South Sudan is beginning to believe in lasting peace. After the cease-fire, signed a month ago and still standing, both power and opposition signed an interim power-sharing agreement on Wednesday in Khartoum.
After tough negotiations, lengthened several times, both sides agreed, at least in part. It is not yet peace, but we are getting closer. The interim agreement provides for a 36-month transition.
Meanwhile, Salva Kiir will remain at the head of South Sudan. His main opponent, Riek Machar, will leave his South African exile to resume his position as first vice president he left when he fled the country two years ago.
In detail, power and opposition have agreed on a millimeter sharing of key positions.
A transitional government of 35 ministers will be in charge of implementing the agreement. Salva Kiir will get 20 ministers, Riek Machar nine, the other opposition parties will share the remaining six portfolios.
A new assembly of 550 members will be born with 332 for the power, 128 for the Machar camp and 90 for the others.
“It’s a great success. We have brought peace to the people and we will work hard to ensure that the agreement is applied to the letter,” said government spokesman Michael Makuei.
Two caveats however: the parties have not yet agreed on the sharing of positions at the local level. And several opposition movements refused to sign the agreement.
Sudan’s Foreign Minister, Al-Dierdiry Ahmed, promised that negotiations would continue to a final text, whose signing is already scheduled for August 5.