This article was last updated on May 26, 2022
Convened under the umbrella of the Political Parties Leadership Forum (PPLF), 21 parties met on Wednesday to discuss their position on the talks.
They said that the crisis in the country was caused by issues within the ruling party, Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), and should not be permitted to hold the country hostage.
“The peace brokered by the IGAD for which the people of South Sudan are very grateful, could be the last chance for the attainment of peace in our beloved country,” said SPLM’s Acuil Malith Banggol, who was reading from a joint statement on behalf of all the parties who attended.
“We urge the IGAD mediators to reconvene the multi-stakeholder peace talks as soon as possible so that a comprehensive peace agreement can be concluded within the sixty days specified,” Acuil continued.
South Sudan has since last December experienced its worst political crisis since gaining its independence in 2011. Agencies estimate that at least 10,000 people have been killed during the crisis, with over a million others displaced in and outside the country. The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has said that over 90,000 displaced people have sought refuge in nine of its camps in the country.
Peace talks, mediated by IGAD for almost to six months in an effort to end the crisis, have yielded few tangible results and were adjourned on Monday until further notice, creating concerns among citizens and other stake holders.
However, Dr. Lam Akol, Chairman of SPLM-DC, South Sudan’s strongest opposition party, called on South Sudanese citizens to remain hopeful, noting that the talks have involved other stakeholders in the country and stating that a comprehensive deal can still be reached.
“Now all the stakeholders are involved in searching for peace and that is why we as political parties and other stakeholders, like civil society organizations and the faith based groups, are active. This is why we meeting- to see how best we can influence the process. It should not be left to the two parties alone,’ Dr. Lam said.