The South Sudan Patriotic Movement (SSPM) Monday accused some members of the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) led by Lam Akol of conducting “subversive actions” to split the alliance and derail the peace deal.
SSOA which a signatory of the revitalized peace agreement is divided over the leadership of the alliance. On 30 November 2018, Lam Akol, the leader of the National Democratic Movement (NDM) backed the election of Peter Gatdet for the chairmanship of the alliance but the incumbent leader Gabriel Changson contested the election and refused to accept its result with the support of other factions.
In statements to Sudan Tribune SSPM media official, Stephen Lual Ngor claimed that Lam Akol continues to reject Changson leadership and works to build another faction of the opposition alliance.
Lam Akol brings (South Sudanese) elements from outside the country that have nothing to do with the (revitalized peace) agreement and were not part of the negotiations or SSOA to merge them into an alliance under the same name,” Stephen said.
He added these hostile efforts against the alliance would undermine the fragile peace deal signed four months ago.
Stephan further called on Lam Akol and his allied factions to stop those actions that were “hurting efforts for peace” in the country.
“SSPM under the leadership of Castillo Garang urges ’SSOA’s parties to resolve their internal differences before the loss of control of the situation,” he said.
Also, he called on Lam Akol and Peter Gatdet to return to the alliance, warning that the opposition umbrella would take “deterrent action” against those who attempt to dismantle the alliance.
The alliance was the third group – by its importance- among the signatories of the revitalized peace pact. However, several factions left the alliance after their rejection of the peace agreement.
In the event of a new split, the IGAD which mediated the peace talks and now overseeing the implementation process and the other peace partners would be forced to reconsider how to share the positions allocated to SSOA among the factions of the initial umbrella.
The IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan is consulting with the non-signatories who established a new structure called South Sudan National Democratic Alliance, as the east African bloc is preparing to convince them to join the peace pact of 12 September 2018.