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Reflect on Reasons for Fighting –Museveni tells S. Sudan Leaders :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Reflect on Reasons for Fighting –Museveni tells S. Sudan Leaders

He cautioned the parties to the south Sudan Conflict to be mindful of politics driven by opportunism which has brought a lot of suffering to Africa and cost it development. In the last 58 years, I have been watching the Africans here. There have been so many mistakes, so much suffering because of the politics of opportunism, that that takes advantage of identity.
President Yoweri Museveni has challenged south Sudan leaders to reflect on the reason for the fighting that left millions of nationals dead and millions of others displaced over the last four years.

The president made the call after the South Sudan government and opposition groups signed the peace agreement on power-sharing and security arrangement, ending more than four years of conflict in the country. The agreement was signed in Khartoum on Sunday.

“Even as we sign this agreement, we must reflect deeply on whether it was a just war. We are congratulating ourselves over many dead bodies in South Sudan over the last four years. This is not good. All the actors in this war must ask whether it was a just war,”

He cautioned the parties to the south Sudan Conflict to be mindful of politics driven by opportunism which has brought a lot of suffering to Africa and cost it development. “In the last 58 years, I have been watching the Africans here. There have been so many mistakes, so much suffering because of the politics of opportunism, that that takes advantage of identity.

“So much time lost and development stalled because of identity. People fighting because they are Muslims or Christians, Shia or Sunni. A lot of rubbish. We should be bold and stop being diplomatic about this,” Museveni stated.

President Salva Kiir signed the agreement on behalf of the government of South Sudan, Dr Riek Machar on behalf of the opposition SPLM-IO and Deng Alor signed for SPLM-FD among others. President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and Omar al-Bashir of Sudan signed the agreement as guarantors, while the representatives of the United Nations and African Union signed as the witness.

“As a guarantor to the agreement, it is my hope that this is the last pact we are signing and that the respective parties are serious and they don't use the ceasefire as a tactical instrument of preparing for war,” Museveni said after appending his signature to the document.

Museveni, however, added that whereas political arguments and disagreements will always exist, the right medicine for the situation in South Sudan is fair elections.

“When you argue, let the population arbitrate and choose whose argument they buy in a peaceful and fair election,” he said, and hastened to add that leaders should instead focus more on working for the fulfillment of their people's interests like peace, health, education and creating a conducive environment to do business.

The signing ceremony was also witnessed by Presidents Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti, Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Kheire and Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister, Demeke Mekonnen, and representatives of UN, EU, and AU among others.

Meanwhile, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said the peace process will continue in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, instead of Nairobi as decided by IGAD head of states.

He said the parties had agreed to keep the talks in Khartoum in order finalize the remaining issues which are mainly the implementation matrix of the peace agreement and the timetable for the return of the opposition leaders as well as the troops' redeployment.

Machar, in his speech, thanked the Kenyan president for consenting the continuation of the talks in Sudan instead of moving to Nairobi as it was initially decided by the IGAD leaders last June. He urged the IGAD, the African Union and the international community to support in the implementation of the deal, saying the evil can be behind the implementation process.

President Salva Kiir reiterated his commitment to the deal and its "difficult implementation" and called again on the opposition groups to put aside their reservation saying in the peace talks there is no winner but "give and take for the sake of peace".

The president further stressed that the deal is difficult to implement because of the important number of jobs it creates at the presidency with five vice-presidents, 45 ministers and 550 parliamentarians. He said his government has no means to provide the needed accommodations in terms of offices, and mobility saying everyone would come asking for 5-10 vehicles and from certain marks.