The chief negotiator for the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels has come under intense criticism after he reportedly sent a letter to Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni urging him to assassinate rebel leader Joseph Kony. David Matsanga, reportedly said in the letter that the only way to end the over two decades LRA insurgency in northern Uganda is to ensure the demise of the rebel leader. Some political observers blame Matsanga for the breakdown of the peace talks after Kony failed to sign the final peace deal, claiming he needed more clarification on certain aspects of the deal. Speaking with reporter Peter Clottey from the Southern Sudanese capital, Juba, rebel chief negotiator Matsanga denied writing any letter to President Museveni.
"A gentleman named Dr. James Alfred Obita came to my office one morning when he was asking for a visa to go to Sweden. I used my letterhead of Africa World Media to give him a letter recommending him to the Swedish Embassy to go and get a visa. It is this same letterhead that Dr. James Obita, and President Museveni and his agents have used to actually write and use my signature and sign as if I was the one who has written the letter. You are aware that I have never seen Museveni for 22 years. These are tactics of the government of the republic of Uganda using the external office organization to taint my name," Matsanga noted.
He said the story is a fiction planted in the media to undermine the ongoing peace negotiations.
"It is a story concocted to threaten me to chicken out of the peace process, which I have struggled to negotiate for all these times, and I will not chicken out. I will still continue to protect general Joseph Kony as I have done, and the peace process will go on," he said.
Matsanga denied being the cause of the breakdown of the recent peace negotiations.
"You cannot blame the man who negotiated the agreement. Let me tell you that the entire agreement was negotiated by three people on the delegation namely; Ayo, Ayena and Dr. David Nyakorach Matsanga. The rest of all these people who claim to be loyal to LRA never talked their work; they never did any negotiation. They were there waiting to pick up money, and all what I did was for us to labor to make sure that this agreement is straight," Matsanga pointed out.
He also denied planning the demise of rebel leader Joseph Kony.
"If I wanted to kill General Joseph Kony, how could I go to The Hague to be arrested by Ocampo (prosecutor for the International Criminal Court)? I have put my life out for him. I am not shaken by that because General Joseph Kony knows that he has confidence in me. He knows I know the politics of Uganda, and he knows that people are now undermining me because he reinstated me, and some of them have left the committee," he said.
Matsanga said although the peace talks are ongoing, the rebels need emergency food ration.
"The peace talks are on course. I am telling the international community to deliver food as a matter of emergency to the LRA troops who are assembled in Ri-Kwamgba because their food was destroyed by the SPLA (Sudan's People's Liberation Army) and there is no water and it was broken down by the SPLA," Matsanga noted.
He challenged his accusers to make their case in the presence of the rebel leader.
"We are going to meet General Joseph Kony, and I want Obita and the rest of these people who are chickening out to climb the helicopter to come along with me and put these grievances, these allegations in front of general Joseph Kony, and let's see who is going to come back," he said.