Where is peace?

The latest visits of the Foreign Ministers of Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to the South Sudanese capital, Juba aiming to check on the issue of the peace implementation is commendable. Although their plan has come-in a bit late, I still believe the move is good and encouraging.

I hope their visit will produce positive results towards achieving a permanent peace in the country. The motive of the Council of Ministers which includes the Sudanese Foreign Minister is to seek for possible measures necessary for the revitalization of the peace agreement on the resolution of the conflict signed in August, 2015 by the President of the Republic and the leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO), Dr. Riek Machar.

Some weeks back, the government reiterated its refusal on the idea of renegotiating the Peace Agreement signed in 2015. But one of the delegations from the Foreign Ministry who came to Juba spoke out clearly that the idea or the concept of renegotiating the Peace Agreement is not part of their plan. Their plan is focusing about inclusivity so as to end the war in the country.

Recently, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveniof Uganda put a great effort by reuniting the SPLM Group headed by Kosti Manibe and Mama Rebecca Garang De Mabior with the SPLM in Government. When

Mama Rebecca, Widow of the Late Dr. John Garang, was interviewed by Voice of America (VOA) about her coming to Juba, she said she would not come back to Juba if all the oppositions leaders staying abroad or in diaspora do not come first. Her message or statement through the interview in terms of peace is meaningful and understandable.

She is right because peace without inclusivity will not be a real or truthful peace. Frankly the peace which was signed in 2015 has not pleased the majority due to an ongoing political and economic crisis all over the country.  Our people are not excited because the renewed conflict which started in July 2016 has increased the frustration of many Southerners about the color or shape of political situation.

The government has been saying that a positive progress has gone in the process of the implementation of the Peace Agreement. But the majority of the people have not ripped the fruits of the peace signed by President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar simply because the deal has neither ended the crisis in the country nor the economic woes facing the nation.

One of the partners who had signed the deal which we assume will bring an end to the 2013 conflict erupted in the country is no longer in South Sudan. Where is the peace we are talking about if inclusivity remains a business of discussion without implementation?

I have praised the ongoing process of the national dialogue which aims at supporting peace in the country. But will the national dialogue be successful if the love for peace is not materializing politically?

There are enemies of peace. More positive political assignment is needed to convince the enemies of peace from within. I don’t think President Salva Kiir alone or with Taban Deng Gai, the first vice President will struggle to end the conflict. Peace needs our collective support, thoughts and positive politics.

I remember when we first celebrated the announced independent state of South Sudan in 2011 at Dr. John Garang Moseleum, most of the crowded people were jubilant, saying peace and freedom has finally come. But where is peace now?  Where is that previous excitement for freedom? Does it still exist?

If we accept the deadline of the Peace Agreement to be pushed further without serious acceptance of true peace by putting unhelpful things aside, the country will not be stable politically and economically.  We don’t want South Sudan to be a free booting country where political mess is the game in the system.

The readers should not confuse about the writer’s full name, the abbreviation M. is for Mogga

By Omuno Mogga Otto

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