Home | News    Monday 17 May 2010

South Sudan ruling party accuses NCP of backing Athor uprising

By Julius N. Uma

May 16n 2010 (JUBA) — Renegade General George Athor Deng’s recent uprising against the Southern government should not be viewed as a post-election issue, but a plot by the Khartoum regime to disrupt South Sudan’s preparations for the forthcoming referendum, Mr. Pagan Amum, the SPLM Secretary General has said.

At a media briefing held at the party’s Southern Sector Secretariat on Saturday, Mr. Amum said his party had secured credible information that the National Congress Party (NCP) was fully backing Gen. Athor and forces loyal to him.

Asked to substantiate further on the NCP’s alleged involvement, the SPLM Secretary General said the party’s [SPLM] intelligence report strongly link the renegade General’s rebellion to the Khartoum regime’s continuous trends of providing logistical and financial support to “enemies” of Southern Sudan.

Mr. Amum’s remarks comes just days after his involvement in an African Union consultative meeting, during which he reportedly told delegates in attendance that the Southern government would not accept any form of negotiations aimed at delaying the referendum date.

According to the SPLM Secretary General, the entire African continent as well as members of the international community have embarked on a coordinated effort to ensure that Sudan’s referendum, a key requirement of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, is not only a peaceful, free and fair, but also a smooth transition that respects the right and interest of all concerned citizens.

Analysts, however, contend that for the 2011 referendum to succeed as planned, the Southern semi-autonomous government must find quick remedies towards resolving prevailing scores of post-election uprisings, discontent as well as tribal conflicts among citizens.

Tension is already mounting after General Athor reportedly warned civilians to vacate Bor, the Jonglei state capital, prior to fresh attacks on government forces.

On Friday, five members of Sudan’s People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) were reportedly killed in the fourth attack carried by forces loyal to renegade General.

SPLA spokesperson, Kuol Diem Kuol confirmed the incident, saying the attack involved an ambush on an army truck in Koliet, Northern Jonglei.

"The SPLA soldiers managed to fire back. The fighting killed five from the forces loyal to Athor...but others were injured," Kuol was quoted saying.