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Refugees urge S. Sudan warring parties to implement peace accord

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September 23, 2018 (GULU) – A group of refugees living in Uganda have appealed to South Sudan’s warring factions to ensure the recently signed peace agreement is fully implemented.

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South Sudanese refugees attending a workshop organised by Remembering Ones We Lost, Sept. 22, 2018 (ROWL photo)

The group, which comprised of 20 youth, were deliberating at a one-day workshop organized by Remembering Ones We Lost (ROWL) on the theme ‘Youth dialogue on sustainable peace in South Sudan’.

A public memorial aimed at remembering all the victims of the conflict and armed violence in South Sudan, ROWL compiles names of all the people who either died in armed struggles or generalized forms of violence in the country since 1955.

Speaking at a workshop held on Saturday, ROWL’s executive director, Gideon Daud, said the youth, who presently constitute the majority of the South Sudan population, can play fundamental roles in ensuring peace and stability in the country.

“The youth, being the majority of the population, have a role to ensure stability and peace or they can also be used to spoil the peace gained since they are the ones fighting on the front lines, both on the government and the armed opposition sides,” he said.

The one-day dialogue, Daud stressed, aimed at ascertaining the roles youth can play in the implementation of the recently signed peace and what is they need for sustainable peace in the country.

More than a million South Sudanese currently live in Uganda as refugees in camps, while other live as urban refugees in major towns.

Patrick Otorit, an attendee of the round-table dialogue, said youth of South Sudan should avoid being used as the perpetrators of violence.

He, however, appealed to the warring factions who signed the September 12, 2018 peace deal to ensure those who did not take part in the process are incorporated in the coalition government.

“How shall we handle issues of aggrieved parties like Thomas Cirillo and his National Salvation Front [NAS]? What will the new government do to bring such warring factions together as one?” asked Otorit.

Mary Keji appealed to citizens to forgive each other and that all the aggrieved parties be reconciled.

Meanwhile, Joseph Amanya, a co-founder of ROWL said the peace agreement is the best opportunity for restoring peace and stability.

In an overview of the recently signed peace deal, Amanya said the government structure of power sharing within the peace agreement offers women and youth fair representation in the new government.

“When you look at the new peace agreement, women have been allocated 35% representation in the new government, with six allocated to the Juba government, three will come from the armed opposition and one will be nominated by the opposition coalition,” he told the gender-balanced participants attending the dialogue.

The accord, according to Amanya, also addressed some key issues such as the need to establish a truth, healing and reconciliation commission, a hybrid court and a repatriation authority.

South Sudan became an independent country on 9 July 2011 after decades of war, lengthy negotiations and a referendum to secede from neighboring Sudan. Two and a half years later, armed conflict broke out between forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and those allied to his then deputy Riek Machar.

However, in August 2015, the two main parties in the conflict agreed a peace deal and later formed a transitional unity government with President Kiir at the helm and Machar as one of his two deputies.

Renewed again fighting broke out in July 2016 with heavy clashes in the capital Juba and other parts of the nation forcing Machar to flee. On September 12, the South Sudanese rebel leader signed a peace agreement with government aimed at ending a five-year civil war, which killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions.

(ST)

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  • 24 September 22:47, by Pakuai

    South Sudanese youths are the most lazies youths on earth. Just have a lot around major towns, they start playing dominoes and cards from morning till sun set and they would talk politics, lack of jobs, misuse of resources, corruptions and lack of services days on end. But here in South Sudan, if you can go to your village and do some farming. You can make a decent living>>>

    repondre message

    • 24 September 22:54, by Pakuai

      But here in South Sudan, everyone wants a government job. If you don’t work to pay rates or taxes, then where do you think the services like education, medical care, policing, defense etc would come from? Too much talking politics and laziness are contributing factors in the destruction of South Sudan>>>

      repondre message

      • 24 September 22:58, by Pakuai

        Church leaders and even many political leaders just don’t even touch the issue of dependency on foriegn or UN handouts is a danger to South Sudan.

        repondre message

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