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South Sudan says not ready to receive SPLM-IO advance team


November 12, 2015 (ADDIS ABABA) - South Sudanese government said it is not ready to receive the advance team from the armed opposition faction of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) under the leadership of the first vice-president designate, Riek Machar, saying the leadership in Juba is yet to make the necessary preparations for the reception of the team.

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South Sudanese information minister Michael Makuei Lueth attends a press conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 5 January 2014 (Photo: AP/Elias Asmara)

SPLM-IO leadership earlier announced they were selecting 500 officials of the movement to be sent to Juba and other nine states by mid-November in order to mobilize and sensitize the populations on the implementation of the peace agreement signed with president Salva Kiir in August to end the 21 months long civil war in the country.

The team would be led by a number of the armed opposition’s senior political leaders with membership of cadres selected from the country’s states.

It would further prepare for the reception of the top opposition leader, Riek Machar, who is expected to return to Juba either by the end of December 2015 or January 2016 to form a transitional government of national unity with president Kiir.

However, in a letter of response addressed to the SPLM-IO chief negotiator, Taban Deng Gai, and former detainees’ representative, Pagan Amum Okiech, the government’s acting chief negotiator, Michael Makuei Lueth, told SPLM-IO to delay for two more weeks, saying they were not ready to receive the team by mid-November and would only be ready after 26 of November.

“Reference the “Outcome of the Meeting of the Principal Signatory Parties to the Agreement on Planning Implementation of the Provisions in Chapter II of the Agreement (21 October – 3 November, 2015); this is to inform you [SPLM-IO and former detainees] that the Government of the Republic of South Sudan (GRSS) is yet to conclude preparations for the arrival of your respective advance teams by the middle of November 2015. Instead, we shall conclude all the necessary preparations by the 26th of November, 2015,” partly reads the letter signed by government’s acting chief negotiator, Michael Makuei Lueth.

“In the meantime, we request that you kindly make available to us the full list of members of your respective advance teams expected in Juba by the 26th of November, 2015,” further reads the letter.

It was not clear what made the government’s preparations to delay in this important stage of implementing the peace deal. Sources close to the decision making processes in the government however told Sudan Tribune that there appears to be disagreements among the government’s inner circles on how to handle the matter.


The opposition faction of SPLM-IO said they were disappointed in the delay in the implementation of the peace agreement, saying their team was ready to travel to Juba by mid-November.

“SPLM/SPLA (IO) advance team has been ready to travel to Juba by mid-November. However, this will not be possible as planned if the government is not ready to receive the team,” said James Gatdet Dak, opposition leader’s spokesman, in a statement he issued on Thursday.

“While the Movement has been preparing to send an advance team to Juba, the government has responded, saying it is not ready to receive the team,” he said.

Dak also said the SPLM-IO leadership expected president Kiir to revoke his order creating “illegal” 28 states before the advance team could travel to Juba so that it did not become an obstacle to the implementation of the peace agreement which was signed on the basis of the current 10 states.

He said the opposition group was committed to the full implementation of the peace agreement without delays and violations.


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  • 12 November 2015 22:57, by Akol Liai Mager

    I would have received them today rather than tomorrow just to end the war and open a first page of peace. Makuendit’s side need to understand that receiving rebels’ team sooner than later will deter the rebels from launching provocative attacks designed by rebels to derail peace and then blame it on the government forces as usual.

    repondre message

  • 12 November 2015 23:33, by lino

    Government confused what to do now? I think they are planning to choose officials for SPLM-FD Government as quick as possible before everyone is back. What are you going to do with National Liberation Council?

    repondre message

  • 12 November 2015 23:35, by Mr Point

    Why does the Juba faction have reservations about implementation of the Peace Agreement?

    What did they achieve with their pointless civil war?

    repondre message

  • 13 November 2015 02:15, by Uncle J

    Returning of prodigal sons need good preparations so that they can feel greatly welcome back. Where they are now is a bush and I don’t blame them because two years in a bush make them to think no different to African apes. Delay is better than rejecting them I don’t see any reason why they connecting it to implementation of peace anyway.

    repondre message

  • 13 November 2015 04:22, by Kenyang

    500 hungry rebels is a lot to receive and should need preparation, factor security, their safety.

    In fact, despite Gadet big mouth, rebels aren’t ready either.

    repondre message

    • 13 November 2015 06:50, by J P Puok

      A scheduled presidential speech status -delayed, scheduled IO advanced team coming status- delayed, scheduled CPA 11 implementation status- delayed, a scheduled 9 month baby to be born will also be delayed what of coming of Jesus if it is was in the hand of Juba could be delayed am afraid lets go on showing our weakness lord have mercy

      repondre message

      • 13 November 2015 08:51, by Son of Ngundeng

        J P Pouk.
        All those delayed issues Jieng council of thieves elders have a big hands on those issue because they are confusing thier Sultan(Kiir) if Kiir will not take care of those fragile issue it will be worse soon to him.

        Son of Prophet
        Front line.

        repondre message

        • 13 November 2015 09:39, by Redeemer

          Son of Ngundeng
          Since 15th of Dec 2013 The more you wish worse to Kiir the more you feel it, so try arithmetical rule of reciprocal I think reverse will do your wish by wishing him better side

          repondre message

      • 13 November 2015 08:53, by Redeemer

        Welcome Dr. prophet Riek Machar but don’t make a mistake to visit Bor

        repondre message

    • 13 November 2015 16:31, by Makuen Ci Nhomwan

      Mr. Kenyang. your expression is right and that is what make me amuse. Anyway rebels are rebels 20 months in the bush is like 20 years to them. They are allow to come on 26 Nov 2015 no hurry even if most of them became old to reach that day. I knows They are hungry in the bush, but let them wait. They will come.

      repondre message

      • 13 November 2015 17:11, by Kenyang

        Brother Nhomwan,
        Thankz I’m glad you like what I pointed out. Yeah impatience is a disease which brought all of us (South Sudan) here in first place and should kill anyone if same group is allowed back with same as attitude.

        repondre message

  • 13 November 2015 09:20, by Uncle J

    Riek is welcome to visit Warrap State but he has to go by the road through the most dangerous State, Lake State.

    repondre message

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