The IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan, Ambassador Ismail Wais, has confirmed that the programme for pre-High Level Revitalization Forum consultation phase has been concluded in Khartoum, Sudan and the delegation will be in Juba by the end of this week.
Professor Ibrahim Ghandour, the Sudanese Foreign Affairs Minister and Ambassador Ismail Wais, held constructive meetings with Dr Lam Akol, General Peter Gadet, General Bapiny Montuil and Dr. Costello Garang in Khartoum over the past three days.
Ambassador Ismail Wais thanked the Government of the Republic of Sudan on behalf of IGAD, for all the cooperation and their assistance in the preparation for meetings.
Ambassador Ismail Wais said, “IGAD Council of Ministers’ delegation will arrive in Juba at the end of the week for meetings and discussions with the Transitional Government of National Unity. The delegation, led by H.E. Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu (Ethiopian Foreign Minister and Chairman of the IGAD Council of Ministers), will include H.E. Amina Mohamed (Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Rapporteur to the IGAD Council of Ministers), H.E. Sam Kutesa (Ugandan Foreign Minister), Professor Ibrahim Ghandour, the Sudanese Foreign Affairs Minister and H.E. Mohamoud Ali Youssouf, the Djibouti Foreign Minister and Abdulkadir Ahmedkheyir Abdi, State Minister for the Federal Republic of Somalia.
“After the consultations with the Government, I will then lead discussions with various civil society representatives”.
“The purpose of this pre- Forum consultation phase is to seek a broad range of views on the conduct of the High Level Revitalisation Forum and pursuit of its three key objectives namely; cessation of hostilities and a permanent ceasefire, return to the full implementation of the Agreement, and developing a revised realistic timeline and implementation schedule towards a democratic election at the end of the transition period”.
(Addis Ababa 03-10-2017)The IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government convened on 12 June 2017 in Addis Ababa decided inter alia to revitalize the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (ARCSS) and entrusted the mandate to the IGAD Council of Ministers. As per this decision the IGAD Council of Ministers were tasked “to discuss concrete measures to restore permanent cease fire, to full implementation of the peace agreement, and to develop a revised and realistic timeline and implementation schedule towards a democratic election at the end of the transition period.’’ The IGAD Leaders appointed a Special Envoy for South Sudan, Ambassador Ismail Wais, who will help the Chairperson of the IGAD Council of Ministers and consult widely prior to the convening of High Level Revitalization Forum (HLRF).
It is to be recalled that the Parties to the two and a half year-old conflict in South Sudan agreed to a peaceful settlement of their differences after the long-drawn out IGAD-led process of mediation and negotiation that culminated in the establishment of a Transitional Government of National Unity. It was hoped that this process, midwifed by IGAD and its partners in the international community, including the African Union, would bring lasting peace and stability to the people of South Sudan. It is deeply unfortunate that barely four months after the return of the SPLM-IO leader to assume his agreed position in government, it appears that hostilities have erupted once again threatening the sustainability of the peace agreement to which all sides have pledged their full commitment.