9th December 2023
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Office of FVP Machar rejects appointment of new defense minister

Author : | Published: Thursday, March 30, 2023

First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar - courtesy

The Office of the First Vice President Dr Riek Machar says President Salva Kiir’s decision to appoint a new minister of defense is unilateral and a violation of the peace agreement.

On Wednesday, Kiir relieved and appointed Deputy Defense Minister Chol Thon Balok through a Republican decree to replace his former boss Angelina Teny who was relieved early this month.

The head of state had removed Angelina Teny from the defense ministry and swapped the position to his party on March 3, 2023.

He also fired the minister of interior, Mahmoud Solomon, and gave the post to the SPLM-IO, causing a rift between the SPLM-IG and the SPLM-IO.

The acting spokesperson of the First Vice President Puok Both Baluang says the SPLM-IO has rejected Kiir’s decision because the two principals are yet to resolve the removal of the former defense minister.

“Concerning this appointment, we would like to stress that no breakthrough was reached during all these meetings that took place between two principles President Salva and His Excellency First Vice President Riek Machar to overcome this deadlock created by President Salva Kiir through Presidential decrees,” he said.

The SPLM-IO is urging the President to recall his decision because it is unilateral and violated the revitalized agreement.

“The appointment of Chol Thon as minister of defense is a unilateral decision, and the president has a blatant new violation of the ARCSS,

“Therefore , we as the SPLM IO, condemned the new appointment of the minister and we rejected it as well,” said Both.

A meeting to resolve the dispute about three weeks ago never bore results.

The stalemate prompted the Ethiopian Prime Ministry to visit Juba where he met President Salva Kiir and his First Deputy Riek Machar to discuss the matter.

Early this month, the Reconstituted Joint and Monitoring and Evaluation Commission encouraged consultation between President Kiir and his First Deputy Dr Riek Machar to resolve the sacking of the Defense Minister as soon as possible.




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