JUBA, Feb 3 – South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is his country’s Special Envoy to South Sudan, has expressed optimism regarding future peace in the world’s youngest nation following the signing of a peace agreement between President Salva Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar in Addis Ababa, Ethopia.
South Africa and Tanzania had been helping the East African regional bloc, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), to find a solution to the conflict in South Sudan, which has raged since December 2013.
Ramaphosa said here monday that the peace deal was a significant start to returning the country to stability.
“It started the process of rebuilding the party, of uniting the party and getting all these leaders to work together and unite. What now needs to follow, is that the IGAD process in Addis Ababa will now be built up and firmed up on what was achieved in Arusha. We will now be looking forward to an agreement on how they will co-operate and work together on a government level.”
IGAD is the eight-member regional bloc which has negotiated six ceasefires in South Sudan in the thirteen months of that country’s conflict, which started at the end of 2013, some two a half years after it gained independence from Sudan in July 2011.