February 12th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan President, Salva Kiir Mayardiit, and his government do not have the justification of why they are rejecting the opposition’s call for the renegotiation of the revitalized peace agreement signed in Addis Ababa last year, a opposition leader has said.
A number of South Sudan opposition groups in September last year walked out of a peace talks venue in the Sudanese capital Khartoum to reject a proposed peace agreement that maintained president Salva Kiir in power leaving the state and border issue with unclear solution.
The opposition groups which include the National Salvation Front (NAS), People’s Democratic Movement (PDM) led by Dr. Hakim Dario, issued a statement announcing that the deal doesn’t address opposition concerns which includes the issue of the state and federalism.
President Kiir who signed the agreement with former First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar, said he will not renegotiate the agreement because it address all the concerns raised by the parties including the opposition during the peace talks in Khartoum.
However, President Salva Kiir last Thursday told lawmakers from the ruling SPLM party that the agreement is a bad agreement and that he signed it to avert the suffering of the South Sudanese people.
In respond, the Chairman of the holdout opposition group, PDM, Dr. Hakim Dario said the statement by President Kiir calling the agreement a bad deal proves how bad is in fact the agreement.
“First Government in Juba and Salva Kiir admitted in his statement that R-ARCSS is a bad agreement and we are in agreement with that but for different reasons. So why would the government reject our proposals [for renegotiation of the agreement] if it agrees that the agreement is a bad agreement,” Dario wondered.
“What are the grounds on which IGAD would refuse our proposals, we don’t know and they haven’t yet said so. Let’s hear from IGAD first. Isn’t IGAD interested in reaching out to the none signatories of the R-ARCSS?” he asked.
He added that the holdout opposition “have set out the basis of the way forward to make the R-ARCSS work for the people, transform it from a bad agreement to a good one which puts the people first NOT elites first to share power.”
“Not reopening the R-ARCSS would be a choice made for continuation of conflict.”