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South Sudan News

AMBASSADOR EZEKIEL LOL GATKUOTH Defected

AMBASSADOR EZEKIEL LOL GATKUOTH, the former political detainee has defected to the SPLM In opposition; leaving his colleagues who chose to be third party in South Sudan peace talks. Ambassador Gathkuoth was accused with ten others of orchestrating a coup against president Salva Kiir Mayardit. He had served as  South Sudan ambassador to US beteewn 2005 to 2011. 

Although coup suspects arrested were eleven, it was only four including Gathkuoth who were charged in court for treason. In a surprise move the government of South Sudan dropped charges against the accused after four months of detention.  The four charged in court of law were Dr. Majak De Agoot, Paga'an Amum, Oyai Deng and Ezekiel Gatkuoth.


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                 Ambassador gatkuoth in Court defending himself against the charges


The above politicians joined rank after their released with seven other detainees who were released earlier under bail of Kenya. The eleven former detainees formed a position known as SPLM Leaders - third party to South Sudan peace talks.


SPLM leaders officially release Ambassador Gatkuoth to follow his conscience. The former minister of Justice John Lok said, "The meeting endorsed the request of Amb. Ezekiel Lol Gatkouth to join SPLM/A In-Opposition since this is his individual wish at this critical juncture in which the people of South Sudan are yearning for peace and democratic change. We trust that Amb. Ezekiel will pursue the struggle for just peace, democracy and justice in South Sudan and add political value to SPLM/A In–Opposition." Adding that "we can only wish him well in his new political endeavors".

The SPLM Leaders dismissed sentiment that they are getting weaken and probably divided in a press released seen by Daily Nation Mirror. "The SPLM Leaders remain solidly united and fully committed to the agenda of achieving peace, stability and democracy in South Sudan by peaceful means together with the other South Sudan stakeholders in the IGAD mediated Peace process". Press release stated.

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Breaking News: A Senior Politician, Uncle Toby Dies

JUBA, 27 June 2014 – A retired politician, uncle Toby died in the South Sudan's capital Juba on Wednesday, June 25, 2014 at Thongpiny. His remain was flown to his village via Wau airport for burial. He was a great politician who was highly admired at his time. The late hailed from Lou Ariik of Tonj North County, Warrap State. He was a son to a former Paramount Chief appointed by the British during the colonial period in Sudan. Toby Mawien Dies at 87. 

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Family of the late Toby carries his remain for burrial 

 

He was popularly known as Uncle Toby. Late Tobby was born in 1927; enrolled for his first formal education in 1936 at Longkap, a village. He later joined a school of clerk and account at the current Juba Commercial School and appointed as Chief Accountant in Thiet Rural Council upon his graduation.

 

Uncle Toby grew into politics and was elected to the national parliament in Khartoum from 1973 to 1977. He was among those few South Sudanese elites who participated in writing the Sudanese constitution that recognized the autonomy and self-government for the South

Sudanese.

 

Uncle Toby was later appointed as a commissioner for Tonj District from 1982 to 1984 before joining the South Sudan war of liberation in mid 1980's where he was a chief mobilizer for SPLA support; and later became an SPLA/M relieved officer when he joined community leadership at the SPLA - controlled areas.

 

Uncle Toby has left a heavy legacy behind.

Toby Mawien Ariik had been a successful leader both at home and in the national politics. Late Toby was married to nine wives; and survived by 40 direct children and a number of grandchildren. His 6th elderly daughter Kuei-Bileu Toby Mawien who has been taking care of him said, "I am very proud of my dad. He was a successful leader who has taken care of his large family of 40 direct children, his lovely 9 wives and a number of grandchildren. He took care of us and as well as the interest of our country."

 

Upon his returned to the village Uncle Toby established a number of bush schools in most of the SPLA controlled areas by 1994 and he was appointed as secretary to then Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Association (SRRA) in Akop Payam, directing relief foods and drugs to the affected areas.

 

Madam Kuei-Bileu said, "My dad has a very great legacy behind him. He loved education and he has supported and taught many people. We the children will make sure that his legacy is preserved and we must make more than he had done to help our people." Kuei-Bileu said his father has been sick for long time and was treated for diabetes in South Sudan and abroad. She added that his recent death was introduced by a shock when he heard that his two sons were killed in the village. "His son, the last born of the first wife died in the village and the only boy of the sister was also killed. When he learnt this he was abruptly shocked."

Anthony Agiemdit Akot, a Lou Ariik community elder, describes Uncle Toby as "Mawien Toby is very unique, eloquent and respected person among his colleagues and the whole of South Sudan." Agiemdit said, "Being known as son of paramount chief Ariik Mawien he gained a lot of fame among his colleagues and within his family."

