Dr. Riek Machar, the leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition (SPLM-IO), recently held talks with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Special Envoy to South Sudan, Dr. Ismail Wais, to discuss the peace process in the country.
The meeting took place in the capital, Juba, on March 7th, 2023, and was aimed at discussing the progress made in implementing the revitalized peace agreement signed in 2018 between the government of South Sudan and the opposition groups.
During the meeting, Dr. Machar and Dr. Wais discussed several key issues related to the peace process, including the security situation in the country, the formation of the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU), the integration of the SPLM-IO forces into the national army, and the implementation of the ceasefire agreement.
Dr. Machar expressed his concerns about the slow pace of the peace process, particularly regarding the formation of the TGoNU. He urged IGAD to exert more pressure on the government to expedite the process and to ensure that all parties are fully represented in the new government.
On the other hand, Dr. Wais commended Dr. Machar for his continued commitment to the peace process and his efforts to resolve outstanding issues. He assured Dr. Machar that IGAD is fully committed to supporting the peace process in South Sudan and will continue to work closely with all parties to ensure its success.
The meeting between Dr. Machar and Dr. Wais comes at a crucial time in the peace process, as the deadline for the formation of the TGoNU is fast approaching. The two leaders discussed the importance of meeting this deadline and ensuring that the new government is inclusive and representative of all parties.
The revitalized peace agreement signed in 2018 has brought hope to the people of South Sudan, who have suffered from years of conflict and instability. However, the peace process has been slow and fraught with challenges, including the failure to implement some of the key provisions of the agreement.
The meeting between Dr. Machar and Dr. Wais is a positive development and a sign of the continued commitment of all parties to the peace process. It is hoped that the talks will lead to concrete actions and progress towards the full implementation of the peace agreement.