March 8, 2021(Nyamilepedia) — South Sudan’s minister of Defense and Veterans Affairs, who doubles as the SPLM-IO chairperson of the National Committee for security, has accused President Salva Kiir of intentionally delaying graduation of the unified forces.
The minister has said that the president is dragging his feet citing the excuse that the absolutely necessary unified forces cannot be graduated for they “do not have guns”.
Teny made the accusation referring to a statement that President Salva Kiir made in October.
In this assertion Kiir told General Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, the deputy chairperson of Sudan’s Transitional Military Council that the forces cannot be graduated because they do not have guns.
“What do you mean when you say the forces will not graduate because they do not have guns?” said a seemingly frustrated defense minister.
Teny, despite having said last week that the unified forces have failed to graduate because they have abandoned their cantonments as a result of hunger, said she has not been given access to finance.
“I do not have access to the money,” said the minister for defense.
She went on to emphasize that she has no ill intention against the graduation of the unified forces and reaffirmed her loyalty and commitment to the SPLM/A-IO.
The revitalized peace agreement allows for the reunification of the government forces and the rival opposition forces to create a professional unified national army.
Despite both parties agreeing to come together, thousands of soldiers who have been training since 2019 have not graduated.
The government cites multiple concerns such as lack of finance, lack of guns or fear of coronavirus; however, the oppositions see such justifications as mere anecdotes meant to delay and frustrate the implementation of the peace agreement.
Both parties have been accusing one another, acknowledging lack of political will but from the other side.