By Justin Ambago Ramba | United Kingdom
August 14, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — South Sudan is likely again to miss on the 17/08/2015 peace deal deadline, if the IGAD-Plus becomes complacent over what took place in the recent Kampala meeting of the ‘Front-line States’ on Monday August, 10th, 2015.
Indeed Museveni’s plan to manipulate very important parts of the served IGAD-Plus Compromise Agreement proposal could prove quite detrimental to the future of War and Peace in South Sudan.
Unfortunately this latest move has already marked a sad reversal to the Old IGAD and its dubious ways of conducting business, and this uncalled for move in Kampala is working to the exclusion of the newly added members to the Peace Initiative whose inclusion earned the new process the name of IGAD-PLUS!
Reports by the Chief mediator, Ambassador Seyoum Mesfin seems to hint that the Ugandan dictator has managed to hoodwink the so-called “Frontline-States” into accepting many major amendments to the original IGAD-Plus Peace Proposal by introducing the following alternations:
‘No demilitarization of Juba. No Power SHARING in the three regions but only at the national level and leaving the SECURITY arrangement to be considered by army generals from Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia and Sudan’
Should this be true, then it confirms the long suspected conspiracy theory suggesting a premeditated plan architected by none other than Museveni who eliminated late Dr John Garang de Mabior in the dubious plan crash just to have a free hand in the affairs of this Oil rich country.
It will be a ‘back-stabbing’ should the four so-called “Frontline Countries” chose to conspire against the people of South Sudan through the manipulation of the current IGAD-Plus Peace document which is certain to dishonour the set deadline of 17/08/2015.
Thus to keep silent on this ill-intended and ill-timed manipulation of the original Compromise Agreement Document is not only to condone the spread of the brutal war all across South Sudan and the region, but also to be a party to the conspiracy that offers to create an ideal circumstance that will enable these countries a free hand to plunder the immense resources of this country as once witnessed in the D. R. Congo.
Who out there doesn’t know that continuing the war is the ‘Arch-devil’s’ strategy to subsequently drag the country under the blanket of instability which can then be used by its ruthless agents to loot South Sudan of its natural resources.
The world cannot afford to turn a blind eye when the same Museveni conspires to drag South Sudan to the path of irreversible destruction as he once did in Eastern D.R. Congo some few years ago under the same disguise of so-called “Front-line countries” until his troops found their foothold in that resource rich part of the world and the rest was history.
Whatever this Museveni is to the Western countries’ interests in the war against terror, it shouldn’t be allowed to be a ‘carte blanche’ for him and his UPDF to first occupy, then control and steal at will whichever part of the African continent they manage to put their hands on!
The rational expectation all peace loving people of the world should stand with is for the IGAD-Plus members to stand their rightful grounds by rejecting those incompatible amendments carried out by the so-called “Front-line States” to the Compromise Peace Agreement document.
They (IGADPlus) should stand firm to the original document they already served to the various stakeholders, lest the poor people of South Sudan who have for a long time been at the receiving end of all kinds of atrocities brought about by countless civil wars are completely wiped out of existence.
Not too long the whole world’s hope for peace in South Sudan was reinvigorated by President Obama’s tough stance when he spoke in Addis Ababa about the possibility of a Plan ‘B’ should the warring parties fail to meet the 17/08/2015 deadline.
However while the US President’s intention was and is still to put pressure on the belligerent sides to negotiate in good faith and put the interest of their country and people above everything else, here comes the crazy Museveni with his devilish plans to derail all these efforts just to satisfy his sick ego and prove to his followers how non-conforming he is to what he prefers to call a ‘Whiteman’s decision’.
Without the least doubt this infamously known ‘Arch-devil’ of the Great Lakes region, and self-perceived life President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has ruled Uganda for the last two decades since his rebel movement, the National Resistance Movement/Army (NRM/A) overran the country and seized power on 29 January 1986.
