August 15th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s First Vice-President Taban Deng Gai has said that the integration of SPLA-IO forces previously under him into South Sudan army have been completed.
The First Vice-President made public the development during remarks to state-ran South Sudan Broadcasting Corporations (SSBC) on Wednesday evening following a meeting with President Kiir at J1.
“I came to express my appreciation and thanks to the President of the Republic, the Commander-in-Chief of the SSDPF [South Sudan People’s Defense Forces] and the Supreme Commander of other organized forces in the Republic of South Sudan for having completed the integration of the [SPLA-] IO forces,” Taban said.
He further hailed the development as an important steps into the creation of a unified South Sudan army.
“This is a big step towards the integration of the forces and the creation of one united national army, ” he added.
Following the collapse of 2015 peace agreement in July 2016 after fighting at presidential palace in Juba, a group of SPLM-IO senior political leaders nominated Taban to replace Machar as First Vice-President.
Afterward, Taban worked to mobilize forces previously led to Machar and a good number of them joined him and became to be known as SPLA-IO (TB) and since then have been on the process of integrating into the South Sudan army.