By Awan Achiek
Countries that make up the regional body Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) have been urged to pay salaries of their respective nationals monitoring ceasefire in South Sudan.
Gen. Bior Leek, a senior member of the Former Detainees (FDs) which is a signatory to the 2018 revitalized peace deal urged countries that make up IGAD which mediated the peace deal to pay salaries of their nationals like South Sudan.
“I would urge IGAD countries to pay their national monitors in CTSAMVM because if South Sudan can take care of its national monitors, I would like to ask IGAD countries such as Ethiopia, Uganda, and Sudan to pay their national monitors in CTSAMVM,” said Leek in Juba on Friday during CTSAMVM plenary meeting.
South Sudan’s government recently disbursed $295,200 to clear outstanding arrears of South Sudanese nationals who are part of the Ceasefire Transitional Security Arrangement Monitoring Verification Mechanism (CTSAMVM).
IGAD that is made up of countries like Uganda, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya and Sudan had declined to fund CTSAMVM.
Leek appreciated the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) for the compromise made in paying their national monitors.
“We want to thank our government for paying our national monitors on the ground to do their job,” he said.
“If they didn’t intervene to pay national monitors, we wouldn’t have had this CTSAMVM technical committee meeting today,” he added.
Leek said that IGAD’s failure to secure budget for the national monitors was an attempt to betray the government internationally.
“There is no article in the agreement that compels the government of South Sudan to pay national monitors, but it was done in a way to frustrate the government to make it look in the eyes of the international committee as a government that can’t take care of its national monitors,” he said.
CTSAMVM is charged with monitoring and verification of the ceasefire that has been largely holding since September 2018 after years of conflict that broke out in December 2013.
The parties in South Sudan are implementing the revitalized peace deal signed in Ethiopia to end conflict that displaced millions and killed tens of thousands.