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The SPLA-IO Chief of General Staff Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual has rejected his appointment as the presidential advisor.

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The SPLA-IO Chief of General Staff Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual has rejected his appointment as the presidential advisor for peace saying the position is not in the revitalized peace agreement.

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The appointment was announced on state-run television SSBC on Monday evening.

Speaking exclusively to Radio Tamazuj this evening, Gen. Gatwech unequivocally rejected the appointment saying, “I do not want it. I do not accept it.”

He stressed that unless the peace agreement is fully implemented he will not go to Juba. He has been stationed in the Magenis area along the Sudan-South Sudan border since the signing of the revitalized agreement.

“First of all, this post as peace advisor is not mentioned in the revitalized peace agreement. Secondly, I am still in the bush and I am not a government member. It is Doctor Riek Machar who went to Juba and took the oath of office and he began to drink the water of the country. Thirdly, our forces that have been taken to the training centers since 2019 up to now have not graduated. This is a delay tactic by the government in Juba,” Gatwech said. “They have given me such a big post but this is a delay tactic. If all my forces are graduated, police, prison service, and wildlife following the peace agreement, I will go to Juba. But if forces are not graduated, why should I go to Juba?”

The opposition general claims that he remains committed to the dictates of the 2018 agreement and nothing will distract him.

“I am not behind money; I am not behind any position but I am behind the right to fully implement the peace agreement. Something we agreed on and that is what I am following now,” he added.

Gatwech says he was not consulted by his party before the appointment.

He also denied having written a rejection letter circulating on social media saying, “This is my first public statement on this decision. No one has consulted me.”

However, the SPLM-IO Director for Information and Public Relations, Puok Both Baluong, told Radio Tamazuj after the appointment that Gen. Gatwech had been consulted and had accepted to take up the position.

“The decision to appoint General Gatwech Dual as peace advisor came after a series of consultations between President Kiir and First Vice President Riek Machar three months ago,” he said. During the consultations, General Gatwech had expressed his acceptance to the post of peace advisor.”

Both said they are yet to receive any response from the general regarding the recent appointment.

“Up to now, we are waiting for official procedures from the concerned Ministries to begin the process of how Gatwech can come to Juba to take the oath of office and assume his post. But as I said, he actually expressed his readiness to take up the post, and we have not heard yet from him if he has changed his mind about the post,” he concluded.

 

Source: Radio Tamazuj 

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