Africa-Press – South-Sudan. South Sudan’s main armed opposition commander and chairman of the SPLM-IO Kitgwang faction Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual has released the group’s official position paper on the revitalized peace agreement as requested by the Sudanese authorities, dismissing an earlier version as “fake and forged”.
Below is the full text position paper!
The SPLM/A-IO Military Command’s Leadership, under the former Chief of General Staff, First Lieutenant General (1st Lt. Gen) Simon Gatwech Dual, officially convened a three (3) day meeting at Magenis, after a wide consultation with the Movement’s leadership and grassroots supporters. During this meeting, the military command’s leadership discussed serious matters. Chief among them was the reason as to why the former Chairman and Commander in Chief (C.IN.C), Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon, went to Juba with only a few politicians and neglected the movement without consulting the entire military leadership, three days after which he was appointed and took oath as the first Vice President of the Republic of South Sudan. The team that went to Juba has failed to implement the Agreement and has neither carried on proper communication nor have they been clarifying to the leadership why they took such an impulsive decision.
The military leadership wrote three (3) consecutive letters requesting the former Chairman to have consultations with them at the SPLM/A-(IO) GHQ’s in 2020. However, the former Chairman downplayed these requests, claiming the SPLM/A-(IO) has already transformed into a political struggle where anyone who wanted to be political had to choose whether to join politics or wait at the cantonment or training centers, without a concrete program in sight. As a result of the political leadership of the Movement absconding their responsibilities, the meeting resolved to depose Dr. Riek Machar Teny Dhurgon – including his political leadership – from the chairmanship of the SPLM/A-(IO) and commander in Chief (C.IN.C) of the SPLA-(IO) forces, effective from the date of the announcement of the Kit Gwang Declaration. We therefore; ON SECURITY ARRANGEMENTS AND CURRENT POLITICAL SITUATION
The traumatic effects of 15th December 2013, and the “dog fight” at J1 (State House) on the 8th July 2016, are still fresh in the collective psyche of our displaced civil population. This is why we must prioritize and expedite the implementation of Chapter II: Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements – commonly referred to as Security Arrangements – and other key provisions of the Arrangement that have been neglected by the Juba Group. We must end the perennial violence that has plagued our politics through the sincere implementation of the negotiated settlement – the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS). It is only after this that the parties to the Agreement can be able to address all matters pertaining to peace as stipulated in that book. We in the Kit-Gwang Declaration therefore;
ON THE R-ARCSS The SPLM/A -(IO), under the leadership of First Lieutenant General, Simon Gatwech Dual, confirms its full support and commitment to the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict In South Sudan (R-ARCSS ) as a means to peacefully transform our society and transfer power to the people. It is an opportunity to bring about fundamental change in the country if it were honestly implemented. We therefore; THE POSITION OF THE SPLM-IO (KIT GWANG)
The Kit Gwang Declaration is advocating for the honest implementation of Chapter II: Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements. It is the contention of the SPLM-IO (Kit Gwang) that the Security Arrangements are central to political stability in our nascent Republic. The Kit Gwang Declaration, through implementation of Security Arrangements, aspires to restore the dignity of the South Sudanese peoples by addressing the problem of political violence in our land.
We acknowledge the frustration shown by the regional bodies and the international community due to the lack of trust between the parties to the Arrangement, despite great expectations and tremendous goodwill. This lack of trust has been a stumbling block to the successful implementation of Chapter II: Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements. We recognize the efforts being made by the regional body IGAD in helping South Sudan achieve a lasting peace so we may benefit from the abundant resources that are currently being misused in fuelling perennial inter-communal conflicts. The revenues from oil alone could fund the Security Arrangements and be used to correct the mistakes of the last three years. The principle objective of the Kit Gwang Declaration is to categorically bring peace within the context of implementation of Security Arrangements – for the welfare and prosperity of the peoples of South Sudan. It is not about the distribution of government jobs.
CLOSING APPEAL We call on the peoples of South Sudan, the IGAD, Troika and all the stakeholders in the Agreement, to recognize the position of the Kit Gwang Declaration – a recommitment to an honest implementation of the Agreement for peace to prevail in South Sudan. We are not after government positions per se; we are searching for genuine peace. We further call on friends of South Sudan to not give up on us at this critical period.
While recognizing the natural right of self-defense, the primary objective of the Kit Gwang Declaration is not to return the country to war. The fundamental objectives of the declaration are political. It is only through the implementation of the Security Arrangements as laid out in Chapter II of the Revitalized Agreement, can we attain political stability in our land. The Kit Gwang Declaration represents a recommitment to finding genuine peace after the failure to implement the Agreement in Juba. Those opposition groups who have been in the struggle within the country to implement the Agreement and all peace loving people should welcome the Kit Gwang Declaration as the least costly way to recommit ourselves to the peace process. The status quo is untenable. We also call on any political forces and other armed groups (Other Armed Groups) in our country who have been left out of the peace process to come on board so that we can find total peace once and for all. Finally, our compatriots in the R-TGONU should not fear the Kit Gwang Declaration because political stability in our country is in all our interest.