JUBA (5 Mar.)
Retired Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Torit and co-chair of the National Dialogue steering committee, Paride Taban has tendered his resignation to President Salva Kiir, citing old age and his retirement from public functions.
Retired Bishop Paride Taban and former Sudanese Vice President Moses Machar Kachuol were appointed by President Kiir in December last year as co-chairpersons to the committee.
In a pardon letter dated 1 March, Bishop Paride Taban asked the president to relieve him from the position of the chairperson of the National Dialogue committee. “I begged your Excellence to excuse me from the role of co-chairman of the national dialogue initiative. At my age of 81 now, I need more rest,” he wrote.
However, the religious leader said he would only play a spiritual role in the National Dialogue initiative, expressing readiness to meet the committee on important matters.
Taban also promised to continue praying and fasting for peace and stability in the country, while urging the people of South Sudan to support the dialogue initiative.
In December last year, President Kiir called for a national dialogue to end violent conflicts in South Sudan, reconstitute national consensus and save the country from disintegration.
But armed opposition groups and some religious leaders said the environment is not conducive for any dialogue due to the ongoing conflict across the country.
Photo: Co-chair of the national dialogue, Paride Taban in Melbourne in 2014