Kiir, Machar to meet in Kampala in February to discuss elections – official
South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his first deputy Dr. Riek Machar Teny will meet in the Ugandan capital Kampala in February to discuss the ongoing disagreements on whether elections slated for end of the transitional period are to take place in 2023, a presidency official said.
JUBA – South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his first deputy Dr. Riek Machar Teny will meet in the Ugandan capital Kampala in February to discuss the ongoing disagreements on whether elections slated for end of the transitional period are to take place in 2023, a presidency official said.
Kiir has previously stated that the country’s general elections provided for in the revitalized peace agreement will take place in 2023, despite an opposition by important signatories of the revitalized peace agreement who argues that the security arrangements need to be completed to make a safer haven for elections.
First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar, who is also the leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO), has previously stated that he won’t participate in elections if the security arrangements provided for in the agreement is not completed.
He argues the unified security institutions, which are to be formed based on the security arrangements provision in the revitalized peace deal, would then be tasked to providing security for what is expected to be a heavily contested elections saying anything less than the unification of the rival forces won’t be accepted.
For her part, Vice-president for Youth and Gender Cluster Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior opposed the conduct of elections before the return of refugees who have stuck in neighboring countries saying they should first be resettled and then participate in the elections.
Speaking to Sudans Post this morning in Juba, a senior South Sudan government official at the presidency said President Kiir and First Vice President Machar have both received an invitation from Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to travel to Kampala for a retreat that he said is expected to discuss contentious issues such as elections and the security arrangements.
“H.E President Salva Kiir Mayardit and First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar have received an invitation to travel to the Ugandan capital Kampala for a retreat to discuss points of disagreements over the conduct of elections as stated by the parties in 2023,” the official who requested not to be named said.
“But I cannot confirm as to when the meeting will take place because the president’s schedule is very full but it will likely take place in mid-February or early March this year,” the official further said.
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