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S. Sudan opposition contest dialogue committee membership

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December 20, 2016 (JUBA)- Several leading South Sudanese armed and non-armed opposition figures contested the manner in which president Salva Kiir on Monday night issued a decree appointing over 30 eminent persons as members of the national dialogue steering committee to develop agenda for the dialogue and work with experts and resource persons to facilitate the process.

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President Salva Kiir addresses the nation at the South Sudan National Parliament in Juba, November 18, 2015. (Photo Reuters/Jok Solomon)

President Kiir, according to order number 27, read out on state-run South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) on Monday evening, appointed retired Catholic Emeritus Bishop Paride Taban and former Sudanese Vice President Moses Machar Kachuol as co-chairpersons to the committee.

He also appointed Abel Alier-wal Kwai, Joseph Lagu, Bona Malual Madut and Francis Mading Deng as advisors. Other members to the committee included former Upper Nile state governor, Simon Kun Puoc as Member.

The order adds Gen. George Kongor Arop, Angelo Beda, Gen.Peter Cirilo Swaka, Sultan Ismail Konyi, Manasseh Magok Rundial, Gen. Andrew Makur Thuo, Lubari Ramba Loloka, Martha Moi, Gebriel Yoal Dok, Mathew Mathiang Deng, Rachael Nyadak Paul, Monica Ayen Maguat, Emeritus Bishop Nathaniel Garang Anyieth, Sheikh Juma Mussa, Harun Ruun Lual, Mary Furu, Joseph Oryem Ismail, Lucia Utilio, Joseph Okell Obango, Mathew Pagan, and Luciano Thomas as ordinary members to the committee.

The appointed members are either members of the faction of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) under him, those in his administration or from parties allied to the government as well as religious leaders and individuals loyal or sympathetic to his administration.

The president didn’t appoint any members from armed opposition groups in the country

The selection of people perceived as close and sympathetic to his administration has generated reactions from the government critics, members of the civil society and analysts, some whom described the national dialogue as having died on arrival. Others see it as internal dialogue with friends.

“That is a not national dialogue. It is just another project in the name of the national dialogue intended to use the resources of the people to self-fund their own projects. This has nothing to do with the issues of the people. Just look at the names and you will not be surprised those appointed are friends, relatives, political associates. This cannot be a national dialogue. It has other names, may be it is an internal dialogue, or call it monologue”, one of the human right activists told Sudan Tribune on Tuesday when reached to give his view on the formation of the committee.

Another political commentator described in a separate interview with Sudan Tribune on Tuesday that the formation of the dialogue by the presidential order without considering the views other stakeholders indicate that the country would continue to experience a streak of crackdowns and power plays aimed at weakening a process to establishing credible dialogue and the country’s precarious “culture of dialogue” seems to be in danger of devolving into a stern lecture under the longtime autocrat a little over a year after an initial bipartisan truce was struck.

Others have argued that the manner in which the former has been formed is the latest test for the “the culture of dialogue and the moniker given to the country’s uneasy political peace forged between the government with armed and non-armed opposition groups in the aftermath of 201.5

“The formation of the committee with people and institutions of questionable records is basically a farce. It is an indication that President Salva Kiir is not ready for any meaningful national dialogue. He wants to maintain the status quo. If there are people who believe in this dialogue, then they need to know there is no such intention from the president and his groups”, said another opposition figure.

(ST)

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  • 20 December 2016 19:58, by Tambura

    It will not work as long Kiir is the president waste your time...

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  • 20 December 2016 20:23, by Eastern

    Kiir and his henchmen continue to deny the obvious. They continue to complaint of hate speech from the social media when Kiir still has faith in Abel Aleir, Angelo Beda, et al. Where are the critical friends of Dr Machar in this arrangement if this so-called national dialogue is really genuine? Kiir must understand that for peace to come to South Sudan, he (Kiir) must cede some power!!!!!

