South Sudanese government has agreed to the last remaining hurdle, opening way for a peace deal to be signed within the coming days as dictated by regional grouping IGAD, meaning next week.
President Salva Kiir and leader of armed opposition, former vice president Dr Riek Machar, had each set their own desire as to how South Sudan should look like. While Dr Machar wanted 23 states, President Kiir could not abandon the 32 states he himself has put in place.
At the 33rd African Union Summit in Ethiopia last week, the IGAD regional economic and security bloc proposed that since both cannot take up the other’s proposal, then South Sudan should go back to its original shape when it got independence in 2005.
President Kiir was given a week to come up with a decision. The opposition, though adamantly, had agreed to the IGAD proposal.
Now, this Saturday, the government said in the statement that it was ready to implement the outcome of the IGAD proposal in which the country should return to ten states.
As par the IGAD timetable, the final peace deal in which President Kiir and Dr Machar form unity government again, will be signed next week. IGAD had set February 21 as deadline for the two sides to end all war in South Sudan.
It seems all is well, at this point, for East African Community member South Sudan, where millions are displaced and thousands have been killed.