Juba dismisses UN warning over Machar sacking

Information minister Samuel Makuei said the nomination of Gen Taban Gai Deng to replace Dr Machar was the business of the opposition and not the government.

“This issue is something which has nothing to do with the government, it is the SPLM-IO that has decided to appoint Taban Gai Deng to act in the absence of Machar,” Mr Makuei was quoted saying byEye Radio in Juba.

The UN, however, maintained that the decision to sack Dr Machar was a violation of the peace agreement.

“Any political appointments need to be consistent with the provisions outlined in the peace agreement,” the UN statement reads. The peace agreement says in the event that the post of the First Vice-President falls vacant during the transition period, for any reason, the replacement shall be nominated by the top leadership body of SPLM-IO.

Dr Machar was appointed to the post in April after nearly two years of fighting between his supporters and President Salva Kiir’s forces.

Dr Machar fled Juba again on July 11 due to latest flare up between the rival forces.

On Monday evening, President Kiir’s office said the decision was made within the law because the nominating organ; former rebels, had said Dr Machar who held the position had absconded duty.

In a sign of deepening crisis within the government in Juba, President Kiir said the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army-in-Opposition (SPLM-IO) wrote to him advising a replacement as is required by the peace agreement the two sides signed.

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by Joseph Oduha

Photo Credits: AFP