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Senior Former Detainees member resigns amid pressure



Nyenagwek Kuol Mareng, a senior member of the former detainees (FDs), said she has resigned amid criticism of her role in the Independent Boundaries Commission (IBC).

Mrs Nyenagwek, who formerly served as information minister in the defunct Warrap state, made the announcement from neighbouring Uganda on Saturday.

She Said on Sunday that she decided to quit amid controversy over the way she represented the non-armed opposition group in the Independent Boundaries Commission (IBC).

The IBC, established pursuant to the revitalised peace deal, is tasked to settle the dispute over the number of states in South Sudan.

The body consists of 15 members nominated among the parties, supported by five experts nominated by the member states of the African Union High Level Ad Hoc Committee on South Sudan (South Africa, Algeria, Chad, Nigeria and Rwanda).

“They [FDs] are not happy because I voted for 10 states in the IBC. The initial position of the former political detainees on the number of states has been the return to 10 states,” said Nyenagwek.

Nyenagwek further said she resigned following “an abrupt change of political positions” within the former political detainees after the reunification of the SPLM party.

“I voted for 10 states because it was our position. Unfortunately, I found out later that the group decided to change the position without notifying me. They did not inform me that we are now one party after the reunification process and the position has changed to 32 states or more states,” she said.

“I was immediately replaced from my assignment but it is not the reason for my resignation. I feel there is a problem within the group and I came to the conclusion that I should distance myself,” she continued.

Nyenagwek urged the former detainees to put the country before their political fortunes, as South Sudanese embark on the implementation of the peace agreement.

“They want to put their interests above, and they told me frankly that they don’t have any interest in the 10 states. They said their interest is what appeases the government,” she said.

Nyenagwek further said, “I tendered my resignation to Deng Alor because I find myself as an alien”.

Mrs Nyenagwek joined the former political detainees in 2014.

The former detainees are a group of high level SPLM officials who were arrested after the outbreak of war in December 2013 and accused of trying to overthrow President Salva Kiir. They were later released due to lack of evidence and fled to Kenya. The former detainees, who do not command any troops, are part of the revitalised peace deal signed in September last year.

In May, three factions of the SPLM party announced the final reunification of the historical party which fractured into different groups after the civil war erupted in December 2013.

Those who announced the reunification process include the SPLM faction loyal to President Salva Kiir, another faction that calls itself the SPLM-IO which is led by first vice president Taban Deng Gai, and the former detainees led by former foreign minister Deng Alor.



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