29th September 2023
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SPLM-IO cries fault in ‘dismissal’ of Machar, Pagan from SPLM

Author: Alhadi Hawari | Published: Tuesday, October 25, 2022

FVP Dr. Riek Machar, leader of SPLM-IO, and Pagan Amum, leader of The Real SPLM - COURTESY

The SPLM-IO said the decision to dismiss Dr. Riek Machar and Pagan Amun from SPLM, and declare the re-unification of the party as complete, is unilateral and a violation of the 2015 Arusha agreement.

On October 20, a meeting of the SPLM Political Bureau, chaired by President Salva Kiir passed the resolution to scrap the membership status of the two opposition leaders.

According to the interim SPLM Secretary-General, the party decided to restructure itself and fill in positions previously held by Dr. Machar and Amum because they formed their own parties.

Peter Lam Both also said the SPLM Political Bureau meeting recommended the replacement of members of SPLM who died or joined other political parties.

But in a press statement late on Monday, the SPLM-IO says, it was surprised to hear about the dismissal of the two leaders from the party.

The main opposition group stated that the decision by the ruling party to expel Machar and Pagan is factional and unilateral.

SPLM-IO said the ruling SPLM party has no authority to dismiss former leaders of the SPLM, when the reunification has not been done.

“After the 2013 violence, the SPLM had split into three groups, namely; SPLM-IG, SPLM-IO and SPLM-FD- and lately, the The real SPLM,” said Puok Both Baluang, Acting Press Secretary of the the first vice president.

“We want to categorically state that none of these factions cannot claim being the SPLM, as such, no faction can dismiss any member of the other factions from SPLM,” he added.

Machar’s office went on to state that the dismissal or replacement would have been possible if there was a convention for the SPLM, rather than a faction.

It added that the SPLM splinter groups had struck a re-unification deal in 2015 in Arusha, Tanzania, and was complimentary to implementation of the peace agreement.

A political analyst also criticized the revocation of the SPLM membership of the duo, saying it was needless until the ruling party put its house in order.

Dr James Okuk who is a senior research fellow at the Center for Strategic and Policy Studies, stated that the dismissal of the former leaders, will not address the lack of reforms that sparked divisions among members.




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