The Independent (Kampala)

5 January 2014

Uganda: Text - Minutes of Historical SPLM Meeting in Rumbek 2004

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There are several other administrative issues that require correction. We are three Deputies without functions. The Chairman is responsible for all systems including the Army General Headquarters. Our HQs. started in Yei, then Rumbek, then new Cush and now Ramciel. When are we going to establish our HQs? The deputies of the General Staff are the ones commanding the forces; they should stay in the General Headquarters instead of commanding. Yet the Chairman is the one who dismantled the General Headquarters. Comrade Chairman, the establishment of the General headquarters hasn't been fulfilled and this I have been requesting ever since Yei was liberated. Branch officers such as the Director of Military Intelligence and his deputy are now in your Headquarters, though they are supposed to remain at the General Headquarters. The Chairman concentrates on his headquarters forgetting the rest of the army. It is only his headquarters, which has military uniforms, boots and other supplies.

Our present situation requires us to be organized and prepared. If peace is signed, the question is; what have we done in training our military cadres so that they meet the standard of their counterparts in the integrated army. There are rumours that the Chairman had already selected by name those Commanders who would command the Joint Integrated Army. What about the rest of the army and who will pay them? The Chairman seems to have taken the Movement as his own property. As we leave Rumbek after this meeting, I would like to see that all our administrative issues be addressed and implemented following this meeting's resolutions.

I would also want Comrade Chairman to give me full powers of the Chief of the General Staff (COGS) to enable me expedite the regrouping and reorganization of the SPLA, and if Comrade Chairman sees that I am not able to do that job, then he can appoint another person to do it.

The Chairman is to be 1st Vice-President of the Sudan and the head of the Government of Southern Sudan, but he is not talking to Southerners. The North is organizing southern militias so that we fight among ourselves. We must unite our own ranks and not just unity with the north. On a personal basis, I don't have any problems with the Chairman but our working relationship is bad and leaves a lot to be desired.

I would also like to say something about rampant corruption in the Movement. At the moment some members of the Movement have formed private companies, bought houses and have huge bank accounts in foreign countries. I wonder what kind of system are we going to establish in South Sudan considering ourselves indulged in this respect.

2nd Session:

Response from the Chairman. I give the floor to the national leadership to comment on what had been said by Cdr. Salva Kiir, I don't want this to be a debate between Cdr. Salva Kiir and I.

Edward Lino thanked the Chairman and said we are really in need of resolving the problems within the SPLM/A. The people of Abyei are accused of being Dr. John's supporters and as such, are victimized for that. Cdr. Pieng made an intervention that Cdr. Edward was not addressing the issues.

Cdr. Elijah Malok stated he really supported what Cdr. Salva Kiir said, and recommended that a collective leadership be created. Here in Bahr El Ghazal Cdr. Deng Alor has been away for too long and these are known facts; the leadership council should address and resolve these outstanding issues and go back on the right track. Let us form committees to reorganize the army, since all the units are here. I don't believe what Cdr. Mayardit said about the people being victimized. Structures are to be recognized right way as a government so let us reorganize them and work in the right way as a government.

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