Civil, political organizations have called for Kiir and Machar’s resignation, while Ateny claims that their removal from office will lead to war.
Representatives of entities calling themselves non-violent civil and political organizations said in a Joint Communiqué that they held a meeting and resolved to mobilize citizens to demand the resignation of President Salva Kiir Mayardit, First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny, and the RTGoNU.
While South Sudan presidency spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny has warned that planned protests against President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his first deputy Dr. Riek Machar Teny amounts to declaration of war saying Kiir is the unifying factor in the world’s youngest country and his departure would means chaos.
According Ateny, speaking in a pre-recorded interview with the RBC TV, a local YouTube channel that hosts interviews with senior government officials, He broached that President Salva Kiir – on one hand is the stabilizing factor – he’s a unifying factor. He mentioned that If Kiir decides now, as I speak with you, to step aside, what will ensue afterward will be chaos in the country.
The presidency mouthpiece said those calling for protests against the government of President Salva Kiir and First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar are not aware of the status of political dispensation among the people of South Sudan and said the departure of the two men would mean chaos and war.
On the contrary, the representatives of the following non-violent civil and political organizations: The People’s Coalition for Civil Action (PCCA), the United Citizens for Change (UCC), National People’s Movement (NPM) and Red Card Movement (RCM), convened a virtual consultative meeting on the situation in our country, the Republic of South Sudan, on 20 August 2021,” the Joint Communiqué dated 20 August read.
Earlier this month, The People’s Coalition for Civil Action (PCCA) said plans were afoot for protests against the transitional government across South Sudan and the diaspora and launched a public campaign to demand political change after 10 turbulent and often bloody years of independence.
The communiqué said that the entities were seriously concerned by the scale of political, security, humanitarian, and economic crises resulting from leadership failure and violent political competition in the country since independence and that they were convinced that the current political leadership in the country is unwilling and cannot manage these crises.
“The people of South Sudan are not under any constitutional obligation to indefinitely endure the immense suffering resulting from their (leadership) failures,” the communiqué said. “Recognizing the constitutional rights and obligations of the people of South Sudan to hold the government to account for its actions and inactions and calling upon our citizens to exercise these civic responsibilities through peaceful means.”
The consortium said they resolved to create a coordination unit to facilitate the activities of all the groups towards mobilizing the people of South Sudan for the National Awakening Day, 30 August 2021.
“Resolved to uphold the National Awakening Day to specifically demand the resignation of President Salva Kiir Mayardit and First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny and the RTGoNU,” The communiqué read. “Call upon the people of South Sudan to come and embark on civil disobedience until their demands are duly met.”
The civil and political organizations appealed to the armed forces of South Sudan to abide by their mandate of protecting the citizens during the peaceful demonstration and appreciated the international and regional community for their continued support to the people of South Sudan.
The organizations also applauded the People’s Coalition for Civil Action (PCAA) for the bold decision to call on the people of South Sudan to stand up for their rights and demand the immediate and unconditional release of Kuel Aguer Kuel.
“Reminded by the sacrifices of our heroes and heroines who envisioned and fought for freedom, hereby resolve as follows; coordinate nonviolent civil and political actions and to translate our people’s desire for change into reality,” the organizations said. “Form a technical committee to study and recommend appropriate modalities for pursuing joint nonviolent civil and political actions in our country and the possibility of establishing a grand coalition for all nonviolent organizations in South Sudan.”
The organizations called on all citizens to avoid violence and vandalism during the demonstrations.
The communique was signed by Rajab Mohandis- PCCA, Wol Deng Atak-UCC, Mabor Gordon Matot Tut-RCM, and Dr. Matur Gorjok Gak-NPM.