Updated at 6:15Am, August 9, 2014(PST)
August 09, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — An SPLA general, Gen. Simon Dau Deng Ahecyol, has switched allegiance to South Sudan’s SPLA/SPLM under the leadership of Dr. Riek Machar Teny. Gen. Dau has declared his former boss, Salva Kiir Mayardiit, illegitimate and illegal to be in power after death of thousands of innocent civilians in the country. Dau calls for regime change for peace to return to the world’s youngest nation.
Gen. Dau is received by the opposition in Addis Ababa and a conference is underway to be convened shortly. According to Mabior Garang de Mabior, the SPLM/SPLA shall be holding the conference today at Ililly Hotel at 2:00PM in the Ethiopian’s capital, Addis Ababa.
“The SPLM/SPLA shall be holding a press conference on the 9th of August , 2014 at 2:00 PM. The venue of the said press conference shall be Ililly Hotel – Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.” said the committee chairman, capt. Mabior Garang de Mabior.
Mabior reiterates that the purpose of the press conference is to welcome Gen. Simon Dau to SPLA/M in opposition.
“The purpose of the press conference is to announce General Simon Dau’s parting with forces loyal to the Juba Government, and his allegiance to the people’s movement, the SPLM/SPLA.” Mabior said.
Defection of the national army to the opposition began in December after a mutiny within the presidential guards unit. By January the South Sudanese parliament confirmed that over 70% of the national army has defected to Dr. Machar, however, defection has continued for the last 8 months.
While Juba recruits, trains and arms more youth, more soldiers are defecting to the opposition, allegedly, due to failures of the current regime. Many defectors have cited poor leadership, salary, negligence and preferential treatment of foreign troops that ally to defend the Juba government from collapse.
Gen. Simon Dau is the latest senior general that has recently defected to the opposition, following defection of Gen. Dau Aturgong and Gen. Geng, who claimed to have assembled over 5,000 troops, defecting from the government side, in the last few weeks. Juba is yet to respond to the new defections.