Sudan: New Rebel Group Calls to Overthrow South Sudan Government

Photo: Jose Miguel Calatayud/IRIN
President of the government of Southern Sudan Salva Kiir Mayardit.

Juba — A new rebel group led by Peter Gadet Yak a former general of the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) called to overthrow Juba government and to form an interim cabinet formed by all the political parties in the nascent state.

The South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA) said, in a statement entitled (The Mayom Declaration) put out on 11 April, it is determined to bring down the government of Southern Sudan led by President Salva Kiir and to replace it by a "national broad-base government agreed upon by all the South Sudan political parties".

The Major General Peter Gadet, defected from Juba army last March and disappeared after receiving a permission to visit Nairobi. The SPLA said he travelled from the neighbouring country to Khartoum but the Sudan Armed Forces denied any support to his move.

The former SPLA commander air defence and deputy commander of division three joined the South Sudan Army after Juba Declaration signed on 8 January 2006 between Salva Kiir and Paulino Matip the leader of the South Sudan Defence Forces (SSDF).

The Mayom Declaration was signed also by Brigadier General Carlo Kol, Deputy Commander of Joint Integrated Units and Colonel Bol Gatkouth Kol a former member of the South Sudan legislative Assembly and a member of the SPLM.

The signatories reiterated their commitment to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) signed in 2005 between the SPLM and the central government led by the National Congress Party of President Omer Hassan Al-Bashir.

The leaders of the SSLA pledged to form a two-year "national broad-base government agreed upon by all the South Sudan political parties". The interim government, they said, will organise general election in the South Sudan to choose by ballot the Constituent Assembly. The elected parliament shall endorse a permanent constitution.

The dissident generals denounced the" miserable state" of the SPLA and the "rampant corruption on the top echelon of GOSS". They appealed on the South Sudan army officers to join them to overthrow the government of the ruling SPLM.

The rebel group pledged to take care of the army and to transform it into "a truly professional national army". They further put among their objectives to prioritise services delivery to the Southern Sudanese and to fight corruption.

Southerners voted overwhelmingly in favour of the independence of the semi-autonomous region in a referendum held last January in accordance with the 2005 peace agreement.

Analysts agree that the new rebel groups in the South Sudan are motivated by the rejection of the results of April 2010 elections as they say the vote had been manipulated by the SPLM. As it is the case of General General Athor who was candidate for the gubernatorial election in Jonglei state.

Others rebels like General Peter Gadet who integrated the SPLA after Juba Declaration say they are marginalized and allege that tribal nepotism dominates in the South Sudan army. The long statement said the SPLM leaders transformed the SPLA to "a party militia".

The SSLA did not allude to any link with the other groups who rebelled after April 2010 elections however the statement denounced the results of April vote saying "The noises of victory by the SPLM in the last elections in the South are preposterous and ludicrous".

They also accused the South Sudan ruling party of breaking the resolutions of the South -South dialogue conference on post-referendum arrangements saying the SPLM threw away "the last chance for the South to close its ranks".

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InFocus

New Rebel Group Calls for Coup in South Sudan

SPLA soldiers on patrol in Juba.

A new rebel group led by a former general of the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) has called for overthrowing the Juba government and forming an interim cabinet comprised of ... Read more »