Warring Juba parties agree to kick out foreign forces, disagree on police unit

By FRED OLUOCH, The East African, Posted Saturday, Sept/20/2015, SSN;

Partners in the South Sudan peace agreement meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, agreed on Thursday on the withdrawal of all foreign forces in South Sudan by October 10, but disagreed on the nature of the Joint Integrated Police Unit and the number of presidential guards.

The foreign forces targeted and which will now have to leave or stand down include Uganda People’s Defence Forces who were deployed in Juba after the outbreak of fighting in December 2013 to shore up President Kiir’s government under a special arrangement with Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni.

Targeted groups

Foreign forces: Uganda People’s Defence Forces who were deployed in Juba after the outbreak of fighting. The Sudanese Revolutionary Forces (SPLM-North) that are also fighting the Khartoum government in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile and the Dafur-based rebels, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), the Sudan Liberation Army-Minawi (SLA-MM) and SLA-A led by Abdul Wahid.
Integrated police unit: The government side believes that the police unit will comprise small group of 1,000 to guard the civilians in Juba only, the rebel movement believes that there has to be a new police body where both sides contribute equally depending on the overall number agreed on.

Others are the Sudanese Revolutionary Forces (SPLM-North) that are also fighting the Khartoum government in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile and the Dafur-based rebels, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), the Sudan Liberation Army-Minawi (SLA-MM) and SLA-A led by Abdul Wahid.

The agreement however exempts Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) based in Yambio, Western Equatorial, because they had been deployed in 2010 as part of the African Union Joint Force to pursue Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army.

On the issue of the presidential guard, the government delegation had demanded 17,000 presidential guards but the Riek Machar-led rebel movement rejected the number arguing that it was too high and that the president could do with about 2,000 to 3,000 presidential guards.

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While the South Sudanese ambassador to Kenya, Mariano Deng, could not confirm the government demand without consulting Juba, Dr Machar’s spokesperson James Gatdet Dak, said that the government team had demanded an army division between 10,000 and 18,000 soldiers to be deployed in Juba.

According to Mr Dak, the rebel movement favours a battalion of between 300 and 800 soldiers “since the intention is to demilitarise the capital.”

The government had taken advantage of the loophole in the Igad Compromise Peace Agreement which did not give the numbers, leaving it for the partners to negotiate.

The earlier proposal had provided that President Kiir retains 265 presidential guards while the first vice-president-to-be Dr Machar was supposed to have 195 guards.

These latest agreements were arrived at at a workshop on security arrangement that was convened by Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) in Addis Ababa from September 13-17. The parties agreed that the foreign or allied forces should be out of South Sudan within 45 days from the time President Salva Kiir signed the agreement on August 26.

However, there is still a stalemate on the transitional security arrangement which includes the demilitarisation of Juba, key among them being the difference in the concept and the numbers for the Joint Integrated Police Unit to be provided by both sides.

Maj-Gen Martin Kenyi, the deputy Chief of Staff for moral orientation on the rebel side told The EastAfrican that the two sides had different concepts of the Joint Integrated Police unit.

He argued that while the government side believes that the police unit will comprise small group of 1,000 to guard the civilians in Juba only, the rebel movement believes that there has to be a new police body where both sides contribute equally depending on the overall number agreed on.

He added that other armed groups such as the police, wildlife service and prison warders were not included in the agreement and yet a lot of personnel from these security agencies had defected to the rebels’ side when the war broke out.

Spread the force

“We want the Joint Integrated Police unit to be replicated in other major towns such as Bor, Bentiu and Malakal and yet the agreement only considered Juba,” said Maj-Gen Kenyi.

On a positive note however, the two groups agreed on many areas such as the requirement for the two warring sides to declare the position of their fighters and their outlook, set up a shared command including its structure and functions.

The two sides have created a joint Chief of General Staff that will manage the military for 18 months before they are integrated. The joint command will have four deputies, two from each side.

