March 22, 2013 (RUMBEK) – South Sudan’s ruling party has dismissed their director for administration and finance in Lakes state, Andrew Macuor Romdhel, accusing him of not cooperating with the party’s acting secretary in the state, Mabor Ater Dhuol.
After Romdhel was dismissed on Wednesday the contents of his office were immediately seized by the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS).
The former official in the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) is suspected to have leaked to the press a list of 38 party members who had put themselves forward for positions in an expected reshuffle among the state’s advisors, ministers and commissioners by the new caretaker governor.
Romdhel strongly denies the charges and has accused Mabor Ater Dhuol of dismissing anyone who objected to his highly contentious appointment as Lakes state’s acting secretary of the SPLM last month.
“I have not sent any document that indicated 38 members of SPLM [were] seeking [a] political position. My work is to administrate things related to money and administrative relative issues”, Romdhel told Sudan Tribune.
There has been unrest within the SPLM in Lakes state since Dhuol’s controversial appointment, which was objected to by many in the SPLM’s State Liberation Council (SLC).
However, the SPLM’s state chairperson, Daniel Awet Akot, resisted demands to reconsider the appointment of Dhuol, whose swearing in ceremony in February was boycotted by many senior SPLM officials who complained that the process of his selection was unconstitutional.
Akot, who is a member of the SPLM’s political bureau and is the deputy speaker of South Sudan National Legislative Assembly, failed in his attempt to be the SPLM’s candidate for governor in the 2010 general elections.
Some Lakes state politicians accuse Akot of seeking to avenge those who voted against his selection in 2010 by imposing Dhuol as the acting secretary. They also claim that Akot was behind a decision by South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir, to remove the elected governor of Lakes state, Chol Tong Mayay, in January 2013.