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Hold-out opposition groups refuse to join new roadmap

The hold-out opposition parties last week refused to join the recently extended peace roadmap.

This was revealed by Michael Makuei Lueth, Minister of Information and Communications who told journalists that the Rome peace talks were adjourned on Friday after the holdout groups rejected to be part of the extended roadmap.

“They don’t recognize the roadmap, they said your period has finished with the agreement and what you have now is the roadmap and this roadmap we don’t recognize it,” Makuei said after the weekly cabinet meeting in Juba.

In August 2022, the parties to the 2018 revitalized peace agreement agreed to extend the transitional period of the government by two years to allow them enough time to settle outstanding issues.

The roadmap started on February 22 and will end with elections in December 2024.

Makuei said the hold out groups called for a roundtable conference to discuss how best South Sudan could be managed up to the time for elections.

“The holdout groups are with opinions that they can’t continue unless people agree on the agenda and the agenda is that we should have a roundtable conference,” he said.

Makuei said the government is not ready for any further negotiation on the new period, adding that the roadmap is the only mechanism to lead the country to elections.

“You (hold-out groups) joined us in a roadmap because you were originally signatories to the cessation of hostilities, so you were part and parcel of this agreement,” he said.

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