The international community is beginning to lose patience with the repeated failure of South Sudanese warring parties to implement the peace agreement signed seven months ago, warned the head of a group of international observers on Thursday.
Fighting continues in South Sudan despite the agreement of August 26, 2015 which was supposed to end the terrible two years civil war, said Festus Mogae, who heads the Commission of monitoring and evaluation (JMEC) of the Agreement created by the organisation of Eastern African countries (IGAD).
“Let me be frank and tell you that the patience of the international community – like mine – is put to the test,” Mogae said.
“I remain concerned about the current delays, violations of the cease-fire and the deterioration of the economic situation marked by rampant inflation and the collapse of the oil industry,” he insisted .
The rebel leader Riek Machar was appointed Vice President on February 12 by his rival President Salva Kiir, in what appeared to be a symbolic step in the implementation of the peace agreement but the composition of a unity government and transition has stalled.
“The appointment of a transitional government, which should have started months ago, is passing quickly,” said Mogae, warning that the country “could not afford further delays.”The conflict now involves multiple militias motivated by local interests and unwilling to consider the peace agreement, who have told the head of JMEC that “the formation of a new government will not be a panacea” to the situation.
Moreover, the president’s spokesman said on Thursday that the head of state had sacked his foreign minister, Barnaba Marial Benjamin, who is one of his most faithful and longest allies, adding that “many elements had contributed to the decision”.
The removal of Mr. Benjamin comes days after he called a former minister who hails from the border region of Abyei, Luka Biong Dengan, an “alien”.
The statement of Mr. Benjamin provoked many strong reactions as South Sudan considers Abyei as part of the national territory.