South Sudan’s key donors on Wednesday urged officials in Juba to retract what they termed as reckless statements on regime change attributed to senior official.
“Britain, Norway and the United States wish to express their shock at the unfounded allegations made on Jan. 13 by an SPLA spokesperson against the Troika (peace guarantors),’’ they said in a joint statement.
“There has never been, nor is there now, any question of our governments seeking to undermine those leading the country,’’ it said.
This came after the South Sudan Army (SPLA) Acting spokesperson, Santo Domic Chol, issued a statement accusing the three countries of plotting a regime change with rebel officials.
“On Jan. 3, international and indigenous anti-peace elements composed of members from U.S., Britain and the rebels represented by former SPLA Lt. Gen. Bapiny Monytuil Wejang, held a meeting in Nairobi to plan ways for regime change in South Sudan,’’ Chol said.
Mr. Monytuil, a former SPLA deputy Chief of Staff broke ranks with the army and has since denounced the Salva Kiir-led regime in Juba.
The peace funding countries called for retraction of the statements.
“Given our historic support to the people of South Sudan and our ongoing investment in the effort to restore peace and revive development, the Troika deeply regrets that the government did not respond positively to our request that this reckless and inaccurate statement be publicly retracted,’’ said the donors.
The Troika countries, with the regional body Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), were responsible for brokering the now fragile peace deal signed in 2015 between the warring parties.
“The Troika has welcomed the announcement of a National Dialogue and looks forward to seeing a process which supports the Peace Agreement which is genuinely inclusive of all parties which are ready to contribute to the future of this country,” it said.
“This process can only take place in conditions of peace and we urge all parties to press forward with a real ceasefire.
“The Troika also looks forward to the deployment of the Regional Protection Force as mandated by the United Nations Security Council,’’ the statement further said.”