National, News, Politics

Cabinet minister blasts Troika, R-JMEC

Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro, the Minister of Cabinet Affairs at the R-TGoNU speaking at the 22nd R-JMEC monthly plenary in Juba on Thursday (Photo: Philip Buda Ladu)

By Philip Buda Ladu

The Minister of Cabinet Affairs in the R-TGoNU, Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro has bitterly expressed disappointment with the Troika countries (United States, United Kingdom and Norway) and R-JMEC saying they always dwell on reporting bad things about the Government of South Sudan.

Dr. Lomuro, who represented the R-TGoNU at the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (R-JMEC) made his emotional remarks while addressing the 22nd R-JMEC Plenary in Juba on Thursday.

He said the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Army in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO) is to blame for the delay in the implementation of the September 2018 Revitalized Peace Agreement but not the government. “I think there is complete misunderstanding on why the R-ARCSS has delayed in its implementation,” he noted.

The Cabinet Minister said the opposition refused to come to Juba, protesting that they were not secure in Juba, and it took them three months, demanding accommodations, allowances and vehicles in Khartoum which the R-TGoNU has to pay for.

“It took us four months, to rent them offices, give them accommodation and when each of the members of the organs of the agreement were called in they came with others; office manager secretary and security,” he said.

“We spent 10 million US dollars and 100 million South Sudanese pounds to maintain the opposition members who are now absent here (featured). So if you add three months plus four months that’s 7 months that was even before we could write and develop the budget for the implementation of the agreement,”  

Dr. Lomuro said “The whole pre-transitional period was spent on harnessing and trying to bring in the opposition and built the trust deficit none of you appreciate that I wonder why? When you blame us for not implementing the agreement on time, it’s because you failed to understand what was going on.” 

He said it took them even four months for the Opposition to mobilize their forces to come to the cantonment sites and they need money to mobilize and some of them were actually lobbying for civilians to become army.

The Cabinet minister blamed R-JMEC with CTSAMVM and all their organs, of not telling the people of the world the truth.

Dr. Lomuro stressed that “This agreement was not supposed to be paid for only by the government of South Sudan, if you look at the matrix there are partners who are supposed to help us but you all folded your hands.”

“We can only appreciate China, Japan, Nigeria, Egypt and Sudan, but the Troika (United States, United Kingdom and Norway) which writes too much about us, didn’t even sign the agreement and they shouldn’t even be here, they are only good in writing against us all the time and by the way! South Sudanese who are here in the civil society if you haven’t learn about these people you look at Ukraine, see Ukraine,” Dr. Dr. Lomuro echoed.

“I have read the report about the First Vice President, these are complaints nothing to do with the implementation of the peace agreement, these are political reports because there are people behind him,” he alleged.

He challenged the FVP, Dr. Riek Machar as the head of the Governance Cluster that he should know that when it comes to the implementation of the agreement he has the right to call a minister to say implement provisions of this article, submit it to the Council of Ministers for approval and get a budget for it but he has never done it.

Meanwhile, Gen. Charles Tai Gituai, the Chairperson of the Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission in his opening remarks at the R-JMEC 22nd Monthly Plenary Meeting on Thursday said despite the relatively short time left available in the Transitional Period and R-JMEC’s repeated appeals.

“I note no substantial progress in the implementation of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflicts in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) since our last meeting,” he said.

However, Gen. Gituai said with all RJMEC’s engagements, both in South Sudan and regionally, they continue to call for the RTGoNU to demonstrate greater political will to increase the pace of implementation at this critical time.

The SPLM/A-IO earlier this week suspended their participation in the Revitalized agreement security mechanisms and RJMEC meeting and Gen. Gituai said RJMEC has taken note of all the concerns raised by the SPLM/A-IO.

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