Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, the widow of Dr. John Garang de Mabior, the late first Vice-President of Sudan and the President of the Government of South Sudan, says opposition will not engage in President Salva Kiir’s national dialogue.
The dialogue currently ongoing was opened by Kiir on Monday in the presence of Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni.
Nyandeng who has served as the Minister of Roads and Transport for the autonomous government of Southern Sudan, and as an advisor for the President of South Sudan, said Wednesday that SPLM/SPLA(IO) will not engage in any initiative as long as their leaders are in detention.
She quoted the Great Madiba who said: “Only free men can negotiate; prisoners cannot enter into contracts. Your freedom and mine cannot be separated”.
Kiir had earlier promised to look into the matter of political prisoners as a gesture of recompilation.
“As a gesture of goodwill, I have directed for the review of cases of political prisoners so that they can be released,” Kiir said at Freedom Hall in Juba on Monday.
Nyandeng of the Dinka tribe from Twic East County said the “one-sided National Dialogue being imposed by Museveni and Salva Kiir, is not only intellectual masturbation; but, it is an attempt to lure in weak hearted people from the opposition”.
“It is a futile attempt to circumvent “justice and accountability” and maintain the status quo; it is in simple terms: “surrender in disguise”,” she added.
According to her, the so called National Dialogue will only root out weak hearted “bourgeoisiefied Junubeen” from their ranks and leave solid cadres, who will wage the “protracted struggle” to its logical conclusion.
“It is only a “negotiated settlement that will bring peace to the country,” she concluded.
While opening the dialogue, Kiir called on the opposition leaders to embrace the spirit of national unity and join the dialogue except his former deputy and rival, Riek Machar.
“Everybody is welcome to participate in the dialogue, except Riek Machar,” Kiir clarified.
He said if Machar has a delegation, they can come but himself is not allowed to set one foot in the capital.
Nyandeng’s son, Cde Mabior John Garang, who doubles as the public relations officer in the office of National committee for information of SPLM-IO, also described Kiir’s dialogue as one-sided.
“It was confusing to see the President of another country launch the so called National Dialogue (or as Jon Pen calls it National Monologue). It was even more perplexing, how President Salva Kiir doesn’t want the (reconciliation) dialogue to include his adversary. That amounts to ‘intellectual masturbation’,” Mabior said in a statement.
He said there is also no such thing as bad soldiers, only bad command; the falacy that: “indiscipline in the army comes from bad soldiers”, is intended for civilian audiences.
“These statements by President Yoweri Museveni are unscientific; indiscipline in the army infects from the top and not from the bottom.”
The problem is the Commander in Chief, not the soldiers, he noted, adding, this so called Commander in Chief of yours has violated the oath “we took” during the “liberation struggle” and the promises of the liberation struggle have been betrayed.