SPLM-IO knocks Santino’s door to probe Lam’s assassination claims

SPLM-IO knocks Santino’s door to probe Lam’s assassination claims
Chief of Defence Forces Gen Santino Wol Deng. [Photo: courtesy]

The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) requested that the Chief of Defence Forces, Gen. Santino Wol, investigate the alleged assassination attempt on the spokesperson of its military wing.

This came after SPM-IO linked the SSPDF to an incident the former described as an attempt to kill Col. Lam Paul Gabriel.

In an exclusive interview with The City Review, Col. Lam, the official spokesperson of SPLA-IO, who was alleged to have survived the assassination incident, confirmed the claims but added that they are being handled.

He told The City Review that he was safe and would continue with his normal duties, but he was not yet sure who wanted to kill him or the reasons behind the attempt on his life.

Lam revealed that after the incident occurred, the CDF was notified to investigate the incident.

“The good thing is that yesterday the incident was reported to the Chief of Defence Forces, Santino Deng Wol, and I believe they will follow up on the issue from there and find out what happened and why it happened if at all it happened,” he said.

Lam added that the SPLM-IO has officially notified the concerned authorities to investigate the matter and bring those who planned it to book.

He stressed that the SPLM-IO remains committed to the peace process with the hope of ensuring permanent peace in the country.

However, when contacted for a response to the accusations, the SSPDF spokesperson, Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang, declined to comment on the probe, adding that the accusation came from a political figure.

“Because the accusation is made by a political figure like him (Oyet), it needs an equivalent; if it could have been from the military wing, I could have responded,” he said.

He added that the government spokesperson, Mr Michael Makuei, remains the right person to give such a response.

On Thursday, the Deputy Chairperson of SPLM-IO, Oyet Nathaniel Pierino, alleged in a statement that some military men suspected to be from the SSPDF trailed and intercepted a personal car belonging to Col. Lam Paul.

“Today, February 21, 2024, at around 9:00 a.m. local time in Gudele II, in Juba, two (2) numberless military armoured vehicles suspected to belong to the Military Intelligent Unit of the SSPDF trailed and intercepted a personal car belonging to Col. Lam Paul Gabriel, the official spokesperson of SPLA-IO,” the statement read.

In a letter addressed to CTSAMVM, a peace security mechanism in the country, Oyet called for quick intervention to investigate the incident.

He added that it is a violation to target the spokesperson of the SPLA-IO, adding that such violates the peace agreement.

Oyet further claimed that there have been several threats to his security by some people who wanted to threaten him, especially after the hot debate over the budget last year.

He appealed to CTSAMVM to ensure that it knew who planned the attack on Lam’s vehicle and what the intention of such plans was.

Oyet stated that such violations remain a blockage to the smooth running of the peace agreement and may jeopardise the peace agreement if not properly handled.

“In light of the above violations and hostilities, I am writing to report this critical and unfortunate incident and development, which is threatening the very foundation of the peace agreement as such, reversing the critical milestones we have achieved since September 12, 2018,” Oyet said.