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Showdown: SSNMC party in rift

By William Madouk


As unregistered political parties are in haste to legalize their status and partake in the December 2024 polls, dark cloud hangs over ownership of South Sudan National Movement for Change (SSNMC) party.

Initially, the SSNMC Party was formed by current minister of presidential affairs, Joseph Bangasi Bakosoro, but he later abandoned it to rejoin SPLM.

On September 20, 2021, SSNMC the general assembly in an extraordinary convention held in Juba, elected Moro Isaac Genesio as chairperson.

However, that put the ‘orange party’ on the verge of split; one allied to Clement Juma and another under Moro Isaac Genesio, each claiming legitimacy.

Meanwhile, Clement Juma allied SSNMC acting interim secretary general, Emmanuel Riko, trashed claims that Vice President and Joseph Bakosoro interfered in the affairs of the arty, as alleged by Moro’s group in News article published by No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper.

“Those claims that H.E. Hussien Abdelbagi, vice president for service cluster, and other claims that Joseph Bakosoro, the minister in the office of the president, are meddling in the party’s affairs are not correct,” Riko said.

“It is baseless [accusations] and doesn’t have any substances; why I am saying so is because SSNMC as a party operates as an independent party within the framework of the constitution and code of conduct,” he argued.

He alerted against the use and abuse of the party name by any ‘person’ or ‘group’ rather than Clement Juma’s, adding, ‘SSNMC is reserved under the leadership of Clement by the Political Parties Council.’

Besides, Riko cited that SSNMC makes its decisions based on the policies and values of the party and the activities carried out by individual members.

“H.E. Hussien Abdelbagi and Jospeh Bakosoro have nothing to do with the changes that took place,” he reiterated.

According to him, the SSOA leadership doesn’t operate in a vacuum but operates through a charter and revitalized peace agreement, adding that ‘everything is done according to procedure.’

He said the appointed members are first vetted by the party in consultation with the leadership, with an eye fixed on one’s performance in the party, commitment, behaviour, lifestyle, etc.

“All these put together qualify one to hold a constitutional position; it is vetted through consultation with the leadership and also the community that you come from,” he noted.

In rebuttal, Moro faction SSNMC spokesperson, Mr. Luka Agok Arialbek, insisted that Vice President Hussien Abdelbagi and Bakosoro have a hand in the party’s woes, terming the other side’s statement as ‘nonsense.’

He recalled a time when Bakosoro left the NMC party for the SPLM, paving the way for elections and the installation of Moro’s leadership.

“The party is under the leadership of Moro, and whatever has happened has been done by VP Hussien Abdelbagi and Hon. Jospeh Bangasi Bakosoro, and we have other details that will later follow,” said Arialbek.

In contrast, he disputed a claim that ‘Orange Party’ is reserved under Clement’s leadership, citing that the NMC Party is booked with the Political Parties Council under Moro’s leadership and not otherwise.

“When it comes to the Political Parties Council name reservation, we have the SSNMC reserve with the PPC in the name of Moro, and we have the letter with us from the PPC from the registrar,” he claimed.

“We have several reserves, so it is reserved under Moro Isaac Genesio, the legitimate chair for SSNMC. The fact that we go there to reserve the party means that we are in full preparation for the party to register fully,” he noted.

Days ago, Mr. Mogga Charles, the SSNMC Secretary for Foreign Affairs under Moro, told journalists that there is a serious injustice and blatant violation of the 2018 peace agreement by Abdelbagi and Bakosoro against their party.

“We are being threatened, blackmailed, targeted, and unilaterally removed from our party members, who include our party chairperson, the secretary, and the commissioner of Kapoeta South,” he said.

In an interview with this outlet, the press secretary in the office of VP Abdelbagi, Gabriel Kiir Amoi, disputed the allegation, citing that it’s a ‘concocted’ and ‘fabricated’ allegation.

“I just want to respond to the claims that these claims are baseless,” Amoi said.

He added that the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) got the leadership council, which decides on matters to do with the SSOA umbrella, but not an individual’s decision to make without consent from the parties’ leaders.

He questioned the legal procedure followed by the SSNMC party while seeking a solution.

However, the minister in the office of the president, Joseph Bangasi Bakosoro, has yet to comment on the matter.


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