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SPLM-FDs ratify South Sudan peace pact, call on holdout groups to join them

October 8, 2018 (JUBA) - The SPLM Former Political Detainees last Friday ratified the revitalized peace agreement and called on the non-signatories to join them saying they are aware that this "imperfect agreement" is a compromise that requires continuous improvement.

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FILE - South Sudan’s Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Kosti Manibe Ngai, at a briefing for the news media on April 20, 2013 in Washington, D.C. (IMF Photo/Cliff Owen)

The opposition group was more inclined to reject the revitalized agreement than to endorse it, but its negotiating team-led by Deng Alor struggled hard to convince those who in the past worked closely with President Kiir to approve it.

In a letter signed by Kosti Manile, the FDs informed the mediation of their decision to "ratify the R-ARCSS signed on 12th September 2018 with the observations under 2 and 3 above".

In the two paragraphs the group called on the peace partners to "genuinely commit themselves to end this senseless violence" pointing that this type of agreement, by definition, is a ceasefire agreement, collapse of the ceasefire inevitably means collapse of the peace pact, they stressed.

Several opposition groups split over the signing of the peace agreement. The holdout groups say the deal affects the national sovereignty and didn’t settle the root cause of the conflict.

The FDs said they understand the concerns of those who rejected the revitalized agreement adding they believe that an imperfect deal demands "continuous evaluation, adjustments and refinement" during the implementation process.

"It is possible to steer the course of implementation in such a way as to address these concerns satisfactorily going forward," they emphasized.

The former SPLM leadership members were struggling within the historical SPLM to achieve democratic reforms alongside Riek Machar and others before the eruption of the civil war in December 2013. But, they distanced themselves from Machar saying they do not support resorting to violence.