South Sudanese government has deployed Gordon Buay as charge de affairs to Washington after recalling the head of the mission for consultation.
The government, in response to the decision by the United States which restricts sales of arms South Sudan, decided to recall Ambassador Garang Diing Akuong in protest of what it equated to sanctions and an arms embargo.
A presidential aide said on Wednesday that the government decided to deploy Buay to the United States with the full backing of the government, particularly the office of the president and his two deputies.
“Comrade Gordon Buay has been returned to the United States this time not deputy head of mission but in a different capacity. He has returned as the charge d’affaires. He will be the head of the mission in the absence of the ambassador”, said the aide.
“A chargé enjoys the same privileges and immunities as a regular ambassador”, the aide explained when asked to comment on the status of the relations between the US and the Republic of South Sudan following the recall of Ambassador Akuong.
The undersecretary of the ministry of foreign affairs also confirmed the return of Buay to the US, saying Chargés d’affaires are appointed to be permanent heads of mission, in cases where the two countries lack ambassadorial-level relations.
A chargé d’affaires, however, do not permit credential to the president of the host country since they are appointed by letters of credence from the foreign minister of the sending state to the foreign minister of the receiving state.
With the absence of the minister of foreign affairs, it remains unclear who signed the deployment letter. Buay also confirmed his deployment, saying has been in Washington since Tuesday after departing Juba on the directive of the government with the knowledge of the president.
“I will do my best to serve the country,” said Buay.