They have also agreed on the cantonment areas where each division in South Sudan will have three assembly areas, especially in states that were affected by war such as Upper Nile, Jonglei and Unity states. The two sides also constituted the crucial Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring Mechanism. END

13 Comments

  1. Mafai says:

    Since Juba is the seat of the government and the main focus of the implementation of the peace agreement, why need such a huge number of the forces. The president can be safeguarded by a battalion with equal number for the vice. Instead the number of the join police force should be much high to maintain peace, order and contain criminal activities. The rest of those indiscipline soldiers from the luaks should move 25km as stipulated in the agreement. A peace maker does not need such a big number to protect him only war mongers does.

  2. Guet Athina Guet says:

    Mr. Mafai,

    Nonsense, first of all no need for the butcher of south Sudan Machar should be allow to return to the VP position. FYI, president Kiir was elected by the people of south Sudan and Machar was not!, get your facts right. None of you people have the balls to call out the serial killer by name.. I pity you all.

    • Eastern says:

      Guet,

      I was almost refering to you as guec [guech]. You are an ****hole indeed!

      KIIR cannot sign a peace accord which cannot allow SPLM-io Macher to return to Juba. If that’s what you Dinkas are cooking at J1, then be prepared for a rude awakening!

      Dr Macher is gonna come back to Juba, in fact his estate at Mia Saba must be vacated by those rats that infested the place since last year!

      It’s evident that king Kiirs dinkas are not ready for peace!

  3. GatCharwearbol says:

    Whether they like it or not, the agreement is what it is when it was signed. You cannot make changes whenever you like. You signed it and you mut be abided by it. 265 bodygurads for Kiir and 195 bodyguards for Dr. Machar is the known agreement. Two armies, Museveni to get the hell of out of South Sudan and the rest of Mercenearies. If Mathiang Ayoor didn’t know really well the White Army, it is should be time for them to start shivering. If they start it again, 195 white army is sufficient or call it overkill to take care of 265 cowards of Mathiang Ayoor.

  4. Fred Oluoch,
    The withdrawal of all the foreign forces in South Sudan is a welcome news. When we talk of foreign troops in S. Sudan, we mean only the Uganda People Defence Forces (UPDF). It is a mistake to exempts the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) based in Yambio, Western Equatorial State, by saying that “they had been deployed in 2010 as part of the African Union Joint Force to pursue Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army.” Joseph Kony is no more in south Sudan, why continue to host ten of thousands of Ugandan troops in the country? This shows how weak our government is and how Salva Kiir is totally depending on the mercy of M7 for help. There should be no exemption, all “UPDF and other foreign troops” in south Sudan must leave the country we don’t need them.The UPDF are the most corrupt army they have committed gross atrocity in south Sudan since December 2013. They have also failed to accomplish their mission, all must go without any exception. We have some UPDF also at Ngomoromo in Magwi county Acholi land, at Pajok Payam in Eastern Equatoria State since 2000. These troop moved into south Sudan since 2000 on the understanding between Sudan and Uganda government by then to flush out Joseph Kony. Then on August 4th 2015, more UPDF invaded south Sudan with tanks and heavy armory, and since then they moved further inside south Sudan territory. The local people (Acholi) have protested to south Sudan government but all in vain. The UPDF who have been at Ngomoromo in 2000, have totally destroyed the vegetation of the area, infect they have been looting the land viciously. Some have even engaged in building permanent houses in the area while other are busy shelling and buying from the soldiers. Why the government of south Sudan continue to keep thieves in the country is ludicrous behavior, all must go.

    • Toria says:

      Oyet
      I couldn’t agree with you more, you hit the point, UPDF is nothing but occupying foreign force. We do not need UPDF, not especially in Equatoria and not in Upper Nile and W. Bahr Ghazal. If Kirr and his native people want they can take UPDF to Gogrial, Aweil and other Jienge lands. According to the IGAD Plus agreement they have 45 days from Aug 26 until or before Oct 15 is their last date. GET OUT UPDF, before we turn our guns on UPDF and maybe we will invade Uganda.

