Cabinet says the agreement on a permanent ceasefire between South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit and Riek Machar, and the signing of the Khartoum Declaration raises hope of a deal to end their country’s devastating war.
“The declaration stipulates that the ceasefire arrangement includes disengagement, separation of forces in close proximity, withdrawal of all allied troops, opening of humanitarian corridors and the release of prisoners of war and political detainees,” said Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane.
The Minister made the remarks at a media briefing on Thursday on the outcomes of the Cabinet meeting held on Wednesday, 4 July.
The agreement also allows members of the African Union (AU) and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to deploy forces to supervise the ceasefire.
Cabinet encouraged the parties to work together to ensure that the ceasefire finally leads to ending the war and ensure the return of peace and economic development in South Sudan.
African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)
The signing of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement with the AU was also hailed by Cabinet as a step towards boosting intra-Africa trade.
“The signing of this agreement by South Africa brings the number of countries who have signed to forty-nine.
“The AfCFTA takes the continent closer to the creation of the world’s biggest free trade area. It is expected to yield great socio-economic benefits for all countries in the continent,” said Mokonyane.
According to the UN, it is estimated that the AfCFTA will boost intra Africa trade by 53% by eliminating import duties and non-tariff barriers. This agreement is potentially poised to create an African market of more than 1.2 billion people with an economy worth US$2.5 trillion.
The Trade and Industry Minister is set to commence the process to get the agreement ratified through Parliament. – SAnews.gov.za