Aswa, 07 January 2020: SPLA-IO cantonment site. On Monday a three CTSAMVM member team visited the cantonment at Aswa with the purpose of finding out why SPLA-IO soldiers from Pageri Brigade at the cantonment site are not moving to the proposed training site as ordered to do so.
The team said that CTSAMVM received information from its Juba office that Brig Gen Charles, from Pageri Brigade, refused to send the forces for training from Aswa cantonment site to the proposed training center in Owiny-kibul. The CTSAMVM office in Juba, therefore, sent the team to come to verify if indeed that allegation was true. The team leader said that his team came to investigate Brig Gen Charles.
At that point Pageri Brigade Commander, Brig Gen Kocu David interjected to explain that he wrote a letter to Joint Defense Board [JDB] copying all relevant authorities and he expects responses, especially from JDB and SPLM/A-IO Chairman, nevertheless, to date, no one gave a response, let alone acknowledgment of receipt of the letter. He brig. General Kocu and his officers at the meeting then made it clear that they are not refusing to move for training, however, General Kocu and his officers set a tough condition, that is until SSPDF forces occupying civilian areas are evacuated, Pageri Brigade won't move for training.
Brig Gen Kocu and his team then went on to challenge CTSAMVM that in their reports they (CTSAMVM) are talking of occupied buildings and yet the agreement talks of occupied civilian areas. Brig Gen Kocu told CTSAMVM, that Pageri Brigade needs to see all SSPDF occupying civilian areas in Pageri county evacuated. If this can be done tomorrow, the brigade is ready to move its soldiers on foot to the training centers.
In concluding the meeting, Brig-Gen Kocu asked CTSAMVM to send Pageri Brigade, a copy of the report of their particular visit so that Pageri Brigade can be sure CTSAMVM has reported the correct information. The CTSAMVM team promised to do so.
After the meeting, the visitors boarded their chopper and left for Juba.
The regime in Juba has so far enjoyed acting with impunity, they are the very people armed with every resource to make the peace agreement succeed but so far, the international community has been soft and easy on Kiir yet the main opposition leader Dr. Riek’s movement been restricted.
This is the first boycott by armed opposition refusing to move to the training center setting a tough condition for Juba to comply and respect the terms of the agreement it has signed in September 2019.