S’Sudan army chief’s comments spark controversy

sudanSouth Sudan’s opposition faction is calling recent comments by the country’s army chief of staff, “anti-peace and anti-democracy.”

Last week, army Chief of Staff, Paul Malong Awan, said as long as he lives, former vice president and rebel leader, Riek Machar, will never become president of the world’s newest nation.

Speaking during a visit to his home village of Malualkon, General Awan did not say how he would prevent the opposition political leader from becoming president.

Machar spokesman, James Gatdet Dak, condemned Awan’s comments as “an unfortunate reminder that there are senior political and military officials of the government in Juba who are not for peace and democracy.”

Awan’s comments came after Machar announced plans to return trip to Juba on April 18 to take up his position as the country’s first vice president to form a transitional unity government under a 2015 peace accord that ended more than two years of civil war.

“But still we are worried the comments may be backed by negative actions,” he added.

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