Machar’s defecting groups could jeopardize peace deal: IGAD warns

IGAD Executive Secretary, Dr. Workneh GebeyehuIGAD Executive Secretary, Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu
Negotiating body in charge of restoring a lasting peace in South Sudan, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) a regional body that mediated the 2018 peace has issued a substantial warning and heavily concerned by the splintering of Machar’s umbrella, Sudan People’s Liberation Movement /Army in Opposition could interfere and derail the smooth implementation of the 2018 peace deal in south Sudan.
Last week, SPLA-IO clashed at Magenis leaving over 30 soldiers dead and injuring many, the group of top opposition commanders led by former SPLA-IO chief of staff  Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual accused Machar of nepotism and lacking strong leadership as they claimed to have ousted the Machar leadership few days ago.
Addressing journalists, the visiting IGAD Executive Secretary, Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, said the SPLA-IO infighting pose fears of a possible spillover effect on the fragile peace deal.
The executive secretary further voiced his concerns saying “The issue of SPLA-IO is an internal party issue but according to the peace agreement signed by all signatories, SPLA-IO is one of the major signatory, if something happens to that signatory, in one way or another, it will affect the peace process, it is not only an issue of one party, it is the issue of south Sudanese and also a regional issue,”
He pledged his commitment saying “We encourage this thing (conflict) be resolved internally, that will be the best way to solve this issue, if not it could have spillover effect on the peace process,” according to the Executive Secretary, a concern over the slow implementation of security arrangements continue to worry the regional bloc.
In regards to the 2018 peace agreement, the unified forces  composed of opposition and government armies were supposed to be graduated before the end of the pre-transitional period which ended in February last year with Machar’s appointment as First Vice President and to be honest, little have changed and a lot yet expected from the implementation of the peace agreement.
Share the news