived in Nairobi and deporting them to Juba.

The kidnappings of the armed opposition leaders by Kenyan police in November 2016 and January 2017 was a well-coordinated act.

There are strong reasons to believe that South Sudan’s government bribed some of the Kenyan Members of Parliament (MPs). One of those bribed MPs was Weston Wanjohi Wahome, a figure cited in numerous reports by the United Nations (UN) and human rights organizations.

The Nairobi-Juba collusion was evident when rebel officials were abducted from their homes by Kenyan authorities.

After the kidnapping of the armed opposition officials, Weston publicly claimed that the abducted individuals were just going home to their country and that there was nothing to worry about.

The South Sudanese were stunned to see the Kenyan government not say anything or voice any concerns about the actions of its own MP.

The abducted people included former rebel political leadership spokesman James Gatdet Dak, former chairman of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition’s (SPLM-IO) humanitarian affairs committee Aggrey Idri, and human rights lawyer Dong Samuel Luak, among others.

James Gatdet is currently being incarcerated in Juba while Aggrey and Dong are nowhere to be found.

The level of foreign greed in South Sudan is unprecedented. Most South Sudanese are probably not aware of the fact that Kiir’s government spent at least $2.1 million on United States lobbying and public relations firms from early 2014 through the end of 2015, according to U.S. federal records.

The money was meant to influence the administration of former American President Barack Obama through U.S. Congress members and other powerful individuals in American politics.

Kiir’s main goals were to promote his government’s image, improve diplomatic relations with the United States, ensure former President Obama gave financial support to his leadership, and prevent the U.S. from imposing tough sanctions against his regime.

The firms that benefited from these seemingly immoral dealings included R&R Partners, Podesta group, KRL International LLC, and former Republican Representative J. C. Watts.

Under U.S. laws, the actions of these lobbying firms were legal; however, there were serious moral and ethical questions that deserved answers from the representatives of these companies.

Is it rational to promote the image of a leader who killed his own people out of his own political madness?

Do these firms know that they were promoting the image of a ruthless tyrant who massacred the mothers and fathers of tens of thousands of children from December 2013 to 2015?

Where is the morality behind these public relations firms’ decisions to ignore the wishes of suffering South Sudanese over money?

Did the U.S. lose its global moral obligation under Obama?

Why was the United States, under Obama’s leadership, using threatening language towards South Sudanese rival leaders without taking any action?

Was the Obama’s administration influenced by liberal lobbying firms as alleged by most South Sudanese?

Why was the U.S. only actively vocal about South Sudanese suffering three weeks after Obama’s presidency ended?

The United States foreign policy on South Sudan under former President Obama was seriously faulty — in fact, his foreign policy was seriously flawed.

For instance, Obama continued to give financial assistance to Kiir’s regime even when South Sudan’s government was determined by the United States, humanitarian organizations, and the UN to be using child soldiers in its fight against the armed opposition.

Obama’s refusal to deny Juba American security assistance caused widespread allegations among South Sudanese communities that some U.S. liberal corporations were doing business with Kiir’s regime, and that Obama was advised by the representatives of such agencies not to punish South Sudan, regardless of the appalling crimes Kiir committed.

If the alleged accusation is true, then it will go down as one of the greatest moral blunders the U.S. ever committed in South Sudan. The Republic of South Sudan is a country today because of U.S. foreign policy.

There is no question in my mind that South Sudan would still be part of Sudan today if it was not for the U.S.’s influence.

There are some muddled ethnic nationalists who shamelessly deny this indisputable fact. It is clear, however, that these people are making fools of themselves.

Former President Obama was too cautious in his effort to resolve South Sudan’s conflict. His overall strategy for the young nation was, in large part, a failure.

Most South Sudanese were stunned when Obama declared the following on December 16, 2016: “I feel responsible for murder and slaughter that’s taken place in South Sudan that’s not being reported on, partly because there’s not as much social media being generated from there.”

One week later, on December 23, 2016, the United Nations Security Council rejected a U.S.-sponsored resolution, delivering a diplomatic blow to Obama’s administration.

