27th January 2021
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Why SPLA-IO is pushing for speedy unification of forces

Authors: Woja Emmanuel | Lin Nelson | Published: Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Col. Lam Gabriel, SPLA-IO deputy spokesperson, addressing the press in Juba in April 2019 | Credit | Emmanuel Akile/Eye Radio

The SPLA-IO leadership in Juba has called for speedy unification of the forces to avoid recurrent of clashes in parts of Central Equatoria State.

SSPDF and SPLA-IO have continued to trade accusations and counter attacks particularly in Kajo-keji areas.

Last week, the ceasefire monitoring body, CTSSAM-VM identified General Moses Lokujo who recently defected to the SSPDF as being responsible for the recent displacement of civilians around Kajo-Keji area.

The Deputy Military Spokesperson, Col. Lam Gabriel, says the peace party has “noted these continues provocative and intended violations”.

It demands immediate withdrawal of SSPDF from SPLA-IO assembly areas that were created when the peace agreement was signed…

“When the master ceasefire map was created these positions were already allocated to the SPLA-IO and Moroto unified training center. We demand immediate withdrawal,” Col. Gabriel told Eye Radio on Monday.

Gen. Lokujo, who switched sides, from the SPLA-IO to the SSPDF in September, is said to have also blocked access to a military training camp.

This is contrary to the revitalized peace deal which obligates all the parties to desist from actions that may impede or delay the provision of humanitarian assistance, or protection of civilians, and restrict the free movement of people.

Over the weekend, the SSPDF and SPLA-IO said they were not aware of reports that some soldiers were still occupying civilian and public buildings in Kajo-keji.

On Wednesday, two religious leaders from the county said civilians were afraid to return to their homes due to the presence of the armed forces.

They said SPLA-IO forces and those loyal to Gen. Moses Lokujo under the SSPDF were still living in schools, churches and other public buildings.

“We recommend the immediate unification of high command and graduation of the forces by concerned committee to avoid constant violations, provision of food and medicines to the Moroto unified training center as the forces looted the food and medicines at the training center,” he added.

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