Home | News    Monday 18 July 2016

South Sudan president could replace Riek Machar with Taban Deng: official


July 17, 2016 (JUBA) - South Sudanese President, Salva Kiir, has given his first deputy, Riek Machar, ultimatum to return to the national capital, Juba, and resume his duties or risk being replaced with someone from his faction, an official told Sudan Tribune on Sunday

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Riek Machar, left, first vice president of the Republic of South Sudan, and Salva Kiir, the president, at the first meeting of the new transitional coalition government in Juba, South Sudan, in April, 2016 (Jason Patinkin/AP)

Machar fled from Juba on Monday, 11 July, following a deadly armed confrontation at the presidential palace, resulting to the death of more than 300 rival soldiers and civilians, with 37 soldiers reportedly from Machar’s side.

President Kiir, according to a presidential source, said he started consultations with some of his confidants and some officials from Machar’s faction of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) in unity government about the matter.

"The transitional government of national unity cannot be held hostage because of Riek. If he does not want to come out from his hiding despite all the assurances of protection, even with the president coming [out] himself to declare to chairman of Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) and special envoy of the African Union that he will stay together with him if he feels unsafe staying alone, then the president has the right to appoint anyone from SPLM-IO to replace him," a presidential source told Sudan Tribune on Sunday.

The official said there were several senior members of Machar’s armed opposition faction from which a nominee could be found to replace him to continue with the implementation of the peace agreement as well as rendering services to the people instead of waiting for other negotiations.

"There are many members of the SPLM-IO here in Juba. The minister of Mining, Taban Deng Gai, who was chief negotiator during the peace talks can be appointed," he revealed.

Also, Bol Makueng, Secretary of Information in the SPLM faction of President Salva Kiir on Sunday revealed in a statement over the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) that if Machar did not return within a given time, he will be replaced with alternative leader.

He said this was resolved in the SPLM political bureau meeting under the leadership of President Kiir.

Sources said Taban Deng Gai and Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth are leading a campaign to replace Machar, but other SPLM-IO officials have reportedly refused.

Taban Deng has been a controversial figure in the SPLM-IO, with allegations since last year suggesting that he was recommended to President Kiir by the Jieng [Dinka] Council of Elders (JCE) to replace Machar.

But others said Deng has no popularity among the Nuer and his ascending to the senior government position may drive away President Kiir’s Bul-Nuer allies who disliked him.

The South Sudanese president this week dismissed the deputy minister of foreign affairs and regional cooperation, Cirino Hiteng. The official is from the former detainees and the decision to remove him was seen as a violation of the peace agreement.

In the agreement, President Kiir has no power to replace an official from another partner in the transitional government of national unity unless recommended to him by the top leader of that particular party.


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  • 17 July 22:44, by Mr Point

    "In the agreement, President Kiir has no power to replace an official from another partner in the transitional government of national unity unless recommended to him by the top leader of that particular party."

    Who was the source of this misinformation ? How is it that people are wiling to spread rumours without evidence and won’t agree to support rumours with their reputation.?

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    • 17 July 22:57, by Panda Odhie

      I wish it to happened how long can people wait for him in his hiding cave good idea

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      • 17 July 23:04, by choldit

        This is a stupid tactics to create distrust amongst Splm-io leadership. Who could accept that in io and how could it goes with the peace. Lol can’t buy into thing like that though he is a friend to Taban. The is a cheap Dinka politica

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    • 18 July 09:47, by Akuma

      Taban Deng is a right man at the right time otherwise Riek Machar has really misinform our Nuer community over his useless Ngundeng prophesies. Riek is not right man but criminal and illuminate person.

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      • 18 July 16:09, by Hardlinner

        Taban Deng Gai speak in English and Arabic fluently than Riek. He as patience and reason better than Riek.

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  • 17 July 22:47, by Mr Point

    Kiir’s latest violation of the Peace Agreement is just one more step on Kiir’s journey, as he continues his way towards creating the next Somalia.

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  • 17 July 22:48, by Mr Point

    Kiir’s latest violation of the Peace Agreement is just one more step on Kiir’s journey, as he continues his way towards creating the next Somalia.

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  • 17 July 23:02, by jubaone

    That is the most stupid, divisive and possibly naive suggestion Kiir has thought of. A cheap way of practicing divide and rule. Riak is aPhD holder and can’t be fooled easily. Of course Taban will have to reject that if indeed the SPLA-IO have a hierarchy and structures. Who knows Kiir wakes up next day and will want yet another.

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    • 18 July 05:05, by barbayo


      this peace for South Sudanese not for Raik Machar, Taban Deng more qualify then Raik

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      • 18 July 06:00, by Eastern

        Barbayo or Bar buy you,

        You are a green horn; better remain a pedestrian and read what others post here on this forum. Mssssssstwe!

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        • 18 July 06:29, by barbayo


          that is your language , your dream will not go a head

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      • 18 July 11:21, by jubaone


        If anything then it is Lado Gore as deputy that will be nominated by the NLC of the SPLM-IO and not Kiir. There are structures here and not in such organizations led by jienges that are often chaotic. Kiir even has the guts to fire a deputy minister from another party he and the jienges are notoriously law non-compliant lot and don’t like rules.

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    • 18 July 16:16, by Hardlinner

      jubaone, Riek has emply PHD certificate. tell me which bridge as he design and build in south sudan since he claimed to be an engineer. He has never invented any thing in south sudan. He is not different from those who hold Degrees and master Degrees. so Riek education is only valued by you jubaone and no one else.

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    • 18 July 17:27, by Khent


      His PHD wasn’t of much use to him when Khartoum played that idiot like a banjo for many years before they eventually tore up his "Agreements" with them. He even admits that he was "cheated" by them even though anyone with any kind of sense already knew that in advance.

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  • 18 July 07:55, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

    That’s very wise decision
    Mr. President

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  • 18 July 08:08, by William Atak Garang.

    I think the best concept based on the political will was either to have succeeded the assassination attempt or imprisoned the opposition leader. The step for replacement is the exaggeration of crisis in the Country. The solution is to bring the rebel leader back to Juba, to end the war and remove the warlords both from rebel and Govt.

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    • 18 July 09:18, by Redeemer

      Lado Gore is senior to Taban he is the right person to replace Riek when the need comes

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    • 18 July 09:43, by Native Boy

      Bravo, Mr. William Atak
      You often writes sensibly and I personally like the way you correctly pass your judgement on this July 8 crisis.
      My opinion is if Kiir thinks Riek can easily be replaced with any body in IO because he bothers him much, why can’t also him, Kiir accept the opinion of his citizens asking him to resign too? Doesn’t him think he bothers too much the citizen like Riek bothers him

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  • 18 July 10:53, by Ker.

    Riek must come out from UNMISS today or risk being replace,south sudan will be better if riek dispose and bring another warm blooded Nuer in case of upper nile for that matter.I prefer Hoth or professor Gai to succeed him.

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    • 18 July 22:10, by Jojo

      Those Nuer who loves cheap BREAD will accept such stupid idea. If they are Nationalist and put citizen as priority not position like Kiir and Jeng Council of Evil; no one will accept that. How can a national soldiers climbed on house roof to remove solar? They learnt it from their bosses who loot and stolen all the Nation Cash

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  • 18 July 15:56, by marie

    The chairman of JMEC must be scratching his head and wondering what he has got himself into. It is like political bureau of SPLA -IO deciding to replace Salva Kiir. He must be wondering if Kiir understood the content of the peace agreement. He needs an interpreter to explain to him in Jenge. It is obvious the peace agreement is dead and the few who agree to this would be like SPLA spokesperson.

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