Military Solution In South Sudan Is Temporary - General Wamala

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In short
Uganda's Chief of Defence Forces General Katumba Wamala has urged the warring parties in South Sudan to settle for a peace process and not seek a military solution to their wrangles. Speaking in an interview with URN, Wamala said that the UPDF will maintain presence in South Sudan until a solution is found but he added that if the parties seek a military solution, it will be short and unsustainable.

Uganda's Chief of Defence Forces General Katumba Wamala has urged the warring parties in South Sudan to settle for a peace process and not seek a military solution to their wrangles.
 
 
Speaking in an interview with URN, Wamala said that the UPDF will maintain presence in South Sudan until a solution is found but he added that if the parties seek a military solution, it will be short and ‘unsustainable'.
 
 
Wamala says that he wouldn't advise the warring parties to seek a military solution and added that if he had his way, the military option would not be the way to solve the crisis in South Sudan.
 
 
Wamala's remarks come just a week after talks between Riek Machar and South Sudan's president Salva Kiir broke down ostensibly in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa.
 
 
The two parties failed to agree to clauses of power sharing in the Transitional government that was set to be formed and functional by May. Following the breakdown of talks, both parties have resorted to military campaigns in the Upper Nile state, a resolution many leaders have denounced.
 
 
The chief mediator, Ethiopia's Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, wrote an emotional letter which he addressed to the People of South Sudan saying their leaders have failed the peace process and urged them not to join the fighting chorus that they were calling for.
 
 
Peace continues to elude South Sudan for a fifteenth month now since fighting broke out in December 2013 in the Presidential Guard headquarters in Juba. Salva Kiir, who accused Riek Machar of plotting a coup against him, launched a cordon and search operation to arrest him. In return, Machar reconstituted the White army and waged a full-scale civil war.
 
 
The fighting, still ongoing, has displaced close to 500,000 people from South Sudan and another unknown number have been killed so far.
 
 
Uganda maintains a 3000-man battalion of soldiers in the country guarding key government installations in Juba and Bor. Uganda, has also been accused of backing the government SPLM soldiers and providing military guidance to them.
 
 
Asked for his opinion on the talks, Wamala said talks everywhere usually breakdown and he is positive that the two parties will go back to the table and ‘discuss'.
 
 
//Cue in: "Talks usually happen…
Cue out: … advise for that"//.
 
 
South Sudan's Ambassador to Uganda Samuel Luate Lominsuk told URN that the government of South Sudan is still open to talks but they are being frustrated by the Riek Machar faction.
 
 
URN tried in vain to get in touch with the spokesperson of the SPLM - IO Mabior De Garang for a comment on the matter. 

 

About the author

Raymond Mujuni
Raymond Mujuni is a URN journalist based in Kampala. Mujuni has been a URN staff member since 2013.

Presently a Law student at Makerere University, Kampala, Mujuni started out as a freelancer for URN in 2012.

Mujuni is an investigative journalist, especially interested in Security, Science and Technology. An avid sports fan, Mujuni volunteers with the charity organisation 40 Days/40 Smiles.