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“The imminent Ecumenical Peace Pilgrimage to Juba of the three religious’ leaders, led by His Holiness, Pope Francis, is an indicator of the world’s desire for lasting peace in South Sudan”, Charles Tai Githuai said.
He called on South Sudanese to use the opportunity to renew their confidence in the peace process.
Tai also urged the unity government and citizens to rebuild trust and demonstrate genuine political will as the country forges ahead towards the end of the Transition Period as stipulated in the Roadmap.
” I urge the leadership of the R-TGoNU, the Parties, and the people of South Sudan to renew their confidence in the peace process, rebuild trust and demonstrate genuine political will and unity of purpose, with the spirit of forgiveness and magnanimity.”
Tai described this peace implementation as critical and recommended steps the peace parties needed to take for a peaceful political transition.
“One, reconstitute the Political Parties Council as part of the operationalisation of the recently enacted laws, which helps to protect political space, thereby allowing for the registration of political parties,
” Two. harmonize the ranks of the unified forces, and provide for their welfare so that they can be deployed to provide security and protection of civilians caught up in sub-national violence,
” Three, initiate dialogue between the communities and parties to address sub-national violence in the country, particularly in the hotshots of Upper Nile, Jonglei, the Equatoria, and Greater Pibor Administrative Area.
And lastly, “commence Phase II of the unification of forces without further delay, and provide adequate resources to the security mechanisms, the cantonment sites, and training centers.”
According to the Vatican, Pope Francis will land in Kinshasa, the capital of DR Congo on January 31, where he will spend two days.
He will make the African trip alongside the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
He will then board a flight to Juba on February 3, where he is expected to hold prayers and meet the authorities, religious leaders, and internally displaced persons.
The long-awaited visit of the Pontiff was canceled in July last year due to health problems.
The historic papal trip will mark the first time a Pope has visited South Sudan, and only the second time a Pope has visited the DRC, which is home to Africa’s largest Catholic population.
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