May 20, 2013 (KAMPALA) – A South Sudanese rebel group, which recently signed a peace deal with the Juba government, claims the government of Sudan arrested some of its members and confiscated personal belongings, including cars and houses in the capital, Khartoum.
Gordon Buay, who identifies himself as the spokesperson of South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA), said the crackdown occurred on May 15, linking it to the decision by the group to abandon their rebellion and accept an amnesty offered by South Sudan President Salva Kiir.
Khartoum denies backing or assisting any rebels in South Sudan but the SSLA claim that their leadership was based in Khartoum with their armed forces in Sudan’s South Kordofan state before they crossed the two year-old international border into Unity state to accept the amnesty in late April.
“We are informing the international community, IGAD and the African Union that the Government of Sudan confiscated four houses, seven cars and detained four members of the families of the former rebel leaders”, the ex-rebels said in statement issued Monday.
Buay, described Khartoum’s actions as violation of international humanitarian law.
He also claimed the Sudanese authorities had placed one Lt. Gen. Gordon Koang Chol under house arrest and prevented him from leaving Khartoum for South Sudan to join the advance team of the rebel groups that signed the recent peace deal.
“Supporters of the rebel groups who reside in Khartoum are being prevented from leaving for South Sudan and the whereabouts of twenty five Nuer boys from Unity state is unknown,” claimed the rebel spokesperson.
The information that reached us confirmed that they were detained by the Government of Sudan National Security agents because they are supporters of the rebel movements that signed peace with the Government of South Sudan, Buay added.
He called on the international community to condemn what he described as “the illegal action the Government of Sudan had taken by confiscating personal properties of individuals and detaining family members of the rebel leaders who signed peace with the Government of South Sudan”.
No official statement on the allegations has, however, been released by the South Sudanese government and attempts by Sudan Tribune to reach the official spokesperson at the ministry of foreign affairs were unsuccessful.
The ex-rebel official claimed the “illegal” actions of the government of Sudan could jeopardise relations between the Sudan and South Sudan, which seceded from the north in 2011 as part of a 2005 peace deal.
Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article46639
May 19, 2013 (BENTIU) – Calm has returned along the county border between Koch and Mayom in Unity state when inter-clan fighting broke out between two branches of the Nuer ethnic group last week.
Thirteen civilians and eight police officers died in the fighting according to local officials.
Jageay Nuer residents in Koch county, including some government sources, accused Bol Mayak the Mayom commissioner of mobilising young men from his Bul Nuer ethnic group to attack their area and a police barracks in Buoth Payam [district].
The Mayom commissioner has denied the claims that he was anyway involved in the attacks. He questioned why he would mobilise young to attack members of South Sudan’s police force “my protectors”, describing the allegations as”false propaganda”.
Those linking him to the attack on the police station and killing of civilians were “trying to tarnishing his image in the community”, he said.
“Without my tireless effort to come down talking with people to stop the conflicts, this would have increase tension around which would have worsened current situation of calmness. I serious urge everyone to leave the responsibility to the government and there is no need our people kill themselves with issues of cattle raiding this will not happen I swear”, he told Sudan Tribune on Saturday.
The commissioners of Mayom, Koch and Rubkotna intervenes to help negotiations between the communities, Mayak said.
Commissioner Mayak urged all communities to campaign against cattle raiding, pointing out that he has arrested 51 accused of the vice since he was was appointed in January this year.
“My representation as the county commissioner does not mean to create problems but to implement the rule of laws that the republic of South Sudan mandated me for”, he added.
Commissioner Mayak added that calm had returned to the area the deployment of security forces and that he was sure the incident would not be repeated. He also said that he appreciated the efforts the Koch County commissioner in helping resolve conflict and bring calm to the area.
Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article46625
May 19, 2013 (JUBA) – The deputy chairman of the South Sudan’s ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), Riek Machar has warmed of a possible collapse of party, unless it democratically transforms and refocuses itself.
South Sudan vice-president Riek Machar (Reuters)
Machar, also the country’s vice president, told senior officials at the party’s general secretariat that the SPLM had “lost direction and vision”, making references to reports from various state secretariats across the country, which depicts the party was largely unpopular.
He however said it was incumbent upon the south-ruling party to change the status quo.
The vice president made these remarks Saturday during celebrations to mark the party’s 30th anniversary where he was invited to deliver a speech.
The party’s occasion took place two days after the army organized a similar event, at which Machar warmed South Sudan army (SPLA) to remain neutral in the ongoing political debates.
Last year, the SPLM dispatched its most senior members to various states and carried out a country-wide performance assessment based on the party’s policies and activities at the grassroots. However, results from these assessments shockingly showed the party had lost its sense of direction and vision.
Officials are now worried that the historical party may not win the upcoming 2015 elections, after it appears to have lost the confidence of the people as the country’s ruling party.
Many blame the party for alleged failure to deliver the much-needed service to the people, while other say the SPLM has performed below peoples’ expectations.
But the party’s deputy chairman stressed that there was need to transform the SPLM in order to refocus and become a viable political party capable of leading the country to prosperity.
Speaking at the same event, the government chief whip, Atem Garang, also highlighted the challenges facing the party and expressed the need to rectify them through transformation.
Atem heads the SPLM parliamentary caucus in the national legislative assembly.
In the process of transformation, however, the south-ruling party has been discussing its four basic documents, which include the constitution, manifesto, code of conduct and rules and regulations.
Primary elections at the grassroots are expected to take place and the elected members constitute delegates to the national convention scheduled for later this year.
Last week, a presidential advisor and widow of the late founder of the SPLM, Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, warned of what she said were “red lines” in the transformation process.
Nyandeng said it was important for the primary elections to take place prior to the convening of the convention.
Many senior party officials are also critical of the chairman’s favoured “show of hand” instead of the universal “secret ballot” voting mechanism during party elections.
Members are also critical of the chairman’s demand to handpick 5% of the candidates, saying this constitutes unfair competition, which can give him an upper hand against other contestants for chairmanship.
Senior party officials, including Machar criticised the president Salva Kiir, also the SPLM chairman, saying he has failed to provide guidance and vision.
Article source: http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article46630