Obama’s comment was not well-suited given the fact that he failed to use his powers as U.S. President for nearly three years to impose punitive measures on South Sudan or deny Juba’s regime from receiving U.S. financial aid.

There is a widely established belief in South Sudan that Kiir’s persistent refusal to accept peace is because of Ugandan, Kenyan and Egyptian influence.

It is worth noting that Museveni deceived the United States a few days after the civil war broke out in December 2013, stating that he was sending his soldiers to rescue Ugandans who were trapped in South Sudan.

Museveni also told the Obama administration that he was going to protect South Sudan’s vital institutions in case the young nation crumbled.

The Ugandan leader even asked the U.S. to finance what was initially presumed to be a rescue mission, but Obama refused to offer any financial assistance after reports emerged that Ugandan military intervention in South Sudan was purely a secret Kampala agenda to fight alongside Juba-backed troops against South Sudanese rebels.

Museveni was a co-founder of the ongoing civil war. He was the one who told Kiir that killing other South Sudanese tribes who are a threat to his leadership was a good thing to do.

Perhaps Museveni was emboldened by the fact that he once committed serious crimes against Acholi people in Northern Uganda while Western leaders turned a blind eye to his atrocities.

It is good to remind people that after seizing power in 1986, the Ugandan leader starved, abused and killed Acholi people on the pretext of hunting down individuals who did not support his government.

This was exactly what Kiir did in December 2013 when he waged a door-to-door killing spree against the Nuer in Juba, claiming that Nuer civilians in Juba were rebel supporters.

Kiir also thought that his massacre of the Nuer civilians would put fear in any South Sudanese who questioned his ruthlessness.

The people of South Sudan are tired of war and do not want to see Uganda, Kenya, and Egypt keep meddling with their internal affairs.

These countries have caused enough suffering and their destructive policies will never be forgotten by the suffering South Sudanese.

The international community must confront these greedy nations if they want this young nation to have peace.

The Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi must be told that his cunning strategy to harm the Ethiopian Nile Dam project by using Uganda and South Sudan as a launching pad has nothing to do with the millions of South Sudanese who are living under dire conditions in refugee camps.

The Ugandan President must also be told that his economic greed in South Sudan does not help in the peace process and that his January 2014 poisoning of South Sudanese rebels through cluster bombs and other documented war crimes he committed will not go unpunished.

The Egyptian greed for the Nile waters and Ugandan greed for South Sudan’s resources must come to an end.

The citizens of Uganda, Kenya, Egypt, Eritrea, Morocco, Ukraine, and Bulgaria should condemn their leaders for investing in Kiir’s atrocious regime.

The people of South Sudan already have a cruel tyrant, Salva Kiir, as their leader, and they should not additionally be subjected to regional and economic tyranny.

The author can be reached at duop282@gmail.com.

Gen. Thomas Cirillo: Demand for Federal system and the 10 former states system

RadioTamazuj, Addis Ababa, JUL/24/2018;

Gen. Thomas Cirillo Swaka, leader of the National Salvation Front (NAS), said the opposition seeks to reduce the power of President Salva Kiir and strengthen institutions in the transitional period.

The disaffected army general quit his position in the military last year and formed a rebel group to fight against the government.

In an interview with Radio Tamazuj from Addis Ababa on Monday, General Cirillo, who secretly quit the on-going IGAD-sponsored talks in Khartoum, said the opposition rejected many power sharing proposals presented by the mediation team at ongoing peace talks for failing to address the root cause of the conflict.

He further said the current system of governance in South Sudan is awarding the office of the president wide powers.

The opposition leader underscored that excessive power in President Kiir’s hand is undermining the workings of the democracy and accountability in the world’s youngest nation.

“We don’t want to dwell on power sharing. We want to tackle the system of governance, so we are saying this is our top priority,” Cirillo said.

He pointed out that a fundamental weakness of the current system of government is the way in which it allocates powers and resources to the states and counties.

The opposition official said it is crucial that South Sudanese parties agree on a council of presidency with equal powers during the transitional period.

