JUBA – South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir Mayardit has issued a presidential order granting amnesty to the leaders of the breakaway Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) faction and the Agwelek forces.
Though General Gatwech is the leader of the SPLM-IO Kitgwang faction and deputized by Olony, Olony maintains a separate force as the chairman and commander in chief of the Agwelek forces.
On Sunday, the two men signed two separate agreements with the Government of the Republic of South Sudan providing for the integration of their forces into the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces (SSPDF).
In a presidential order read out on the state-own South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC), Kiir pardoned Gatwech and Olony for waging war against the state throughout the seven-year-old conflict.
Gatwech and Olony have been members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition since the outbreak of the conflict, but the two men fall out with First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny in August last year over government failure to implement peace deal in letter and spirit.
They attempted to remove First Vice President Machar as the chairman and commander in chief of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army in Opposition leading to opposition infighting that has killed dozens of soldiers on both sides.
Last Sunday, they signed an agreement with the government of South Sudan in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, officiating a process to integrate their forces into the South Sudan People’s Defense Forces.