JUBA – South Sudan opposition commanders of the so-called SPLM/A-IO Kitgwang are likely to split over disagreements over objectives of the group with General Johnson Olony, the designated deputy head of the group, reportedly opposing all initiatives taken by General Simon Gatwech Dual to organize the movement, sources with direct contacts with the two leaders have said.
General Simon Gatwech Dual and Olony split from First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny in early August, but apparent lack of coherent agenda for the group has reportedly kept the two commanders apart as General Johnson Olony said during an interview with Radio Tamazuj this morning that he was not part of most of the decisions being taken by Gen. Gatwech.
Speaking to Sudans Post from the Sudanese capital Khartoum, an SPLM-IO diplomat allied to Gen. Simon Gatwech said General Johnson Olony and Gatwech are not in good terms regarding how the opposition faction should be run, with General Johnson Olony in favor of excluding politicians in the movement and immediate return to Juba.
“There are number of issues that are still pending between the two leaders. General Simon Gatwech Dual is for the full organization of the SPLM/SPLA (IO) of the Kitgwang faction, but to our surprise, General Johnson Olony is against that and is not for the organization of the movement because we cannot go to Juba just like that,” the opposition diplomat who requested not to be named told Sudans Post from Khartoum.
“The other thing is that Olony does not like politicians and this is hampering the situation within the movement. The SPLM/A (IO) is a military opposition group that aims to bring change in the Republic of South Sudan unlike Riek Machar who surrendered himself to the regime in Juba and that’s why we should accept politicians. No movement is run without politicians because they are the people who will design the group’s foreign policy and political program,” the official said.
When contacted by Sudans Post, SPLA-IO Kitgwang spokesman Gen. William Gatjiath Deng claimed that General Johnson Olony is in good relationship between General Simon Gatwech Dual and that he has conducted any interview with Radio Tamazuj saying some people are dragging the two opposition leaders to misunderstanding each other.
“They don’t have any problem and the reason behind the cancelling of the conference is merely because of financial issues and has nothing to do with other things. Again, I don’t thing where Radio Tamazuj brought that interview, General Johnson Olony has not spoken to any media house since the Kitgwang declaration and so, this interview should be disregarded because it does not come from General Johnson Olony Thabo,” the official said.