Home | News    Tuesday 25 February 2014

S. Sudan rebels seek political reforms to build new nation


By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

February 24, 2014 (ADDIS ABABA) - South Sudanese rebels group - the SPLM-in-Opposition on Monday said it hopes the new round of peace talks in neighbouring Ethiopia will secure the political and security sector reforms needed to build a viable nation.

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South Sudanese rebel delegation chief Taban Deng (left) and members of his delegation attend talks in Addis Ababa on January 4, 2014 to try and broker a ceasefire (AFP/Solan Gemechu)

Puoch Riek Deng, the head of public relations in the opposition humanitarian liaison office in Addis Ababa told Sudan Tribune that among the key reforms they are looking for are a review of the country’s constitution, swift reforms and re-structuring of security forces.

He further said that for peace to prevail, there is a need for a more comprehensive political process, which will be inclusive and transparent with the participation of all the diverse sections of South Sudanese society to redraw their political destiny.

Deng who is not a member of the rebel negotiating team said the constitution must be reviewed to establish a system which reflects the aspirations and expectations of the people of South Sudan.

The rebel official said they were looking to establish a "new South Sudan" where there was no discrimination based on ethnicity and political views, as well as no corruption, nepotism or tribalism.

"We [SPLM/A-In-Opposition] want to build a new nation where there is human dignity and respect for human rights as well as rule of law and justice," said Deng.

He further stressed that their vision was for the country to have checks and balances between the four arms of government.

"Federal Democracy will be an ideal system of governance in South Sudan like it is in Ethiopia, United States of America and elsewhere in the world," the official told Sudan Tribune from the Ethiopian capital.

"A national reconciliation and healing process will be a corner stone in the New South Sudan and we will embark on this process with genuine intentions and commitment to bring our communities which were devastated by the communal conflicts and cattle raiding among themselves," he added.

Both the rebels and government forces have been accused of committing atrocities over the last two months, with an estimated 10,000 killed, over 700,000 internally displaced and almost 150,000 forced to flee to neighbouring countries.

The second round of talks between the two warring factions was yet to resume after negotiators representing rebel leader, Riek Machar insisted that Uganda withdraws its forces from South Sudan before the new round of talks begin.

"There will be no peace in South Sudan with UPDF [Uganda Peoples Defense Forces] taking part in active combat," Deng emphasised.

He, however, told Sudan Tribune that the deployment of the African Capacity Crisis Response proposed by the African Union had nothing to do with UPDF.

"We will not accept participation of UPDF in any peace keeping mission in our territory," Deng said, adding, "They are hostile forces and we consider them as an occupation force".

The rebels opposed to President Salva Kiir have clearly stated that they would not accept any international force to be deployed in South Sudan other than the UN peace keeping mission already operating the world’s youngest nation.

The two warring parties signed a cease fire agreement in Addis Ababa on 23 January, although the peace pact did not stop actual fighting on ground.

According to East African mediators from Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the proposed agenda for the talks includes; social and humanitarian; security, political and governance; constitutional review and reform; national reconciliation and healing; as well as reform and review of the civil services.

Sudan Tribune understands that both sides have responded to IGAD’s draft proposal.


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  • 25 February 2014 07:33, by Wicdail

    Keep going you my heroes. Those greedy creatures (UPDF) are not and will never be welcome in SS. The good thing is that they are dying in big numbers here in SS.

    repondre message

  • 25 February 2014 07:35, by Konkooc

    that what i use to say
    Dinka Region
    Nuer Region
    Shilluk Region
    Anyuak Region
    Bari Region
    Latuko Region
    Taposa Region
    Mandari Region etc

    repondre message

    • 25 February 2014 11:22, by Epuol

      Yes like in Ethiopia,Then who is the president???????????????
      Or president will be outside S.S??because the problem is not the region,there is no doubt with that,but the problem is the leadership,Who leading the country?in which way which is now the root cause of the current conflict.

      repondre message

  • 25 February 2014 08:22, by blesssing

    What new nation does the rebel wants? They have already destroyed the newness of South Sudan. I strongly do not agree with any change in the government without elections, otherwise rebellion will not and will never stop in South Sudan if we do not use laws. Remember, Dinka is the largest tribe in South Sudan, if it rebel the whole South Sudan will turn into ashes or desert.

    repondre message

    • 25 February 2014 09:58, by Morthon Akol

      brother, I do agree with you. those people been in government for the last 8 year why they did reform the South Sudan? I do really put a big belaim on my President because he is too much respecting the international Law while the army are ready to end up this rebellion because the SPLA is capable to do so. but due to the respect to the president they just wait for orders.

      repondre message

  • 25 February 2014 09:27, by Ambago

    In brief a new South Sudan represents the end to the sick Dinkocracy system of governance that has brought south sudan the current disgrace.
    It will be a ’Confederation of the Three Greater Regions’ with rotatory presidency that has one term limited powers just as symbol of sovereignty and a rotatory seat of government.

    repondre message

    • 25 February 2014 10:11, by Tata

      I don’t know why people still live and think 30 years ago in old Sudan, duirng regional government. We are South Sudanese, neither Bahr Ghazalians, Equatorians nor Upper Nileans. Please, just follow Riek Mahar to bush if you are not satisfied with South Sudan as a nation. Tban Deng with 2% oli revenue not able to develop Bentiu and Robkona. He just built 1KM tarmac road, 4m his office to Robkona.

      repondre message

      • 25 February 2014 10:21, by Tata

        If Taban can’t build Bentiu is he capable to build South Sudan 10 States? He is A Mutkul (jalaba). Is he a Nuer? Absolutely Not! He is a secondary school Leaver who taught Mathematics at Bentiu Girls Intermediate in Kwere. It is good to enjoy some cold/mud and fight with snakes and mosquitos in bush.

        repondre message

        • 25 February 2014 10:40, by jubaone

          Are you suggesting that it is better to have "hata aryan jenge sakit" to a half-mundukuru Taban Gai(I think you meant mundukuru and not mutkul?" Seems you´re even not a Southerner mispelling a mundukuru, that is a crime.

          repondre message

          • 25 February 2014 10:57, by Tata

            My friend Jubaone,
            This is what they call in Arabic (Asma Hagemiya) which are non-Arabic word and can be written anyhowly regardless to the spelling.
            Listen, Taban was my Mathematics teacher in Bentiu.

            repondre message

        • 25 February 2014 11:48, by Bentiu son

          Tata what a fib? Dr Lam Akol advised his bro Pagan Amum when he was dieheart Supporter of Dinka Kingdom that’if you follow Dinkas,it is like dangerously waddling/walking on slide muddy bank of river’Dinka thugs,what is wrong with hard worker person like Taban Deng whom you kept in Unity State for 8 years? Plz,morons Taban Deng Gai has got bachelor Degree Jb not unlike your illiterate President Kii

          repondre message

  • 25 February 2014 11:15, by Epuol

    If we need change,we exclude all of them both Riek and the president.But if not,All of them will remain in the position

    repondre message

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