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  • 20 December 2016 20:25, by Eastern

    Kiir, Mugabe, Museveni, et al are the type of leaders the AU is happy keeping in power. No wonder Africa continues to remain at the recieving end of everything substandard!!!

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  • 21 December 2016 03:52, by Joyuma John

    Dear opposition,
    Unless the president shall appoint a foreigner otherwise there is no s.sudanese who is clean, not a relative, has not any political affiliation or may be unborn child but unborn child must be a child of aforesaid category even a foreigner must be one who shall have any political relations in one way or another to any party. So what is a remedy, may be God shall pick .s.s up.

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    • 21 December 2016 05:08, by Akook

      By the way who told anyone in South Sudan that dialogue is what is needed now before people even begin to question Kiir’s appointment?

      South Sudan is infected with some numerous active war fronts as we speak from all corners. Sensible humans would begin to talk of PEACE first then Dialogue or Monologue later.

      Ok if people are feeling bored in Juba and would want something to engage.. Ok MAYBE!

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    • 21 December 2016 06:31, by jubaone

      Joyuma,
      These "old men" have outlived their time. Most have messed up the SS as early as 1960s before most of us were born. They don’t want to retire cos they have no reasonable things to do. You and I must reject this "bogus" national dialogue cos youth and IT generation has been left out who can take SS to higher levels. Are the young so hopeless that old and sick men must lead the SS?

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  • 21 December 2016 06:09, by Jieng Nephew

    This is a rotten move that Kiir wants to install. Whit who is the ND is about? Old folks with old school theory. Exclusively needed the angry people to be there so that the root cause of our problems are found.
    good luck !

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  • 21 December 2016 07:24, by Jongo

    The president always takes long jump the call for national dialogue should be followed by re emotions releasing the political detainees from the blue house, resigning & forming a acting government simply cleaning all his dirt’s & putting every thing back to it’s place OK now we can TALK

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    • 21 December 2016 08:11, by Chang Kuony

      Under visionless President Salva Kiir Mayardit South Sudan will disintegrated into tribal entities.it is not National dialogue but Salam el Dakal between Jaang Council of Evils and their yes men and women from other 63 ethnic groups. It seems to be Dinka Dinka dialogue rather national ones. Where is SPLM IO Mainstream and others political forces like SPLMG 10?

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  • 21 December 2016 10:37, by Dengda

    When stand up, he quickly fall into his shadow. Rushing things to claim credit is the one destroying his administration. E.g. 28 states was rushed. Again he want to mess up with the only option and last hope which is ND. ND will follow this sequences, 1. ceasfire, 2. peace with Riek and G10 and other forces 3. consultation process and formation of committee. Now it goes Kiir way of thinking.

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    • 21 December 2016 10:41, by Dengda

      Its desperate attempt to lure in donors to pour dollars into fake ND, was cause July 2016 incident was donors didn’t fund ACRSS as some conditions were not met. Juba regime were assuming that when Riek Came in April dollars will follow like in 2006-7. But three month later, no dollar and Riek was echoing the same tune of donors, he was kicked out of frustration as arrival bring no dollars.

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  • 21 December 2016 11:19, by place of justice fangak

    HEY GUY DONOT MISLEAD OUR PEOPLE AGAIN JULY PLANNED AND FAILED ASSASINATION WILL NEVER BE REPEATED

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  • 21 December 2016 15:56, by BORCHAR LN

    hahaha how can illiterate coward leader still used non sense degree

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  • 21 December 2016 18:08, by Biwaw

    I think it won’t help at all, how come you called it a national dialog and you didn’t involved all parties,Mr.President keep saying these so far and nothing has changes.

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  • 21 December 2016 19:19, by Deng Gatluak Riek

    hahahahahaha what kind of dialogue you are talking about you massacre innocent civilian in december 15 you genocide equatorian peoples with no case with who are you going to national dialogue slava kiir museveni i believe that this innocent will be rescue soon in your hand vision and illiterate dictactor

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