The body was flown to Wau town on Friday 27 June, 2014 and was accompanied by a number of government officials, children and grandchildren. Uncle Toby will be laid to rest in village at Akok in Lou Ariik area of Warrap State.

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Kiir, Machar Warned on Fresh Fighting

The African Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC) has sternly warned the warring parties in the South Sudan conflict to put an end to hostilities, saying continued fighting was endangering efforts to restore sanity in the war-torn country. The statement came just hours after rebels loyal to Riek Machar announced the seizure of tanks, army vehicles and heavy artillery from retreating government soldiers.

SPLA recently denied reports that all soldiers in forward positions on the frontline had abandoned their positions before defecting to Machar's rebel movement. However, government said some soldiers had indeed defected due to delayed salaries which officials said is an "administrative matter that will be sorted out soon."

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The two warring principals Dr Riek Machar and Salva Kiir

AUPSC expressed "its deep concern that, in spite of the commitments made by the Parties, the Government and the SPLM/A in opposition have failed to meaningfully move forward the peace process and bring an end to the senseless killing of innocent civilians".

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Armed Opposition Boycotted Peace Talks

By Staff Writer:


South Sudan peace talks is postponed following Riek Machar's armed opposition boycott to fourth round of negotiation. Sources close to rebels say that civil society participation in Addis is the center of controversy. Armed opposition says selection of civil society was one sided and it does not represent them; therefore they want their own representatives from abroad and from the areas under their control to be broad in.

There had been debate among the members of civil society about who should go to addis to represent them. This comes following pressure mounted on both the government and armed opposition to include other stakeholders such as civil society, faith based organization and former detainees in the peace talks.

Taban and Nhial

Taban Deng, left and Nhial Deng, right

 

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UPDF, SPLA to Fight Armed Robbers

Uganda and South Sudan have issued a joint alert for traders and travellers, saying armed robbers continue to terrorise people along the Uganda-Juba highway. Since early June 2014, business communities plying the Yei – Yambio, Yambio – Wau road in South Sudan have registered incidents of armed robberies of their goods in transit and torching of their vehicles," reads part of the statement sent to Chimpreports on Wednesday afternoon.

"This is therefore to alert the general public that there are potential dangers along the Yei – Yambio, Yambio – Wau road and request them to take the necessary precautions until they are assured that security has been restored." The two governments explained that these security challenges have been confirmed by The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).

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The Uganda army is working closely with South Sudan to crush the armed robbers disrupting cross-border trade

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Upper Nile University: Lean us a Listening Ear


 
By Ariik Atekdit:  

The senior administrators of the Upper Nile University (UNU) urged the Government of South Sudan to lean them a listening ear. Speaking in Malakal, Prof. Yohannes Edward Odhok, stressed that the University’s infrastructure is a complete ruined and intervention of the government and well wishers is much needed. He urged South Sudan government to give listening ear so that the future of the students is safeguarded in the higher learning institution.

Professor Odhok is a deputy Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance in Upper Nile University. He said that “The institution is badly destroyed during the conflict”… and that “it needs the government, partners and donors to remain firm in helping the University to stand again after the devastating destruction of its Malakal Campus”.

prof cuirProfessor Isaac Cuir Riak - Vice Chancellor of Upper Nile University

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S Sudan leaders agree to form new government

President Kiir and rebel chief agree to form transitional government within 60 days in move hoped to end civil war. South Sudan's president and rebel chief have met in Addis Ababa in a bid to end six months of civil war, agreeing to forge a transitional government within a 60-day deadline, Ethiopia's prime minster says.

President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar met on Tuesday on the sidelines of a regional leaders' summit organised by the East African regional bloc the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), which is brokering the slow-moving negotiations.

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President Kiir and Riek Machar met only for the second time since the conflict begun in December

"They agreed to complete the dialogue process within the coming 60 days on what how, when and who... (for) the formation of the transitional government," Ethiopia's Hailemariam Desalegn said, after the rare meeting between Kiir and Machar.

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South Sudan: Interim Government without Kiir is a Red Line

By staff writer:

Interim government without Kiir is “unacceptable”, government of South Sudan warned. In a brief statement, the government through its twitter account said, “Dissolution of the National Legislature and a transitional government without Salva Kiir will not be allowed - this is a red-line.”

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President Salva Kiir Mayardit

The warning surfaces as the rebel leader, Dr. Riek Machar pushes for interim government without Kiir being its leader. Dr. Machar, led armed opposition against his former boss, President Salva Kiir in December 2013. President Salva accused Machar and his group of attempting to stage a coup against him. Machar deny attempting coup and instead accused Kiir of falsifying coup to silence his critics. Machar was South Sudan former Vice President but was fired by Kiir in July 2013.

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