Lobby group tells Igad to drop power sharing from S. Sudan peace talks

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir (right) with his rival Riek Machar. FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

A lobby group wants regional bloc Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) to drop the power sharing agenda from the South Sudan peace talks.

The Empowerment for Progress Organisation's (CEPO) warning comes ahead of this month's peace revitalisation forum.

CEPO Executive Director Edmund Yakani said focusing on power-sharing could derail the peace process.

Personal gains

Early this month, Igad issued a schedule for the pre-revitalisation forum to consult with the South Sudan leaders, including the armed opposition factions, on the best way to achieve peace and stability.

Mr Yakani stated the revitalisation forum should focus on restoring peace and stability, as opposed to power sharing.

He said the attitude of the stakeholders angling for their personal gains went contrary to the interests of the nation.

Ethnic dimension

South Sudan, which got independence in 2011 after secession from Sudan, drifted into war in 2013 after a debate on political reforms within the ruling SPLM party turned violent.

The violence soon took an ethnic dimension, pitting President Salva Kiir's Dinka community against the Nuers of his former deputy Riek Machar.

The war has uprooted more than 3 million people from their homes, while tens of thousands have been killed, according to the United Nations.

Can Kiir deliver on his promise of peace and stability in South Sudan?

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