“We don’t want powers to be in one man’s hand so that he does whatever he wants to do in the country. If Salva Kiir will continue as the president, he should be part of the presidency where there should be a consensus based decision-making process during the transitional period,” he explained.

Cirillo said that the opposition will not religuish its demand to get power at the local government level during the transitional period.

He also said that the people of South Sudan demand for federal governance, a system in which sovereign powers are divided between federal and state governments.”

“The national government has too much power and the states are being weakened, so we are confident that the federal system will empower our people at the local government level. We reject any proposal saying the federal system will be introduced after the transitional period,” he said.

The opposition leader voiced support for a peace agreement that is widely inclusive of the views of the South Sudanese people and that engages civil society, faith-based groups and women.

Cirillo demanded that South Sudan should revert to the defunct 10 states as provided for in the 2015 peace agreement. “If the people of South Sudan demand more states, there will a referendum so that they can decide on the number of states. The current 32 states have caused conflicts in South Sudan,” Cirillo said.

He further said the opposition alliance will sign a peace deal in Khartoum on Thursday if their concerns are addressed by the mediation team.

LATEST: US doubts ability of South Sudan’s president Kiir and rebel leader Machar to bring peace

NAIROBI, July 22 (Reuters); The United States doubts whether South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar have the leadership qualities needed to deliver peace to the country at war since 2013, the White House said on Sunday.

Peace talks last week in the South Sudanese capital Juba need to be more inclusive to succeed, the White House said, adding that it will impose fresh sanctions on anyone who threatens the country’s stability.

The statement constitutes tough U.S. language about South Sudan, a country whose independence in 2011 Washington backed after a war with Sudan that lasted decades. Since then, tens of thousands have been killed in a civil war.

“We are deeply concerned about the direction of the current peace process …. A narrow agreement between elites will not solve the problems plaguing South Sudan,” said the statement.

It implored the warring parties to implement a ceasefire as a first step and condemned a move by the country’s parliament to extend the government’s term in office.

“South Sudan’s political leaders … have not demonstrated the leadership required to bring genuine peace … We remain sceptical that they can oversee a peaceful and timely transition to democracy and good governance,” it said.

On June 13, a U.S.-drafted resolution at the United Nations Security Council imposed an arms embargo..

South Sudan’s parliament voted this month to extend Kiir’s mandate until 2021, a move likely to undermine the peace talks as opposition groups say the change is illegal.

Last week Kiir said he is ready to accept a peace deal to end the war and set up an inclusive new government. The proposed deal would give the country five vice presidents and also covers security and power sharing arrangements. (Reporting by Omar Mohammed Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg)

Detail Copy of the Khartoum ‘Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance’ yet to be signed by Kiir & Opposition

Published by SSN, JUL/21/2018;

This is the failed/pending Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance to be signed by Kiir’s Government and the rebel/opposition movement.

**Mindful of their commitment under the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011 to lay the foundation for a united, peaceful and prosperous society based on justice, equality, respect for human rights and the rule of law,

**Deeply regretting the scale of untold human suffering that had befallen their country and people as a result of disregarding this commitment,

**Determined to compensate their people by recommitting themselves to peace and constitutionalism and not to repeat mistakes of the past,

**Recognizing the prime significance of preserving the sovereignty and territorial integrity of their country,

**Cognizant that a federal system of government is a popular demand of the people of the Republic of South Sudan and of the need for the Revitalized TGoNU to reflect this demand by way of devolution of more powers and resources to lower levels of government,

**Confirming the commitments that they have solemnly undertaken in the ARCSS and the Khartoum Declaration,
–The Transitional Government of National Unity of the Republic of South Sudan(TGoNU),
–the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement Army-In Opposition(SPLM/A-IO),
–the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA),
–Former Detainees(FDs),
–Other Political Parties (OPP), referred to hereinafter collectively as the Parties, confirm their commitment to the agreed part of the Revised Bridging Proposal and hereby resolve as follows the outstanding issues on governance:

1. The Presidency:
1.1. As of the beginning of the Transitional Period:
a. H.E. Salva Kiir Mayardit shall continue as President of the Republic of South Sudan.
(page–2)
b. The Chairman of SPLM/A-IO, Dr Riek Machar Teny, shall assumethe position of the First Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan.

