Sept 19, 2014(Nyamilepedia) — The multi-stakeholders roundtable peace talks began on Tuesday outside the Ethiopian’s capital, Addis Ababa.
The talks, which stalled several times in the last nine months, were moved to Amhara province’s capital, Bahir Dar.
In Bahir Dar, the barely surviving mediation kicked off with stakeholders’ consultation with IGAD following disagreements over the protocol that was briefly introduced in the fifth phase.
In the consultation, IGAD, has announced that the protocol is the agenda of the 6th phase and it cannot be changed. Instead the stakeholder will only be allowed to negotiate and improve the listed principles.
The mediators warn the stakeholders that whoever does “not accept this protocol and what the head of states are saying will be deal with by the region.”
The protocol has been signed by the IGAD heads of states and Salva Kiir, and the bloc is currently pursuing Dr. Machar to sign the document:
“IGAD is talking to Dr. Riek Machar to convince him so that he signed the protocol”
The regional mediators have made it final that the bloc will take measures to restore peace in South Sudan. However, it is yet to be verified if the region is willing to impose sanction on the newest state.
IGAD has further reiterate that the African Union do not accept any unconstitutional change in Africa, and instead requested SPLM/SPA-Resistant Movement to ask for bilateral talks with SPLM-Juba.
IGAD recommends that the civil society groups should persuade the SPLM-IO to change their position and sign the protocol.
The regional bloc further recommends that the Faith-base group should intervene and inquiry from Juba why the political opposition were stopped from coming to the Peace Talks.
South Sudan Government (SPLM-Juba);
The government delegation has accepted the protocol and its principles, and believes that the document is final and the agenda for the sixth phase since it was approved by Salva Kiir.
- Protocol is the final document and agenda for this phase. This protocol was signed by the president, discussed and passed by the council of ministers and adopted by the parliament.
- We are here to negotiate base on this protocol and agreed principles.
The SPLM/SPLA-IO reiterates that they will only negotiate the principles that were agreed in the multi-stakeholders roundtable format, or else negotiate only the leadership of the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGNU) if IGAD insist on its protocol.
The SPLM-IO maintains that, as agreed by the thematic committees, the TGNU would compose of a ceremonial President and an Executive Prime Minister who is the head of government and head of National Security Council (share powers) with no deputies.
Former Political Detainees (SPLM-FPD):
The SPLM-FPD rejects the protocol on the basis that it is not a win-win agreement and further on the ground that it complicates than resolving the conflict.
The former detainees are not interested in positions but sustainable, just, comprehensive and lasting peace in South Sudan; however, they are looking forward for a realistic and win-win approach.
CSOs &Faith Base.
The Faith Base and Civil Society Groups agree with the SPLM-IO that the negotiation must commence from where it was left off in the thematic committees in 5th round.
The groups believe that the IGAD protocol, known as “agreed principles”, favors one side of the conflict and ignores all the efforts that were invested by in the thematic committees to mediate what is in public interest of South Sudanese people.
The thematic committees recommend that IGAD should persuade the government delegation to agree with the thematic committees or add their portion to the document.
In parallel report, Deng Athuai, who survived an assassination plot last month in Juba, sent a new list of civil society delegates to IGAD and asked IGAD to replaced members of civil society who were already accredited by the IGAD mediation Team. IGAD rejected the new list of the civil society (Juba Group).
The political parties delegate, led by Dr. Lam Akol, were prevented by the SPLM-Juba security at the airport.
Instead the government has drafted and presented a new list of political parties’ delegates to replace the already accredited political parties’ delegates to the Peace Talks.
IGAD has turned down the new list and said they will write to SPLM-Juba to allow the political parties delegation to join the talks.