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Forum: IGAD urged to reach out to opposition

Author : | Published: Sunday, August 20, 2017

Participants in a high level meeting on the revitalization of the peace agreement have called on IGAD to convince armed groups to stop fighting and take part in the forum.

The revitalization forum, which is expected to take place next month, was proposed to discuss full implementation of the Peace Agreement and develop a revised and realistic timeline.

It will also form implementation schedule towards a democratic election at the end of the transitional period.

A meeting was held in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, on 16 and 17 July to find suggestions on the major issues that should be discussed in the revitalization forum.

A representative of the civil society, Edmond Yakani, says the participants called on IGAD to reach out on the armed groups to participate in the forum.

But he says IGAD should not use power sharing as a means of bringing them to the table.

“As we are aware, the country has a limited opportunity of public office that can be given to anybody who wages war,” Mr. Yakani told Eye Radio.

“We requested IGAD to go out and reach out to these groups but not let power sharing be the focus.

“Rewarding people with power gives others an opportunity to start thinking that actually by violence, they can find their way under process of the revitalization to have a share within the public office.”

The participants included 22 South Sudanese experts from the academia, civil society as well as renowned South Sudanese practitioners.

The meeting was also attended JMEC Chairman Festus Mogae, the Executive Secretary of IGAD, the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan, and representatives of the AUC, UN and EU.

The other issues discussed included the development of a revised timeline that should allow the full implementation of the peace agreement.

He further said there were suggestions that the transitional period should be extended to four or five years.

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