1.2. During the Transitional Period there shall be four Vice Presidents of the Republic of South Sudan who shall be nominated as follows:
a. Vice President to be nominated by Incumbent TGoNU.
b. Vice President to be nominated by SSOA.
c. Vice President to be nominated by Incumbent TGoNU.
d. Vice President to be nominated by FDs, who shall be a woman.

1.3. Apart from the First Vice President, there shall be no hierarchy among Vice Presidents. The ranking in 1.2 above is for protocol purposes only.

1.4. Decision making in the Presidency shall be in a spirit of collegial collaboration. However, the powers and functions of the President, First Vice President, and Vice Presidents shall be delineated along the provisions of the ARCSS 2015.

1.5. The First Vice President and Vice Presidents shall oversee respectively the following Cabinet Clusters:
(a) First Vice President: Governance Cluster.
(b) Vice President: Economic Cluster.
(c) Vice President: Services Delivery Cluster.
(d) Vice President: Infrastructure Cluster.
(e) Vice President: Gender and Youth Cluster.

2. The Revitalized TGoNU:
2.1. The Council of Ministers shall be comprised of thirty five (35) Ministers that shall be organized in the abovementioned five (5) Clusters.

2.2. The three Clusters stated in the ARCSS shall continue having due regard to the amendments required as a result of creating new Clusters and new Ministries.

2.3. The Infrastructure Cluster shall include Ministries of Energy and Dams; Transport; Roads and Bridges; Information, Communication Technology and Postal Services, and any appropriate Ministry of the five new Ministries.
—(page..3)
2.4. The Gender and Youth Cluster shall include Ministries of Gender, Child and Social Welfare; Culture, Youth, and Sports, and any appropriate Ministry of the five new Ministries.

2.5. The additional five Ministries and their clustering shall be agreed by the Parties before or during the Pre-Transitional Period further to a proposal to be drawn by the IGAD and shall be included in the Revitalized ARCSS. The full list of the thirty five (35) Ministries shall be drawn at that time.

2.6. The Ministerial positions shall be selected as follows:
a. Incumbent TGoNU: 20 Ministers.
b. SPLM/A-IO: 09 Ministers.
c. SSOA: 03 Ministers.
d. FDs: 02 Ministers.
e. OPP: 01 Minister.

2.7. There shall be ten (10) Deputy Ministers in the following Ministries:
a. Cabinet Affairs.
b. Foreign Affairs.
c. Defense.
d. Interior.
e. Justice and Constitutional Affairs.
f. Finance.
g. Agricultural and Food Security.
h. General Educational and Instruction.
i. Public Services and Human Resource Development
j. Lands, Housing and Urban Development.

2.8. Deputy Ministers shall be nominated by the Parties by rotation from the above list according to the following ratio:
a. TGoNU: five (5) Deputy Ministers.
b. SPLM/A-IO: three (3) Deputy Ministers.
c. SSOA: one (1) Deputy Minister.
d. OPP: one (1) Deputy Minister.

2.9. No fewer than three (3) of the Deputy Ministers shall be women.

2.10. No Assistant Presidents, other Ministers or Deputy Ministers shall be appointed during the Transitional Period.
—(page…4)
2.11. If more than two Advisers to the President are appointed, the responsibility sharing ratio shall apply to their selection.

3. The Transitional National Legislature:
3.1. The Transitional National Legislature (TNL) shall consist of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) and the Council of States.

3.2. The TNLA shall be dissolved and composed of 550 members who shall be allocated as follows:
a. Incumbent TGoNU: 332 members.
b. SPLM/A-IO: 128 members.
c. SSOA: 50 members.
d. OPP: 35 members.
e. FDs: 5 members.

3.3. The Speaker of the TNLA shall be nominated by Incumbent TGoNU. One Deputy Speaker shall be nominated by OPP and the other, who shall be a woman, shall be nominated by Incumbent TGoNU.

3.4. The Council of States shall be dissolved and composed of 50 members or the closest figure that can be shared evenly by the States as per the number that shall be recommended by the IBC. However, the minimum number for the representatives of every and each State shall be two.

