May 25, 2016, South Sudanese First Vice president and leader of the SPLM/A-IO Dr. Riek Machar declares that the position of the armed opposition on the issue of Salva kiir’s 28-states proposal remains the same, saying that Kiir’s continuous push for the establishment of the plan is a violation of the peace agreement.
The move comes as South Sudan’s warring factions, which recently formed the Transitional government of National Unity (TGoNU), appear to have different views on how to better address the issue of 28 states.
“Our position is still the same. The act is a violation of the peace agreement. It’s in the agenda. We hope to discuss it,” Machar told the US-based Foreign Policy magazine at his site in Juba.
Dr. Machar admitted that he and Kiir still did not talk about 28-states expansion scheme and that he hopes the issue will be discussed in the near future.
The leader of the SPLM/A-IO also told the magazine that he has not talked to any American official after his return to Juba, saying the US government is a part of a host of nations which he says worked hard to make sure his coming back to South Sudan’s capital for the implementation of the peace agreement.
The Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) warned early this month that failure to suspend 28-states by the newly formed interim-government will amount to non-implementation of peace deal.
Kiir decreed the creation of 28 states last October after Machar proposed an expansion of the existing 10 states to 21-states.
The two rival proposals were later rejected by the IGAD-Plus and the international community, saying the August 2015 power-sharing deal only recognizes the existing 10 states.
The issue of 28 states has drawn condemnations from other ethnic groups, accusing Kiir of trying to keep his ‘one-man rule’ by giving at least half of his 28-states to his tribe.