Olony holding on for security deal with Kiir before flying to Upper Nile

Olony holding on for security deal with Kiir before flying to Upper Nile

The leader of the Agwelek Forces, Gen. Johnson Olony, will meet President Salva to wrap up a security deal before returning to his base in Upper Nile State.

After months of procrastination around his planned visit to Juba, Gen. Olony finally arrived at the Juba International Airport on Sunday.

However, according to Olony, he will have to spend five days in Juba to discuss with President Kiir the modalities of implementing the Khartoum Peace Agreement signed with him last year.

In an exclusive interview with The City Review yesterday, Paul Achut Nyibek, the head of the advance team to Juba, said that Olony will first accomplish the unfinished discussions surrounding the Khartoum deal with President Kiir before returning to Malakal.

“He came to finish the unfinished part of the agreement; he came to implement the agreement. In a meeting with the president, they will discuss a lot of issues. Concerning security arrangements,” Achut said.

He revealed that Gen. Olony may spend more than the five days he proposed, adding that he is committed to ensuring that the peace is implemented.

“There is no time limit; you cannot fix a time to bring peace. He would like to go back as soon as possible because there are other responsibilities behind him. But the situation here is that he came on Sunday, and already three days have passed. If you want to calculate, these five days will be done before anything is done, so there is a need for some time,” he said.

He added that Olony is prepared to meet President Kiir, but several engagements kept the head of state busy, including the conference on transitional justice mechanisms.

“Tomorrow we will know exactly when Olony will meet the President, and he is ready and will meet him,” he said.

He added that the unfinished parts of the peace agreement include the cantonment and integration of Agwelek forces.

“We were supposed to station our forces in four areas along the Upper Nile, and then we will have the communiqué that has to be concluded by a conference,” he said.

“He is going to complete the rest of the security arrangement in Upper Nile,” he said.

The Khartoum Peace Agreement was signed by President Kiir’s security advisor, Tut Gatluak, the Director-General of the National Security’s Internal Security Bureau, Akol Koor, and the SSPDF Military Intelligence Director General, Stephen Marshal, on behalf of the government. Gen. Simon Gatwech Dual and his deputy, Gen. Johnson Olony, signed the deal on behalf of their SPLM/A-IO breakaway Kitgwang faction in 2022.

According to the agreement, the government of South Sudan was supposed to facilitate the establishment of coordination offices in Juba, Malakal, and Bor to assist in the process of assembling and reintegrating the KitGwang faction. 

The peace agreement also guarantees the implementation of the security arrangements and a permanent ceasefire and grants the Kitgwang faction amnesty, containment, and reintegration of the breakaway SPLA-IO forces into the SSPDF within three months, among others.