3.5. The membership of the Council of States shall be reconstituted as per the responsibility sharing ratio.

3.6. The Speaker of the Council of States shall be nominated by SPLM/A-IO and the Deputy Speaker shall be nominated by Incumbent TGoNU.

4. Number and Boundaries of States:
4.1. Within thirty (30) days of the signing of the Revitalized ARCSS, the IGAD Executive Secretariat, taking into account the decision of the 55th Extra-Ordinary Session of the IGAD Council of Ministers held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, January 30-31, 2016, shall appoint Independent
Boundaries Commission (IBC) for the Republic of South Sudan.

4.2. The IBC shall consist of fifteen (15) members with the necessary skills and expertise.
—(page…5)
4.3. Members of the IBC shall be appointed as follows:
a. Five (5) South Sudanese who shall be appointed by the Parties, one (1) each.
b. Two (2) representatives of the IGAD states that shall come from states with no boundaries with South Sudan.
c. Three (3) representatives of the Troika states.
d. Five (5) representatives of the African Union that shall be from the C5 states.

4.4. The IBC shall be chaired by one of its non-South Sudanese members who shall be of recognized standing and integrity and who should have had occupied a senior judicial, executive or administrative position in his home country.

4.5. The IBC may retain the services of a team of experts.

4.6. The IBC shall establish three teams, each consisting of five representatives and relevant experts, to be deployed at locations it will designate.

4.7. The function of the IBC shall be to consider the number of States of the Republic of South Sudan and their boundaries and to make recommendations on the same.

4.8. The IBC shall focus on studying the alternatives currently proposed by the Parties and any other viable alternatives in the light of guidelines that shall be drawn beforehand. The IBC shall also draw its own internal regulations.

4.9. The IBC shall strive to arrive at its recommendations by consensus. If consensus is not achieved, the IBC shall adopt its recommendations by simple majority.

4.10. The recommendations of the IBC shall be presented to the IGAD Executive Secretariat and shall be immediately communicated to the Parties.

4.11. The IBC shall complete its work within ninety (90) days, extendable to a maximum of ninety (90) days more. In all cases it shall make its recommendations on the number and boundaries of States during the Pre-Transitional Period. Thereafter it shall be dissolved.
—(page…6)
4.12. The Parties agree to abide by the recommendations of the IBC, and hereby authorize the IGAD Executive Secretariat to enshrine those recommendations in the Revitalized ARCSS. The Parties accept to implement the recommendations in full at the beginning of the Transitional Period.

4.13. In the unlikely event of the IBC failing to make its recommendations before the end of the Pre-Transitional Period, the Republic of South Sudan shall have as regions the old three provinces, as per their boundaries of January 1st 1956. This solution shall be adopted on
temporary basis until the number and boundaries of the States are agreed.

5. States and Local Government
5.1. The Responsibility sharing ratio at State level and local government level shall be as follows:
a. Incumbent TGoNU: 55%
b. SPLM/A-IO: 25%
c. SSOA: 10%
d. OPP: 10%

5.2. State and local governments shall be dissolved and reconstituted as per the responsibility sharing formula stated above.

5.3. The positions that shall be subject to responsibility sharing include: Governors, Speakers of State Legislatures, State Councils of Ministers, State Legislatures, County Commissioners, County Councils, Mayors and City Councils.

5.4. In sharing State and local government positions Parties shall take into account the relative prominence each Party has in the respective State or Payam and effective administration of that unit.

5.5. The FDs shall have three State Ministers in States of their choice.

6. General Provisions:
6.1. The Parties recognize that during the Pre-Transitional Period, the Incumbent TGoNU shall continue to exercise its powers as per the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011.
—(page…7)
6.2. At the beginning of the Pre-Transitional Period, the Parties shall issue a solemn commitment to their people and the international community at large confirming unequivocally that they will not return to war and shall work hand in hand diligently and collectively for the sake of peace and stability of their country. In particular, the Parties shall pledge to use the resources of the country wisely and transparently, for the best interests of the people of the Republic of South Sudan, and to put in place the efficient mechanisms required for achieving this paramount goal. In their solemn commitment the Parties shall also appeal to the international community for support and cooperation at this difficult time of the Republic of South Sudan.

