Home | News    Wednesday 27 January 2016

South Sudan rebel leader and Uganda agree on new ties

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By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

January 26, 2016 (ADDIS ABABA) – Leader of main armed opposition faction in South Sudan, Riek Machar, has concluded his two-day visit to Uganda during which he held a closed door meeting with President Yoweri Museveni over a host of issues affecting South Sudan and the region.

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South Sudanese opposition leader, Dr. Riek Machar meets Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni in Khartoum, Sept. 16, 2015 (ST Photo)

The visit to Uganda by the leader of the armed opposition faction of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) is the first of its kind in two years following the outbreak of violence in South Sudan in which President Museveni’s forces involved.

His official spokesman, James Gatdet Dak, has confirmed to Sudan Tribune that Machar returned to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on Tuesday evening.

“True, he has returned to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, this evening,” he said on Tuesday when reached by phone.

Dak said the interaction between Machar and President Museveni was cordial during a closed door meeting with participation of his wife, Angelina Teny, an outright politician who chairs national committee for defence and security.

The two leaders discussed Uganda’s role in the implementation of the peace agreement which Machar signed in August last year with President Salva Kiir and other parties. They also discussed regional peace and security.

The opposition leader’s press secretary also said besides discussing the implementation of the peace agreement, the two leaders also “opened a new chapter of relationship” between their respective movements or parties, the National Resistance Movement (NRM), which is the ruling party in Uganda, and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO), which spearheads democratic and institutional reforms in South Sudan.

According to a press release issued on Tuesday by the SPLM-IO leader, Riek Machar, he said an agreement was reached to work together by starting a new page in relations between the two sides.

The two sides have also agreed on consolidation of peace in the region through the implementation of Agreement on Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (ARCISS).

The issues discussed, according to the press release, include the controversial 28 states and how it is in violation of the ARCISS, and how it has impeded the formation of transitional government of national unity.

The other issues Machar mentioned are the lifting of the state of emergency which he said is restricting the movement of the opposition’s advance team and the implementation of provisions in the ARCISS regarding Sudanese rebels.

The SPLM-IO chief has also responded to a statement issued by President Salva Kiir with regard to normalizing relations with Sudan.

He welcomed President Kiir’s initiative, but however said the process of normalization ties with Khartoum should be expedited through the full implementation of provisions in the ARCISS.

He added normalization process should also be based on the implementation of the cooperation agreement signed in September 2012, which included the creation of a buffer zone along the North-South Sudan common boundaries.

“The SPLM-IO would like to take this opportunity to reiterate our full commitment to the implementation of the ARCISS in letter and spirit,” Machar said.

Machar left the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, for Uganda on Sunday night on the invitation of President Museveni.

The meeting between Machar and Museveni came only days after the two SPLM warring factions failed to form a transitional government by the Friday dateline set by the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC).

Machar previously met with Museveni in Khartoum in September 2015, but this was his first visit to Uganda since war erupted in the young nation in December 2013.

Meanwhile members of Machar’s delegation who had earlier been blocked in Juba from travelling to Kampala were allowed to leave and reached Uganda Monday evening.

On the other hand, Dak said the Former Vice President and First Vice President designate, Machar, will participate in the upcoming African Union (AU) summit of the heads of state and government to discuss the status of the implementation of the peace agreement.

(ST)

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  • 26 January 22:28, by choldit

    Ahahahaha!
    There is something fishy going on in Uganda.’isn’t it? If that is true then South Sudan is about to enjoy the real peace that is becoz the bull is being drag by its balls. Hahahaha..... Let give peace a chance this time 4 we are one body, vast-Kuol Deng

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    • 26 January 23:09, by Khent

      Chuoldit

      Your name is not Chol. The Nuer do not have that name - it’s our name. It’s obvious that Riek is trying to see if he can convince Museveni to pressure Salva Kiir to abide by the terms of the peace agreement. There’s nothing spectacular about it.

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      • 27 January 03:30, by Dinka-Defender-General

        Khent, let tell something you might not know Dinka and Nuer people. 5,000 years before the birth of Jesus Christ, Dinka and Nuer used to be brothers. When their father died and Dinka didn’t want to split his father properties such as cows, goats, sheep. Nuer was not happy about it.

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        • 27 January 03:36, by Dinka-Defender-General

          Cont..since Dinka was the older son, he could do what he wanted. Dinka plan was to keep the properties for 15 years and than split them after they multiple, Nuer was unsatisfied about the Dinka decision. Nuer stole most of the sheep and goat and left.

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          • 27 January 03:43, by Dinka-Defender-General

            Cont...however, nuer kept coming back steal Dinka properties ever since. Therefore, Dinka and Nuer were brothers 7,200 years ago. So that is why we still share the same names such as Deng, chol/chuol, Majok, Bol/bul,and so forth.. Nuer is gene is not consistent..no patience/wait.

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      • 27 January 04:10, by Shadrack Nuer Machut

        Riak Machar is an autocratic tribal leader who believes only in his decisions. How can sb that calls himself a potential politician fail to recognize the popular demand of the public? Instead of now saying peace is around the corner, it’s war around the corner b’se of Riak’s demand to reverse 28 states.

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        • 27 January 04:33, by Shadrack Nuer Machut

          What’s the reason of 609 rebel soldiers being accommodated in hotels by the govt if the rebel leader is against peace. Let them remind Riak, the agreement was rejected & b’se of innocent civilians, reservations had to go hand in hand with it without obstacles. Riak is a good initiator of things & easily forgets. He’s now preparing a way back to war. Let SPLA stand vigilant to avoid negligence.

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      • 27 January 07:55, by choldit

        It is unhealthy to see people like khent dwelling in shadow of tribal affiliation! U shld be advicing Dinka/Jeing council of elders to stop acting like they do in their villages and tell our president kirr not to lead the country basis on advices by a Dinka elders for their mind set is to enrich Dinka tribe not ss.

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    • 27 January 08:04, by Akuma

      Following Museveni up to his campaign caravan SPLM IO term it as cordial. Riek Machar was humiliated by President Museveni in Seldon Hotel before reaching to Masindi Primary play ground for his election. President Museveni mock Riek when he said and I quote "Whether 28, 21, or 10 states South Sudan has, go to Juba and formation TGNU, South Sudan has constitution" Said Museveni yesterday.

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  • 27 January 05:13, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

    What is a result of the meeting?

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  • 27 January 06:44, by Son of Ngundeng

    Dear All:

    I have no comment because I know Kiir already sold out by IO Leader, Alhamdulillah(Thank God)
    :
    :
    :
    :
    :
    :
    :Son of prophet
    :currently at IO HQs.

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  • 27 January 14:01, by Eastern

    Just go and see what Museveni’s government agreed with M23 then you will realise that the "agreement" with Dr Riek was just a white elephant. Museveni hates those who are independent in their thinking!!!

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