April 3, 2017 (JUBA) – South Sudan President Salva Kiir Monday has installed a new governor in Ruweng State, a state in the Greater Upper Nile region allocated to the SPLM-IO in a power-sharing deal with the former rebel turned First Vice President, Taban Deng Gai.
Governor Them Machar Kuol has been sworn in by President Salva Kiir at a ceremony at the presidency of the republic in Juba, despite a massive support for the former Governor Theje Adwad Deng who was relieved after his defection of the SPLM-IO.
Governor Kuol who has been rejected by the Dinka people of Ruweng was appointed to replace Adwad Deng. The Ruweng community sent a letter to President Kiir requesting to halt the swearing in of the new governor, amid threats to resort to violence.
“The newly appointed Governor of Ruweng state Hon. Them Machar Kuol was sworn in at the State House in Juba today before President Salva Kiir Mayardit. The swearing-in ceremony was attended by the First Vice President Taban Deng Gai and was presided over of Justice John Gatwich, the Deputy Chief Justice,” said a statement issued by the office of President Kiir on Monday evening.
The statement did not allude to the Ruweng community’s opposition to the new governor but mentioned an appeal by President Kiir “for unity among the community.”
“In his remarks after the swearing in of the governor, President Kiir appealed to the newly appointed governor to work and cooperate with the community members in the state. President Kiir called on the Governor to have a dialogue with the people in a peaceful manner in order to find a solution in the state,” the statement added.
The statement further added that Gai believes the appointment of Governor Them would unite the Dinka people in Ruweng to live peacefully with their neighbours.