Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has appealed to the leadership in South Sudan to work quickly through this transition period and organize free and fair elections which he says will be the ultimate cure for political instability that has dragged the country in a civil war.
Museveni said this Tuesday during a video conference held by Heads of State from IGAD member countries. The 37th Extraordinary Summit was chaired by Prime Minister of Sudan, Dr. Abdallah Hamdok.
The Heads of State discussed the implementation of the revitalised agreement on resolution of the conflict in the republic of South Sudan, challenges occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic on our economies, security and other regional matters.
“I congratulate the stakeholders in upholding the revitalised peace agreement of South Sudan,” Museveni wrote on his social platforms after the virtual Summit.
“I would encourage them to work quickly through this transition period with an aim to plan and hold free and fair elections as the ultimate cure for politically motivated instability by promoting accountability among leaders,” he added.
President Museveni also said he was happy to report that Uganda’s effort, in concert with the Regional Response Strategy has so far been able to test 226,000 people for coronavirus.
Only 1,040 of these having been found positive, with an impressive 984 recoveries registered and no deaths.
“The virus is still a big threat and I call upon member states to direct co-operation towards accelerating the diagnosis processes, developing anti-covid treatment and a vaccine,” he said.
This month, South Sudan marked 9 years of independence. However, it has been seven years since the start of a bloody civil war and two years since the parties to the conflict signed a peace agreement.
The transitional government was formed in February, but it took the former warring parties until June to nominate the states’ governors. Two of the 10 governors have yet to be appointed.
While the parties to the conflict have formed a new, unified government, the peace deal is yet to be fully implemented and millions remain displaced – nearly 1.7 million within South Sudan and more than 2.2 million as refugees in neighbouring countries.
Armed conflict continues between the government and non-signatories to the peace agreement in some areas, while in others, inter-communal violence fueled by competition over resources, easy access to arms and weak rule of law is on the rise.
On South Sudan’s independence anniversary this month, President Salva Kiir acknowledged that months of deadly inter-communal fighting threatens to rip the country apart.
He called on all South Sudanese to work for peace and reconcile communities whose social fabric has been “torn apart by war.”
“The phase of political violence is now behind us. Unfortunately, our success in ending political violence is now threatened by different sorts of violence. Inter-communal conflict is raging in different parts of our country. As a government we will not allow this to reverse our gains,” said Kiir.
Several hundred people died last month in a wave of attacks and counterattacks in Jonglei state.