JUBA South Sudan (Xinhua) --
South Sudan said Friday that it is capable
of finding solution from within to the key outstanding issues
with rebels rather than outside the country following approval
by the main rebel group to sign the final peace deal in the
Mawien Makol, the
foreign ministry spokesman, said outstanding issues can better
be solved from within when the rebels return to Juba than at the
forthcoming forum of the East African bloc IGAD that has been
mediating the peace deal.
“There are issues in
the agreement that can be discussed here. The outstanding issues
cannot be discussed outside the country,” Makol told Xinhua in
He added that they
are relieved by the decision of the Sudan People’s Liberation
Movement/Army-in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO) leader Riek Machar to
initial the final peace agreement in Khartoum after he had
refused to sign on Tuesday.
issues that include revision of the current 32 states and the
writing of new constitution are expected to be concluded at the
next meeting of the IGAD Council of Ministers, according to
“We are finally
happy that he (Machar) has approved the peace agreement. We
agreed that some issues be discussed from within and should not
be taken outside South Sudan,” Makol disclosed.
Yakani, the head of local civil society CEPO that monitors the
peace agreement welcomed the SPLM/A-IO’s approval of the peace
agreement, saying it will help build lost trust between the
government and rebels who have been fighting for over four years
since December 2013.
the efforts of Sudan mediation for making progress in making the
conflicting parties resolve the outstanding issues of governance
and security including making the parties initial the
revitalized peace agreement,” he said.
South Sudan optimistic peace
will bring development aid for reconstruction
JUBA South Sudan (Xinhua) --
South Sudan said Friday that it expects badly
needed development aid from international community to kick
start reconstruction from conflict after warring parties
recently concluded the final peace agreement in the Sudanese
Wani Buyu, the
undersecretary for planning in the ministry of finance, told
journalists that they are currently undertaking key
institutional reforms especially in the revenue sector to win
back the confidence of investors and development partners who
abandoned the country following outbreak of conflict in 2013.
“We expect the
development partners to come in, some of them have actually lost
confidence in South Sudan because of the war but with the coming
of peace I am sure they will have trust in us,” Buyu said in
He disclosed that
China and Japan are undertaking key development projects and
provision of essential services in the country.
The South Sudanese
government recently approved 600 million U.S. dollar 2018/19
budget that will be largely funded by local revenue since
development partners were not forthcoming, and payment of
salaries of civil servants takes the lion’s share of the budget
leaving little for capital development.
transparency and accountability are crucial for South Sudan to
benefit from its massive available resources.
He said the
establishment of the national revenue authority and ongoing
training of tax officials will help them in their bid to widen
the tax base as non-oil revenue has since risen ahead of the
previously much depended-upon oil revenue.
“There is a great
improvement in non-oil revenue collection because right from
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) until 2011 we were entirely
depending on oil revenue but when we shut down oil production in
2012 we realized we have enough resources we can collect from
our borders,” he said.
The CPA, agreed in
2005 between Sudan and South Sudan, paved way for the
independence of the latter from Sudan in 2011, but it came with
challenges stemming from weak institutions and corruption.
Mugisha, the head of strategy and analysis unit at the UN
Development Program (UNDP), said South Sudan needs to diversify
its economy away from oil and strengthen the non-oil tax base.
“For a long time
South Sudan has focused much on the oil revenue. It is now an
opportunity that we are trying to push for the non-oil revenue
and revenue authority is an important component for mobilizing
of non-oil revenue,” he said.
cautioned that South Sudan is a project still in the works and
needs time to emerge from conflict and embark on development
“If we have not been
having non-oil revenue for a long time it will take a while for
people to appreciate the value of paying tax and for systems to
work to the maximum,” he said.
More South Sudan
rebels rejoin government amid wave of defections
JUBA South Sudan (Xinhua) --
A top South Sudanese rebel commander and
his forces on Friday rejoined the government of President Salva
Kiir amid a wave of opposition fragmentation since an amnesty
was granted to armed groups in the country’s civil war early
Gathuoth Mut, who
was until recently the spokesperson of the rebel group, the
South Sudan United Movement/Army led by Peter Gadet, arrived in
the South Sudanese capital Juba on Friday with more than 20
He said at least
5,000 of his forces have assembled in the northern part of the
country awaiting transportation to the capital, a claim not
Mut said he
responded to the amnesty in order to end the ongoing civil war
in the East African nation.
“We welcome the
initiative made by the president of South Sudan to open the road
for everybody outside South Sudan and I urge those who are still
outside to come home. Peace is more important now because our
country is already devastated,” the rebel official told
reporters upon arrival.
leader Kiir in early August pardoned his rival and former deputy
Riek Machar and other estranged groups, after they signed a new
peace deal in neighboring Sudan on Aug. 5.
announcement of the amnesty, several rebel commanders and
hundreds of forces have rejoined the government and it signifies
the quest for peaceful resolution of the conflict, said Lul Ruai
Koang, spokesperson for the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA).
descended into civil war in late 2013, and the conflict has
created one of the fastest growing refugee crises in the world.
The UN estimates
that about 4 million South Sudanese have been displaced
internally and externally.