South Sudan trial army general

South Sudanese Commander-in-Chief and President Salva Kiir, PHOTO: Media

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) – AFP recently reported that a court martial has resumed a trial of Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) General Stephen Buoy Rolnyang.

He was arrested in May 2018 in Mayom, in the former Unity State (north), after refusing to report to army headquarters in Juba as ordered, according to the same source.

Gen. Rolnyang is accused of treason and attempting to rebel against President Salva Kiir’s government.

“Stephen Buoy Rolnyang is charged with treason offences related to insecurity and for disobeying his hierarchy,” said deputy spokesman for the South Sudanese army, Santo Domic Chol.

“It is the prerogative of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army and the Chief of Staff to ensure that justice is done in matters relating to insecurity.”

According to media reports, in early 2014, a Juba court tried four high-ranking politicians, including two generals, for attempted coup d‘état, who then created the influential “former political prisoners” movement, which signed the 2018 peace agreement. They were then released without having served their sentence and pardoned.

General Buoy’s defence obtained a ten-day postponement of the trial on the grounds that the court was composed only of members of ranks lower than their client, who has the right to demand that the President of the Court have the rank of general.

Southern Sudan sank into civil war in December 2013, when President Salva Kiir, a Dinka, accused Riek Machar, his former vice-president, of ethnic nudity, of plotting a coup d‘état.

The conflict, marked by ethnic atrocities and the use of rape as a weapon of war, has killed more than 380,000 people according to a recent study, and forced more than four million South Sudanese, or nearly one-third of the population, to flee.

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