  5. Joana Adams says:

    Kiir is a typical war monger. His demand to keep 17,000 soldiers in Jubà is a mockery of the Agreement which demands demilitarisation of Jubà and other key towns. It is furthermore an insult to the patience of South Sudanese who indeed want him to apologise for the genocide and atrocities he has committed especially from Dec 2013 to date. He keeps on saying he has reservations. What reservations? We the masses have serious reservations about him being imposed as president during the transitional period, but we are willing to give peace a chance.
    These 17,000 soldiers are not national army but his Gelweng village boys recruited and trained by Malong in tribal language to come to Jubà and do nothing but to kill all non Dinkas. He wants to creat jobs for his lazy nomadic kith and kins under the pretext of guarding the president. Why should a president who does not protect his citizens and allows them to be decimated by his tribesmen have any priviledge of protection?
    Kiir’s regime has expired and he has fraudulently started to borrow from the transitional period. Juba should be protected by Central Equatoria state and not foreign luak boys. Kiir and his JCE want to use the capital as a pretext to occupy Equatoria. We also have reservations, serious reservations about the imposition of Jubà as a capital during the transitional period. The national capital should be moved to Ramciel or rotated every ten years between the three regional capitals of Jubà, Wau and Malakal. This will stop migration of cattle keepers into Jubà and will also spread development into all corners of South Sudan.
    Having said that let the guarantors of the Agreement keep a close eye on Kiir and his tribal advisors or he will bring the efforts of the international community to naught.

    Joana Adams

  6. Guet Athina Guet says:

    Ms. Adams,

    Sorry to rain on your party …. Hope all’s well. you seems to have nervous disorder uncontrollable fear of the Dinka tribe. As a matter of fact we’re all related … you have absolutely nothing to offer in your argument above. For your information I have 5 of my cousins, and yours truly who’re married to Equator-ians girls, and their children speaks Dinka language, Oops, they’re Dinkas. There’s nothing in Equator-ia that will benefits the Dinkas we’re there to help build this hell hole of a capital.
    May god bless president Kiir and keep him safe, and may god bless south Sudan.

  7. Mafai says:

    Dear Guet,

    Typical a cattle camp behaviors you are demonstrating here. If we are talking of people who have killed, all the so called liberators did, including your King Kirr, right when he was chief of intelligence under Garang and up to now. Lecturing us that Macher is a butcher and your King and others are not is a broad day dream. I think you are still living or swimming in a cattle camp era. Kirr term of office is over my brother. Wake up and liberate your yourself from this whims.

    Enjoy

    • Guet Athina Guet says:

      Mr. Mafia,

      You’re right, we’re (cows) cattle’s herders and proud of it, there’s no one who can change that. Do you remember the butcher or Dr. death Machar for 1991 coup d’etat attempt against Dr. Garang, and went he failed Dr. death went on rampage of killing many women, children and the old. Dr. death Machar must be bought to justices by any means necessary. We can’t have a serial killer as VP in south Sudan government, it can’t be allow.
      May god bless president Kiir and keep him safe, and may god bless south Sudan.

  8. Alier-kon says:

    Dear Joana Adam,

    If you don’t want to give peace a chance what will you do? the Government is not for central Equatoria state is for the whole of south Sudan and if it is sate affaires then we have no problem.
    now can you access the parliament and claimed your reservations personally?

  9. Eastern says:

    Museveni is a very cunning man, he can always backtrack on what he discussed and ‘agreed’ with Dr Macher in Khartoum. I don’t see UPDF leaving South Sudan soon.

    I recently heard Phillip Aguer the SPLA spokesman lying to the world that the recent attacks in Lainya county was carried out by LRA rebels. Now, this line will be taken up by Museveni to convince Kiir to allow him deploy UPDF in Lainya, not really far from Juba. In a nutshell, UPDF I’ll remain in the country until such a time that Museveni decides otherwise.

    South Sudan is being ruled by a man siting not in J1 in Juba but far south in Uganda at the shores of Lake Viictoria in Entebbe. South Sudan, under Kiir, has been reduced to the 112th district of Uganda, cry the beloved country!

  10. Raankan says:

    we a peace to come and not need for destruction

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