Dec 20, 2020(Nyamilepedia) — South Sudan’s President, General Salva Kiir Mayardit, is feared to be under self-imposed house arrest in the country’s capital, Juba.
The president hasn’t traveled outside the capital, Juba, since his main rival, Dr. Riek Machar Teny, took oath of office in February this year causing speculations that the president fears to create leadership vacuum that Machar would fill in his absence.
According to senior government officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, the president is torn apart between leaving the country in the hands of his First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar, and assigning him to represent him in the regional and international conferences.
“The R-ARCISS has left his excellency in a crisis. At this point we can conclude that the peace agreement has officially arrested the president” Said the senior government official.
“He fears to leave the country to fulfill his presidential duties outside the country and at the same time he can’t afford to delegate Dr. Riek because he knows Riek is too eloquent to steal the show.” He further explains.
Another official, who spoke to our editorial team, calls the situation a “crisis within the peace agreement”, warning that it could explode any time.
“It is practically another crisis within the peace agreement. The president has found himself incubeting power like a hen would incubet her eggs. He can’t leave the country and he can’t send Machar either” Said a senior politician who wants to be identified as John Doe.
Asked of why the president is reluctant to leave the country, Hon. John Doe said the president has more than one fears.
“The first fear is that president Kiir would leave Riek Machar in charge in his absence, the second fear is that if he delegates someone else to act as the president in his absence that will openly violet the peace deal” Hon. John Doe said.
“The third fear is coup. President Kiir is a military man and his worst fear is a coup d’tat. Before and after December 2013, Kiir accused numerous senior politicians and military generals of attempting a coup on him in his absence and at some points he got locked down in J1, he couldn’t leave the country because he fears Riek Machar, Paul Malong, Oyai Deng Ajak, Majak Agoot or any other Garang boys could overthrow him in his absence” John continued.
Asked of why the president missed an important regional summit that is expected to discuss peace and stability in the region, and most importantly the crises in Sudan, Ethiopia, South Sudan and between Kenya and Somalia, Sudan and Ethiopia, another senior politician said it is normal for a president to assign any senior politician of his wishes to represent him.
“The president has a choice on whom to send to represent him, when and where as long as that politician would represent the views of the president” the senior loyalist said.
President Kiir has missed important events that include a peace celebration in the Sudanese capital in November where he was invited to preside over the ceremony by the Sudanese politicians as a special guest and the peace guarantor. He is currently also missing out in Djibouti.
President Kiir assigned the Vice President for Service Delivery Cluster, H.E. Hussein Abdelbagi Ayii, in the last minute to represent him in Khartoum and assigned Vice President for Gender and Youth Cluster, H.E. Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, on December 16 to attend the IGAD summit that commenced today in Djibouti.
While politicians question whether these assignments are observing the peace agreement or not, the president is being blamed for misusing his powers to assign just random politicians that do not have the know-how to address heated regional tension.
“The Summit in Djibouti is more about the governance in the region and less about economic and health. So the most senior politician that can represent the president in any case is Dr. Riek Machar Teny but also this is about the governance. For example the issue in Ethiopia is about the governance, the political interference in Somalia by Kenya is political and so is the issue in Sudan. So Riek would be the right person” John Doe continued.
“Why would you send Rebecca Nyandeng to such a political discussion? What does she even know about political issues in the region?” He questions.
“Besides, those hardliners in the region have bullied women in their countries to death. No body will bother to listen to Nyandeng de Mabior, this is a failed fail mission”. He added.
The senior politicians do not see any better excuse for president Salva Kiir to skip all his presidential duties outside the country other than his fear for his rival, Machar.
On the other hand, Machar’s supporters are also speculating that the First Vice President, who hasn’t traveled outside the country since February as well, is also serving a house arrest.
While the two leaders have remained in the country’s capital all this time, not a significant progress has been made on the implementation of the peace agreement either.