PHOTO: Presidents Obasanjo and Mbeki recognized that the solution to the current crisis was within the reach of the peoples of South Sudan
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, September 5, 2014/ — The African Union Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan (AUCISS) (http://www.au.int) met with President Thabo Mbeki, in his capacity as Chairperson of the High Level Implementation Panel on Sudan, today 4 September 2014. In attendance were President Olusegun Obasanjo, Professor Mahmood Mamdani and Lady Justice Sophia Akuffo.
The meeting follows nation wide consultations earlier undertaken by the AUCISS with key stakeholders across the spectrum of the South Sudanese society. This meeting constitutes another level of consultation which President Obasanjo observed as ‘providing us an opportunity to receive insight and possible proposals from President Mbeki and the high-level panel, for a lasting solution towards healing, reconciliation, accountability and institutional reform”. The two former Presidents engaged in a frank and open manner and they both noted the complementarity of the mandates of the two processes.
President Obasanjo chairs the AUCISS, which was established by the Peace and Security Council of the African Union at Summit level, in the wake of heightened tensions and violence in South Sudan from December 15 2013 to the present. The High Level Implementation Panel, on the other hand, was established in 2009, to undertake the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement which (amongst others) led to the independence of South Sudan. The mandate of the Panel includes the supporting of institutional reforms, promotion of reconciliation as well as democracy in the Republic of South Sudan and Sudan.
Presidents Obasanjo and Mbeki recognized that the solution to the current crisis was within the reach of the peoples of South Sudan but also requires an active supportive role from the regional structures, particularly, the Inter – Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the African Union (AU) and the broader international community.
The Commission of Inquiry will continue to meet (between 4 and 6 September) with other various stakeholders at the African Union Headquarters including holding a briefing session with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, HE Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.
Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of the African Union Commission (AUC).