6.3. The activities that shall be undertaken during the Pre–Transitional Period, which can take as long as 8 months, shall include:
a. Dissemination of the Revitalized ARCSS to South Sudanese People inside the country, in different cities and towns of Sudan, in refugee camps in neighboring countries, and in diaspora, so that the people can own it.
b. Carrying out the tasks entrusted to the IBC.
c. A process of national healing and reconciliation that shall be led by all Parties inside and outside of the Republic of South Sudan.
d. The agreed security arrangement activities.
e. Incorporation of the Revitalized ARCSS in the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011.
f. Reviewing and drafting necessary bills as per the Revitalized ARCSS.
g. Any other activities agreed by the Parties.

6.4. Provisions of the Transitional Constitution of South Sudan and ARCSS on participation of women (35 %) in the Executive shall be observed. In particular, Incumbent TGoNU shall nominate no fewer than six (6) women to the Council of Ministers, and SPLM-IO shall nominate no fewer than three (3) women to the Council of Ministers.

6.5. Having in mind that more than 70 percent of the population in the Republic of South Sudan is under the age of thirty and that youth are the most affected by the war and represent high percentage of refugees and —(page…7) IDPs, the Parties shall strive to include people of young age in their quotas at different levels. In particular, the Minister of Culture, Youth, and Sports in the Revitalized TGoNU shall be less than forty (40) years old.

6.6. In selecting their nominees Parties shall give due consideration to national diversity, including regional representation.

6.7. Without prejudice to Paragraph 6.1. above, a National Pre–Transitional Committee (NPTC) shall be formed as follows by the President of the Republic of South Sudan within thirty days of signing the Revitalized ARCSS:

a. The NPTC shall be formed of ten members representing the Parties as follows:
— five (5) for Incumbent TGoNU,
— two (2) for SLPM/A-IO,
— one (1) for SSOA,
— one (1) for FDs, and
— one (1) for OPP.
The NPTC shall be chaired by TGoNU representative with two Deputy Chairs to be nominated by SPLM/A-IO and SSOA respectively, and shall adopt its decisions by consensus.

b. The NPTC shall be entrusted with the function of oversight and coordination of the implementation of the activities of the Pre–Transitional Period with the Incumbent TGoNU taking full account of all constitutional institutions and powers.

c. The NPTC shall draw the road map for implementing the political tasks of the Pre-Transitional Period, prepare a budget for the activities of the Pre–Transitional Period that involve the Parties, and address issues of VIP security and preparations for new Ministers, among others.

d. The NPTC shall start its work in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and shall move to Juba sometime during the Pre-Transitional Period. The NPTC shall be dissolved when the Pre-Transitional Period ends.

6.8. There shall be established a fund for the implementation of the political and security activities of the Pre–Transitional Period provided for in the Revitalized ARCSS. The fund, which shall be drawn from the proceeds of oil, shall be deposited by Incumbent TGoNU in an escrow account in a bank agreed to by the NPTC. The NPTC shall manage the fund (page—8) transparently and report on it monthly to the President of the Republic of South Sudan and to the Parties.

6.9. The Parties shall agree on Inter-Ministerial Mechanism for Implementation of the Revitalized ARCSS including reporting to JMEC. The IGAD led mediation and the Guarantors shall revitalize and
restructure all monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to ensure inclusivity of all Parties, including new Parties, and to enhance the effectiveness of all mechanisms. Such review and restructuring shall be included in the Revitalized ARCSS.

6.10. Within 12 (twelve) months of the beginning of the Transitional Period, the Reconstituted National Constitutional Amendments Committee (NCAC) shall revise relevant laws and draft new legislations pursuant to the Revitalized ARCSS.

6.11. The Parties reaffirm their agreement in the ARCSS that a federal and democratic system of governance that reflects the character of the Republic of South Sudan and ensures unity in diversity be enacted during the permanent constitution making process.

