How Raila Odinga brokered peace between South Sudan President Kiir and Rebel leader Machar

KTN News Jun 21,2018


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War ravaged South Sudan could be on the mend after President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar struck a deal brokered by Opposition leader Raila Odinga. Sources privy to the Friday meeting between Raila and Dr Machar in South Africa said the two, in consultation with Juba, agreed on bare minimums that are expected to set the stage for a meeting between the rebel leader and Kiir.

Machar, who is currently under house arrest in Pretoria, South Africa, could be released next week to head to Kenya for the final leg of talks, before a face to face meeting with Kiir in Khartoum and his eventual return home. The truce is expected to effectively end three years of conflict in Africa’s youngest country.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who was meant to meet Raila to discuss the situation in South Sudan, is in Canada for the G7 forum but weighed in on the discussion via satellite link. By yesterday morning, the NASA leader was reported to have phoned President Kiir to bring him up to speed, which the latter lauded, promising to work with Machar to build the nation.

“The meeting went very well. We are optimistic that the two leaders (Kiir and Machar) are committed to lasting peace in South Sudan. They reiterated that African issues are best solved by their leaders and Raila has so far remained a neutral arbitrator,” said a member of the delegation, who declined to be named. He continued: “We are on the right path. Machar is equally interested in returning home and reconciling with the president.”