South Sudan opposition leader Dr Riek Machar has today Thursday morning flown from Khartoum, Sudan enroute to Kampala for talks with President Salva Kiir, Chimp Corps exclusively report.
The meeting comes at amid heightened tension in South Sudan as Kiir insists the government of national unity must be formed by November 12, 2019.
Machar recently said the country was unprepared for the formation of the unity government but the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) insisted the November 12 deadline must be observed.
The talks between Machar and Kiir were planned for this past Tuesday in Uganda’s capital, Kampala.
However, Machar said he received communication from Kampala asking for the postponement of the engagement to today Thursday.
Today morning, Puok Both Baluang, SPLM (IO) Director for Information and Public Relations, told ChimpReports that Machar “accompanied by Lt. General Abdel Fattah Al Burhan, Chairperson of the Sudan’s Sovereign Council, left Khartoum for Kampala this morning at about 7:00 am, on a one-day visit, to attend the 3rd face-to-face meeting with President Salva Kiir in the presence of Revitalized Agreement of the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) guarantors.”
He added: “The meeting aims at discussing the critical outstanding issues of the R-ARCSS and chart away forward as the extended pre-transitional period draws to a close without much having been achieved.”
President Museveni and Lt. General Abdel Fattah Al Burhan, who are guarantors of Revitalized Agreement of the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS), were expected to grace the ceremony.
He said SPLM/SPLA (IO) “reiterates its full commitment to the implementation of the (R-ARCSS), in letter and spirit, as the only way to attain lasting peace in South Sudan.”
The meeting is crucial considering that President Kiir is already mobilizing the armed forces and lawmakers to embrace the opposition to form a unity government not later than November 12.
Addressing the command council at the defense headquarters in Juba last week, Kiir said an extension in the formation of the transitional Government of National Unity was bad for the country.
Kiir further said “peace is very expensive and comes with consequences,” adding, “some people will lose their positions to give peace and stability a chance to prevail in the country.”
He said he urged the opposition leader Dr Machar to nominate the names of his delegates that are to be appointed in the transitional Government of the national unity “but up to now he (Machar) has not yet presented the list of his nominees.”
Observers say Machar does not appear to be ready for the formation of the government, a move that has unsettled Juba.
A new government would bring about stability, attract foreign direct investment and boost regional trade.