6.12. The Parties also reaffirm their commitment to the principle of lean government and to having national assembly that shall have a number of members commensurate with the number of population pursuant to the internationally recognized proportions. The Parties recognize that the high number of members of the Executive and TNLA is agreed herein on exceptional basis for the purposes of the Transitional Period only and that those numbers shall form no precedent or any precursor for the future.

6.13. This Agreement shall prevail on contradictory or incompatible provisions of ARCSS and the Revised Bridging Proposal.

Done in Khartoum, Sudan, this day 19th of July 2018.

To Be Signed:
For Incumbent TGoNU
……………………………………………………………
For SPLM/A-IO
……………………………………………………………………
For SSOA
……………………………………………………………………………
For FDs
………………………………………………………………………………
For OPP
………………………………………………………………………………
For the Republic of Sudan (Guarantor):
……………………………………………
For IGAD (Witness):
…………………………………………………………………………..

Differences emerge as People’s Democratic Movement (PDM) rejects latest proposal

People’s Democratic Movement (PDM),
July 18, 2018, press@pdm-rss.org, UNITED KINGDOM,

Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance;
Mindful that Sudan Government’s mediation in Khartoum has repeatedly and persistently insisted on presenting its proposal for a bloated government as a purported agreement by all parties on “Outstanding Issues of Governance”, and with Salva Kiir as the President of a proposed revitalized TGONU based on ARCSS 2015, PDM would like to take this opportunity to inform the mediators and the public that:

1. Khartoum mediators proposal for “Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance” is not consistent with SSOA’s position as communicated to the mediators, and the statement issued by SSOA this week, rejects this latest proposal.

2. The proposal does not reflect the position of PDM which calls for adoption of Federal Governance during the transitional period, based on three (3) autonomous regions with their borders of the three provinces of Upper Nile, Equatoria and Bahr al Ghazal as they stood on 1st January 1956.

3. The proposal does not reflect PDM people-centric position for power sharing between three federal regions on 33.33% for each region, and not allocation of power to political elites and their movements by a stroke of a pen.

There now seems to be a communication emanating from the mediation in Kharoum, quoting the Sudan Foreign Minister, Mohammed Eldirdiri, purporting that all the parties to the talks in Khartoum have agreed to their proposal on “Outstanding Issues of Governance.”

This could not be further from the truth and PDM wish to categorically refute this claim. As member of SSOA, neither PDM nor SSOA have reversed their expressed positions on the proposal, and have not endorsed it individually nor collectively as an alliance.

PDM as a member of SSOA has not given consent or authority to SSOA to sign the Khartoum Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance.

The communication from mediators in Khartoum that an agreement has been reached by all the parties is therefore misleading, inaccurate and not being factual.

Any member of SSOA who is so interested to sign the Khartoum Agreement on Outstanding issues should sign it on their own behalf individually and in the name of their own party or organization.

The interim Chair of SSOA, Mr. Gabriel Changson Chang, has no authority of SSOA to sign the Khartoum Agreement on Outstanding Issues of Governance on behalf of SSOA.

Dr. Hakim Dario
PDM Chair
press@pdm-rss.org

South Sudan community in Britain reject the Entebbe Proposal

Press Release,
South Sudan Communities in the United Kingdom, 13 July 2018;

President Salva Kiir Mayardit on his Independence speech solemnly decelerated his commitment to the New Nation and the world on the 9th July 2011 by the following statement “We have waited 56 years for this day. For many generations, we have been made to suffer, have been bombed, maimed, enslaved, discriminated against and treated worse than a refugee in our own country. Having been at the receiving end of injustice for so many decades, South Sudanese will not be aggressors or trouble makers. Independence is an opportunity for a new beginning of tolerance, love and unity.”

This year marks the 7th year of the independence, and the people of South Sudan have not seen the opportunity Mr. Mayardit vowed to bring. The New Nation instead has suffered a serious setback sliding into a civil war worse than the 20 years of South-North war we came out of.

While we the South Sudan Community in the United Kingdom thank the international community, AU, UN, the Troika (The United States of America, The United Kingdom and Norway) and IGAD for their untiring efforts to reach a peaceful solution to the current devastating conflict in the youngest nation.

