The Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Dr Martin Elia Lomuro, and his counterpart from the defence and veteran affairs, Angelina Teny, differed over the significance of the Troika and EU member states to the peace deal.
According to Dr Lomuro, South Sudan government is financially capable of stepping in to fill the finding gap if the two big boys opt against support the ceasefire monitoring bodies, like US had announced.
Lomuro said the people should worry about the withdrawal of support by the Troika and the EU to the security mechanism bodies that monitor the peace implementation.
The cabinet affairs minister said the government would not be deterred in its quest to extend the period as outlined in the roadmap due to the ill-will from some stakeholders.
“We have money. Yes, we have money for these agreements,” Dr Lomuro stated.
He made the remarks during a talk show hosted by Radio Miraya on Saturday.
Lomuro assured the citizens of the government’s commitment to holding an election at the end of the extended transitional period.
He further said “And we do not need all the budget for implementation of the agreement to be given to the committee. What we are saying is give us what we can implement in each month and move forward to the next one in the other month.”
According to Lomuro, in the previous fiscal year budget, each institution or ministry was required to include the agreement’s terms in its strategic plans and budget.
However, he said the approach did not work and now they came up with a different solution this time.
He said the government has established a higher-level standing committee with the duty of overseeing, assessing, and enforcing the implementation.
“That means we have authority to call on the ministers, the heads of institutions that are concerned with the various articles and provisions of the road map and say, my friend, you have only a number of these months, weeks, or days. Give us the real budget for the implementation of specific tasks,” he said.
He argued that the government’s decision to adopt the peace roadmap was sovereign and did not need the partners’ input.
“We are capable of taking decisions about the future of our country and our people just as they do in their own countries. They do not need to be informed. We have not informed them and we will not inform them. Their only job is to see the final document and exactly what they have seen now,” he said.
“These people are not South Sudanese. They have not signed the agreement. When they take decisions in their countries, they never consult with us. Let me be clear about this. It is a sovereign decision.”
He said South Sudan maintains diplomatic relations with the same bodies but that does not mean that they should interfere with the country’s internal affairs.
“We want an honest relationship, not a relationship that says if you do not talk to me or if I do not approve of what you are doing, I do not need it, and that itself is condescending.”
Nontheless, the Minister of Defence and Veteran Affairs, Angelina Teny, who was in the same talk show differed with Lomuro’s sentiments saying if the partners stop funding the security systems even the monitoring compliance and report on violations would not proceed.
“Let’s take the example, RJEMC reports violations and also support in trying to address some of the difficulties that parties encounter in the interpretations of the articles of the agreement. They report to IGAD, the AU, the Security Council, and parties and report to the cabinet of R-TGoNU. They need to maintain their independence,” she stressed.
Such arrangements, according to her, are funds that the country may not be able to provide. She believed it would be absurd for it to support RJEMC because they would be overseeing the same government.
“So, it is good for our international partners to support them so that they provide credible information as per what is happening in the implementation of the agreement.”
Teny added that the partners have done a lot, including allowing South Sudan to achieve its independence. She reiterated her call to the Troika to increase their assistance to continue going forward.
Last week, the EU and Troika which comprises the United States, Norway, and the United Kingdom issued a joint statement noting the recent decision to extend the term of the transitional government, but cautioned the government to use the funds at its disposal to fund the agreement.