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Dissident Lam Akol returns to Juba to support peace process

Dissident Lam Akol returns to Juba to support peace process

The opposition leader of the National Democratic Movement (NDM), Dr. Lam Akol Ajawin, has returned to the South Sudanese capital -Juba to physically support the implementation of the 2018 peace deal.

Dr. Lam is a signatory to the 2018 peace agreement under the umbrella of the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA). He left the country to Sudanese capital -Khartoum in July 2020 and later relocated to the Ethiopian capital -Addis Ababa following the outbreak of conflict in Khartoum on April 15, 2023.

Lam said he came back to Juba to physically support the implementation of the 2018 peace agreement.

“I came in order to continue in the road that we have started on 12th of September 2018, the peace process that we voluntarily  agreed that we should do it. I have not been far from it, maybe physically i was not there but i was taking part in the process,” Lam told reporters upon his arrival at Juba International Airport on Monday.

Dr. Lam Akol who leads the National Democratic Movement (NDM) is known for being critical of the government of South Sudan. He criticizes the government on the policies and the implementation of the 2018 peace agreement which he took part in as a signatory.

On his arrival, Lam said he has not been physically involved in implementation but has always supported it in a distance and now came back home to give his physical support.

“We hope to do the next stages which demand the physical process. If we were able to do the rest previously at a distance, this time; we need to be physically presence in order to push forward and take our land to the desired end that we have all planned,” He asserted.

Prominent politician Dr. Lam Akol previously served as the minister of Agriculture in the national government of South Sudan and resigned in 2016 citing lack of commitment to 2015 peace deal by the unity government.

Lam Akol has previously also led the opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-Democratic Change (SPLM-DC). He returned to Juba when the country is preparing for it first ever general elections.

The peace government in August 2022, agreed to extend the transitional period by 24 months to give parties time to complete the implementation of the remaining provisions.

After the extension, the parties developed a roadmap containing implementation matrix to guide and give a time bound implementation and this now make the country expects its first general elections since it gained independence from Sudan in July 2011.