By Lt. General Wesley Welebe Samson,
August 1, 2017(Nyamilepedia) —– On July 31/2017, the SPLA/M Army stationed at Lanyi went out and started looting food items from civilians, burning their houses and raping women. Upon receiving this information, the SPLA/M IO Division 9 “A” forces under the command of Major General Emmanuel Yangu attacked Lanyi garrison and after heavy fighting of two hours, Lanyi fell into the hands of gallant SPLA/M IO forces and eight of their soldiers has been killed, huge quantity of arms and ammunition captured in good condition, one military truck and one 14.5 totally destroyed. A rescue convoy which tried to come from Lui to Lanyi has also been totally destroyed. Lanyi town is now under full control of SPLA/M IO forces.
I extend my congratulations to the gallant SPLA/M IO Division 9 “A” commander and all his forces for a job well done. We SPLA/M IO forces will continue to defend the innocent civilians in all areas under our control and will fight in self-defense whenever any of our locations are attacked. I once again advise the Governor of Amadi State and his President Salva Kiir to stop looting of food, burning of houses and raping of innocent civilians who has nothing to do with this current war. I also advise Governor Ngere not to use food as a weapon by denying relief food distribution to SPLA/M IO controlled areas in Amadi State as this is against International Humanitarian Law and the law of armed conflicts. As I speak now, the whole population of Amadi State is still starving without food as Governor of Amadi State Joseph Ngere has stopped aid workers from taking relief supplies to areas controlled by SPLA/M IO, though we in SPLA/M IO have granted free movement to all humanitarian workers. As such, the innocent civilians, women, children and elderly persons are in urgent need of food, medicine, shelter, seeds and tools. I therefore appeal to UN to stop the governor of Amadi State from using food as a weapon and provide urgent relief food and medicine to the suffering population of Greater Mundri Counties/Amadi State. I also call upon the so called governor of Amadi State Joseph Ngere to resign as he has failed to render services to the people of his State. Instead, he is busy killing his own people by denying them food, medicine and shelter.
In a related development, SPLA/ M IO Division 2 “B” under the command of Major General John Mabier, captured government garrisons at Bamure and Jale in Kajokeji county on July 29, 2017 after government army attacked their locations. I extend my congratulations to the gallant SPLA/M IO Division 2 “B” commander and all our forces under his command for bringing Bamure and Jale under our control. It is worth mentioning that people of Yei, Kajokeji, Lanya, Bamure, Jale and Morobo are starving without food and are in urgent need of food and medicine. I appeal to international community to provide food and medicine to the suffering population in the above mentioned areas.
In light of the current crises and recognizing the fact that 2015 peace agreement is now dead, I would like to make the following recommendations as the way forward to end this war and bring lasting peace to South Sudan:-
- SPLA/M IG must recommit itself to immediate permanent ceasefire, agree to revive the peace agreement with full participation and inclusion of all warring and political parties and start a new genuine implementation of the signed Peace Agreement, beginning with the following points:-
- Total demilitarization of Juba
- Immediate deployment of Joint Integrated police to Juba town as per the signed peace agreement.
- Stop operationalization of the thirty two States with immediate effect and form a committee to look into this matter as per the previous IGAD Communiqué
- Immediate establishment of cantonment sites for all SPLA/M IO forces in Equatoria and other towns of South Sudan and provision of all needed logistics for them.
- Reconstitute the parliament and allow the Equatorians to choose a Speaker of their choice without any further manipulation and intimidation as stipulated in the signed peace agreement.
- Reconstitute/establish all institutions of governance as stipulated in the signed Peace Agreement
- Start reform process of all institutions of governance as stipulated in the signed Peace Agreement, beginning with Security Sector Reform.
- Recall all ambassadors, South Sudan Representatives to the United Nations and appoint new ones jointly with other parties as stipulated in the signed Peace Agreement, taking into account tribal, geographical and regional balancing.
- Allow immediate and speedy deployment of a regional, neutral protection force to Juba and other disputed towns in South Sudan, so as to facilitate quick return of the First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar back to Juba to assume his responsibilities and continue with the implementation of the signed Peace Agreement. Remember that, there will be no peace in South Sudan without full involvement and participation of Dr. Riek Machar and SPLA/M IO Forces under his command, since we control most parts of South Sudan.
- Remove military from all roadblocks and check points in the Country and replace them with new trained police, so as to allow free movement of goods and people in and out of the country.
- Lift the state of emergency and allow people leaving the country to go without unnecessary security investigation and clearance.
- Release all individuals who are arrested because of having connections with SPLA/M IO and order the security forces not to arrest, torture or kill any civilians or loot their properties.
- All those who have lost their properties be compensated so that they can rebuild themselves and start a new life.
- Let the military be withdrawn from the SPLA/M IO base at Jebel, so that this base can be rehabilitated before the return of the First Vice President and his forces.
- Dismiss the current so called First Vice President Mr. Taban Deng Gai as he is the real obstacle to any peace agreement and has no control over SPLA/M IO Forces.
- Increase and pay regular salaries of all government employees, who have now stayed six months without pay and are suffering with their families, instead wasting South Sudanese money to finance the war.
- Giving up on JMEC and IGAD due to their failure to bring peace in South Sudan, we SPLM/A-IO call on TROIKA, AU, EU, UN and the rest of the international community to quickly take over and support a new political process that will bring permanent ceasefire, lasting peace, dialogue and reconciliation. Peace is possible if the above mentioned/outlined steps and points are taken seriously by the government and the international community. Remember, South Sudan government will never defeat SPLA/M IO Militarily.
- In case all the above-mentioned points do not work, we will continue to fight for urgent regime change and formation of an all-inclusive interim or caretaker Government, which will lead the country to democratic elections, to allow all South Sudanese to choose a new leadership of their choice and save the country from total collapse. In conclusion, I call upon all opposition political parties and warring groups, civil society organizations and the entire public to unite and join hands with us, so that we can together push President Salva Kiir out of leadership and end the suffering of our people in South Sudan and refugee camps. Lastly, I call upon President Salva Kiir to immediately resign and leave the country, as he is not interested to bring lasting peace to South Sudan. I also call upon all people in government controlled towns to stage demonstrations and strikes against this government to demand for peaceful settlement of the current crises. The time for silent suffering must end. Kiir must go.
Lt. General Wesley Welebe Samson
Deputy Chief of Staff for Training
SPLA/M IO Headquarters
July 31, 2017