Press Statement; Ref: 02/17, March 28, 2017:
The office of the Representative of the SPLM/A-IO to New Zealand has strongly condemned the position of IGAD 30th Extra-ordinary Summit of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government held on March 25, 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya. The Nairobi Communique of the Summit of the IGAD Summit on South Sudan deviates from the truth and does not reflect the reality on the ground.
The Nairobi Communique released by the Members of the Heads of State and Government is nothing more than rallying support for President Salva Kiir Mayardit to continue his agenda of war on the innocent people of South Sudan.
The forces of the SPLM in Government have recently intensified their atrocities against civilians and blocked food aid to the people of Leer and Mayiandit, in Bentiu. Unity State. However, there has been no single time where IGAD Member State condemns President Kiir’s atrocities that he continues to commit on his people; the IGAD has blessed him to do more harm than good instead of intervening as a regional bloc that works for peace in the region.
As much as IGAD praised President Salva Kiir in article 4 in the Communique, this does not require a rocket scientist to know that IGAD participatory voice in South Sudan conflict is to protect the perpetrator in order to destabilize the country. The IGAD Communique is unwarranted, biased, and would damage the spirit of peace in South Sudan.
It is to be recalled that some member States of IGAD such as Uganda fully and actively involved in active combat (2013 and 2014) in South Sudan and used toxic cluster bombs as documented in 61-page of UN human rights report in 2014.
The recent concluded Nairobi Communique of the IGAD Summit on South Sudan is the return of President Yoweri Museveni to the war in South Sudan but in a different footage.
The world must be informed that IGAD the region is not working for the welfare of South Sudanese people but their demise. The people of South Sudan will never see the light of peace unless the region has abandoned its selfish interest in war ravaged nation.
Likewise, anything that delays the return of peace to South Sudan is for the best interest of IGAD as its tactics are to impede, obstruct and disrupt peaceful solution of the South Sudan conflict.
In all of its 8 points in the Nairobi Communique, the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government GAD did not mention SPLM/A-IO by name as if does not exist, this is contrary to the reality that Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition under wise leadership of Dr. Riek Machar Teny is the largest revolutionary struggle in Africa and beyond. SPLM/A-IO adheres to resuscitation of ARCSS.
The SPLM/A-IO advocates for peace and believes in peaceful settlement of the conflict in South Sudan. IGAD as a regional bloc has no interest bring about peace, and has no intention to urge President Salva Kiir Myardit to stop his forces from raping women, forcefully displacing people from their homes and refrain from denying humanitarian aid to the populations in need.
Similarly, IGAD finds it difficult to tell Kiir off for the crimes he commits because South Sudan oil revenues made President Salva Kiir and IGAD two peas in one pod.
Overall, the steps that have been taken by the IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government held on March 25, 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya are the buying time tactics that are aimed to delay the resuscitation of Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan. The language of exclusivity used by IGAD is the language of war-mongering. Unless the tone is changed, it cannot bring stability to war-torn nation.
Gatluak Pal Chuol
SPLM/A-IO Representative to New Zealand