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President Kiir, all opposition leaders sign governance agreement

07 August 2018

The talks come as part of a regional push aimed at achieving peace in South Sudan, which plunged into a devastating conflict just two years after its independence from Sudan in July 2011.

Present at the signing ceremony were Sudanese President Omar Bashir, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, Djibouti President Ismaïl Omar Guelleh and other regional and global representatives.

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir and Riek Machar, opposition leader and Kiir's former vice president, will attend the signing ceremony alongside many regional leaders and representatives of the worldwide community.

Thousands of South Sudanese were massed outside the Friendship Hall in Khartoum to celebrate the peace deal.

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South Sudanese President Salva Kiir said Friday he was committed to a power-sharing deal with his arch-rival Riek Machar, vowing it would not collapse like similar agreements had in the past.

Salva Kiir says the new deal will survive because it won't be forced upon them like previous accords.

But Bashir said with South Sudan expected to resume oil production, Juba would raise enough funds not only for the huge administration costs but also reconstruction of the broken road infrastructure network.

The war erupted following a power wrangle between President Kiir and his former deputy Dr Machar.

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"My government and I know the conflict in South Sudan has resulted in a financial and political burden", Kiir said.

The agreement outlines guidelines on power-sharing and governance, including settling boundary disputes, which will be guided by a Boundary Commission, and provides for an avenue for the people of South Sudan to participate in a referendum if need be to settle those disputes. The transitional Parliament will comprise 550 lawmakers, 332 from Kiir's side and 128 from Machar's faction.

The conflict has been fuelled by divisions between the Mr Kiir's Dinka and Mr Machar's Nuer ethnic groups.

"As we have done, we shall continue to walk with you from this moment of great expectation to the full implementation of a Revitalized Agreement", President Kenyatta said.

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President Kiir, all opposition leaders sign governance agreement