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Abyei’s final status government’s top priority – Kiir

Author: Lasuba Memo | Published: Wednesday, September 28, 2022

President Salva Kiir - Credit: Office of the President - Sept. 21 2022

President Salva Kiir said achieving the final status of Abyei is a top policy priority for the government of South Sudan.

In a statement seen by Eye Radio, Kiir expressed his commitment to a peaceful resolution of the conflict over the Abyei Administrative area.

Kiir’s statement comes days after an Abyei intellectual proposed to the governments of Sudan and South Sudan to grant the area a self-governing government link to both parties with security guarantees from the international community.

According to Francis Deng Mading, making Abyei independent of Juba and Khartoum could serve as an ultimate goal of achieving lasting peace, security, and stability in the region.

He pointed out this would also help bring services and development opportunities closure to women and youth of the contested area.

And this will enhance their participation in public life and thereby bring peaceful coexistence between the Ngok Dinka and neighboring communities.

The proposal was received with mixed reactions from the natives, creating a rift within the community, according to Romano Kuat the Chairman of the Secretariat of the National Committee for the Final Solution of Abyei.

However, in a statement, President Kiir said he acknowledged what he called the heightened frustration among the Abyei people on the status of the area.

He says the government’s non-action on the matter was rather not purposeful but to respond to the volatile situation in the area.

President Kiir said 2013 referendum results revealed what is already known that Abyei’s communities envisage themselves as South Sudanese.

He stated that the final status of Abyei is a priority to his government.

“The 2013 referendum results revealed what we already knew that Abyei’s communities envisage themselves as South Sudanese,” said Kiir in a statement.

“I want to assure you that achieving the final status of Abyei is a top policy priority for the government of South Sudan.”

Kiir said his leadership is currently supporting the ongoing political transformation in Sudan to strengthen bilateral ties with Sudan and achieve regional stability.

This, he says, will enable the communities bordering two countries to benefit from this approach and expand the economy of both nations.

However, President Kiir said he is committed to the return of Abyei’s displaced families, the right to self-determination outlined in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and the African Union High Implementation Panel, and decisively reaching the final status on Abyei.

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