SPLM-IO refutes rumors that Machar was “told to stay” in Juba

SPLM-IO Director of Information and Public Relations Puok Both Baluang (File photo)

January 25th 2020 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s main armed opposition group, SPLM-IO, has refuted rumors that its chairman, Dr. Riek Machar Teny, has been told by the regional body, IGAD, to stay in Juba until February.

Social media users circulated a news report alleging that Machar has been told to stay in Juba until the revitalized transitional government of national unity is formed in February.

However, in a statement this evening, the SPLM-IO director of information and public relations Puok Both Baluang denied the allegation saying the news was being circulated by anti-SPLM-IO and anti-peace elements.

“In reference to the above, the SPLM/SPLA (10) would like to categorically refute the malicious propaganda and fake news created and circulated by the anti-SPLM (10) and anti- peace elements; dated, January 25t, 2020- Subject: Machar Reportedly Told to Stay in Juba until February,” the statement seen by Nyamilepedia partly reads.

“The SPLM/SPLA (10) would like to assure members, the people of South Sudan and the General public, that the assertion is mere propaganda and wishful thinking. H.E. Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon, Chairman and Commander-in-Chief of the SPLM/SPLA (10), and First Vice President designate of the Republic of South Sudan, has not been told by any actor(s) to stay in Juba until February as is alleged. Dr. Machar will return to Khartoum, Sudan, once the discussion is concluded,” the statement added.

“H.E. Dr. Riek Machar Teny-Dhurgon came to Juba, South Sudan on 14 January 2020 to attend IGAD’s initiative led by H.E. David Mabuza, South Africa’s Deputy President and Peace Envoy, aimed at discussing the challenges facing the implementation of the critical pending Pre-Transitional tasks during the extended 100 days of the Pre-Transitional Period of the R-ARCSS.”

The statement further cautioned members “to be vigilant and not succumb to the malicious propaganda and fake news which is intended to create division in your glorious movement.”

Baluang told Nyamilepedia this evening that Machar was to return to Khartoum on Tuesday along with the deputy chairman of Sudan’s Sovereignty Council Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Daglo after more than two weeks in Juba where he has been engaging president Salva Kiir on issues pertaining to the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement.

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