As power greedy as he is, Museveni sees South Sudan as his natural backyard where he doesn’t need permission to extend and exercise his rule.
With his long held expansionist interest in the region Museveni hopes to use the current instability as a pretext to extent his rule into South Sudan which his new amendments to the Peace document will not only derail the peace talks, but hopefully also it will enhance and guarantee for him a new role in the so-called “US-Plan B-2” in South Sudan.
The Plan “B-1” being of course what US President Obama and the rest of the international community are likely to declared as the way forward once the 17/08/2015 is missed, and needless to explain is the “Plan B-2”, which is what Museveni plans to secure as a continuation of UPDF’s role in the region.
Let no one under estimate the fact that this new amendment to the IGAD-Plus Peace document if left unchecked by rest of the IGAD -Plus members and their representatives, will go down in history as the one single act that finally discarded any chances of a peaceful settlement in South Sudan.
Nonetheless should the peace process be faced with yet another deadlock, the peace loving people of South Sudan will never forgive Museveni for his repeated insistence to meddle in their country’s internal affairs.
Furthermore there is the likelihood of this to generate a bitter sentiment against IGAD. Let’s not forget that although Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda are indeed members of this regional body known as ‘IGAD’; however they are not the only countries in this regional body to over assume positions which will probably come back to haunt the very future of any peaceful co-existence in the region.
It is for this simple reason that, they (Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan & Uganda) shouldn’t assume that by renaming themselves as “Front-line Countries” they can thus ignore the input of the other IGAD member states.
Again for clarification purposes, the Peace Process for South Sudan has long bypassed the domain of the so-called “Front-line Countries” and even the IGAD itself. Analysts have since produced abundance of evidence to suggest that these countries have long compromised their roles due to their proximities to illegitimate regime in Juba, than they are to the other SPLM/SPLA –In Opposition and the other political opposition groups.
The lack of neutrality and objectivity from the side of the four so-called ‘Front-line countries’ remain central to why the negotiations have moved from the IGAD only mediation to the current IGAD-Plus.
This new mediation body which comprises of the traditional but largely compromised IGAD member states (Sudan, South Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia and Djibouti), is also shared by representatives from five other African countries (South Africa, Tanzania, Chad, Algeria and Nigeria), the UN, the AU, The EU, China, the Troika of USA, UK and Norway giving it a clear international composition.
If there’s anything that must stop while the peace loving people of the world seek a peaceful settlement to the Civil war in South Sudan, it is to immediately stop this irresponsible habit of ‘Forum Shopping’.
What ‘Forum Shopping’ does is that it enables anti-peace sides in the conflict to abuse it as their last minute resort to derail whatever prospects of peace are there!
All eyes are now once again on the IGAD-Plus in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to foremost guarantee that member states do not unilaterally go around introducing alterations to the originally proposed peace document without going back to seek the approval of the rest of the IGAD-Plus Members.
The only draft document likely to become a true nucleus for peace in South Sudan remains the original IGAD-Plus Compromise Peace Agreement document that encompasses demilitarisation of Juba the capital of South Sudan and one of the sites that witnessed the worst massacres in the ongoing civil war.
The other important issues are Federalism; wider power sharing at all levels of government and a negotiated security arrangement among other things among others like the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) etc….
The people of South Sudan have had enough of this war and any attempt to use “behind the door” introductions of dubious amendments to the draft as the one claimed to have taken place in the infamous meeting of the so-called “Frontline States” in Kampala, will obviously be a clear recipe for disaster.
We want peace on 17/08/2015; however irresponsible amendments like the ones brought about by dictator Museveni are likely to widely open the doors of the region to yet another round of major instability and humanitarian sufferings of the most untold scales. So can something be done to fend off Museveni’s meddling hands and save South Sudan from another round of brutal warfare, disease and possible war related famine?
Author: Dr Justin Ambago Ramba – SPLM/SPLA – In Opposition – Representative in United Kingdom. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org