Ex-presidential advisor Daniel Awet Akot tells Kiir to step down

18. Mars 2021
Senior SPLM member says President Kiir is “mentally incapacitated” and does not have the capacity to serve citizens of the world’s youngest country.

JUBA – South Sudan’s former presidential advisor for military affairs Daniel Awet Akot is urging President Salva Kiir Mayardit to step down and hand over leadership to presidential minister Nhial Deng Nhial.

Speaking during a meeting of the Jieng Council of elders on Sunday, Awet said President Salva Kiir is mentally incapacitated and does not have the capacity to serve citizens of the world’s youngest country.

“When we call for the leadership meetings, we discuss nothing about development, about the vision of the SPLM. We discuss nothing about how to move this country forward. We discuss only our own affairs. We are always quarrelling and on our necks about small issues,” Akot said, according to Sudan Tribune.

“People look at us as the cause of their problem. Yes, we are the problem, and which is what I have always said that if we are the problem, let all of us step down, including comrade Salva and let someone with energy like Nhial Deng take over”.

The senior SPLM member further accused some unnamed junior officers in the SPLM and the army of sabotaging and undermining the efforts of senior party members.

“I have always reiterated in our SPLM PB [Political Bureau] meetings that we are mentally incapacitated and exhausted; Let’s hand over the remaining part of our vision to Nhial Deng to clean our image internationally,” he said.

It is not clear why one of the most loyal friends of the president is calling for end to his leadership. However, senior members of the group have in recent days grown hostile to the president with senior presidential advisor Kuol Manyang Juuk saying the government has failed to serve the people.

“Instead of reconstructing what was left by the war, we are destroying what was left by the war,” Juuk last week during the swearing ceremony of the newly reconstituted Jonglei state government.