JUBA – A senior South Sudan government official has said that recent utterances by some senior members of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement for President Salva Kiir to resign in an apparent power struggle has resulted in the replacement of presidential affairs minister Nhial Deng Nhial.
Kiir on Saturday issued a republican decree removing Nhial and replacing him with former foreign minister and current presidential envoy Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin in what appears to be a power struggle between the two senior SPLM senior members.
This comes less than one month after former presidential advisor for military affairs and ex-deputy speaker of parliament Daniel Awet Akot said President Salva Kiir has failed and should hand over the leadership to Nhial Deng Nhial.
Days later, Kiir’s senior presidential advisor Kuol Manyang Juuk who once served as the country’s defense minister and governor of Jonglei reiterated the same failures, but ran short of calling on Kiir to resign.
Speaking to Sudans Post in an exclusive interview this morning, a senior government official allied to Nhial said the president was furious that Nhial did not publicly reject the calls for him to replace Kiir resulting in his removal.
“Cde Nhial Deng Nhial is a nationalists and does not in anyway support coup against an elected government,” the official who requested not to be named told Sudans Post in Juba on Sunday morning.
“But what has now happened is that the president has dismissed him because he did not rejected publicly the calls for Nhial to replace him. This is sad and is a bad precedent for the future if this country’s politics,” he added.