South Sudan

Kiir pardons Pagan Amum, ex-detainees

pagan-amum ps

Pagan Amum, the former powerful SPLM Secretary General


The ruling SPLM has dropped all criminal charges on Pagan Amum, Deng Alor Kuol and other members of the former political detainees.

Acting Secretary General, Dr. Ann Itto, told Eye Radio that the cancellation of the charges was instructed by the president, as a provision of the Arusha agreement.

The charges were dropped after a SPLM political bureau meeting held on Monday by the chairman of the party, President Salva Kiir with other SPLM members agreed to abandon the criminal charges.

“In that directive, there is a phrase that says that all former detainees are welcome home, provided that they do not have criminal charges,” Dr Itto was quoted as saying.

The government in Juba has been trying to convince the former detainees to return to the war-torn country.

“And that [criminal charges] had made it difficult for them to come home. They were not sure who had criminal charges or not. So, in the interest of peace, the Political Bureau met to cancel any criminal charges against them.”

Dr Itto says the return of the three politicians will be done in consultation with the facilitators of the Arusha Agreement.

The Arusha Agreement was facilitated by Tanzania’s ruling party, Chama Cha Mapenduzi.

However, according to Radio Tamazuj, the former detainees have downplayed their alleged pardon saying they were not aware of any crimes they committed in the first place.

The former detainees are a group of high level SPLM leaders who were arrested and released at the start of the South Sudan Civil War in December 2013 before going into exile in neighboring countries.

“I am not aware of any criminal charges against one of us before, so you ask them the basis of the pardon,” said John Luk Jok, spokesperson of the group, in an exclusive interview with Radio Tamazuj.

Jok said that as the leader of the SPLM party, Kiir should revoke previous orders that terminated membership of various party leaders as per the Arusha agreement signed earlier this year that was meant to reunite the SPLM’s warring factions.


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