Nevertheless, we are deeply concerned of how the mediation is proceeding. It has been reduced to a bilateral negotiation between President Kiir and the ex-Vice President Machar, which undermined the core principle of the HLRF of inclusivity and is simply focusing on power/responsibility sharing and rewarding the warlords and war criminals.

We for the above stated reasons reject the Entebbe Proposal as it is none but a repetition of the so-called IGAD’s Bridging Proposal which was met with overwhelming rejection by all patriotic South Sudanese because it ignores the root causes of the conflict.

We strongly believe that some members of the mediation team are trying to bulldoze an agreement to legitimize the illegitimate, diabolical, ethnocentric, unpopular and failed Kiir’s regime.

We hereby again repeat our call for the mediation responsibility to be passed to the African Union supported by the UN and the Troika.

We also call upon the Troika and international community to review their support to a failing IGAD mediation.

Signed by leaders of South Sudan Communities in UK representing (the Equatoria region more than 30 ethnic/tribal groups), Western Bahr El Ghazal State (Fertit) more than 8 ethnic/tribal groups, and the Shilluk/Chollo Community.

Federico Vuni
Chair
Equatorian Community in the UK

Karlo Kwol Akol
Representative
Chollo (Shilluk) Community in the UK

Peter Gaere
For Western Bahr El Ghazal (Fertit) Community in the UK

For contact: Federico Vuni federicovuni58@gmail.com

Position of Chiefs from Equatoria Region on the on-going Peace Talks in Khartoum, Sudan

TO: Mr. Antonio Gutereas,
The Unted Nations Secretary General,
UN Headquarters, New York,
United States of America (USA)

JUL/14/2018, SSN;

We, the chiefs of Equatoria Region in Uganda deliberated on the relevence of the recently signed ‘Khartoum Declaration of Agreement’ and we would like to bring your attention to our position if a lasting peace is to prevail in South Sudan.

1) IGAD mediation team, AU and Troika countries that are trying to help in bringing peace to South Sudan should address the root causes of the conflict before signing of any agreement. We shall not be part of any peace agreement that is imposed on us by the mediators.

2) The most important step is to focus on the immediate ending of the sufffering South Sudanese from brutal killings, rape, violent displacement, looting of properties and many other forms of mistreatments instead of focusing on oil production. When there is peace then automatically economic activity thrives and the country’s economy improves

3) Federal system of governance.
Equatorians have suffered a lot since the successive wars of liberation till to date. We offered our own sons, daughters, men, woment, lands, resources and more for peace for all in South Sudan. It’s our desire that for any inclusive peace agreement to be signed, the federal system of governance should be a core/principal item in the agreement.

4) Relocation of South Sudan National Capital out of Equatoria land. We, the chiefs are supporting the idea that the national seat of the government of South Sudan be relocated to Ramciel from Juba as proposed earlier on.

5) Your excellences, we would also like to bring to your attention that the chiefs fully participated in the successful referendum in 2011, thus any peace agreement signed by president Kiir of Bahr el Ghazel and Riek Machar of Upper Nile without considering our views in Equatoria is not national in character. We shall not be part of that agreement and shall be ready to our region at all costs.

6) Youth and Women.
We, the chiefs of the Equatoria Region would appreciate the participation of the youth and women in the peace process and leadership in future government unlike the recently signed agreement between Salva Kiir and Riek Machar, where youth and women are excluded and we even believe not consulted altogether.

Your excellencies, we confidently believe and trust that you will consider our views to be extended to IGAD, AU and Troika, so tht a comprehensive and inclusive agreement for a lasting peace can be celebrated by all South Sudanese.

Yours Sincerely,

Chief, Scopas Lobur Peter,
Executive Chief, Bori Boma, Kangapo 2 Payam
Kajo-keji County.

For Chiefs of the Equatoria Region in Uganda

CC.
Chairperson African Union
Chairperson of the African Union Commission
IGAD Chairperson
IGAD Council of Ministers
Troika
US Secretary for African Affairs.