AFRICANGLOBE – Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has warned South Sudan’s warring parties that their fights were working into the hands of countries like Sudan.
Museveni, in separate meetings with the warring factions in the South Sudan conflict, called on them to reconcile and unite, insisting the people of South Sudan were suffering and the neighboring countries have been let down by these conflicts.
“If you continue like this, you will lose the freedom of making wise decisions, Khartoum and people interested in grabbing your wealth want to prove that you can’t manage your own affairs.”
South Sudan recently declared independence from Sudan after a decades long conflict.
In a statement released on Monday, following a meeting on Sunday with emissaries from South Sudan at State House in Entebbe, deputy presidential press secretary, Linda Nabusayi indicated that Museveni was displeased at the conflict in South Sudan and wants it to end soon.
“If you continue you will be called mistake makers and these mistakes are costing your people and the neighbouring countries.
“We must liberate the people of South Sudan and address all other upcoming conflicts like the borders issues.
“We don’t want South Sudanese to finish themselves. What is most important is not to continue with these mistakes,” he said.
The Ugandan leader said he was compelled to call for the meeting after information emerged that Khartoum was celebrating because they heard that the South Sudanese where fighting and had failed to manage themselves.
“I shared that information with President Salva Kiir and after crosschecking we found that this information is accurate.
“I thought my brothers should know what was happening and I got in touch with both President Salva Kiir and Rebbeca Garang,” he said.
Rebecca Garang, wife of the late vice president of Sudan and president of the government of South Sudan before its independence, John, belongs to a rebel faction led by former vice president Riek Machar.
Garang led a high-level delegation of the former SPLM detainees, also known as G-11.
The meeting comes on the heels of a resolution issued at the end of IGAD Assembly on November 7, 2014 to grant a request by the warring parties in South Sudan a grace period of 15 days to complete consultations on the outstanding issues.
IGAD also directed the two sides to commit to an unconditional, complete and immediate end to hostilities among other things.
President Kiir commended Museveni for facilitating the meeting happen.
“Today in this meeting I hope everyone can be ready to frankly express themselves because people are ignorant of what is happening in South Sudan.
“When the crisis broke out many people died. Some regional leaders became mediators including President Uhuru Kenyatta and Ethiopia’s Hailemariam Desalegn.
“They were willing to support South Sudan and also pushed for the release of the rebels,” he said.
The fighting between government troops and rebels led by Machar started on December 15 last year in Juba, but later spread to the whole country leading to hundreds of deaths and over 1.5 million people being displaced.
By: Godfrey Olukya