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December 14, 2018

KIBII: South Sudanese should now own the peace agreement

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (R) talks to South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar as they sign a cease fire and power sharing agreement with in Khartoum, Sudan August 5, 2018. /REUTERS
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (R) talks to South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar as they sign a cease fire and power sharing agreement with in Khartoum, Sudan August 5, 2018. /REUTERS

While the parties in the South Sudan conflict signed a peace deal last week, there is still skepticism on whether it will be honoured.

Speaking prior to the signing, David Shearer, the head of the UN Mission in South Sudan, said: “With the signing of this revitalised agreement, we should publicly acknowledge it is but one step on the road to peace, but one which lays the foundation for all that follows.”

UK ambassador Chris Trott said: “We remain concerned about the parties’ level of commitment to this agreement.” AFP reported that he spoke for the Troika bloc, which also includes Norway and the United States and provides key funding to the peace process.

“The Troika is committed to peace in South Sudan. But in order to be convinced of the parties’ commitment, we will need to see a significant change in their approach,” Trott said.

Since the war began, regional and international friends have invested a lot of time and resources in the South Sudan peace deal. Not much progress seems to be made. And while thousands of South-Sudanese nationals face the full force of this silly conflict propagated by two ignoramus and self-centered individuals, the rich are living large in posh estates and top hotels in Kenya and abroad, driving Range Rovers and Land Cruiser V8s.

UNHCR estimates that about 616,000 Sudanese refugees are in the neighbouring countries, with the majority of them in Ethiopia while others are spread across Uganda, Sudan and Kenya. Women in displacement camps have been raped, while not less than 1.6 South Sudanese are internally displaced. A lot of human atrocities have been committed.

Instead of enjoying their sweet independence, gained by blood and thin sweat, about a third of the population, which equals about four million, is facing what the United Nations Security Council in July 2014 described as the worst food insecurity in the world and could die as a result. The crass Sudanese’s political class has let the violence claim more than 10,000 lives. Quite irresponsible, inhumane and dullard of them!

I don’t expect the political class in South Sudan to implement this deal to the letter and spirit. More are likely to continue suffering and dying. Still, external intervention will not solve the underlying political and ethnic problems, albeit, the people of South Sudan have an opportunity to say enough is enough! They need to put their arms down, hug each other like they did on the night of their independence and own their country.

They need to get rid of such leaders that have taken advantage of their diversities and differences for their own selfish interests and greed for power for this long!

 

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