December 6th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Africa’s Vice-President David Mabuza said he is hopeful that the parties to the conflict would resolve the issue of the number of states which has been thorny since the signing of a peace deal last year.
Mabuza chaired, along with the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan Ismail Wais, a three-day consultative meeting of the parties on the contentious issue of the number of states and their boundaries.
“We entered this meeting with a number of ideals, foremost being ensuring that peace and development reigns in South Sudan. It was therefore encouraging for me to sit around the table with parties with strong and divergent views, willing to shift from their original positions where necessary, for the sake of peace in their country,” the top South African official said.
“Of great importance, is the vote of confidence vested in South Africa by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, to play a meaningful role in assisting the peace process.
“As South Africa, we are grateful for this vote of confidence. South Sudan people deserve peace and space to realize their development potential. Finding lasting peace and silencing the guns in line with the priorities of the African Union, remains our priority.”
The South Sudan parties failed to reach an agreement on the number of states and their boundaries. While the government insists that the status quo is maintained, the opposition and the IGAD mediation proposed that the country go for 23 states plus the disputed area of Abyei.
They have been given a 10-day break within which the parties would consult their principals on the issue.