January 24, 2016 (JUBA) - The Jieng Council of Elders warned that reversing President Salva Kiir’s decree, which saw South Sudan divided into 28 new states from the constitutionally recognised 10 could instigate a new war, if not contained.
- President Salva Kiir Kiir with members of the Dinka (JIENG) Council of Elders. Its chair Ambrose Riny Thiik apprears to his right (Photo: Larco Lomayat)
"The council feels it would be unwise to reverse the order and advise the two parties to place the interest of the country above personal ambitions. The interest of the people should not be subjected to negotiation. The people are now watching and waiting what the two parties will say", said General Bona Bhang Dhol.
The Dinka council of elders is not a traditional group, but a self-appointed group comprising influential Dinka politicians and relatives of president Salva Kiir who advised him on how to run the affairs of the country in the interest of ethnic Dinka.
The group held an emergency meeting on Saturday at which it resolved a reverse of the order will have dire consequences if not properly handled.
"The position of the council is clear and would like the people to know. The council supports implementation of peace agreement because it is the desire of our people and therefore calls on the two parties to proceed with the implementation. The issue of more states is the desire of the people and should therefore be applauded. We call on the parties to respect the will of the people", said Dhol.
He warned that any attempt to reverse the order was capable of creating another war.
"The council feels that reversing the order which has been welcomed by the majority our people will not be accepted and this means another war. The council does not support war and therefore calls on the parties to abide by the desire and interest of the people", Dhol told Sudan Tribune Sunday.
Dhol is the closest and longest serving political ally of president Salva Kiir. He also comes from Akon Payam in Gogrial West county, where president himself hails.