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Joint Defense Board visits Bahr el Ghazal over Magenis clashes

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 A Joint Defense Board (JDB) committee comprised of 16 members last week visited Western Bahr el Ghazal state to reassure about the unification of forces and the implementation of security arrangements of the revitalized peace agreement following the recent fighting within the SPLA-IO ranks in the Magenis area of Upper Nile State.

The presidency formed a committee to investigate the Magenis fighting and tasked the JDB to meet all the forces at the various training centers across the country and dispel any worries that the clashes would jeopardize the implementation of the security arrangements.

The JDB Bahr el Ghazal team on Thursday visited Dakum (Mapel) military training site where they informed the forces about the ongoing progress in handling the SPLA-IO fallout without compromising the peace deal. The committee is also expected to visit Massana Biira in Wau and Pantid in Northern Bahr el Ghazal.

Addressing the forces in Mapel, the head of the committee, Major General Charles Macheing, said his team was on a mission to inform the trainees about the recent fighting in Magenis.

 “We came to tell you about what happened recently in Magenis, in the past few days, a problem happened in Magenis among SPLA-IO alone and when we received the order from the responsible side, we were told to come and tell you a clear message in Bahr el Ghazal that what happened is something that does not take us back again and it will not derail the security arrangement,” Gen. Macheibg told forces in Dakum (Mapel) training center.

He added, “The president of the Republic of South Sudan with his deputies stated very clearly that it will not affect the security arrangement, the security arrangement will remain as it is and the forces will soon be graduated.”

He acknowledged the challenges faced by the forces at the training centers which include lack of food and medicines.

“The problem of food, as I told you, comrade Santino Deng Wol, the co-chair of the JDB and Chief of General staff of SSPDF, during his recent visit ordered all Division commanders to dispatch food to all the training centers,” Gen. Macheing said.

For his part, the commander at the Dakum (Mapel) training center, Brigadier General Benjamin Wol, said the forces on the ground are ready for graduation and deployment.

“Here in Mapel, we the forces are already unified and ready for the process of graduation. Due to some constraints is why we are still here but we are already unified,” General Wol said.

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