The first vice president of South Sudan and former leader of the armed opposition, Riek Machar, his wife, Angelina Teny, and several workers in his office and bodyguards have contracted the coronavirus, official sources reported Monday.
Machar’s press office said in a statement that all of them have tested positive for COVID-19, without specifying how many employees are affected, and said that from today they will be quarantined at their residence for a period of 14 days.
The department described the vice president’s condition as good and stated that he has no symptoms of the disease, discovered through a test carried out on May 13 and whose results were known on Monday.
Machar had already undergone another coronavirus test on April 27, but this time it was negative, according to the note.
According to the latest data released by the World Health Organization (WHO), South Sudan has so far registered 285 infections and four deaths.
The former opposition leader and the South Sudanese president, Salva Kiir, signed in September 2018 a peace agreement that ended five years of war and established the formation of a transitional government with Kiir at the helm and Machar as first vice president for May 2019.
After several extensions due to disagreements on the number of states that the country must have and the merger of the security forces, the Executive was finally born at the end of last February when the two men who led the main sides of the civil war were sworn in.
South Sudan, the youngest country in the world, gained independence in 2011 and sank in 2013 in a civil war estimated to have killed 400,000 people and led hundreds of thousands of people to move internally or leave the country.