We expect political leaders to apologise to South Sudanese - FBOs

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Faith-based organizations participating in the final phase of the South Sudan peace talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, say they expect political leaders embroiled in the current conflict to apologise to the country for the atrocities that have been committed in the country.

Faith-based organizations participating in the final phase of the South Sudan peace talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, say they expect political leaders embroiled in the current conflict to apologise to the country for the atrocities that have been committed in the country.

 

”Traditionally, during Lent season, Christians reflect on their relationship with God and fellow human beings, confessing sins committed against God and against one another with the aim of seeking forgiveness and reconciliation,” said a statement from the group.

In a statement sent to the media, Bishop Enock Tombe, the leader of the FBOs delegation to the South Sudan peace talks said it was significant that the talks were coming after the signing of Arusha Agreement for re-unification of the divided ruling party, the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM).

He said the agreement had given a lot of hope to the suffering people of South Sudan that at long last the leaders of SPLM have realized the need to resolve their differences peacefully instead of through violence.

He commended the SPLM leadership for its shared and collective responsibility for the political crisis that erupted on 15th December 2013, and the resulting violence which has led to loss of many lives, suffering and displacement of civilians and destruction of property.

“It is our hope, therefore that their promise to make apology to the people of South Sudan will be fulfilled very soon because it is an important step in our long journey of justice, peace, reconciliation and healing in our beloved country,” said the statement.

The FBO said they hoped the Arusha Agreement had enabled the building of confidence and trust among SPLM leaders, and that it had given them the courage to rise above personal differences and narrow individual interests to look at the larger interests of the people of South Sudan for peace, justice, reconciliation and socio-economic development.

They commended the commitments made in January 2015 by the two principals, President Salva Kiir and Dr. Riek Machar to resolve the remaining issues of conflict and reach an agreement by 5th March, on establishment of a Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU).

They said despite the many challenges in the peace process such as the frequent violations of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement by the warring parties, there was need for decisive political will to achieve peace through compromise.

The FBOs further say that they will support the peace process by mobilising the grass-roots for peace, reconciliation and healing using their networks of religious institutions on the ground and based on the trust bestowed upon them by the people of South Sudan.

“We will continue to pray, lobby and work together with all other peace actors to support peace and reconciliation in the Republic of South Sudan,” said their statement.

The FBOs statement came soon after resumption of talks in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa. This is expected to be the last round of talks in the peace process.

Earlier, Bishop Tombe said the talks will break into three thematic committees for governance, transitional security arrangements and economic and humanitarian affairs. .

The talks resumed after the mediators gave the delegates time to go back home and have consultations with their constituencies. The time of the break saw a rise in fighting between the warring sides, with each blaming the other for breaking the cessation of hostilities agreement.

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