Riek Machar sworn in as First Vice President
Between 2005 and 2011 Riek Machar was 2nd Vice-President of Southern Sudan. Then on 9th July 2011 he was made Vice-President of the new state of South Sudan. But on 23rd July 2013 Machar was dismissed from his position by President Salva Kiir.
By December 2013 South Sudan was plunged into a violent conflict with Riek Machar leading a group of rebels, the consequences of which have led to the deaths of at least 11,000 people (with some reports suggesting it could be as high as 50,000) and the displacement of up to 2 million people.
Since then the United Nations and neighbouring countries have been trying to bring the warring parties back together. Yesterday they achieved partial success when Riek Machar was sworn in, once more, as the 1st Vice-President and Wani Igga as Vice-President.
In the Transitional Government of National Unity Machar’s Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) will have 10 Cabinet ministers and around 70 members of the national legislative assembly.
Whether the new government will hang together is anyone’s guess but it didn’t bode well when President Kiir said “In the Transitional Government of National Unity, we do not expect opposition neither in the Executive nor in the Parliament” during the swearing in ceremony.
We may have an announcement on the new Cabinet as early as this weekend.