JUBA – President Salva Kiir of South Sudan says his country's long-delayed elections will take place in 2024 and that he will be on the ballot.
Kiir, who has led South Sudan since the territory became independent of Sudan in 2011, accepted the endorsement of the ruling party at a stadium event Tuesday in Bahr el Ghazal.
“I am deeply touched by your endorsement and your continued support to our historic party,” Kiir told tens of thousands of supporters at the Wau Stadium.
Kiir is expected to face his long-time rival, First Vice President Riek Machar, who has yet to confirm his candidacy.
The opposition has accused the government of lacking the political will to hold elections.
But Kiir said he was committed to free and fair elections.
The vote would be the country’s first and the culmination of the peace agreement signed nearly five years ago to pull the young nation out of fighting that killed some 400,000 people.
While large-scale clashes have subsided, violence in parts of the country persists, killing 2,240 people last year, according to the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project.