The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, emphasizes once again the imperative of renewed efforts to end the unfolding tragedy in South Sudan. She recalls the primary responsibility of the South Sudanese stakeholders in bringing about the peace and security that their people are so desperately yearning for.
She also stresses that the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan submitted to the South Sudanese parties by the mediation led by the Intergovernmental Authority and Development (IGAD), following extensive and prolong consultations, is a balanced document whose faithful and effective implementation by all the parties would enable them to find a lasting solution to the current conflict. Against this background, she welcomes the signing of the Agreement by Dr. Riek Machar, leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement In Opposition (SPLM/IO), as well as by Mr. Pagan Amum, on behalf of the Former Political Detainees, and by other South Sudanese stakeholders, during the IGAD Summit that took place in Addis Ababa on 17 August 2015. She notes the initialing of the Agreement by the Government of the Republic of South Sudan as an encouraging step, and welcomes the commitment by President Salva Kiir Mayardit to complete the signing process within two weeks, after consultations in South Sudan.
She made calls on all the South Sudanese stakeholders to demonstrate the required sense of responsibility and put the interests of South Sudan and its people above all other considerations. Continued deadlock in the peace process can only spell further disaster for South Sudan and its people, with far reaching implications for regional security and stability.
According Dr. Dlamini-Zuma, AU is commited to continue assisting the South Sudanese stakeholders to achieve lasting peace in their country. Over the coming days, the AU, including through its High Representative for South Sudan, former President Alpha Omar Konaré, and the High-Level ad hoc Committee, will intensify its interaction with both the Government and other concerned stakeholders, in support of the IGAD-led efforts. In the meantime, she also stresses the imperative for all parties to comply strictly with the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and ensure safe and unhindered humanitarian access to the needy populations, and to facilitate the return of the displaced populations.
She reiterates the AU’s appreciation to the Chairperson of the IGAD, Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn of Ethiopia, and to other leaders of the region, notably Presidents Omar Hassan al-Bashir of Sudan, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, for their continued commitment and tireless efforts to end the conflict in South Sudan. She expresses appreciation to the members of the AU High-Level ad hoc Committee for South Sudan for their support to the peace process. She also thanks the international partners that are members of the IGAD Plus Mechanism for their continued support to the IGAD-led efforts.
Finally, she appeals to the international community to enhance its support to the ongoing efforts in South Sudan, and to stand ready to support in whatever way possible the implementation process of the Agreement, once the signing process is completed. It is against this background that, on 18 August 2015, she met, at the AU Headquarters, with the Special Envoys for South Sudan and other representatives of China, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, the European Union and the United Nations.