Mabuza confident of breakthrough in deadlock over states
South Africa's Deputy President David Mabuza on Tuesday said he is confident of a breakthrough in negotiations on the number of states and their boundaries.
Mabuza is currently in Juba to facilitate a three-day consultative meeting on the contentious issue of the number of states and their boundaries. The South Sudan parties failed to reach an agreement on the number of states and their boundaries last month.
Speaking to reporters after meeting President Salva Kiir, Mabuza said he made final consultations with President Kiir on the contentious issue of the number of states and their boundaries.
"We are now at a point where we must zero in and find a conclusion to this discussion, that’s why are we making the last consultation with the president," Mabuza said.
The South African deputy president further said he held very productive meetings with President Salva Kiir. "We are now preparing for a meeting with the president and Dr. Riek Machar in one meeting where we are going to probably take a further step forward in trying to find a solution,” he explained.
During the consultative meeting of parties that took place from 1 to 4 December 2019, Mr. Mabuza said meaningful progress was made wherein parties moved from their original five divergent positions towards consensus on two positions, which are 23+1 and 32+ states.
President Salva Kiir and SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar last month expressed hope that South Africa’s deputy president David Mabuza could play a big role in bridging their divergent viewpoints.