SPLM-IO’s Machar not returning to Juba next week – spokesman

Photo: SPLM-IO leader Dr. Riek Machar attends an IGAD an extraordinary summit of IGAD in Addis Ababa | Credit | Minasse Wondimu Hailu | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images.

January 27th 2020 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s main armed opposition leader Dr. Riek Machar Teny is not returning to Juba next week as reported by a section of South Sudan media, an opposition spokesman said on Monday.

Machar returned to the Sudanese capital on Sunday after two weeks of talks with President Salva Kiir in Juba failed to resolve the outstanding issues.

Speaking to Nyamilepedia on Monday, SPLM-IO director of information and public relations Puok Both Baluang said Machar has not been told to return to Juba for talks on the issues which are still pending.

“It is not true,” Baluang said. “The Chairman and Commander in chief will not return to Juba next week. Yes there is possibility that he may return but we have not discussed any such thing that he can return to Juba next week.”

Machar and Kiir signed a revitalized version of a 2015 peace agreement in 2018 to end the ongoing civil war. The agreement provided for the formation of a unity government which would govern the country for 36-months.

But a number of issues the agreement want to be formed before the government formation are not yet in place. The rival forces need to be reunited and the number of states and their boundaries need to be determined.

None of the above has been resolved and the opposition – unlike the government – want these issues resettled first before the government is formed. This – according to their own words – is to ensure a peaceful transitional government.