COMMAND -Gov’t 60, opposition 40￼
By Yiep Joseph/ James Atem Kuir/ William Maduok Garang
Government and opposition parties yesterday agreed to end the long-running deadlock over sharing of ratios within the military command structure, paving way for the graduation of unified forces.
The parties finally strike a deal to share responsibility within the unified command by60:40ratiofor government and opposition respectively under the mediation of the regional bloc, IGAD on Sunday after days of political tension in Juba.
“The responsibility-sharing is 60 to 40 percent for government and opposition parties respectively. The opposition will divide between 40 percent allocation and in that case, the SSOA got one position in each of the seven (security) sectors,” said Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro, Cabinet Affairs Minister at the State House, J1 yesterday.
DrLomuro stressed that “We will graduate the forces within this week.”
The 2018 peace agreement provides for the unification of forces from government and opposition groups to serve as the national army. However, the parties have been unable to graduate forces whom they sent to training centers in 2019 due to a lack of agreement on how many command positions each group should have.
The opposition had earlier proposed 50:50 ratio sharing but the government refused the formula saying it was disproportionate.
While addressing the media yesterday, Tut GatluakManime South Sudan Security Advisor said that the parties finally inked the agreement on security arrangement.
“Today Juba City witnessed a historic move in implementation of the peace agreement, today we have finalized security arrangement of all the forces that exist in contentment sites to be graduated and for the second batch to be taken to contentment sites for training,
“One week from now, we are going to release the timetable for the graduation of unified forces and for the second batch to be cantoned [for training]. at this juncture, we appreciate the government of Sudan, and Sudanese deputy chairman of the sovereign Council, Mohamed HamdanDagolo and the Sudanese chairperson of the sovereign council for their effort in implementing a peace agreement in South Sudan,”
“Today we have a unified army command structure in all positions, in the security sector, we have divided the cake with our partners in peace and the most expensive thing is peace, peace has a heavy price and we have to agree on it so that country will have peace and stability
Meanwhile, MartinAbucha, the Representative of SPLM/A IO said that peace is about security and there is a need for South Sudan to move forward.
“Today we have moved forward to reach an understanding of how we shall implement chapter two of the agreement. The people of South Sudan are yearning for peace, peace is about security, and today we have made a milestone in that we have agreed and we have signed an understanding that we shall move forward
“the most important thing is not only the signing but the implementation of this article, we must implement what we said. The people of South Sudan expect us to do that,”
‘But most importantly, we must recognize the importance of the Republic of Sudan by His Excellency the Deputy chair for the supreme Council of Sudan, Mohamed HamdanDagolo who facilitated this meeting
“The most important thing is that we all must recognize peace, the guns must go down the silence of guns is most important to peace. We cannot continue to fight when we are talking peace in Juba,”
However, Yasin Ibrahim Yasin, Sudanese Minister of Defense said that the agreement is in favor of all parties.
“This proposal has come fully and harmonious and thanks God, it was signed by all the parties to the agreement in regard to relinquishing of army positions and it was agreed on as a roadmap or as a timetable for implement what has been agreed on by parties in this proposal”