Dec 12, 2020(Nyamilepedia) — Responding to uncategorized criticisms against South Sudan’s Minister of Defense and Veteran Affairs, Hon. Angelina Teny, on social media with regards to ongoing fighting in Morota, the press secretary of the Ministry debunks the criticisms as “subjective” and uncalled for.
According to Col. Lam Paul Gabriel, the Press Secretary and Media Analyst, in the Office of the Minister, the criticism is baseless as it is being directed to the wrong person other than the responsible parties and mechanisms.
Col. Lam called on unidentified critics to educate themselves on the revitalized peace agreement and acquaint themselves on what body or structure should be blamed or held accountable if the security arrangement fails.
“However, it is important to know which body or structure is responsible for command and control of the forces.” Lam said.
“Article 2.4.2. of R-ARCSS states that “The JDB shall be formed at the Level of Chiefs of Staffs and Directors General of National Security Services, Police and all other Organized forces to exercise command and control over all forces during the Pre- Transitional Period”.” He continued quoting the R-ARCISS.
According to Col. Lam, the Minster of Defense would be the last person to blame after the JBD and NTC saying the Minister does not have any command or control over the forces.
“It is therefore, very clear that the Defence Minister doesn’t have any command and control over any force, but as the Defence Minister and a member of the NTC, she has the responsibility to direct the JDB to exercise to arrest the situation on the ground since they are in charge of the forces to the agreement; which she did several times already.” Lam emphasized
Col. Lam reiterated that the Minister has been vocal and even made attempts to visit the front line to brief the forces herself and therefore she should not be blamed.
“Secondly it should be noted that on 7/10/2020, the Minister showed courage by visiting both forces of the SPLA-IO and SSPDF after the first violations in Morota and directed the JDB to investigate the clashes that occurred and bring those responsible to account.” He added.
“This can’t just go unrecognized if we seriously mean to acknowledge one’s efforts towards stopping the aggression in Morota.” He further stressed.
Col. Lam calls on critics to change “the notion of looking at forces in cantonment sites and unified Training Centers as under the command of the SPLA-IO or SSPDF” which he terms as a “complete lack of knowledge of the Agreement”.
“The JMCC is tasked with responsibility of the assembly areas, cantonment sites and barracks while the JTSC is responsible for Training Centres.” Lam explained.
“This misunderstanding of the Agreement is the one that is currently causing such unwanted violations.” He continued.
He agrees that the Minister can be blamed and challenged to resign when she goes astray; however, such criticism should not be subjective or aimed to tarnish her image.
“Much as the Minister is opened to any constructive criticism, it should be noted that subjective criticisms meant to tarnish her image as a person is not welcomed.” He said.
“Hon. Teny understands the pain caused by the violations against the Security Arrangements not only in Morota but all over South Sudan. These violations are real threats to the R-ARCSS.” he further added.