- Former Spokesperson for SPLA-IO sentenced to death
- SPLA-IO says the sentencing contravenes the peace agreement
- Parts of South Sudan still does not have peace
By Iceta Matedio
Moyo-The leadership of the SPLM-IO under Dr Riek Machar has condemned the death penalty of James Gatdet, the former Spokesperson of the group who was sentenced to death in a court in Juba on Monday.
He was accused of treason and other charges after being deported from Kenya in 2016 and has since been held at the National Security detention premises.
The leadership of the SPLM-IO said the death penalty is unjust and is contrary to the Cessation of Hostilities agreement and basic human decency. In a statement which Daily Monitor received, the leadership said: “It is shameful that when the regime should be working to create a concussive environment for negotiations they are instead handing down a bogus death penalty.”
The agreement signed in December 2017, recommits the parties to ending all forms of violence, protect civilians and allow unhindered humanitarian access.
Col Lam Gabriel, the deputy Spokesperson for SPLA-IO told West Nile Press Online on Wednesday evening on phone that the Cessation of Hostilities (CoH) in Article 9(2) (a),(b) and (c) has provision for release of political detainees.
Top. Former Spokesperson James sentenced to death, while Col Lam Paul Gabriel speaking at Uganda-South Sudan border. Photo from Internet and Felix
He added that the movement would like to encourage civil population to remain steadfast to the cause of peace. “We assure our members and members and all peace loving South Sudanese that we are pursuing diplomatic means to resolve this matter and in this we shall spare no efforts. The intention of the regime is to arouse xenophobic sentiments in the home town of James Gatdet,” Col Lam said.
In a statement released by Amnesty International Commission, the Deputy Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and Great Lakes, Sarah Jackon, said: “Gatdet’s sentence is completely unacceptable and must be quashed immediately. The death penalty is an abhorrent punishment and should never be used in any circumstances.”
Mabior Garang Mabior, the Chairperson SPLM (IO) National committee for information and Public relations said that the AU, the UN, European Union to intervene in this ‘blatant’ violation of Human rights. “We are calling upon them for unjust and cruel decision by the regime and our civil population to remain calm in the face of these callous provocations”, he says.