Longechuk, December 13, 2021 (SSNA) — A reliable source disclosed that 15 soldiers led by General Tuding Yak Rom, who defected to SSPDF a few months ago, have deserted their base and declared their return to SPLM/A-IO base in Mangok, Longechuk County, Upper Nile State, South Sudan. The defectors, under command of 2nd Lt. Chiok Gatmut Nyuon, recounted their narrative saying they were misinformed about the situation indicating they had faced a “harsh situation,” which could have been prevented if they were not misled from the very first place by General Tuding Yak and the people behind their defection.
They said, when we followed General Tuding Yak, it was on the basis that we were joining the SSPDF to ensure peace since we are in peace. Our defection was under the pretext that we could not fight our brothers, but to be integrated into the SSPDF without turning our guns to our community. However, this was not the case as the intention of the SSPDF is to encourage us to destabilize Longechuk, County, contrary to bringing stability into the area.
Such a decision is against our will and shall not be executed in our watch. If the SSPDF is working hard to divide the community, we are not meant to do so and/or have no reason to destabilize our county. We are informing the public that we have now returned to SPLM/A-IO as we realized that SPLM/A-IO is the only principal peace guarantor wholeheartedly working toward bringing about peace and stability across South Sudan.
We, therefore, would like to inform the people of South Sudan, and the Longechuk communities that we are back to the right movement (SPLM/A-IO). We will be followed by a number of our colleagues who do not support the idea of waging an insurgency against our community. Instead, we would only advance the position of SPLM/A-IO mission of bringing peace to impoverished communities devastated by the civil war for the last 7 years.
The war has killed more than 400,000 people and exiled millions of people into refugee camps in foreign countries.