June 06, 2015(Nyamilepedia) — Multiple reports from the neighboring states of Western Bhar el Ghazal and Western Equatoria allege that “Several battalions” of troops have defected from the army (SPLA-Juba) and South Sudan Police Service (SSPS) in the two embattled states.
According to the Deputy Spokesman of the SPLM/SPLA leadership, Mr. Nargi Roman, the troops which defected this morning have declared their allegiance to the armed Opposition under the leadership of the war-torn South Sudan’s former Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar Teny.
“This morning in Western Bahr el ghazal state, Several battalion defected from government troops and police services from different units to join the SPLA-IO and switly declared allegiance to SPLM/SPLA-IO under able leadership of Dr.Riek Machar Teny” Cde Nargi said.
The Opposition confirms that the renegades from Wester Bhar el Ghazal State are commanded in parts by the 1st Lt. Jedo Hassan Suliema, 1st Lt. Martin Juma and 1st Lt. Wilson Francis Dongo, all from South Sudan Police Service.
Another group from the army, which defected from Wau, is believed to have joined the SPLA [IO] forces, under the direct commands of the newly established Wau state’s Military Governor, Mr. Tingo Peter.
In accordance with the Opposition’s Pagak’s resolution, Cde Tingo Peter, whose forces recently captured the regime’s military and police posts at Bazia County, leads the operations in Western Bhar el Ghazal as a Military Governor.
The source further reiterates that a unit of heavily armed government troops, under the direct command of Capt. Nimeri Justin, have joined rebellion in Western Equatoria state this afternoon.
“From Western Equatoria state, a full batallion breakaway with all war fares and joined SPLA -IO early this afternoon under the command of Capt.Nimeri Justin .” Said Nargi, the deputy spokesman of Dr. Riek Machar.
While the overwhelmed residents of Western Bhar el Ghazal and Western Equatoria states are shocked and concern of the deteriorating security as war rages in states that have been relatives calm for the past 17 months, Juba is weighing SPLM’s Arusha Reunification agenda with the IGAD-Plus Peace Processes that are expected to resume soon in the neighboring Ethiopia capital, Addis Ababa.
South Sudan conflict began in mid December 2013 and continued to escalate for the past 17 months.
Following the breakdown of Peace Talks in Addis Ababa, which has given the two warring parties a window of intense battles in nearly all the ten states, South Sudan economy and security have collapsed as more oil-fields and strategic towns are seized by the rebels.
The well equipped government troops, which are blamed for advancing attacks in Unity, Jonglei and Upper Nile states, have recently lost many strategic towns in Greater Upper Niile and Bhar el Ghazal region.
In other reports, the State Government of Upper Nile, led by governor Simon Kun Puoch, has relocate its headquarters to Renk County as security status in the capital, Malakal, remains volatile.
Hon. Kun and many of his officials have sheltered in UN camps in Makala and also in Melut as fighters of the Opposition severally take control of the strategic capital of the oil rich Upper Nile state with very minimal resistance from the government troops and militia.