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South African Vice President in Juba for SPLM reunification talks


May 17, 2016 (JUBA) - South African Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, was in the South Sudanese capital, Juba, on Monday to try to push for speedy implementation of the peace agreement by the newly formed transitional government as well as reunification process of factions of the ruling party, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).

Cyril Ramaphosa (File photo Reuters)

Ramaphosa, who doubles as Special Envoy of President Jacob Zuma, met President Salva Kiir and First Vice President, Riek Machar, in separate meetings on Monday.

The visit of the South African Vice President is one of the efforts of regional leaders trying to reunify the three factions of SPLM-Juba, SPLM-IO and former detainees (FDs) ahead of 2018 elections in South Sudan.

But the specific objectives of the reunification deal remains unclear since three factions appear to have the same presidential ambitions, with President Kiir declaring he would contest the upcoming elections if the people decide he goes for another term in office.

Supporters of his main political rival and the First Vice President in government, Machar, also see him as an alternative leader to Kiir.

Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, widow of late founding leader of the ruling party, John Garang de Mabior and Pagan Amum, Secretary General of the divided party, appeared to have not yet given up, though there are clear signs of frustrations due to division of the party members, majority of whom have gone with Machar while the rest, specifically those serving their own interests, remain with the government.

The visit of Ramaphosa is one of the series of missions he undertook in the first year. In May last year, the three main parties to the peace deal agreed in Arusha, Tanzania, to reunite and review the contentious issues in their party constitution following the conflict in 2013.

In a statement, the South African government said the visit of their vice president would help consolidate unity within the ranks of the SPLM ruling party with a view of bringing lasting peace and stability in the country.

“Deputy President Ramaphosa working alongside the Secretary-General of Tanzania’s ruling party, Abdurrahman Kinana, have worked tirelessly for the restoration of unity of purpose within the ranks of the SPLM as a precursor to the creation of peace and stability in the country and formation of the unity government in Juba,” partly reads a statement posted on the official website of the South African government.


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  • 18 May 2016 11:48, by Ayuen deng

    African leaders have a lot of work to do in South Sudan due the agreement which was sign last year because if they really need a peaceful South Sudan then the SPLM/Io or Detainees have option of forming their Political parties and show how credible they are to People South Sudan then sticking around SPLM Mother for nothing because the only tool presidency are the people of South Sudan not SPLM.

    • 18 May 2016 20:54, by Kenyang

      I agreed. Riek joined SPLM/A many years after it was formed. If he doesn’t like it and wants to be an alternative, he needs to form his own independent party away from SPLM instead of these rebellions.
      He had good lesson this 2nd round, he’ll be dead next round.

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