PRESIDENT KIIR In Addis Ababa for peace talks
President Salva Kiir Mayardit /file photo
By Opio Jackson
President Salva Kiir Mayardit yesterday traveled to Addis Ababa to discsus with the Ethopian Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed the need of peace in the country.
The Regional grouping IGAD has been helping to mediate and get South Sudan’s warring parties to agree again on power sharing and security arrangements.
However, last week several attempts to narrow the gaps between the positions of the parties by the IGAD mediators ended without a deal.
Speaking to the media in Juba, the Presidential Press Secretary Ateny Wek Ateny, said President Kiir will highlight Dr. Abiy Ahmed on the government position in the High-Level Revitilization Forum.
Mr. Ateny said that South Sudanese were in need of peace as such Kiir would like to urge the Ethopian Prime Minister to enusre that the process of High-Level Revitilzation Forum was speeded up.
Kiir is accompanied by the government Chief Negotiator and senior adviser, Nhial Deng Nhial, Information Minister Micheal Makuei Lueth, Minister of Petroleum Ezekiel Lul and other senior government officials.
This will be Kiir’s first visit to Addis Ababa since Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed took office following the resignation of Hailemariam Desalegn.
On Wenesday while adressing Journalists in Juba, Michael Makuei Lueth,the Governmnet Spokerpseron and Information Minister said the government was in total objection about the inclusion of Dr. Riek Machar in the future Tranistional Governmnet of National Unity.
He said the government wanted to maintain its status quo. “We have learned the hard way from Riek starting from the time of liberation struggle to 2013. Even in July 2016 he attempted to take over power by forec but unluckily he lost the battle,” Makuei said.
“If Riek wants to be the president, he should wait for the elections and when time comes he will be free to contest,” he said.
The government spokesperson has also dismissed the call for technocrat government by the opposition alliance saying every minister was a technocrat in his own field.
“I am a lawyer by profession and I am a technocrat in my own field and who will doubt my credibility and ability in my own field? Makuei questioned.
He said the call for a technocratic government by the opposition alliance does not hold water because everybody is a technocrat in his own field.
He said despite many compromises being made by the government, the oppositions group had never moved a single step in the attempt to bring peace in South Sudan.