June 29, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — After two days of intensive negotiation under the auspice of Kenyan president, Uhuru Kenyatta, the two South Sudanese principals agreed to recommit to negotiated settlement to end the conflict in their country.
Within the first day, the talks immediately collapsed after President Kiir learned that the meeting was aimed to address negotiated settlement of the conflict through the IGAD-Plus peace process as oppose to Arusha Reunification initiative.
According to the Opposition’s National Committee Chairman for Information and public relations, Mabior Garang de Mabior, President Kiir retreats that he was not aware of the agenda, and concluded that his government has already rejected the IGAD proposals, and also the IGAD-Plus mediation.
“The meeting however failed to bear any tangible results, as the President of the Republic of South Sudan appeared not to be aware of the agenda. The President of the Republic of South Sudan also informing the meeting that Juba had rejected both the IGAD Proposal for resolution of the conflict, and the IGAD Plus Mediation.” Mabior said.
Instead Kiir demanded that his administration would respond to Dr. Riek’s letter to heads of regional leaders, a call that promptly ended the meeting.
“The President concluded by stating that his Administration would respond to the letter of Dr. Riek Machar titled: Why the SPLM/SPLA Committee Within the Tripartite Committee did not go to Juba, in [what he called] “the appropriate forum”. Mabior added.
On the second day, however, President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar held series of meetings among themselves with their delegations and also with President Uhuru Kenyatta, and agreed to address the agenda that was proposed by president Uhuru.
“I met President Kiir and former Vice President Machar individually, as well as with their delegations. Crucially, my two brothers held five hours of face-to-face talks last night, which is important to build confidence and trust between them, in order to cement a viable path of peace.” President Uhuru Kenyatta states.
“President Kiir and Dr Machar expressed their full commitment to the on-going peace processes and reaffirmed their commitment to securing peace for their people.” President affirms.
President Uhuru believes that the weekend meeting has bridged a gap between the bitter political rivals as they settled to discuss and understand their concerns and reservations.
“At our meetings this weekend, we identified and isolated further the most important issues for both sides. We have discussed these extensively and, with the direct talks, both President Kiir and former Vice-President Machar understand each others’ concerns and reservations.” Kenyatta said.
According to Dr. Machar’s spokesperson, James Gatdet Dak, the proposed outstanding issues include federalism, reforms, power sharing ratios in all the ten states, and compensation and reparation for the victims of genocide.
“Among the outstanding issues that need further negotiations include federalism as system of governance in the country; reforms on security, judiciary, economy and public service; compensation and reparation of victims of genocide in Juba and beyond as well as power-sharing ratios that should include 7 states of the two other regions of Bahr el Ghazal and Equatoria.” James Gatdet said.
Gatdet further reiterates that the leadership of SPLM in Opposition has welcomed the positive initiative by President Uhuru Kenyatta which encourages the two leaders to propose position papers and negotiate on the outstanding issues in the IGAD-led peace process.
As a result of this initiative, the two warring parties will draft their proposals and submit them to President Uhuru’s office within the next few days.
The parties expect these proposals to be incorporated into the next phase of IGAD-led mediation that is likely to resume in July in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
“This is a positive approach towards a negotiated settlement to the conflict. Any agreement reached under the auspices of the Kenyan president shall be incorporated into the IGAD peace proposal.” James Gatdet reiterates.
The Kenyan President, who is appreciative to Salva Kiir for the recent reinstatement of the former political detainees whom he hosted for nearly two years in Nairobi, calls on the South Sudanese principals to value peace and reconsider their positions.
“A few days ago, at my intervention, all former South Sudanese detainees returned home to Juba and have already been restored to their party positions within the SPLM, ranging from the party’s Secretary-General to ranking members of the Politburo and National Liberation Movement” Kenyatta recalls.
Kenyatta urges the South Sudanese leaders to reflect on the long civil war they fought together, and the suffering of their people.
“I invited the two leaders to reflect on the issues that unite them, which are bigger than those that separate them. I invite the leaders to reflect on the fact that they did not fight for 50 years for their independence so that their country could disintegrate before their own eyes. I invite both leaders to seize the hour for the cause of peace in South Sudan.” Kenyatta emphasizes.
“I urged, my brother President Kiir and my brother Dr Machar to keep the suffering of their people in mind every day, every hour, every minute, every second. Their people are our people too. We want them to live in peace and prosperity and the two leaders hold the key to peace in South Sudan.” Kenyatta concludes.
In other reports, while the delegations of the two warring parties are to resume the Arusha SPLM-Reunification process, war continues in Greater Upper Nile region.
Latest report from Upper Nile state confirmed that the government has lost control of key towns including Malakal, the capital of the oil-rich state.