South Sudan

S.Sudan VP: I’m tired of carrying Machar on my head


Wani being guarded by SPLA elite guards

South Sudan’s Vice President, James Wani Igga, says he is tired of carrying rebel chief, Riek Machar, on his head.

Wani was addressing the South Sudan national parliament before leaving for New York USA to attend a UN meeting that President Salva Kiir boycotted after being treated like a school boy.

Wani is quoted by Radio Tamazuj complaining and crying out that his position for the second time is being taken from him and given to Machar.

According to the compromise peace agreement signed by both Kiir and Machar, the rebel chief was given the juicy First Vice President positon putting him on top of Wani who becomes the Second Vice President.

Wani says the regional bloc IGAD did not consult him on the matter but just imposed Machar on him.

The VP who earlier supported and promised to help implement the agreement now says he also has reservations, similar to those Kiir had while signing the agreement.

During the Addis Ababa peace talks, Machar demanded the position of executive Prime Minister which IGAD leaders declined to.

Machar then set his eyes on Wani’s position.

The Vice President protested and swore never to ever give up his position for Machar but to no avail.

“For the second time Riek Machar has been imposed on my head and I am carrying him again this time round,” Wani expressed his bitterness.

He added: “Why should I always be the victim of South Sudan?”

A member in the audience reminded the VP that he was being patritioc.

“Patriotism?” Wani spat out the word, “Am I the only person who has patriotism? All these people have patriotism?”

The bitter VP told parliament he only accepted to leave his position to Machar for the sake of peace.

He said there are good things about the agreement and he will be at the forefront supporting the implementation for the sake of peace.

“The issue is not about the personalities ‘Wani Igga or X or Y’, the issue is the country. It is our people who have suffered untold sufferings for almost fifty years. So I appeal to this house, if there is anybody who has been affected as an individual by this agreement, please, please stomach it as I did.”

Wani said the only fights left to fight are those in which the country is defending itself from foreign invasion but not within.

Wani stepped down for Machar to become the second deputy chairman in 2002 when he returned to SPLM following his defection in 1991.

“I did it so for the sake of peace and out of patriotism,” Wani recalls.

He also stood aside for Machar after the signing of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), which ended more than two decades of civil war between north and south, paving the way for South Sudan’s secession in 2011.

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